Sharing Gets People Saved

Most Christians believe they’re sharing their faith by simply being good people. But the world’s filled with good people, living good lives, who have no relationship with Jesus Christ. In fact, it’s not unusual to find unsaved people being more kind, generous and good than most church attenders. Being good, in itself, does not get you or anyone else saved.

Your actions don’t speak louder than your words, but they should speak before your words. If your actions don’t match your words, your words have no power. Living good lives is critically important, but not all-important. The sharing of your faith gets people saved. Being a good person sets the stage for being a good faith sharer.

Timing Is Everything

It’s been said that we should live practically, as if the Lord’s not returning for another 1,000 years and spiritually like He’s coming back today! It’s good advice. You never know what tomorrow holds. Even if we’re still here tomorrow and the next day, the unsaved around us today may not be. Quite unexpectedly, their time might be running out. You never know!

Every time you delay sharing your faith with someone who’s obviously lost and in need of the Lord, you’re playing with their eternal destiny. You have no assurance that there’ll ever be another opportunity, like the one you’re having at that very moment, to have that conversation. There are no guarantees in life. For sure, you have that moment and you dare not waste it. Just a simple word about how God loves them will tell you if they’re hungry for more. And if they’re not, don’t push.

Regardless of their reaction, you’ve done the right thing and God honors your obedience. Even in rejection, you’ve moved that person closer to Jesus by your love. They can’t get away from that! And if they should die in their sin, you’ll not be held accountable.

Indeed, timing is everything! Seize every opportunity God gives you to tell people that He loves them and wants them to spend Eternity with Him in Heaven. That’s the Good News of the Gospel.

Two Commandments

When God was asked, “Which of the commandments is the greatest?” He answered that loving God was the first and greatest commandment, but there’s a second one of equal importance which is to love your neighbor as yourself. When you fulfill these two commandments, you will have fulfilled them all. Everything you do leads people closer or further away from God, that’s why loving God and loving your neighbor is so important. When you value the salvation of everyone around you as much as you do your own, you’ll automatically fulfill the law. Not out of obligation of legalism, but out of your passion to move everyone, every day, closer to Jesus!

Your Biggest Motivator

There’s nothing more real or horrifying than Hell, and yet we seldom think about it or talk about it without being viewed as some kind of religious fanatic, even among Christians today. It’s like, if we ignore it, it will go away or not happen. But just like death and taxes, it will happen!

Hebrews 9:27 tells us that it’s appointed unto man once to die and then the Judgment. For those of us who are Christians, we’ll stand before God at the Judgment Seat of Christ, where we’ll be rewarded for how we served Him. But for those whose names are not written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, the scene will be decidedly different and cataclysmic at the Great White Throne of Judgment.

In Revelation 20:11-13, John explains, I saw a great White Throne and Him who was seated on it…the dead were judged according to what they had done…Then death and Hades were thrown into the Lake of Fire, which is the second death. Those whose names were not written in the Lamb’s Book of Life were thrown into the Lake of Fire. 2 Thessalonians 1:9 tells us they will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from His Glory. Matthew 13:50 says they will be thrown into the blazing furnace where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Revelation 14:11 states that the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever and they have no rest, day or night.

While more than 90% of our population still believes there’s a Heaven and Hell, the fear of Hell as an impediment to bad behavior has all but disappeared. In fact, most people believe they’re going to Heaven simply because they’re good people. While this is a total contradiction of scripture, almost half our population never reads the Bible and many of those who do simply don’t understand its basic tenants. Half of all evangelicals don’t believe Jesus is the only way to Heaven.

The next time you’re in a crowded place, consider this: That 80% of all the people you’re seeing at that moment are unchurched and likely headed for Hell. How are they going to know unless someone tells them? Unless you tell them?

It’s so important to remember that God doesn’t send anyone to Hell. If we go to Hell, it’s a self-inflicted punishment. God sent His Only Son to die His Horrific Death on the Cross, as a sacrifice for our sins, that whosoever believeth on Him will not perish, but have Eternal Life (John 3:16). God is a just God and there is no other way we, as sinful men, could justly stand guiltless before Him without the Cross and His Gift of Eternal Life.

Just as we use rewards and punishments to discipline our children, God uses the ultimate in reward and punishment options to discipline us. And as with our children, we choose our own option. It’s our choice to make. Here’s the bottom line: If the two options were being properly explained, a whole lot more people would be choosing the “Free Gift of Eternal Life” option.

While this is the biggest tragedy in the history of mankind, we’ve decided not to talk about Hell, lest we offend someone in the process. But are we afraid of offending God or man? Matthew 10:28 tells us not to be afraid of those who want to kill your body, they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God who can destroy both soul and body in Hell.

We are the “Watchmen on the Wall” and God will hold us responsible for not warning those around us about Hell. It may not be popular, but you can’t escape the fact that most Americans are wrongly assuming they’re going to Heaven. That should be your biggest motivator to move everyone, every day, closer to Jesus.

