Life hack

How to share the gospel like jesus

Golden-haired and adorned in her Sunday best, Angel was having a hard time living up to her name.

She squirmed in her pew seat, constantly turning around to peep and wave at the friendly faces behind her. She lost her shoes, 5 times. Then she climbed on her mommy’s lap, down again, up again—over and over again.

Finally, Mom had had enough. As the preacher droned on about how we can see God, Angel’s ears picked up on that interesting concept.

See God? Me want to see God!! Mommy, me want to see God!” Angel loudly claimed.

Without missing a beat, Mom swooped up her unruly Angel, headed toward the back of the auditorium, and said, in a whisper all who were near (including this author) could easily hear, “God is in the nursery. Let’s go see Him now!”

While Angel’s mom was certainly not focused on witnessing to her child at that particular moment, she had the right idea all the same.

God is in the nursery. And He’s in the pre-K classroom, and the early elementary groups too.

When you have the amazing opportunity to share the gospel with kids in your care, keep these 6 pointers in mind.

1. Don’t underestimate them

When it comes time to share the gospel, we sometimes make the mistake of thinking that very young children are too little to be presented with the weighty message of the good news.

Maybe we think the story of Jesus’ death is just too harsh. Or maybe we feel a little lost trying to explain how God could both send His Son to earth and die on a cross at the same time.

But we expect little ones to understand all kinds of heavy and important subjects.

  • We talk to them about staying away from fire and open windows and other hazards.
  • They learn not to talk to strangers, because not all people are nice to children.
  • We tell them about their right to keep their bodies private, and how to protect themselves.
  • And when loved ones die, we try our best to explain what’s happening and why we are sad.

We have no problem telling our little ones these things because we realize they only understand them at a basic level, which is all they need.

These things are important for our children to know, so we make a point of stating them, from the time they are old enough to understand “No” and “Obey” and “Stay with Dad.”

And we keep teaching them—over and over again.

The same should be true for times we share the gospel with kids. We know they will only understand it at a basic level, but that level is all they need right now.

From the time they are able to squeak out “Jesus loves me this I know,” we need to tell our children how they can know Jesus loves us so and what the Bible tells us about that.

And we need to keep teaching them—over and over again.

2. Don’t make it hard

When you share the gospel, keep it simple. Use a vocabulary your young child or the children in your ministry will understand.

Instead of saying, “Jesus paid our debt with His blood,” say “Jesus died on the cross so our sins could be taken away.”

Or instead of saying “Jesus conquered death and was resurrected on the third day,” try “Jesus died but came to life again on the third day. He showed everyone that God is stronger than death and that we can all live forever with God.”

In an effort to soften the story of Jesus’ death on the cross, we could actually make the event more confusing to children, or even unintentionally change the meaning.

We might say something like “Some bad leaders were mad at Jesus for saying that He was God’s Son and that He was a king. They put Jesus in jail and hurt Him until He died. But Jesus came to life again and lives forever in our hearts.”

While there is truth in this telling of the story, there is also a change in focus.

Instead of it being Jesus’ choice to die for us, this story makes it sound as though Jesus had no power or will. It also could sound to children like Jesus isn’t really alive as a person, but just as a thought or a feeling inside of us.

A better explanation might go like this: “Jesus taught people about God. He told them God was His Father and that God has a special kingdom for us. Some people didn’t believe Jesus, and they even wanted to kill Him! But to be part of God’s special kingdom, everyone must know Jesus. Jesus gave His life for us to show us how much He loves us, and how much He wants us all to live with Him in God’s kingdom. When we believe in Jesus, He helps us make good choices every day.”

In an effort to soften the story of Jesus’ death on the cross, we could actually make the event more confusing to children.

3. Don’t make it weird

Let’s face it. The Christian imagery we use to share the gospel can sometimes be very odd, and even downright scary. Bleeding lambs, animal sacrifices, people nailed on crosses, weeping and gnashing of teeth.

But just because all of that is in the Bible doesn’t necessarily mean you have to focus on it.

When you share the gospel with kids, what you don’t want to do is lead them into a kind of mental panic room, where hellfire burns outside the walls, but inside they can be locked up and kept safe and clean, as long as they say the sinner’s prayer 3 times fast.

The gospel story should be about the good news of God’s love for us.

Do children need to know about hell and the consequences of sin? Yes, of course. But we should be very cautious not to manipulate their feelings.

If we force kids into a spiritual corner, we may indeed come away with a confession of some kind—but will it be a true confession of faith or will it rather be a concession made in fear?

“Observe how Christ loved us. Love like that.” – Ephesians 5:2

Loving like Jesus is the best way to live. When we love like Him, we can step outside ourselves and clearly see our loved ones and their needs. We can shed layers of selfishness, resentment, anxiety, pettiness, and entitlement. Most of all, we can rise above our human imperfections and step into transcendent love.

Jesus’s model of love challenges us to stop settling for anything less than “the most excellent way.” If you want to love like Jesus, read on.

Can anyone really love like Jesus?

When it comes to love, Jesus raised the bar astronomically. He teaches us to love our enemies, turn the other cheek, and walk the extra mile. To our human minds, that sounds completely outrageous–but that’s the point.

If we want to love like Jesus, we have to open our hearts and our minds. We need to be able to fully utilize our emotion, reason, thoughts, and feelings. We can’t bring perfect love into our imperfect lives without this kind of complete vulnerability.

Why? Because opening your heart allows love to change your mind. When Jesus touches your heart, your mind can follow suit and be completely transformed. Allowing your heart into the conversation will revolutionize your thinking. We believe that’s what Paul meant when he said, “You’ll be changed from the inside out” (Romans 12:1 MSG).

If you’re in search of reasonable love, you’ll miss out on a love that’s extraordinary–on the opportunity to find a love you didn’t realize you had.

Jesus’s ideal model of love can rub off on our imperfect lives. Why? Because loving like Him is more attainable that we realize.

5 actionable ways to love like Jesus

Jesus’s example and teachings show us at least five ways we can love more like Him. While it’s not an exhaustive list by any means, these practices can provide us with an actionable starting point to apply to our imperfect, human lives.

To love like Jesus, we must:

  • Be mindful. We need to connect more deeply with our lives and the people in them, rather than living a detached, disconnected existence.
  • Be approachable. It’s important for people to feel safe approaching us; in other words, we must become less exclusive in our interactions with others and more welcoming to those who seek us out.
  • Be full of grace. We must be willing to relate to others in a less judgmental way.
  • Be bold. We have to shed our fears, “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7, ESV).
  • Be self-giving. We need to become less self-absorbed and more invested in those around us.

