Many devout Christians fail miserably in their efforts to introduce others to Christ simply because they do not know how to go about it.
Knowing how to share your faith often makes the difference between effective and ineffective witnessing. Before you can introduce others to Christ, you must:
Know that you are a Christian yourself.
Understand the empowering ministry of the Holy Spirit in your life personally.
Learn how to present the distilled essence of the gospel so simply, clearly, and convincingly that the one with whom you are sharing will be able to make an intelligent decision for Christ as Savior and Lord.
In this lesson we will observe Christ's example in witnessing. Jesus demonstrated how to witness in the most effective manner as He talked to the woman of Samaria. Study John 4 carefully to discover new approaches and techniques of witnessing.
Example of Jesus
Read John 4:1-42. What everyday experience did Jesus use as an opportunity for witnessing?
What do you think is the advantage of beginning to conversation on the level of a person's immediate interest? Think of an occasion in which you used a person's special interest to share Christ with him. How did he respond?
List some of your natural opportunities to witness for Christ.
Why do you suppose Jesus sent all twelve of his disciples to buy provisions when two of them could have done it?
Who spoke first, Jesus or the woman of Samaria? Why is this significant when considering how to witness?
What did Jesus do repeatedly when the woman tried to divert His attention from her sin and her need?
Responses of the Samaritan Woman
How effective was the approach Jesus used in witnessing to this woman of Samaria?
What was the result of His witness?
How did the people to whom she witnessed respond, and why?
Sometimes witnessing can seem like breaking a sound barrier, like when an airplane accelerates to supersonic speed. Introducing the subject of Jesus can produce much stress and nervousness.
The first sound barrier occurs when we first mention the name of Jesus Christ and the value of knowing Him. Once we turn the conversation from dating, fashions, politics, work, sports, or any other topic to spiritual things, we have broken the first barrier. It is sometimes hard to do, and it does not always come easily.
The second sound barrier comes when we present the gospel. That nervous feeling returns once again. We must blast through this one also because many people, when they understand who Jesus Christ is and what He has done for them, will want Him in their lives.
The last barrier, asking the person to receive Christ right now, is the most difficult. But this is the most important step. Often we tell the person how to become a Christian and then just leave him high and dry. Until we ask the person to trust Christ as his or her Savior and Lord, our witness is not complete.
Think of the last time you encountered the first barrier to witnessing. How did you begin your conversation about Christ? How could you have handled it better?
How did the person respond when you asked him to receive Christ? If the person did not receive Christ, how could you have been more effective in your approach?
What is the one thing you have learned from Christ's example that you can apply most in your own witnessing?
What do you think hinders your witnessing most? List some practical ways you can overcome it.