“And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.”Mark 16:15
Go and tell the world about Jesus. It’s a must, but it isn’t as easy as people make it out to be. You are essentially sharing the gospel about a savior that people don’t realize they need, yet. Thankfully, the results are not up to you, those are God’s. You job is to deliver the message. While the delivery of the message is all we are responsible for, we must be ready for the response. 1 Peter 3:15 reminds us,
but in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy, ready at any time to give a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.1 Peter 3:15
Are you ready to do that? Are you ready for the questions? Why do you believe in something you can’t see? Why do you think Jesus is my only option? Are you saying I’m not a good person? How is my life different from these other “christians” out here? The list really can go on and on. Are you prepared to answer more than just “the bible says so” that why. While that is an accurate answer, if I was the unbeliever, I’d say, “ok, show me.” Are we ready for that? Now, don’t get me wrong, you will NOT have all the answers, you will NOT be able to quote every verse and passage off the top of your head (even though the more you interact with God’s word, the more often you will be able to do it- just sayin’), and you will NOT understand all of the questions; but you DO have a responsibility to find out. You can say, “I don’t know”, but you need to follow up with, “but, I will find out.”
On top of that, are you ready for the misinformation and misunderstanding of the Bible? How do you respond when someone says, “but God loves everyone, a loving God won’t send His people to hell.” Then there is “The bible says that I should be like Jesus. I volunteer at the homeless shelter, I feed the poor, and donate to several charities which is more than other christians are doing.” How about this dangerous one, “I walked down the aisle at VBS or summer camp when I was 9, prayed a prayer, and asked Jesus into my heart, so I am good.” These are just a couple of common ones. Do we know God’s word well enough to show the problems in that thinking? While, asking Jesus into our hearts is an easy way to explain salvation to little kids, that and the sinners prayer are actually nowhere in the Bible. Do we know the Bible well enough to know when its being twisted, manipulated, or just misinterpreted? If we don’t, then someone who has read some of it and is more confident in what they are saying can convince us that the bible says that.
My son asked me the other day how you talk to someone about God when they won’t believe in Him unless they can see Him. That’s an excellent question that many believers don’t know how to respond to. The answer is we do see God everyday. God revealed Himself to us two ways: through His creation (which we will look at next week) and through His Word. The bible is the infallible work of God, divinely inspired through human hands, without fault or blemish. Look, there are people who are going to try to refute this. There are even people calling themselves Christians who will refute this and I say with all the genuine love in my heart, they are mistaken. Oh, people will come up with clever paradigms and apparent contradictions that they believe they have found in God’s Word. This is because they look at the Bible through the human lens and not the divine. Man has a desperate need to understand everything and man has trouble accepting the fact that there will be things that we will not understand this side of eternity. The Bible even tells us that we won’t understand it all. We see in Isaiah 55:
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, and your ways are not my ways. This is the Lord’s declaration.”Isaiah 55:8
And they ask if I truly believe that…well, yes, I do. I don’t need empirical evidence. I don’t need a mathematical formula to prove the validity and accuracy of God’s Word. I’ve seen too much evidence in my life where every promise God made in there has been kept over and over. So, yes, we can believe in God without seeing Him- it’s called faith after all.
If we are going to be effective witnesses for God’s kingdom and if we are going to be fulfill the commission He left with us through Jesus, we are going to have to become intimately involved in God’s Word. Stop reading it like its a high school English assignment. Stop reading it like its 66 independent books; and start reading it like it’s one complete story that points us to the same place- the cross. Jesus revealed this to us in Luke on the Emmaus road:
” Then beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted for them the things concerning himself in all the scriptures.”Luke 24:27
Do we know God’s Word well enough to show the world the powerful message of hope and salvation from their creator; not only so that we can give a defense of why we believe what we believe, but also so that we can identify when something is not right. God is revealed through His perfect Word.
In Christ Alone,
Rev. Bro. Coach