Over and over, Jesus demonstrated these qualities to show us that they’re not unattainable ideals. Instead, they’re a doable way to get an earthly handle on a heavenly ideal.

Debunking the myths

It’s a common misperception that loving like Jesus means that you must become a doormat, a weak wimp, or a spoilsport. Some people believe that loving like Jesus means we have to deny ourselves everything, miss out on all the fun, and smother our joy. But that’s not true.

According to research, having the ability to practice love in our daily relationships–marriage, friends, family, and otherwise–is actually the defining mark of human happiness. When we give of ourselves and do good for others, we use higher-level brain functions that trigger neurochemical reactions in our brains. The result? A cascade of positive emotions.

God designed us to want happiness because he wants us to be happy. But we seldom realize that the things we think will bring us happiness actually won’t. The things we chase after actually hinder our ability to truly enjoy life. We get used to pitiful pleasures that only last for a moment–and we miss out on the deepest enjoyment life has to offer.

Learning to love like Jesus isn’t illusive, out of reach, or pie-in-the-sky theology. It’s available to you and me right now. At times, we will fail–but each time we dust ourselves off and start again, we’ll learn a little more. It’s not easy, but it can be done. And I (Les) want to share the journey with you.

Need a road map?

My new book Love Like That is a deep dive into the 5 steps you and I can follow in order to love more like Jesus. When you pre-order, you’ll get access to bonus resources, including a sneak peek at chapter 1, a 30-day devotional, a free copy of the Deep Love assessment, and more. Get your copy here.

If you’d like to join the Love Like That launch team, sign up here.

Do you want to love more like Jesus? Are you already following some of the tips in this post? Let us know how they’ve opened your heart and changed your mind in the comments below.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Jonathan Dodson

You Can Know the Holy Spirit

Light Shines in the Darkness

What About All the Other Easter Resurrections?

Evangelism on the Rocks

Mission to North America

Three Ways Evangelism Can Be More Believable

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Jonathan Dodson

You Can Know the Holy Spirit

Light Shines in the Darkness

What About All the Other Easter Resurrections?

Evangelism on the Rocks

Mission to North America

Three Ways Evangelism Can Be More Believable

Pastor, Austin, Texas

When the gospel is communicated in preachy, impersonal, intolerant, know-it-all ways, people find it hard to believe. Typically, this style of evangelism is reduced to information. We content ourselves with “name-dropping” Jesus or telling people doctrine, but rarely do we draw near enough to people to know how the gospel applies to their actual lives. People want to know why the gospel is worth believing. In the information age, people are used to seeing through words. Most evangelism offers a sound bite gospel, which is easily screened, distrusted, and dismissed. In order for people to see something of substance in our words, our gospel communication needs depth.

New Creation in Rehab

When I met Ben I was immediately confronted with the need for depth. Ben had been through hell and back as an addict and he was worn out, at the end of his rope, and ready for a new start. Name-dropping Jesus wouldn’t cut it. First, he needed to see and feel the gospel. I desperately wanted to embody the love of Christ and I prayed he would feel and see it. Instead of correcting his life choices, I needed to understand his choices.

Sitting at rehab with him, I asked him questions: “What was your childhood like? When the church rejected you, did you experience rejection from your parents also? How did that make you feel? What was your drug community like? What were you looking for in this journey?” I asked these questions because I cared for Ben. This wasn’t an evangelistic formula; it was a budding relationship with a man in the image of God. He was an addict who was struggling to make sense of his life. I expressed empathy, concern, and compassion. He shared that he was adopted by good parents but struggled with a sense of loneliness and rejection. He began using drugs at age nine. Eventually we got down to the heart of the matter. “Ben, what have you been searching for?” He talked about loneliness and disappointment. I asked him how he thought God could figure into his longings. He wasn’t sure.

There was a strong sense that he was tired of the old life. He wanted to escape the broken, cemetery life. He wanted a new start. He wanted to know that a brighter future was possible. I thought: “What gospel metaphor is most appropriate for Ben’s current challenges?” Ben wasn’t yearning for justification by faith but he was dying to hear the gospel of new creation. Discerning some of his longings, I knew the promise of new creation could make the gospel a little more believable. He needed to know that there was a grace that could run deeper than all his failures and remake him from the inside out.

Remade from the Inside Out

Understandably, a cloud of skepticism still hung over him. At the risk of rejection, I told him something like: “Ben, I know you’re tired and worn out. I know this isn’t what you hoped for your life and I want you to know that God loves you. He wants to make you new. He wants to exile the old life and give you a new life in Jesus. Jesus died to give you this life, to forgive you and shower you with his grace. He wants you to come back home to enjoy his love, acceptance and peace. Instead of trusting in the escape of drugs and the fleeting acceptance of a drug community, he wants you to trust in Christ to become a new creation, to be remade from the inside out.”

He needed to know that his old man could be exiled and a new man could emerge (1 Corinthians 5:17–18; cf. Colossians 3:9–10; Ephesians 4:20–24; Galatians 6:15). If nothing else, I knew the hope of new creation would be desirable and, most of all, I knew it was true. We talked about his struggle to believe it, to believe in God and to trust the person of Christ. I asked if he would be willing to talk to God about it. He said yes. We got him a Bible and prayed.

A shallow gospel wouldn’t cut it with Ben, not with what he’d been through. His addiction ran deep and he needed a deep gospel. Hearing the information of Jesus’s death on the cross would be screened and dismissed. He needed to know how Jesus’s life and death is good news in his life. He needed a believable gospel.

Two years later, Ben stood up in one of our Sunday church gatherings. Healthy, calm, and composed, he kicked the doors off of his private struggles and shared the story of his addiction and recovery. You could hear a pin drop. When asked, “How has God’s grace been generous to you?” Ben responded: “Just being able to start new.” New creation! For Ben, God’s grace equals being new, liberated from the old life to experience an entirely new life in Christ. The old man exiled; the new man arrived! Belief in the gospel of new creation has made Ben new. The hope of new creation resonated with his longings; it pulled him towards Jesus.

Gospel Metaphors

There are struggles and hopes, fears and dreams that sit on the surface of people’s stories. If we listen well, with dependence on the Holy Spirit, we can discern which gospel metaphors people need to hear most. We can communicate a believable gospel. Using the gospel for how we share the gospel, we commend five ways forward for believable evangelism:

  • To those searching for acceptance in all the wrong places, we can point them to perfect acceptance in the gospel of justification.
  • To those searching for fulfilling relationships, we can point them to profound, personal union with Christ.
  • To those who struggle with tolerance, we can show them the uniqueness of Christ in the gospel of redemption.
  • To those who fear disapproval or demand the applause of others, we can share the gospel of adoption, which offers an enduring approval and produces humble confidence.
  • To anyone longing for a new start, there is the hope of new creation.

