When people find a great new restaurant, golf course, retail store, or ice cream shop, they will go to great lengths on social media to let others know about their discovery. Word-of-mouth advertising takes over and things can go viral. You’ve seen it happen, I know.
One of the primary purposes we have as Christians is to share the good news of Jesus with others. The Great Commission is clear – we are to make disciples, and that process takes place when we introduce people to Jesus’ redemptive work on their behalf.
Many believers don’t step out in faith and share what they’ve discovered about Jesus for a number of reasons. As a group leader, you can help them share the Good News. Here are three reasons why people don’t share their faith, and how to help them tell others about the most important message in the world:
- People don’t know a simple gospel presentation. I remember the day when people used to attend 12 week seminars to learn a one-hour gospel presentation (I doubt many people today will sit still that long!). Knowing a simple gospel presentation you can share “on the back of a napkin” is really important. I prefer the one used by The Navigators, their “one-verse evangelism” presentation. It’s based on Romans 6:23 and can be written down and easily shared quickly and conversationally. As a person who has led Bible study groups, I’ve taught group members this one-verse method, and it is easy to learn and share with others. This one-verse method feels more like a conversation than a presentation, and it is highly visual, too.
- People don’t know how to articulate their testimony. The second thing that people don’t know is how to give an “elevator speech” about their come-to-Jesus moment. If they haven’t thought it out, they just don’t know where to start. People can be taught to write out their story (testimony) in three parts: their life before coming to Christ, the situation surrounding their salvation experience, and their life after receiving Jesus as their Savior. Group leaders can give group members time to write this out during a Bible study session, and then give them more time to practice sharing their testimony with another person in the group. This gives people a safe place to practice and hone their story. As confidence rises, so will the chances that they will speak up when the moment arises with a non-believing person. When your group has an evangelistic, gospel-centered study, that is a great time to do this with them as a learning exercise woven into your lesson plan.
- People don’t feel the urgency to share. Just like Peter’s critics (see 2 Peter 3) who thought that Jesus’ return wasn’t going to happen, believers can be lulled into thinking that Jesus’ return isn’t imminent. Peter reminded his opponents that the Lord counts time differently, “delays” his return so that people can hear the gospel, and that unbelievers at Christ’s return will face a terrible day of judgment. It’s a sobering chapter in the Bible that encourages all believers to embrace the urgency of the hour and get busy sharing the gospel. It’s a passage that group leaders can teach to help their group members see the seriousness and the urgency of helping others hear about Jesus.
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