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When Will The Rapture Happen?

Water Baptism a Precursor to Spirit Baptism

When and How Do We Receive the Holy Spirit?

Can good people who are not Christians get into Heaven?

 
Discipleship Training
How To Be A Good Witness For Christ
by Dan Therrien

Following the Great Commission (Matt. 28:19) is a command Christ gave to all Christians.  He didn't give us the truth just to hoard it. He gave us the gospel to share. Today is the day of salvation. We must infiltrate, not isolate. We are to be God's paperboys by delivering the Good News. God doesn't ask for our ability but our availability.

Living a Christian life is so much more than getting saved, trying to be a good person and going to church. If the Disciples did that Christ would have wasted his time and there would be no Christians today. All are called but not all answer the call. The way we're going the next generation will be in real trouble because sadly today, about 95% of Christians never led anyone to the Lord which explains why the earth is in such disarray today. We must answer the call. Jesus never said to leave it all to the pastor.

Being a good Christian is more than just leading someone to Christ. We must disciple them. It's not just about getting into heaven. It's about heaven getting into you. It is not ok to say the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. It's also not ok to say we must decrease so He can increase. This is admitting we have strongholds or addictions we haven't released to Christ which means Satan still has controls over certain areas of your life. This keeps people from sharing the gospel for fear of being called a hypocrite and they'd be right. But by sharing your testimony on how the Lord saved you and is moving in your life to release you from certain strongholds, others can then relate, won't call you a hypocrite, self-righteous, or anything else. The worse thing you can do is tell someone what they need to do or they will go to hell. Although a true statement, this is the quickest way to turn someone away and they'll quickly tell you where to go.

Colossians 3 says we must die to self so we can live. We are commanded to filled with the Spirit which means to be totally controlled by the Holy Spirit and depend on Him in everything we do. Only then can we be a truly good witness where others will see Christ in you and not just see you as another good person. It's about bringing glory to God and not yourself.

But you may say, "I only hang around with Christians and don't associate with others." Most Christians today put themselves in this category and are specifically the ones I'm writing this article for.

When and Where to Share the Gospel

We are to "Be On Duty" at all times. We meet people every day beyond the relatively small group we hang around with which provides endless opportunities if we keep our eyes and ears open.

An effective witness includes both a good witness and verbalization of the gospel. You may be the only Bible some people ever read. Some people will develop their whole opinion of God based on you, His representative. This can be friends, relatives, associates, neighbors and others. How does that make you feel and what does that motivate you to do, change, or stop doing? Did you ever think there's a reason God put you where you are for a reason?

The Power of Your Personal Testimony

We have been called to make a difference. Our personal story is an effective tool in evangelism. It cannot be argued with and acts as a bridge in relating to others without sounding like you're preaching at them.

How to Share the Gospel

There's not a one-size-fits-all approach to evangelism. As Christians, we are called to always be ready to answer for our faith (1 Peter 3:15). When sharing the gospel, establish a dialogue and engage people with tact and humility.

You can start a conversation with, "Hi how's it going?" If they tell you good things, say something like, "That's great! God is good. He loves us so much and wants nothing but the best for us." Followup with your testimony and what God has done for you. If they tell you bad news regarding health issues or the like, respond with something like, "I'm so sorry, can I pray with you about that?" Most people will say yes and thank you for caring. As your conversations continue always look for opportunities to lead them to Christ if not saved. People like to be complimented so when you say they have a nice smile or you like their clothes, tattoo or whatever, you're building a relationship. Tell them how much you enjoyed talking with them and would like to call them sometime, befriend them on facebook or whatever seems fitting. Hopefully they'll respond with, "That would be great." If so, pull out a pen and piece of paper (which you should always keep on hand) to record their name, phone number, email, address, etc. Then make sure you followup.

Once you've built a person's trust, invite them to church so you can introduce them to the pastor and some of your friends. Offer to take them or meet them at the door at a certain time which will make them less likely to back out at the last minute. This is where discipleship begins if they've said the sinners prayer from their heart and became born again. If not, more seeds will be planted during the service and they'll have another opportunity to respond during the altar call to reinforce what you've already shared with them. If they still don't respond, offer to take them out to lunch and ask them how they liked the service. Tell them how much you and everyone else enjoyed having them and you look forward to seeing them next Sunday. You are now building a loving relationship and planting more seeds. If they've come this far God is working on them and it's just a matter of time before they turn to Him.

Church is an essential part of the discipleship process because they must be baptized after being saved. Matt. 28:19 states, "Go ye therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you." This is the Great Commission. Without doing this we make it the Great Omission.

Bad News | Good News

Gospel means 'Good News' but before we can share the Good News we need to know the bad news.

The bad news is all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23) If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. (1 John 1:8) Sin is also called trespass or crossing the line. So if you break one of the 10 commandments you've crossed the line. If you've lied, used God's name in vain, stolen, etc. then you've sinned. In the Book of James we're told if we're guilty of one sin we're guilty of all. One sin is enough to keep us out of heaven. That's the bad news.

The good news is that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. Jesus came to pay the debt He did not owe because we owed a debt we could not pay. We need to establish that all are sinners and need a Savior. There's lots of good people out there - Christians and non-Christians but heaven is not for good people: heaven is for forgiven people.

God sends no one to hell. We send ourselves there if we choose to live our lives without Him. The last thing God wants is for anyone made in His image to be separated from Him for eternity and go to hell. He gave us free will and if we reject God and everlasting life in heaven, we're choosing satan and everlasting destruction in hell.

Jesus is not one of many ways to heaven but our only hope of salvation. Scripture tell us there's salvation by no one except Christ. (Acts 4:12)

CLOSE THE DEAL

When sharing the gospel, it's important to know when to pop the question. We shouldn't be afraid to ask someone if they would like to receive Jesus Christ as Lord. You never know where someone is at spiritually. Now may be the time for the harvest. Remember, we used to be the person who didn't know God until someone shared the gospel with us.

Be prepared to lead someone in a simple prayer that asks for God's forgiveness and salvation. We must also be prepared to make disciples by helping new believers to grow. Lead them by your example, encourage them in their faith, bring them to church, etc. - whatever is necessary.

Part of their growth is going out and doing what you just did over and over.