People need to know how the gospel is good news to them. Will you continue to recite canned presentations and avoid listening? Or will you love people enough to offer them a believable gospel?

Question: “How do I share the gospel with a ______?”

Answer: Humans have a tendency to self-classify based on certain identifiers and to group together with others who are alike. For example, we might define ourselves or others based on ethnicity or interests or political affiliations or countries of origin or lifestyles or the like. In discussions of sharing the gospel, we sometimes wonder if there is a particular way that the gospel is best shared with a person of any of these particular groups.

It is true that there are commonalities among those with similar cultural backgrounds or other types of group identifiers. And it’s true that certain aspects of the gospel message may resonate more deeply with one group over another—and certain groups may have a particular resistance to receiving the gospel—but the gospel message is universal. Every human being is made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27). Every human being is born in sin and separated from God (Romans 3:23; 6:23). The way of forgiveness and eternal life is only through Jesus—this is true for every human being (John 14:6; Acts 4:12). We need not think of one another in terms of a group classification. Our duty in life is to fulfill the Great Commission. Christians are called to share the gospel, the good news of Jesus, with everyone (Luke 24:47).

First Peter 3:15–16 tells us, “In your hearts revere Christ as Lord. 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, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” Our lives should be a reflection of the reality of the gospel. We live in submission to Christ as Lord. In part, this means that we treat others with gentleness and respect, no matter what group they identify with. Sharing the gospel is an act of compassion. Sharing the gospel is not about finding areas of dissimilarity. It’s about sharing a universal message to meet a universal need.

The question of sharing the gospel with a ______ often becomes complicated when it comes to people engaged in a particularly obvious sin that seems to be part of their lifestyle—or even their identity. For example, when witnessing to homosexuals or to heterosexual couples living together out of wedlock, we are prone to condemn the sin and try to modify the person’s behavior before sharing about Jesus. While we need to recognize sin for what it is, we must also remember that the Holy Spirit is the One who convicts (John 16:8). We usually don’t need to catalog a person’s sins, or even single one out, to share the fact that Christ died for sinners. Trying to “clean up one’s act” or stop a specific sin will not grant anyone eternal life. Homosexuals and fornicators are not saved by stopping their sexual sin but by receiving Christ by faith; the sin will stop after they are transformed and made new in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Another time the question of sharing the gospel with a ______ can become complicated is when we interact with someone of a different religion. We might gravitate toward apologetics and begin pointing out everything that is incorrect in the false religion, but that is usually counterproductive. Apologetics is useful, as is knowledge about the person’s beliefs and how they differ from what the Bible says, but the best way to illumine the darkness is simply to turn on the light. Point the person to Christ. Once people see who Jesus is and what He’s done, they will be able to see everything about their religion that is wrong.

Jesus was “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14), and so should His followers be. We do not share the gospel from an attitude of spiritual pride or a position of superiority. We confront sin when needed. We counter beliefs that are incompatible with the Bible. However, in our sharing of truth, we are careful of the manner in which we share it: “Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will” (2 Timothy 2:25–26).

If we were to mistreat or disparage those who are different from us, then we would limit our own opportunities to share the gospel with them. Why would people ever want to repent and believe in Jesus Christ, if followers of Jesus act in a rude, dismissive manner? We are called to be ambassadors of Christ, no matter to whom we are speaking (2 Corinthians 5:16–21). If we are loving, kind, and express concern for all humanity, then we are true reflections of Jesus Christ. Salvation is open to all who will believe: “God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him” (John 3:17).

When sharing the gospel with a ______, we should show our genuine compassion and concern for him or her as a person, regardless of the group he or she identifies with. We care about what’s going on in his or her life; we are truly concerned for the troubles he or she is facing. In the context of relationship, we can teach him or her of the need for a Savior while pointing to Scripture and explaining how all humanity is lost and in need of Jesus Christ.

In sharing the gospel, it is good to remember that the good news is the “power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16). It is the message that truly changes lives.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Andy the Atheist

Basic Description

Atheism is defined as “not having a ‘god belief’.” This is important to remember, because it’s not that an atheist doesn’t believe in god, because that statement opens the possibility that god or a supreme being exists. The atheist’s worldview is driven by pure rationality, reason, and the scientific method. The result of this is that most atheists hold the theory of evolution to be true, and they reject the possibility of the spiritual world and an afterlife. Most surveys show that around 15% of Americans call themselves atheist.

Questions You Can Ask

  • What makes you most excited about being an atheist?
  • Do you ever feel judged by others for rejecting the existence of God? If so, how does that make you feel?
  • Have you ever been mocked or rejected for being an atheist by those who claimed to be Christians?
  • Why have you chosen to not believe in the existence of God?
  • Are you willing to go wherever the evidence leads, whether or not it supports your worldview that there is no God?
  • Some in the scientific world have concluded that evidence like the specified complexity of DNA and the fine-tuned universe point toward an intelligent designer. Do you think it’s theoretically possible that there was a Designer behind the universe we inhabit?
  • Have you ever considered the possibility that you could be wrong about the existence of God? What might the consequences be if you are wrong?
  • Do you think there is a difference between “religion” and a “relationship” with God? Why or why not?
  • Has anyone ever explained the gospel to you?

Areas You Can Admire

  • Andy’s commitment to reason and logic.
  • Andy’s willingness to wrestle with tough questions.
  • Andy’s belief that no one person has all the answers.
  • Andy’s courage in facing life and all of its hardships without a belief in a loving and all-powerful God or an afterlife.

What Andy Believes

About Atheism:
Andy believes that atheism is the most rational and reasonable worldview, sometimes because of the ‘damage’ done by religion throughout the centuries, but mainly because it seems to be the most consistent with the observable world according to the scientific method.

About God:
Andy lacks a ‘god belief’.

About the Trinity:
Since Andy lacks a ‘god belief’, the concept of the Trinity is totally irrelevant.

About Jesus:
Andy believes Jesus was either just an ordinary person, or never existed at all. He will oftentimes refer to the ‘Jesus-Myth’, or when he is being really sarcastic, refers to ‘Jebus’ (a sarcastic reference to Christ).

About the Bible:
Andy believes the Bible is a collection of myths, half-truths, and lies designed to lead ignorant people astray and give power to religious leaders over the masses.

About the Afterlife:
Andy does not believe in an afterlife.

About Salvation:
In Andy’s mind, there is no need for salvation from sin and hell. He doesn’t believe in sin, and he doesn’t believe in hell, so why does anyone need to be ‘saved’?

