Presented by Stone Tablets Ministries - www.stonetablets.org
We pray that as you read through these pages you will find some information that will help your personal ministry. The information has been broken up into three keys. These are preparation, being a witness, and discipleship. Let's start with preparation.
The Key of Preparation - This key has three parts to it and each are critical.
1. Prayer - You will never save a soul! Only God can call someone to salvation. This is the work of the Holy Spirit, but we need to pray for our part in the process. That would include: someone to witness to, God's wisdom and words, and the courage to talk to the person. The importance of prayer in witnessing cannot be understated. If you do not bring God into your witness, you will be wasting your time!
2. Fear of Man - When asked why most Christians do not witness, they will tell you it is fear of rejection or looking bad. First, we suggest that if this is an issue with you then you need to get a compassion for the lost. These poor souls are headed for eternal punishment. The world tells us there is no Hell, or we are already in it. The Bible tells us that when Jesus comes He will divide the sheep from the goats. The sheep that are blessed by the Father and will go to the Kingdom. The goats on the other hand, that were not righteous and that we are so afraid to talk to, He will say "...Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:" (Matt. 25:41b) This is PUNISHMENT FOR EVER AND EVER! Hell is spoken about or referred to about 400 times in the New Testament. God has made it clear. If you may think that it is bold to walk up to someone and speak about the Gospel then we strongly suggest that you read Foxe's book of martyrs. You will never feel the same about standing up for your faith in Jesus and His Gospel again.
3. Witness - Never forget that you do not witness...you are a witness! You are called to be His light to this dark world. So you will need to "Live the Life." The life you live will show non-Christians how Jesus has positively effected your life and they will want the same. On the other hand if you do not live a Godly life it will show. For example You will never get anywhere with a non-Christian friend that knows you are cheating on your spouse.
Key of Being a Witness - We are called to be a Witness not just to witness.
Witnessing - This is a common term for spreading the Gospel. Paul gives us instructions on how and when to witness. He said to "Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with longsuffering and teaching." (2 Tim. 4:2) Let's look at some keys to being a Witness.
* Earn the right to witness - First you must get to know the person. This is not a superficial kind of getting to know them but real compassion for them. A person will quickly turn away from you if they feel you are just trying to fill a quota and not really interested in them. If it is right the Holy Spirit will let you know when to move on tospeaking about the spiritual. Listen for Him!
* Use Tracts - Tracts are a great bridge from talking about everyday things to the spiritual.
* Use God's Ten Commandments - This way you are showing them their sickness (sin) before you give them the cure (Grace). Simply ask if the person has kept the Ten Commandments. They will most likely say yes.
Then go through them:
Have you ever told one lie (even a "white" lie)? What does that make you? A liar!
Have you ever stolen something (even if it's small)? What does that make you? A thief!
Have you ever lusted? Then you have committed adultery of the heart. Let them know that they are a lying, thieving , adulterer at heart and in big trouble.
On Judgment Day they will be found guilty and end up in Hell!! (They will know that they sinned and need a Savior.)
But God sent His Son to die on the Cross for you. Jesus took your punishment upon Himself and then rose from the grave--defeating death.
This is a very powerful way of witnessing. We know that God has placed the law on the sinners heart "...the work of the Law written in their hearts..." (Rom 2:15). Please read our Use of the Law page for more information why the Law is so important in witnessing. Also we recommend "Hells Best Kept Secret" by Ray Comfort for more detail in using God's Law in witnessing.
* You can not mess up bad enough! - What we mean by this is that most of the work is done by the Holy Spirit. He is certainly powerful to overcome anything that you may do. This is not to say that you do not need to do your best but, like stated above, you cannot save anyone so you cannot make someone lose salvation. So relax and talk in love.
