“Philip found Nathanael and said to him, ‘We have found him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph’ ” (John 1:45).
Believe it or not, many Christians witness most effectively during their earliest days of becoming a Christian. This occurs for many reasons, but new Christians tend to have more spirit and zeal and less inhibitions. As we grow older, we become more self-conscious about our witness, thinking we need a polished approach for anyone to grant us a hearing. Perhaps the best advice someone could give us is, “lose the polish.” People love a story, and we all have one.
Philip did not attend an evangelism class, he simply spontaneously sought out Nathanael and told him what he discovered. He had found the long-awaited Messiah of which Moses wrote of in the law. Though Nathanael met the news with some skepticism, Philip’s witness bore fruit and resulted in Nathanael’s conversion to Christ:
“Nathanael answered him, ‘Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!’ ” (John 1:49).
These early accounts of people coming to Christ teach us many things. And they reaffirm the impact of sharing our story. How can we best share our story?
1. By sharing what happened to you.
We call this your personal witness. You simply share with others what God has done for you. You may not know much theology or have ever attended a Bible school, but God can use you to testify of Him. Everyone can connect with someone else. Perhaps you can share what circumstances got you thinking about your spiritual condition. You might include certain events that led to your conversion. Your testimony may not include any dramatic twists and turns, and it may not sound sensational, but it’s your story. It can reach someone.
2. By including the gospel.
Personal stories of coming to Christ vary in circumstance, but not in substance. We all needed to acknowledge our sinful condition before God. We all needed to admit we could not save ourselves. We needed to embrace Jesus Christ as our Savior from sin and giver of salvation. We come to Him from various life circumstances, but we all placed our trust in Jesus Christ.
3. Do not over-complicate it.
As we hint above, our witness should flow from our life and not a detailed doctrinal dissertation. We should write it down and commit it to memory. This does not make it mechanical, it makes it real. We can relate it in different words and respond to questions, but we should not over-think it. We needed a Savior, we heard the gospel, and we placed our faith in Christ. We can fill in the details that relate to us specifically, but share sincerely, honestly, and prayerfully. God can use your story to impact a life.
Posted on Mon, October 10, 2016
by Sam Petitfils