What the Bible Teaches

About God:
God identified Himself as “I Am” (Exodus 20:2) – meaning He is the self-existent (has no beginning or end)eternal Creator of the universe.

About the Trinity:
There is one God and yet three Persons (Isaiah 45:5; Deuteronomy 6:4; James 2:19).

About Jesus:
Jesus is fully God and fully man. He is not just an enlightened man. He is the God of the universe (John 1:1, 14, 18; 8:58; 10:30. Compare Titus 2:13 and Isaiah 45:21), and He is equal with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit.

About the Bible:
The Bible alone is the word of God. It is without error. It cannot and should not be added to or subtracted from (2 Timothy 3:16-4:4; Revelation 22:18-20). It backs up its claim as the word of God with accuracy, historical correctness, and fulfilled prophecy.

About the Afterlife:
Those who trust in Christ alone as their only hope of salvation spend eternity in heaven; those who reject Christ spend an eternity in hell. (John 5:24-30; Revelation 20:11-15).

About Salvation:
Every person born on this planet is born into sin, is destined for hell and needs a Savior. Salvation is by faith in Christ on the basis of His death on the cross. Good works or self-denial have nothing to do with being saved (John 3:16-17, 36; 6:29, 47; Romans 4:1-5; Galatians 2:16; Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5).

Things to Remember

  • The first thing you need to ask an atheist is “do you really seek to discover the truth – even if it costs you your reputation, and even your friends?” If the answer is no, then realize that he/she is not willing to go where the evidence leads; you won’t be having an honest intellectual dialogue, but your conversation may still have a spiritual impact.
  • Don’t talk about sin with an atheist. In their worldview, morality is generally dependent on the situation and neutral, so there is no reference point in their minds for a concept of breaking God’s universal laws.
  • Don’t get dragged into arguments about what God did or didn’t do. Focus on the evidence that Christ existed, died on the cross, and came back from the dead. As well, your personal testimony can be a powerful tool, because it’s very difficult to ‘disprove’ the real and lasting change that Christ has brought to your life.
  • Bottom line with an atheist (or anyone else for that matter) – you cannot argue someone to faith in Christ, but you can (and should) live such a Christlike life that those around you sense something different, which opens the door for you to explain the ‘evidence’.

For Further Research

About Dare 2 Share Ministries

Dare 2 Share is a church assisting ministry that provides resources for youth leaders and equips teens to relationally and relentlessly reach their generation for Christ. Over 1,400 of these resources are provided completely FREE! D2S also conducts nationwide youth evangelism training conferences. The events are structured for students in junior high and high school, ranging from 12 to 18 years old. Regardless of gender or denomination, D2S teaches from a Christian perspective. D2S is based in Denver, Colorado and has impacted the lives of more than 300,000 teens since 1991.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Before you even start reading this post, I want you to take a minute and try to think back to the last time you shared the gospel with someone. How long ago was that? Have you ever shared the gospel with someone? What was it like?

Really. Take a minute. I’ll wait.

If you haven’t shared the gospel with anyone in a while, what is holding you back? Are you worried what people will think of you? Scared that you won’t know what to say or that you won’t be able to answer their questions? Do you think that sharing the gospel is only for pastors and missionaries? Maybe you just haven’t thought about it or you don’t think it’s important. Or maybe you don’t even have non-Christian friends to share it with? (It’s okay to be honest.)

Regardless of your reason, the fact is that in Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus COMMANDS us to go and make disciples (and yes, that includes you!)

“Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” -Matthew 28:18-20

Furthermore, not only should we do this because Jesus COMMANDS us to, but also–shouldn’t we want to? When you have fantastic news, don’t you WANT to share it with your friends? And I’d venture to say the Good News is the most important news of all!

Why Christians Don’t Share the Gospel

So, if sharing the Gospel is so important, why don’t we do it?

I think it’s because a lot of people have the wrong impression about sharing the gospel. Sharing the Gospel doesn’t mean that you have to grab the nearest unbeliever, open your Bible, and lecture them about Heaven and Hell. It doesn’t mean that you have to know all of the answers (though it helps if you do actually know why you believe what you believe). And it doesn’t have to be awkward or scary or weird.

Instead, sharing the gospel is just having a normal conversation with another person who doesn’t believe the same things you do. Except instead of talking about football or the weather, you’re telling your story about your God and the things He has done in your life, and letting them know that He can do the same for them too.

Sharing the Gospel isn’t trying to convince the other person that you are right and they are wrong. It isn’t about telling them a great argument so that they will believe. It isn’t trying to get them to stop being such an awful sinner. It’s just sharing who God is, what He’s done for you and explaining why that matters.

Furthermore–the point of sharing the Gospel isn’t to save people. Yes, you read that right. “Saving people” isn’t our job–it’s God’s job. Our job is simply to sow the seed, nourish the seed, and hopefully eventually harvest the seed. We are obedient to share God’s love with others, and we depend on Him for the rest.

So without further ado, here are:

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Photo adapted from this photo under this license.

25 Easy Ways to Share the Gospel

  1. Tell people that you went (or are going) to church when they ask about your weekend. Add in a quick sentence about what the sermon was about.
  2. Refuse to participate in ungodly activities. When they ask why, politely(!!) let them know.
  3. Play Christian radio in your car when you carpool (It’s okay to have it on quietly. You don’t have to blast it and sing at the top of your lungs–unless you want to.)
  4. Pray for people when you hear they are going through a rough time. Pray right there with them, and let them know you have will be praying for them on your own too.
  5. Read the Bible or other Christian books on your lunch break. People will notice. They may ask you what your book is about, or you may bring it up yourself.
  6. Having a garage sale? Put a few Bibles on a table with a “Free–take one!” sign.
  7. Teach Sunday School.
  8. When someone is sick, bring them a hot meal and a card with a nice note and an encouraging Scripture verse written on it.
  9. Ask their opinion about current events. Share your (Godly, but humble) opinion as well.
  10. Be honest about a tough time you are having and how you are really having to rely on God to get you through it.
  11. Do a random act of kindness and leave a note simply saying “because Jesus loves you.”
  12. Invite them to a church event. Many people who don’t attend regularly would go if you ask, especially around major Christian holidays like Christmas and Easter.
  13. Do you own a business? Leave a couple Bibles in the waiting room for people to read while they wait.
  14. Share encouraging Scripture verses, memes, youtube videos, and posts by your favorite Christian bloggers on your social media accounts. 🙂
  15. Support a child in a third world country.
  16. Don’t be afraid to share the big things God is doing in your life.
  17. Did you know there are numbers people can call or websites people can visit at anytime–day or night–if they want to learn more about Jesus? You could sign up to be one of the people that answers their questions or talks with them.
  18. Feeling super brave? Go door to door. Even if most people aren’t interested, if you find a few that are, it’s completely worth it.
  19. Volunteer in a setting like a hospital, children’s home, women’s shelter or crisis pregnancy center. Listen to their stories, offer hope, pray with people.
  20. Go to a bar and talk to people. (No, I’m not joking.) Find out their life story. Share yours.
  21. Start a Bible study with a few Christian friends. Ask nonbelievers if they would like to join you.
  22. Wear t-shirts/jewelry with Christian themes on them.
  23. Help people stranded on the side of the road. Give God the credit.
  24. Be a big brother or big sister.
  25. Start a blog where you can tell the world about Jesus!

