Sometimes sharing your faith as a believer can be daunting, but I have a few tips that can help you be more effective when striking up conversations with nonbelievers. If you’ve ever wanted to share your faith but don’t know where to start, see below for three things to remember.
1. Use the Bible.
Number one: use the Bible when you share your faith. When I say, “Use the Bible,” I don’t mean that you have to carry a large Bible around with you or wave it in a person’s face.
Hide the Word of God in your heart. It’s good to carry a Bible in your purse or your backpack, but the best place to hide God’s Word is in your heart. Why is it important to quote Scripture? Because there’s power in the Word of God. God says in Isaiah, “So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it” (Isa. 55:11).
It’s not a mistake that the Bible calls the Word of God a sword. It’s the “sword of the Spirit” (Eph. 6:17). The sword is primarily an offensive, not defensive, weapon.
Yes, you could deflect blows with the sword, but mainly it’s offensive. And so use the Word of God when you share your faith. Imagine someone saying, “Well, I don’t believe that sword you’re holding is sharp.”
Really? Well, stab him with it. Now I don’t mean that literally, of course, but figuratively. I’m saying, quote the Scripture because there’s power in the Word of God.
Memorize the Bible, know the Bible, and quote the Bible when you share your faith.
2. Talk About Jesus.
Here’s another big one. This is probably the biggest of all: Talk about Jesus.
That’s our message. It’s Jesus. Jesus crucified, Jesus risen, and Jesus standing at the door of the person’s life and knocking. Paul the apostle says, in effect, I don’t want to know anything else among you except Christ and him crucified (1 Cor. 2:2).
Here’s the problem: Sometimes in our attempt to cross over, we don’t bring the cross over. The power of the gospel is in the simple message of Christ dying on the cross in our place and rising again from the dead.
That’s why Paul said, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes.” (Rom. 1:16).
So no matter how you start that conversation, make sure you get to the message of Jesus crucified and risen again.
3. Remember That Conversion Is God’s Work.
Remember that conversion is the work of God, not you.
My job, your job, our job, is to proclaim the gospel; the Holy Spirit’s job is to convict or convince a person of his or her need for Jesus Christ.
I think sometimes one of the reasons we don’t share our faith is because we’re afraid of failure. But maybe another reason we don’t share our faith is we’re afraid of success. Like, Oh, what do I do if the person accepts Christ?
I remember years ago, I was in Alaska with my friend, Franklin Graham, and Franklin is a real outdoorsman. He hunts, and he fishes, and he does all these great things.
Well, I’m from California. I don’t do any of that.
So he said, “Do you want to go fishing for salmon?” I said, “Sure.” We’re out fishing. And I got one—I got a good sized salmon. And I said, “Hey, what do I do now? Will you clean it for me?” And he says, “No, clean it yourself.”
I’m saying, “OK, where’s the soap and water?”
“No, you got to gut it and clean it.”
“Uh, will you show me how to do it?”
“I’ll show you how to do it,” he said, “But you’ve got to do it.”
So I cleaned my first fish, and I think sometimes—and this analogy breaks down really quickly because when we’re leading someone to Christ, we’re obviously not gutting them, but—the thing is, What do I do when someone accepts Christ? We’re a little overwhelmed.
The answer is: now you follow up on them. Now you help them get established in the faith. Now you help them get grounded.
It’s very exciting to listen to the questions of a new believer because it helps you rediscover things that you’ve forgotten—or maybe things you’ve taken for granted. So, this is the Great Commission, to go and “make disciples of all the nations … teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you,” says our Lord (Matt. 28:19–20).
So this is the job we’re called to do. Let God do the converting; you do the sharing, and let’s double down on our efforts.
This article originally appeared on Greg’s blog and is reposted here by permission.