Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Things I Want You To Know: How to Share Christ

I don't have the gift of evangelism. At least, the Lord has not revealed that this is one of my gifts. My heart's desire is for everyone to know Christ and respond to His open invitation of salvation and transformation. But, I begin to sweat just thinking about trying to share the gospel with someone. It isn't the message. It's the delivery. I know how important it is to share Jesus in a way that glorifies and honors Him and I've always had a fear that I wouldn't have the words or would say something wrong or not have the answers to another person's questions.

But, Jesus commands us to share the gift of salvation:

"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations." Matthew 28:19a

So, girls, I started thinking that I need to tell you how to share Christ with other people. I don't know who God will put in your path or life but I know He will ask you each to share the gift of salvation with others. Here is one way...

We're All Sinners
We are born into sin. This is a fallen world. Given the choice, the outcome would have been the same if you and I had been in the Garden of Eden. We, too, would have eaten the apple and disobeyed God. We, too, would have had to hide our sin and shame from the glory and perfect goodness of God.

"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." Romans 3:23

It's true. Not one of us living here on earth is perfect. It isn't about being a "good person" or "doing all the right things." None of us are good. God sees us all the same: Sinners. Wrong-doers. Destined for wrath and destruction. And, so...

Because we are all sinners, because none of us can reach the standard of perfection God requires, because we are covered in guilt and shame, the consequence of sin is death. That's a hard thing to swallow. How can a loving God demand perfection from imperfect people? Good question.

"What fellowship has light with darkness?" 2 Corinthians 2:14c

In other words, how can perfection make room for imperfection and still remain perfect? It cannot. The same is true of God. He is completely without sin. Since we are all sinners, we cannot have fellowship with Him. Because He is eternal life, we cannot live eternally because of our sin.

"For the wages of sin is death..." Romans 6:23a

But, our God is also LOVE. And so...

Jesus Died For Us All
God, in His merciful and infinite love for us, saw that we were steeped in sin, headed for death, and made a choice. He sent Jesus--fully God and yet fully man--to walk this earth. Jesus came to show God's love for us. He came to be the hands and feet and voice of God--in the flesh. And then he paid the debt of our sin.

"But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8

He willingly sacrificed His life for me. For you. He took my place and your place on that cross. He chose to die for us so that we could be free. Free from sin. Free from death. Free indeed! He died so that we could be with God forever.

In laying down His life for you and me, he conquered death and then rose again. His death and resurrection create a bridge that spans the wide canyon of sin separating us from God.

"...but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 6:23b

Sin and death no longer have any hold on us. We are free! When God looks at us, He sees the shed blood of Jesus, the sacrifice of love He made and our debt paid in full. Jesus, because He was fully God and perfect, took my place, your place, in death and, in doing so, gave us the gift of eternal life. Life with God forever. What a gift! Instead of the judgment and punishment we deserve, God offers us forgiveness and mercy and grace. Now, that it LOVE!

The only thing you have to do is accept this free gift by recognizing your need for a Saviour and then asking Jesus Christ to be just that: your Saviour, your Redemption, your Key to Life Eternal. If you are willing to receive this gift of grace and forgiveness, let's pray together:

Father God, I know that I am a sinner in need of forgiveness. I confess my need for a Saviour. I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sins. I believe that he rose again from the dead. Jesus, I ask You to come into my life and my heart and be my Lord and Saviour. I thank You for this gift and ask You to help me live for You. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

If you just prayed this prayer, you can be assured that you do indeed have life eternal in Jesus Christ. Praise the Lord!