* The scale - We recently received a three tape series on witnessing. A Pastor in Winston-Salem, North Carolina produced the series. He brought up a very important point to witnessing that we would like to share with you. This Pastor was on an airplane and witnessed to the person next to him. By the end of the flight he had presented the Gospel but did not have a decision for Christ. The Pastor did not get down on himself for not getting the decision because he knew that he had done what our Lord has commanded him to do. He used an illustration that I thought was very good. He talked about a scale from 0 to 10. A 0 may be someone that has never heard the Gospel. A 10 may be someone ready to commit to Christ. A 5 may be someone with some knowledge. Everyone that does not know Jesus falls somewhere on this scale. When witnessing to someone you may bring that person from a 3 to an 8. You must know that you have not failed just because you did not bring someone to a 10. You may bring someone from a 5 to a 7 and then someone else through the Holy Spirit will bring them the rest of the way. The most important point to remember is that sharing the Gospel is never in vain!
* Sample prayer - Here is a sample prayer that you can suggest that a non-Christian use to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior.
"Dear God, I understand that I have broken Your Law and sinned against You. Please forgive my sins. Thank you that Jesus suffered on the cross in my place. I now place my trust in Him as my Savior and Lord. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen."
Key of Discipleship - Not Follow-up!
You may be called to disciple someone. Christians that have started to walk away from the faith or just need help understanding their walk with Christ may be brought to you. Also if our Lord has given you the opportunity of seeing someone come to Him, then you may be called to disciple this "Babe in Christ." Discipleship - "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching, and admonishing one another..." (Col 3:16) Discipleship is critical to the growth and strength of the body of Christ. We are called to help each other to "Live the Life!" Let's go over some keys to discipleship.
* Discipleship not "Follow-up" - Discipleship is a long term commitment to helping a fellow Christian grow in Christ. The relationship is typically initiated by the new or growing Christian. Follow-up on the other hand is initiated by a mature Christian or evangelist right after a person comes to Christ. It is meant to make sure that a new Christian is going through with his or her new commitment. Often this is done after mass crusades where hundreds of people make an emotional or mental commitment to accepting Christ. Many never follow through and join a church. We believe that one cause for this lack of true conversion is the absence of using the Law in evangelism.
* Disciple a new Christian - A new Christian will be hungry for God's wisdom and for learning about being a Christian. You will not need to find him. He most likely will be lead to you. That does not mean that you cannot offer to help a new Christian. It just means that if he is truly saved then you should not need to chase after him. Here are some steps in setting up a discipleship meeting.
1. Setup a definite day and time to meet. Show the person that you are committed to his growth and be prepared with material to discuss.
2. Pray at the beginning and end of each meeting. Learning to be comfortable when praying with someone else is important. Try to keep the prayers short and simple at first. With the Holy Spirit's help he will quickly pick up speed and will become comfortable in praying with other people.
3. A new Christian will have many questions. She may be looking for the depth of your knowledge or simply very inquisitive. Let her know that you do not know everything and that you will commit to find out the answer to her question. Then do it!
4. Read the Bible with him. This may sound simple but you will find that your time together will go quickly. You may also notice that he will try to avoid reading the Bible by wanting to talk about your church or religious doctrine or someone he knows that is not saved. These topics are important but reserve time to simply read a chapter or two. He may not want to read at first. So you read it but make sure to ask questions so that he has an understanding of what was read. Once he is hooked on the milk of the Word he will never let go!
* Disciple a Christian - The Christian life is a continual growth process with the ultimate goal of becoming like our Lord Jesus Christ. During this time He will use other Christians to teach you and in return use you to teach other Christians. Never forget that this is a commitment to the person you have been called to disciple and to our Lord.
1. We all have been given gifts by the Holy Spirit. You may have been using a gift for several years and will be called to teach someone with the same gift on how to best use that gift.
2. The world is consistently trying to tear down Christian beliefs. You may be called to help a fellow Christian that is falling prey to these worldly beliefs and has sinned. Let him know that we have all heard the world's call to sin but God's grace and mercy is great. He may just need encouraged that failing does not mean God will never forgive him. Use God's Word and your own experiences as much as possible.
3. Discipleship is also accountability. In true discipleship you will be accountable to each other. This is powerful and should be discussed so that you both know what is expected. Accountability does not mean that you can tear down each other for messing up. This is the way the world understands accountability. As Christians we are there to build each other up and be there for each other when we fall. In a word love! "This is My commandment that you love one another as I have loved you." (John 15:12)