Do you regularly share the Gospel? If not, what is holding you back? Which of these 25 ways do you think you could do–or what other suggestions could you add as well?

Waiting for the perfect opportunity to share the good news with people who need to hear it? This is it! Just use the share buttons below! Easy, right? 🙂

Sharing your faith is one of your most important callings as a follower of Jesus. These resources will help develop your skills, desire and ability to join others on their spiritual journeys and take them closer to Jesus.

What Is the Gospel?

Have you ever wondered what the gospel is? The word “gospel” means news. It is the news about who Jesus Christ is, what He has done, and how that changes everything for all of us. Learn what is so good about the news of the gospel in this in-depth explanation.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

More than anything, everyone needs to experience God’s love and grace. Not only that, but God has commanded His followers to always be ready to give a reason for the hope they have (1 Peter 3:15) and to go make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19).

With Whom?

There are people near, like your neighbors, acquaintances, friends and family, and people far, like those from different cultures than you and those in other countries, whom God has called you to share Jesus with.

You can join people on their spiritual journeys by being an Explorer (discovering where they are spiritually), a Guide (showing the way to Jesus), a Builder (helping people get past obstacles) or a Mentor (walking with them as they grow in their faith).

Where to Start?

Start from right where you are. You don’t have to have all the answers, and it’s not your job to change anyone’s mind. Love people and share the hope you have in Jesus with gentleness and respect. Need some help? Take your next step using the resources below.

Preparing Your Personal Testimony

Your story is His story. When you share how God rescued you from sin and death through Jesus, it gives others an opportunity to know God and what He can do. Learn how to prepare and share your story.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Getting your teenagers to share the gospel can be a challenge. These ideas will help spark them to action.

1. Get them to start praying for their unreached peers. When teenagers pray for their lost friends).

2. Take them on fishing trips. In other words, take them out to actually share the Gospel once a month or so. Jesus did that with his mostly teenaged followers, and we can do the same (Matthew 4:19). Of course we want them to learn to have Gospel conversations and not just make evangelistic presentations.

3. Train them how to bring the Gospel up in a natural way. Jesus used the subject of a drink of water to share the Gospel with the Samaritan woman (John 4:4-10). You can train them using the Ask-Admire-Admit strategy developed by Dare 2 Share to help you do this well.

4. Immerse them in Gospel fluency. Just like the Apostle Paul equipped the Corinthians with a Gospel creed he himself had put to memory (1 Corinthians 15:3,4), we must equip our teenagers to clearly articulate the Gospel message in a clear and simple way.

5. Have your teenagers role-play various faith sharing scenarios. You can do this during youth group or small group. Use these different worldviews to create Gospel sharing scenarios with your teenagers.

6. Program story sharing time into your weekly youth group meetings. One of the reason we love the book of Acts is that it is full of Gospel advancing stories. Faith sharing stories bring the theoretical into reality and make God’s truth come alive in the form of changed lives.

7. Have teenagers write down the names of teenagers who don’t know Jesus. Use this to help them begin to pray for these friends with passion, pursue them with love and persuade them with the truth of the Gospel. At Dare 2 Share we use THE Cause Circle to help your teens visualize and actualize this process.

8. Talk about the urgency of hell). The urgency that erupts from its flames can melt even the coldest hearts to evangelistic action.

What are some other ways to get your teenagers sharing their faith right away?

This guy comes up to Jesus and asks him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus’ initial response is sort of a shock: “Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone.” He does not say this as though to contrast Himself with God, but rather to make a point about man vs God, generally. Nobody is good. Only God is good. This is a huge hint to help us understand where Jesus is going with the next part of his answer: “You know the commandments, ‘DO NOT MURDER, DO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, DO NOT STEAL, DO NOT BEAR FALSE WITNESS, Do not defraud, HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER.’”

Now let’s be honest. This isn’t anything like the answer you were expecting, is it? This guy just wants to know how to be saved. In our thinking Jesus is supposed to share the Gospel now. This man is open to instruction now in a way he might never be again. His question was like a giant lob in slow-pitch softball, just waiting for Jesus to connect with “the Gospel bat.” All Jesus needed to do to make us happy was tell him to “believe” or maybe “repent and believe.” Instead, Jesus whips out a can of law, and starts laying it on thick. Murder. Adultery. Theft. Lying.

How to Share the Gospel like JesusThe weight of the law is crushing. And Jesus used that weight all the time. (Image credit: peasap)

If somebody did that today, we’d tell them it was a terrible waste of an excellent opportunity to share the Gospel. But we don’t really feel free to do that with Jesus. So what do we make of this, and how do we apply it as we seek to learn from Jesus and become more like Him? Before we can answer that, we should probably read the rest of the story.

The man responds to Jesus with, “Teacher, I have kept all these things from my youth up.” Then it says, “Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him…” (Here we all breathe a sigh of relief. Aha! Here comes the good news, right?) “…and said to him, ‘One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.’”

Did you catch that? Jesus felt love for him. So He… gave him more law. Ugh. Jesus just doesn’t seem to have the same “gospel centered” message we have, does He? But wait. It gets worse. The story continues: “at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property.”

Here was a man who wanted to know how to be saved. He asked Jesus how to be saved. Jesus’ answer was, “keep the law.” When the guy says he’s been keeping it, Jesus shows him where he hasn’t been, and how to change it. Jesus discourages the man so much with all the talk of the law that the man walks away sad.

There are a few choices for how to understand this:

  1. Someone who approaches the Bible as if it’s a timeline everything must fit into in its proper place might dodge the bullet by saying Jesus couldn’t preach the Gospel yet because He hadn’t yet died, but now He has and so we can skip over the Law, going straight to the Gospel.
  2. A heretic would have no problem with the story: Jesus made a mistake.
  3. A Christian who honors Scripture by allowing it to mold his thinking and life will recognize that the only legitimate answer is that Jesus was proclaiming the gospel, here. The fact that we don’t see it that way only reveals our failure to properly grasp what “proclaiming the gospel” looks like.

