Boldness in Sharing Our Faith
How many of you would raise your hand if I asked whether you were good at boldly and confidently sharing the Gospel? Probably not many of you… rather, most of you would be shaking your heads emphatically. And I would have been with you a few months ago, squirming until the subject changed. God has worked on my heart and fears, however, and brought to a point that while I still need a lot of work I think I could do it confidently. I think. There are so many logical reasons why sharing the gospel is so important. And we went into that in July 2016 ’s Th!nk magazine. The truth is that the fear of witnessing to others, while a very real fear, is selfish! And we logically know that and all the other reasons why we should be witnessing, but sometimes it is hard to convince ourselves of it so that we truly know what we know. Make sense? One of the problems there is that all those logical reasons aren’t the reasons we should be doing things for- though they are huge and great themselves. Our ultimate reason should be out of obedience to God. And When we obey God in something He won’t leave us alone in it! He will supply us and equip us with what we need to do the job. And that means He will give us courage if we need it. Do we trust in God’s will and His courage enough to do the thing asked of us? To obey? I was looking through the references to boldness in Scripture, and one of the main situations it was used in was to describe the early Christian’s sharing of the Gospel!
- So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to perform signs and wonders. Acts 14:3 (NIV)
- So Saul stayed with them and moved about freely in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord. Acts 9:28 (NIV)
- He proclaimed the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ—with all boldness and without hindrance! Acts 28:31 (NIV)
- Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. Acts 4:29-31 (NIV)
I am sure that they must have been terrified… they were facing persecution and execution! And yet they trusted in God and He provided them with the courage that they needed.
“But before all this, they will seize you and persecute you. They will hand you over to synagogues and put you in prison, and you will be brought before kings and governors, and all on account of my name. And so you will bear testimony to me. But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict. Luke 21:12-15 (NIV)
The message that we bear is not one that can be taken lightly! (2 Timothy 2:15) It is not one that can be defeated by the fear of the enemy, our message is one full of unmatchable power! It is okay if we are not sufficient because God is, and His truth is. All we have to do is obey and rely on Him, ‘the author and perfecter of our faith’.
I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power. 1 Corinthians 2:3-5 (NIV)
2 Timothy 1:7 assures us of our power over fear (see Dissect it!), and then immediately proceeds to tell us this in verse eight:
So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God.
Will you join me in this fight over fear? If you are willing, God will help you! He is faithful to complete the good work he has begun in us even if we are not. In Him, we are more than conquerors (Romans 8).
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