The Right Words
Read 1 Corinthians 1:17 (ESV)
For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with wisdom and eloquence, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
Do you ever hesitate to evangelize because you are afraid you don’t have the right words?
We all know that we are commanded to “go and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19). But for many Christians, just the word evangelism makes them squirm or break out in a sweat. What if I don’t say the right words? What if I stutter and stumble my way through it? What if I completely butcher it?
If you have ever felt this way, maybe today’s verse will encourage you. Paul says that Christ didn’t send him to be a world class orator. He didn’t send him to use flowery, impressive words. Christ sent him to preach the Gospel—plain and simple. The power of Paul’s message was not in his delivery but in its content. The power was in the message of the cross of Christ.
So how can you share the simple message of the Gospel with others? I have good news about that, too! God has already given you the words in His Word!
A great starting place is with a well-known, easy to memorize verse—John 3:16. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” This verse is a great one to use to point out that God loves us so much He sent Jesus to save us. All we have to do to receive eternal life is to believe that Jesus Christ died in our place.
Another useful Scripture is Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” This verse is useful because it points out why we were worthy of death in the first place—sin. But the good news is that eternal life is a free gift from God through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. The gift just needs to be accepted.
Sharing the narrative flow of Scripture is also a great way to share the Gospel. It is easy to remember the big picture storyline of Scripture with just 4 words—Creation, Fall, Redemption, and Restoration. These 4 themes can help guide you as you explain the story of your faith to others.
Friends, the thought of evangelism may seem overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be. God has given us the words already. We just have to be prepared. “...Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15).
It is our responsibility to take the time and put in the effort to be prepared to share the hope of the Gospel with others. But be encouraged! It is not your responsibility to save those you are sharing with. Remember, Paul said his responsibility from God was to preach the Gospel, not try to save everyone by the power of his own speaking ability. The power is in the message. So get ready to share the powerful message of the Gospel and give it a try! Let the Holy Spirit work on their hearts. God is the one who saves. We are the ones who preach.
Lord, so often I hesitate to share my faith because I don’t know the right words to say. Thank You for giving me the words to share the Gospel in the Bible. Help me to be prepared to share them while You work in the hearts of those who hear. Amen.
~ Pastor Nat Crawford
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