Jesus’ great love for the man caused Him to hammer away with law, law, and more law—not letting up on him. Not even after he walked away from Jesus mourning. Jesus was preaching the Gospel here and his Gospel preaching was not in error or a failure.

Jesus showed us how to preach the gospel to those who think they are good. How to preach the Gospel to the righteous, the clean, those who think they see. In other words, it’s no failure to “get to the gospel” when we call men to obedience to the Law without ending the call to obedience with an explanation that “Jesus did it all,” and now “it’s all by grace,” “grace is everything,” and “isn’t grace wonderful?”

If we think the Gospel must always be preached by turning unbelievers away from the Law to Jesus, and the sooner the better, we need to re-examine our theology because, by our criteria, Jesus here failed to get to the gospel.

Not just once, either, because Jesus preached the Gospel like this regularly.

Why did Jesus take this tack? Because what this young man needed to hear was not, “Cheer up. You’re worse than you think you are, but the good news is better than you can possibly imagine.” This man thought he was good and, until he was convinced otherwise, he could never obey that last command Jesus gave him—”come follow me.” Jesus himself is the One Who said He didn’t come for good men, for the righteous. The only thing that can convince a man who thinks he is good that he isn’t good at all is being helped to see more clearly what the law of God truly requires of him. You can tell him “you can’t keep the law” or “you’re worse than you think you are” until you’re blue in the face. It’s not going to accomplish what preaching the law will accomplish. Preaching the law is the tutor to Christ. It’s true gospel preaching all on its own, the same way Jesus did it.

If we love people like Jesus did, we’ll regularly give them God’s law and let them stew in it until it’s done it’s work and the rich young ruler is finally ready to give up the money he loves and come follow Jesus.

Posted by Greg Stier on Nov 24, 2007 2:40:05 AM

There’s nobody like Jesus.

He can take a situation where you feel pressed and distressed and turn it around with a flinch of his finger. When you are torn up inside and the pain seems more than you can bear he takes his nail scarred hand, puts it gently on your shoulder and whispers through his Word, “I understand. I hurt with you. I’m there for you. Through my strength you can endure this, you can endure anything.”

There’s nobody like Jesus.

He is defending you before the Father right now against the accusations of the Evil One. His Spirit is interpreting your prayer requests to God with deep groans that only the Heavenly Father can understand. But in his groans we find our sighs of relief.

There’s nobody like Jesus.

Through his death our sins are forgiven, through his resurrection our hope is alive, through his life in us and through us we have victory over sin and Satan.

There’s nobody like Jesus.

When he died on the cross the ground shook, the graves opened and the world changed. The creation that once was all on a highway to hell was now on the pathway to redemption.

There’s nobody like Jesus.

At the moment our Savior paid the price for sin, the veil in the temple was torn from top to bottom. That thick veil which was handknit for thousands of man hours to keep a barrier between sinful humanity and holy divinity, was shredded in an instant by the hands of the divine. With that rip our relationship with God could finally and forever be repaired. The sounds of tearing were not just the fabric in the temple being torn but the body of Jesus on a hill being shredded. The Holy of Holies, reserved exclusively for the presence of God, was now accessible to frail humanity. What was once blocked by a wall of thread and dread was now opened up for all to enter through faith. The Son of God offered himself for our sins so that we could revel in the presence of God, not in the temple built by human hands, but in the true temple in Heaven itself.

There’s nobody like Jesus.

The last words of Jesus in the second to the last verse of the Bible are, “I am coming soon.” And he is. The first time he came as a lamb to be sacrificed. The next time he comes as a lion to conquer. Then, at the culmination of all history, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father. Every demon that ever uttered blasphemies will bow. Every atheist who railed against the existence of the One who created them will bow. Every sinner, every saint, every person from every religion, every angel and demon that ever existed, including Satan himself will bow and admit.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Many years ago, Bud Wilkinson, the great old football coach of Oklahoma University, defined the game by saying, “Football is when thousands of fans in the stands desperately in need of exercise are watching 22 young men on the field desperately in need of rest.”

And you know, that could describe the church today in many ways! There are so few in the game actually sharing their faith. Most are in the stands just watching!

But the truth is if you are a follower of Christ… if you claim the Lord Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior… you are called to share your faith with others.

In fact, Jesus said it Himself in Acts 1:8, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (emphasis added).

Even though Jesus expects us to share our faith, many followers of Christ today find it difficult… even scary. If this describes you today, I want to offer you a word of encouragement:

In spite of your weaknesses, in spite of your past mistakes or struggles, you can be an effective and successful witness for the Lord Jesus Christ.

Here are 3 Ways You Can Share Your Faith

1. Ask God to give you a passion for people. That’s where it all begins! Sharing your faith isn’t so much a program or technique as it is a passion of the heart. So ask God to give you a burden… a desire… a passion… to talk to your friends and family about Jesus.

2. Be authentic. Most people can identify with the ordinary, real experiences you’ve had in your life. So don’t be afraid to let people know how God is working in those ordinary, everyday experiences! Remember… people aren’t looking for perfection. They’re looking for someone who’s real.

3. Love people unconditionally. This is a hard one! But this is what Jesus did… and it’s what you and I are to do as well…no matter how people may mistreat or misuse us.

Finally, share Jesus now! This is why Jesus said in John 4:35, “Lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest.” It’s the responsibility of every Christian to introduce as many people as possible to Jesus. Today! Right now!

It’s my prayer that you will get out of your comfort zone this week… and begin sharing your story of God’s grace in your life with those who need to hear it!

Photo credit: ©GettyImages/MangoStarStudios

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Sharing Jesus is hard, but it doesn’t have to be.

We consulted with dozens of the nation’s top evangelists and asked them for their secrets to successfully spreading the gospel to friends and acquaintances who you’re pretty sure don’t know the Lord.

