Be ready and willing

I am going to share with you this morning a way to explain the gospels to others, especially those who do not know our Lord and Savior Jesus. It is not my own, but shared from Scripture, for I believe the Scripture is given to help us understand all truth, and to be able to share all truth. It happened when Paul was in Greece, and the men of Athens did not know about Jesus, and when they heard Paul talking, they called him a pseudo-intellectual. Perhaps they were humoring him when they wanted to hear more, so they took him to the place where he could speak to a larger number of those who claimed to be intellectuals.  Here is what he told them: “For as I was passing through and observing the objects of your worship, I even found an altar on which was inscribed: To an unknown God. Therefore, what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it – He is Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in shrines made by hands. Neither is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives everyone life and breath and all things. From one man He has made every nationality to live over the whole earth and has determined their appointed times and the boundaries of where they live. He did this so they might seek God, and perhaps they might reach out and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us. For in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ Being God’s offspring then, we shouldn’t think that the divine nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image fashioned by human art and imagination, Therefore, having overlooked the times of ignorance, God now commands all people everywhere to repent, because He has set a day when He is going to judge the world in righteousness by the Man He has appointed. He has provided proof of this to everyone by raising HIm from the dead.” Acts 17: 23-31  It seems that everyone worships someone or something. It’s all a matter of what they choose. Some worship themselves and their own ability to think intellectually. They are like the Athenians, but at least they wanted to hear more. Some would ridicule him, some would get angry. Some would make the excuse that they would hear more later, and probably never show. But some believed!  We must know that our lives should be a living testimony of Jesus. We don’t have to wonder what to say, for others will ask us. But we do need to know how to reply when asked. That’s when we will either deny Christ by our silence, or admit who He is and have a conversation prompted by the Holy Spirit. People who evangelize are not necessarily smarter than you and that’s not why they are called. They are called because they are willing to be used, and not afraid to speak to others.  You may be afraid to speak to others, but are you willing to share one on one with another person who comes to you to ask you a question about your faith? If you are willing, you will be used by God to bring another to the throne of grace. You only have to share that which you know about Jesus. It doesn’t matter if it doesn’t make sense to others. It doesn’t matter if they reject you! It doesn’t matter if they say bad things about you or think you are out of your mind. There will always be one who is in the crowd wanting to know the truth, and they will open their hearts, and hear the truth, and you will be blessed because you shared what your heart believes. Don’t be afraid, for it will not be you speaking but the Spirit who lives in you. Then go and have a good time, making friends, and sharing the hope that exists within you. So many need to hear, for they have no hope, and you just might be the one the Lord uses to bring that person to Him. Pastor Andy

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