Many people in our day don’t verbally share the Gospel with others because they practice “lifestyle evangelism.” Those who promote lifestyle evangelism explain their lack of verbally sharing the Gospel by saying, “I don’t feel led to share the Gospel. I feel that the life I live is my witness about Jesus.” There is an element of truth to this statement. Jesus did say that we are to let our lights so shine that people may see our good works and glorify our Father in Heaven (Matt 5:16). So the life we live is to bear witness about what Christ has done in our lives.
While that is true, it is not true that letting our lights shine is a replacement for verbally sharing the Gospel with someone. No one will ever see the life we live and then suddenly recognize their need for Christ. They may see the way we live and wonder what makes us different from them, but our godly lifestyles will not bring them to faith in Christ. There must come a time when we clearly explain the Gospel to someone if they are to be saved. While our lifestyle will give credibility to what we are saying, eventually we have to say it. People must here the Gospel before they can believe the Gospel and be saved.
“For ‘whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.’ How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?” Romans 10:13-14 (NKJV) “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10:17 (NKJV)
Anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. However, before they can call on the name of the Lord they have to believe in the Lord. Before they can believe in the Lord, they have to hear about Him. Before they can hear about Him, someone will have to tell them. Through all of this, Paul is driving home the point that verbally sharing the Gospel is absolutely critical for someone to believe in Christ and then be saved. The faith that is necessary for salvation comes through hearing the Gospel Jesus Christ. This is why it is not enough for us to live a godly life. At some point we must verbally share the Gospel with those that we want to see saved.
God’s plan for the redemption of the world is for believers to share the Gospel with unbelievers. As one preacher said, “This is God’s plan A and there is no plan B.” God chose this as His plan for a very specific reason.
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.” 2 Corinthians 4:7 (NKJV)
The treasure is the Gospel. We are the earthen vessels. The reason that God wants to put the great treasure of the Gospel in ordinary earthen vessels like us is so that when something happens as a result of our sharing the Gospel we will understand that the glory goes to Him and the power comes from Him.
As believers in Jesus Christ, we want to be faithful followers of Jesus Christ. To do this we must share the Gospel with others. Sharing the Gospel with others is as much a part of being faithful to Christ as living a holy life is. Despite this, it is something that the majority of us struggle with. I know that it is something I struggle with. I want to share the Gospel outside of church more frequently that I do. Let me quickly give three things to do that will help us be more faithful in sharing the Gospel.
Pray for opportunities to share the Gospel. One of the things I’ve started doing is praying for opportunities to share the Gospel outside of church. Nearly every day, I pray for God to give me at least one opportunity a week to share the Gospel with someone outside of church. This is something we can all pray. This is a God honoring prayer. This prayer is in line with God’s will. Make a point to pray for God to give you opportunities to share the Gospel.
Look for opportunities to share the Gospel. One of the things I’ve realized is that I don’t see opportunities because I’m not looking for them. There are times when the opportunities jump out at us as someone asks us how to be saved. However, these times are relatively rare. Most of the time our opportunities to share the Gospel will come in the ordinary moments of life where we see an opportunity open up. If we are praying for God to give us opportunities, then let’s actively look for these opportunities.
Courageously take the opportunities to share the Gospel. We don’t often think of sharing the Gospel as an act of courage but I’m convinced it is. Courage is doing the right thing despite being afraid. For one reason or another, most of us are afraid to share the Gospel with someone. Yet we know that sharing the Gospel is the right thing to do. Therefore, it is a courageous to share the Gospel with others. When God opens up the opportunity to share the Gospel, let’s be courageous and take that opportunity.