Then, for you, we distilled their advice down to these seven simple, tried-and-true methods of faithful soul-winning:

  1. Never mention it. This is a subtle tactic, but effective. One of the most impactful ways you can share Christ is to be sure never to talk about Him, no matter what. And if a non-believer brings up God or Jesus, be sure to change the subject or flail your arms about to scare him or her off so your evangelistic strategy isn’t ruined.
  2. Use elaborate metaphors from current films and TV shows. Old-school evangelism was all about preaching Jesus from the Scriptures, but there’s a reason that’s considered outmoded now: it’s lame and boring. Instead, find a gospel connection from a recent film like Dr. Strange or Tyler Perry’s latest art film, and share Jesus as the “greater Batman” or whatever.
  3. Build relationships for 40–50 years before sharing Christ. Too often, Christians jump right into presenting the gospel before building meaningful relationships. So for the first four or five decades of your friendship with someone who desperately needs the gospel, just connect with the person, love on them, and also fervently pray that they don’t die.
  4. Wear Christian T-shirts. A recent study showed that the majority of converts to Christianity were first exposed to God’s amazing grace through “Lord’s Gym” T-shirts. So replace your wardrobe with gaudy Christian T-shirts—especially ones that parody secular brands and logos. Now you’re always talking about Jesus, even when you’re not.
  5. Get a clever rapture bumper sticker, and put it on your friend’s car. One of the fruits of salvation is putting a Christian fish or bumper sticker on your car. But the true faithful will go out and buy a box of bumper stickers that make a clever quip about the rapture, and put them on all the cars in their neighborhood. What a great witness for Jesus!
  6. Hide Chick tracts in their bathroom. If your neighbor invites you over to watch Monday Night Football, great. You’ve infiltrated their oikos. Now it’s time to excuse yourself to the restroom and leave some of Jack Chick’s most fiery tracts on top of their toilet, in their medicine cabinet, and under the sink. Next time they use the bathroom, they’re sure to be scared straight into the Kingdom.
  7. Whisper “Jesus loves you” in their ear while they sleep. It’s the time-honored message of American evangelicalism: Jesus loves you. But to get across the full effect of this powerful gospel truth, you need to slip into your friend’s house in the middle of the night and whisper these words into his or her ear.

Well, there you have it. We are truly humbled and blessed to encourage you toward more faithful evangelism with these seven effective methods.

No excuses now—get out there and share Jesus!

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Share Jesus Without Fear – God’s Guidance
Do you want to share Jesus without fear? Perhaps the thought of sharing your faith in Jesus Christ causes feelings of fear and guilt in your heart. We need to look no further than the first book of the New Testament to see that we are commanded to share God’s good news with others. Matthew 28:19-20 says, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” However, God did not intend for this command to give you feelings of inadequacy. Instead, this command illustrates God’s desire to include us in His wonderful plan to redeem mankind.

Would you like to know the secret to fearlessly sharing your faith in Jesus Christ? Sadly, there is no special trick, but it is comforting to know that God hears your prayers, and He is faithful to grant you anything according to His will. Since God desires to see everyone come to the knowledge of the truth (2 Peter 3:9), you can confidently ask Him to provide opportunities to share your faith. Praying for God to guide your Christian witnessing encounters allows you to rely on His supernatural power rather than your own ability. He will remove your fear of witnessing.

Share Jesus Without Fear – The Questions
If you want to share Jesus without fear, how do you get started? Starting a discussion about spirituality is often the biggest barrier to sharing your faith in Jesus Christ. Do you wonder how to approach the subject in the midst of everyday conversation? You can make this a much easier task by using the simple technique of asking your friend questions about his beliefs. This technique usually has two benefits. First, your friend may be more obliged to listen to your beliefs once you have listened to his. Second, and more important, this technique allows you to know what is going on in your friend’s life so that you can better minister to him.

Here are a few questions that can move the conversation from a secular topic to a spiritual topic. The questions act as a funnel to introduce the Gospel.

  • Do you have any kind of spiritual beliefs?
  • To you, who is Jesus?
  • Do you think there is a heaven or a hell?
  • If you died tonight, where would you go?
  • By the way, if what you were believing is not true, would you want to know?

These five questions, asked in the order listed above, can move a conversation from the secular to the spiritual. And if your friend answers “yes” to the final question, you will have the privilege of sharing your faith with your friend.

Share Jesus Without Fear – Let God’s Word Speak
You can share Jesus without fear! Rather than recite an elaborate presentation, simply open your Bible and let God’s Word speak for itself. For this to work, you will need a Bible (preferably a small one because small Bibles tend to be less intimidating to non-christians), and a few salvation passages to share. Some passages that serve this purpose are listed below:

  • “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
  • “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
  • “In reply Jesus declared, ‘I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again'” (John 3:3).
  • “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me'” (John 14:6).
  • “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, ‘Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame'” (Romans 10:9-11).
  • “And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again” (2 Corinthians 5:15).
  • “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me” (Revelation 3:20).

Invite your friend to read a verse aloud and then have him explain the verse to you. Take him through all the verses listed above. If your friend interprets a passage incorrectly, don’t argue or offer your interpretation, but politely ask him to read it again, and then explain it a second time. Misinterpretation should not be much of a problem if you use the Bible verses listed above.

Even if your friend mentions that he doesn’t believe in or agree with the Bible, it is best not to argue. You can state that you simply want him to understand what the Bible says about eternity. Isn’t it wonderful to know that it’s not our responsibility to convict? Conviction is God’s job. All we can do is share. Once we have shared, we have done God’s will. Witnessing for Christ is a no-lose activity.

Ideas and concepts taken from William Fay’s book, Share Jesus Without Fear, published by Broadman & Holman Publishers, Nashville, TN.

WHAT DO YOU THINK? – We have all sinned and deserve God’s judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, “Jesus is Lord,” you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

In Rethinking the Gospel, I shared briefly on the content of the gospel…as envisioned in the New Testament.

However, I believe the way that the gospel is presented should differ depending on the people with whom we share it.

This requires sensitivity to the Spirit and attention to the person’s heart. Jesus Christ didn’t present Himself the same way to everyone.

To some, He warned. To others, He rebuked. To some, He showed compassion and mercy. To some, He asked questions or told parables, etc.

Don’t Miss

Just examine the way He interacted with various people, and you’ll see monumental differences. In a much-overlooked text, Jude describes it like this:

And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh. (Jude 22-23 NKJV)

You have the same thing in Paul.

Sometimes, Paul says things like, “It’s the kindness and mercy of God that leads us to repentance.” In other places, he says things like, “Knowing the terror of the Lord, we persuade men.”

Forgive the personal reference, but as I think back on all the times I’ve shared Christ in one-on-one settings over the years (which includes many miserable failures at trying), I’ve noticed a few interesting things.

With some, I never mentioned the afterlife and focused only on the mercy and love of God for the moment. And I watched people repent and believe on Christ.

Should a kid wait until she is an adult to share her faith with a friend? Absolutely not! A vital part of Kids Ministry can and should be helping kids become equipped to share the gospel with their friends. An incredible way to see this happen is to start a training class for kids interested in sharing their faith.

You may be wondering “What tools can I use to start a class?” Consider the Leading a Child to Christ Training Pack. This pack provides you with tools to guide parents, leaders, and older children in how to share their faith.

Inside the training pack you’ll find a booklet called, “Leading a Friend to Christ” which helps kids affirm their own faith and prepares them to share their faith. Also in the training pack you’ll find a video spotlighting a kid sharing the gospel with a friend.