Move Everyone

Less than 1% of Christians are actively sharing their faith every day! How are they going to know unless someone tells them? Unless you tell them! Like it or not, you’re a city set on a hill for all to see and watch, every when you don’t know they’re watching. you’re a full-time witness, either for the defense or the prosecution of the Gospel. Everything you do and say, every moment of every day, moves everyone watching either closer or further away from God. This is why you need to focus on leading everyone, every day, closer to Jesus in everything you do and say. You’re in full-time ministry!

People Want to Know

There’s nowhere to run anymore — no place of safety. At any moment, any of us can be attacked on the street, in our schools, our theaters and even our churches. There’s no place to invest our fortune, if we have one, that’s beyond a possible meltdown. Regardless of whether you’re rich or poor, the world’s coming to believe that if there is a God, He’s our only refuge.

A staggering 86% of the unchurched now find themselves wanting to believe there’s a God and wanting to talk to someone who knows who He is, but they won’t go into a church. Instead, they’re listening to Christian radio where they can have anonymity. The unchurched now represent a full one-third of all listeners to Christian radio.

From a faith sharing perspective, this is an unprecedented opportunity. Contrary to what you may believe, most of the unchurched people in your life want to know more about God and it’s not by accident that God’s placed you in their lives.

Eternal Life

All of us view bad news as a temporary situation. Whatever happens to us, life goes on and the sun will still rise tomorrow. Even pain that we can’t escape from will end when we die. At some point, there will be finality to our human condition. But we are immortal beings. Our consciousness never ends! All of us will live forever with our thoughts in one of two locations that the scriptures describe in graphic detail.

With regards to Hell, one of 20 definitive scriptures declares the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day or night (ever) (Revelation 14:11). But put aside the horrors of eternal darkness, fire, worms and demons. The greatest torment of all would be knowing every moment, without end, that we put ourselves in Hell by refusing to bend our knees to God and seek His forgiveness for our sins through the death and resurrection of His Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ.

The words of the brilliant entertainer and devout atheist Penn Jillette should haunt all of us. He said, If you really believe that I’ll go to Hell if I don’t accept Jesus Christ, how much would you have to hate me to not tell me? Following that to its logical conclusion, how much would you have to hate the unsaved people in your life to not tell them how Jesus gave His Life for their Eternal Life in Heaven?

Jesus Is Our Model

Except for the self-righteous, everyone was drawn to Jesus during His time on earth, even the children. He was, at all times, approachable, engaging and loving. In fact, in John 13:35 He told us they will know that you’re My disciples by your love. Love must be our driving principle because God so loved the world that He gave His Only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him will not perish but will have Eternal Life (John 3:16). In fact, anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love (I John 4:8).

And He didn’t just love the loveable. Anyone can do that. Jesus went out of His way to be with publicans and sinners saying that those who are healthy have no need of a physician, but those who are sick’ (Mark 2:17), and that He did not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance (Luke 5:32). Jesus came not to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved (John 3:17).

Hate the sin and love the sinner is the very core of God’s Mandate. Without question, those who hate you and hurt you the most are the ones who need God the most. They’re not in your life by accident. The question is whether you’ll move them closer to Jesus or they’ll move you further away. If you allow them to rob you of your joy, they win!

Sharing Is Not Optional

When asked which commandment is the greatest, Jesus gave “Loving God” and “Loving Our Neighbors As Ourselves” equal status, explaining that when we uphold these two commandments, we’ll uphold all the commandments.

Here’s how it works: When we love our neighbors (everyone who comes under our influence) as ourselves, we’re every bit as concerned for their Salvation as we are for own. When their Salvation truly becomes our highest priority, we become sensitive to the fact that every aspect of our lives plays a critical role in leading them to Jesus. Our testimony is only as strong as our weakest trait. This takes us to where living our lives according to the Law (all of the Ten Commandments) becomes an automatic by-product of sharing our faith, and the furthest thing from legalism.

In addition to being commanded, all of us have been commissioned to share our faith. The Great Commission doesn’t say, “Go ye, those who are gifted or in pastoral ministry, into the world and preach the Gospel.” The Great Commission was given to everyone — especially laypeople. For the most part, our pastors go into our churches. But those of us who are laypeople are the ones going into the world, surrounded by people who are lost, and if we don’t tell them, who will? Above everything else, this is God’s Purpose for your life.

You’re also called to be Christ’s Ambassador. Ambassadors are held responsible for honoring the highest ideals of their leader and their country in every situation, 24 hours a day, even when they’re doing something as casual as eating a meal or attending a sporting event. So it is with every Christian. As Christ’s Ambassador, God holds you responsible for honoring Him in every situation, 24 hours a day. The consistency of your walk and the words of your mouth should always be moving people closer to Jesus, regardless of the circumstances.

Then there’s your calling to be the “Salt of the Earth” and the “Light of the World.” The common thread between these two is that they both change their environment. So here’s your self test: Are you changing your environment or is it changing you? Are you part of the problem or part of the solution? Are you letting your light shine or have you turned it off?