As Christians, we are called to give witness to our faith. Problems can arise when we lose sight of our role. A witness, as in a courtroom, is neither the judge nor jury. Spiritually speaking, that is God’s role. Christian witnessing means telling the story of how Jesus is working in our life. It is not the role of a Christian to argue or debate someone into heaven. We’re called to share! Please read more…..
In some regards today’s message is a sequel to last week’s message, “Why Is Being Right So Important?” When two Christians argue over their “rightness” it rarely results in bringing someone closer to Jesus. In fact, it usually has just the opposite effect. When we argue, we often do so in the role of the prosecuting or defense attorney as it pertains to our beliefs. This is not the role of the witness and we are simply called to give witness.
Courts generally recognize two kinds of witnesses: expert witness and general witness. You and I are called to be general witnesses for Christ. We do not need to be able to explain detailed theology in order to be a good witness. We simply need to explain what we have seen and witnessed in our own life as it pertains to Jesus our Lord.
We do not even need to rely on our own abilities. In Acts 1:8, Jesus tells His followers, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
In Luke 1:1-4, we are told that we can have certainty in the words of the Gospels because the stories of Jesus have been passed down to us from eyewitnesses. 2Peter 1:16 says this, “We did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we had been eyewitnesses of his majesty.”
Now it is incumbent on you and me to continue in this 2000 year tradition as we too, give eye witness to Jesus from our own experiences. To be clear, witnessing was a command, not a choice. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 28:19)
Do we need special skills to be an effective witness for Christ? No! Take a look at what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 2:1-5, I came to you in weakness and fear and much trembling, and my message and my proclamation were not with persuasive (words of) wisdom, but with a demonstration of spirit and power, so that your faith might rest not on human wisdom but on the power of God.”
What exactly are we called to give witness to? We are called to give witness to the reality that Jesus has saved us from our sins, to the love Jesus has for us, to God’s mercy and forgiveness, and to the grace we have received through our faith in Jesus. Finally, we are called to give witness to our hope of Eternal Life through the death and resurrection of Jesus.
We each have a unique story to tell. It is our story and it is not for others to challenge, condemn or judge. They are neither the jury nor judge. They too, are called to give their own witness. In a courtroom, witnesses swear to tell the truth. We are expected to do the same. We must proclaim the truth of Jesus in our life. The power of our story rests in Him.
I once read an article that indicated that the majority of Christians fail to give witness to their faith in Jesus. It said that eighty-five percent never invite anyone to church, and 95 percent never win anyone to Christ. Mankind is in dire need of our witness.
Why do so many Christians fail to give witness? There is a long list of potential reasons. What is your reason?
We have nothing to fear if we simply attest to our own weaknesses and brokenness and attest to our dependence on Jesus to save us. There is nothing hypocritical about that. We need only witness to others what we have seen and experienced. We do not need to be perfect to be a witness. We all make mistakes and we all fall short at times on our Christian journey.
Our world is in dire need of authentic Christian witnesses. If we don’t share our faith in Jesus who will? Romans 10:13-15 gives us this, “For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. But how can they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how can they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone to preach? And how can people preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring [the] good news!”
Our personal witness to Jesus Christ just might bring the gift of eternal life to someone in need today. Let’s not delay.
Heavenly Father, please grant me the courage and strength to always give witness to my faith in your Son Jesus Christ. Help me to testify to the mercy and forgiveness He has poured out on me, a sinner in need of being saved. Amen!
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