Due not being able to expound on the application of this past Sunday’s sermon, I am taking this week to help us (I say us because I need this just as much as anybody) personally cultivate a lifestyle of sharing the Gospel.
Know and Share Your Personal Testimony
A very important part of sharing the Gospel with an unbeliever is making sure you know, understand, and can communicate briefly how YOU YOURSELF came to faith in Christ. Sometimes it won’t come up in a Gospel conversation. But often it does. It is a great tool to have tucked away in your toolbox if/when the opportunity presents itself.
If someone were to ask you how YOU came to faith in Jesus, I recommend you make sure 3 parts of your story are included:
1. Your life before Christ.
Every person who has put his/her trust in Jesus has a “Before Jesus” period. For some (like me!), it is hard to remember those church going years leading up to age 8. You’ll have to think hard. For others, it was an obvious lifestyle that contradicted the things of God prior to trusting Him as an adult. For still others, it is everything in between. Everyone’s story will look different. But everyone’s story has a time when they did not know Jesus.
Take a minute to write out what your life was like before Jesus saved you. Ask the Lord to bring things to your mind. Don’t write a dissertation. Just a brief description of your life before knowing Jesus.
2. How you actually came to faith in Christ.
For every Christian, there was a time when they knew they became a follower of Jesus. For some, it was a “moment” at a revival meeting. For others it was a process over time. For others, it was a conversation with parents. Some remember the date, time, location, and what they were wearing. Others can’t even remember the year. But for those who are truly “born again,” there was a time and/or season when you went from being a non-Christian to a full follower of Jesus Christ.
Take a minute and briefly write about what happened when you came to faith in Jesus.
**A VERY IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER HERE is that when you share your testimony with an unbeliever – ALWAYS include the Gospel during this part. Your story won’t save anybody. But the Good News of the Gospel will. The Gospel, not our story, carries the power to save.
For instance, you might wanna say something like, “That night at that old country church I was listening to the preacher preach from God’s Word and I felt like God was speaking right to me. I heard the preacher say that ‘all have sinned against God and deserve to be punished forever.’ I knew that was me. I also heard him say, ‘But instead of leaving us to get what we deserved, God sent Jesus to do everything for us we couldn’t do. Jesus lived the perfect life we couldn’t live and Jesus died the death that we deserved.’ I knew I couldn’t do it on my own. Then the preacher said, ‘The Bible says that if you look to Jesus as the only way to be rescued and your only hope, you can be saved.’ I don’t remember everything that happened that night, but I know that – for the first time – I stopped trusting in myself and my ‘good works’ and I put all of my trust in Jesus to save me. And He did.” Again – this will look different for everyone. But for every genuine Christian – there was a time when you understood and put your complete and total trust in the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Include the Gospel you believed in when you are telling your story.
3. Your life since you put your trust in Christ.
Though no one will ever be perfect this side of heaven, followers of Jesus are different once they trust Jesus for their salvation and the Holy Spirit comes to live in them. As a matter of fact, nowhere do we read in the Bible that we have to know the date and time and place where we “got saved.” But we are told that the way to know for sure you are saved is to check the fruit of your lifestyle. Tell how your life has been different since you put your trust in Jesus.
For me, since I became a Christian at age 8, I can honestly say I have sinned “worse” after I believed than before. The difference? When I sinned in high school, for instance, I got convicted REAL quick. To this day, when I sin against the Lord, the Spirit of God convicts my spirit. My life has been different because of the indwelling presence and convicting power of the Spirit of God.
Take a minute and write out how your life has been different since you put you trust in Jesus. What have you noticed about your lifestyle? Your affections? You conviction of sin? Your love for the Word of God? Your desire to make Jesus known?
Now – here’s a challenge: Pray for God to lead you to someone you can share this with. Commit to God right now that at some point over the next 24 hours you will ask someone if you can share your personal testimony with them. Who’s in?
Just remember these 3 things: Before Jesus – How Jesus – After Jesus
WHY NOT? We have nothing to lose.
You can do it! He who is in you is GREATER than He who is in the world!