A New Year means trying new things right?
Well, at least I’d like it to mean that.
2016 was a crazy year full of protestin, and crazy global atrocities. It was the year that everyone proclaimed that they could do whatever they like without accepting any form of truth except their own and calling everyone else a bigot.
A friend of mine, who doesn’t have faith in Jesus asked if, in the light of all that has happened this year, with the enlightenment of many of what white privilege is and so on, whether there was such a thing as spiritual privilege? That is people who believing in spiritual things exercise their ‘privilege’ on other people.
History tells us that evil people have exercised religious privilege (using spiritual concepts religiously to alienate a group or create havoc – this is my own definition), as in Hitler, or what is happening with ISIS, all which has happened in Syria and more – in the name of Islam and Christianity alike throughout the ages.
With that being said, how does one, in today’s climate even begin to share think of sharing their faith? I’d like to put it to you that having faith in Christ is, in a way Spiritual Privilege!
It is interesting that the Greek word for salvation can be translated as ‘safety,’ or ‘soundness.’
Being ‘born again’ and becoming a child of God, makes us whole, or safe and sound.
Therefore, when you speak to others about the salvation available in Jesus, you are revealing to them how they, too, can become whole and safe.
There are two different aspects to this view of salvation:
- Reconciliation to God, which is made possible through Jesus’ death;
- And regeneration to new life, which is made possible because of Jesus’ resurrection.
It’s so important you and I realize that we don’t need to wait until we are perfect to make disciples (or followers) of Jesus! We must carry on fulfilling the Great Commission, while at the same time allowing God to continue to make the adjustments that are necessary in our lives – and I feel that he will be making adjustments forever!
None of us should allow laziness, complacency, unbelief, or a lack of love to stop you from doing what Jesus has asked his disciples to do.
Here are Three Helpful Points adapted from Russell Toohey’s Three Main Forces That Enable You To Make Disciples:
- There are three main forces that will enable you to make disciples. In 2 Corinthians 5:14, the Bible says, “For the love of Christ compels us…” (emphasis added). The word compel is a forceful word, implying strength and power. It indicates a compulsion beyond your natural self, so great is its power. When this type of love is burning in your heart, you yearn for everyone else to share in the wonderful experience of Christ and His love. You can hardly stand to keep the Good News to yourself. The Spirit of God will enable you to share your faith. “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8 NKJV). Apart from the Spirit, you can do nothing; full of the Spirit, you become a bold witness of what Christ has done for you and what He can do for others. “Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men” (2 Cor. 5:11). A healthy, reverential respect for God and humble awareness of His omnipotence will cause you to want to share Him with others. When you know their eternal destiny apart from Christ, the fear of the Lord on their behalf will propel you to action.
- Prepare yourself to be a witness. Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you and anoint you to lift up Jesus Christ, and to empower you for His service! Ask the Holy Spirit to flow out from you to touch other people’s lives and to minister through you to other people. Ask the Holy Spirit to put His words in your mouth and to anoint your lips to speak in the way that He desires. Ask Him to give you words of power, authority, challenge, conviction, life, liberty, love, and compassion! Then, lift up Jesus with your life, actions, and words. Your life is your most powerful tool in influencing friends, relatives, and other people and in leading them to Jesus. It has often been said that your life may be the only Bible some people will ever read. How can people tell whether you have Christ in you and are filled with the Holy Spirit?
Consider this example: Think of yourself as an unmarked tube. When the pressures of life squeeze you, what comes out? Is it impatience, tension, anger and frustration, or is it love, joy, peace, and patience? Others will look to see what comes out of your life, particularly when you face difficulty, because they will want to know if you live what you preach.
- Pray for the lost. I’ve made this a huge part of my life, and have also written a list which contains that names of the friends and family that I am praying for. Some of them have been on there for years, but I keep praying. Ask God to draw them to Himself (John 6:44) – Lost people cannot make themselves want to get saved. God must draw them to Him. Pray that they will seek to know God (Acts 17:27; Deut. 4:29). Pray that they will believe in Christ as Saviour (John 1:12; 5:24) – They must believe in Jesus’ saving, atonement work. Pray that they will confess Christ as Lord (Rom. 10:9-10) – This is your ultimate goal for them: that they would receive Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Saviour. Pray that they will yield all to follow Christ (2 Cor. 5:15; Phil. 3:7-8) – Pray that they will have a heavenly perspective and will not be entrapped by worldly pleasures and desires. Pray that they will take root and grow in Christ (Col. 2:6-7) so that their salvation would be real stable, and permanent!!
Sharing your faith, no matter how ‘uncomfortable’, is a natural part of ones’ Christian journey. Sharing Jesus is motivated by the love of God for the lost and is accomplished through the power of the Holy Spirit.
You do not have to be perfect in order for God to use you in sharing your faith. You only need to be willing and obedient to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Willing to, if you’ve never done this before, DO SOMETHING NEW!
He will lead you to those who are waiting for someone to invite them to join the journey of following Jesus!