Here are some tips from the booklet that teachers can explore with kids to help them feel more comfortable entering a dialogue about the gospel. They are excellent for adults, too!

Once you feel God leading you to talk with someone about Jesus, begin to pray for that person and ask God to give you an opportunity to talk with this friend or family member about your faith in Jesus.

Become familiar with a tool/tract that can be shared with your friend outlining what one does to become a follower of Jesus.

Talk as if you are carrying on a conversation.

Try not to argue with your friend/family member.

If your friend is not open to the gospel, simply share what God has done for you!

Check out this resource and see if God might be leading you to start a class in your church for kids to become equipped to share their faith.

Jerry Vogel serves as a Childhood Ministry Specialist in LifeWay Church Resources. He is married to Janie and has four children and twelve grand kids. Jerry is a member of Brentwood Baptist Church in Nashville and teaches preschoolers there. He is committed to enriching the lives of those who teach kids as well as making eternal investments in the lives of children.

This article is not meant to give some magic formula or to serve as a wooden script, but rather to offer a few guidelines on how to best share the good news of Jesus with our Hindu friends. Be genuine and have real conversations with the Hindu people you meet. As you do, here are some things to keep in mind

1. Treat Hindus with respect by asking questions and patiently listening as they explain their religion.

The first thing about sharing the gospel with anyone is to remember that you are talking to a person, not an object. Always ask questions when talking to a Hindu. Do not tell a Hindu what he or she believes since Hinduism is an extremely diverse religion with each individual having a different expression of Hindu belief and practice. Instead, let him or her tell you what they believe. As a result of listening, do not witness out of a sense of duty or anxiety, but of loving compassion for the Hindu people.

2. Care for them.

Always be willing to reach out in love to your Hindu friends. Invite them to your home. Go to their homes, if invited, and learn about their beliefs and culture. Out of this sense of mutual respect, begin to share the good news of Christ with them.

3. Have a humble spirit.

When talking to Hindus about Christ, always have a humble, respectful attitude. First, you can pray for and with them. Second, be respectful about their beliefs. Third, always do your best not to argue with them, but politely emphasize the positive good news of Christ.

4. Use stories to explain Jesus’ forgiveness.

Hindus are accustomed to learning through stories in their culture and religion (for example, see the Bhagavad-Gita). As a result, it is helpful to explain the gospel message using stories to which they can relate. For example, the parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32).

5. Keep the personhood of God in mind.

Explain that God is not an impersonal entity, but is a loving, perfect, and just God who cares for His people. You could even use the story of the progical son to illustrate God’s love for His children (Luke 15:11-32). Even when we rebel against God, he comes running to us with mercy and forgiveness as the father runs to forgive his son (Luke 15:20).

6. Carefully emphasize the exclusivity of Jesus

Help the Hindu understand that faith in Jesus Christ is the only way to attain salvation (John 14:6; cf. Acts 4:12). A Hindu might put Jesus up there with the other gods that they worship. So one must be patient and help them understand that Christians can only worship Jesus (Mt. 2:2, 11; 14:33). They might not understand that worshipping many gods is set against worshipping the one true God of the Bible. This might take a long time for them to understand, but it is well worth the effort as you patiently explain it to them.

7. Be patient.

When sharing the gospel with Hindus, you have to be very careful to realize that Hinduism for many people is more than a set of abstract beliefs and principles, but is a reality of their daily culture and family life. For them to consider accepting the exclusive claims of Jesus would often require them to pay a great personal price, including rejection by family and friends. Emphasize to them that following Jesus does not mean that they are rejecting their family and culture, even if their family or culture rejects them.

I remember how the office smelled. I remember the rough feel of the table under my hands and the tears stinging my eyes. I remember exactly what his voice sounded like — gentle, soothing, pleading, and full of a passion I did not understand.

“I can’t”, I whispered.

“It’s not that easy. You don’t understand.”

“Do you believe that God can forgive you?”

“When God forgives you, He separates your sin as far from you as the east is from the west. That’s a straight line, Kris. If God can forgive you, you can forgive yourself.”

This was the single most important conversation of my life — talking with Tom, my friend and pastor, about the guilt and shame that was eating my soul. I left that day thinking that God probably could forgive me, not sure that He would, and not convinced that His forgiveness was really what I needed.

Even so, that conversation was the turning point for me.

That day God began working on my heart and, little by little, God replaced the guilt, hurt, and shame that characterized my life with His love, joy, and peace. I’m not the same woman who sat in Tom’s office over 20 years ago.

Talking about God is easy for me. Most of my friends are Christians and it’s easy to talk to people who believe like I do, but I’ve struggled with how to accurately represent the Savior who changed my life to those outside my Christian circles.

I know broken, hurting people searching for meaning and hope who do not want to hear about Jesus. I know people who have been shunned by their families and labeled by society who do not want to hear about Jesus. I know people bound to guilt and shame over choices they’ve made who do not believe God will offer them forgiveness. I know people who believe, truly believe, that Jesus has nothing to offer them.

And now I understand the passion I heard in Tom’s voice all those years ago. I understand the pleading just below his gentle tone. He knew what I did not. He knew that I needed Jesus. So, he gave me a gift. He told me and showed me, time and time again, in more ways than I can count, that God loves me and that the peace I was looking for could be found in Jesus and the forgiveness He offers.

My pastor didn’t try to change me. He told me that God loves me . . . and let God do the rest.

Today I realized that Pastor Tom gave me another gift. He showed me how to share Christ with those who don’t want to hear about Jesus or who don’t believe that Jesus is the answer they are looking for. I just need to do what he did with me so many years ago: show them and tell them, in every way I can, that God loves them and then trust God to do the rest.

I may not see what grows from the seeds I plant. I just need to tell them the truth.

God loves you.
Jesus died for you.
You can be forgiven.
You can have peace and joy.

It’s not my responsibility to “fix” anyone. God can do a much better job than I ever could. He’s had a plan all along.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him.

Whether you’re searching for peace or love someone who is, Jesus is the answer.

If you are searching, it is my prayer that you will listen . . . God loves you. No matter where you are, God loves you. He offers the peace, fulfillment, meaning, and satisfaction you are looking for.

If you are trying to “fix” someone who is searching, it is my prayer that you will tell them that God loves them, in every way you can . . . and trust God to do the rest.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

Tips for Christians Navigating the 21 st Century

Living for Jesus isn’t just the path to more peace and joy in your life, it’s also the path to salvation. It can feel like the secular world is pulling us away from our beliefs, and there are more distractions and temptations than ever before. But there’s hope for the modern-day Christian. If you want to put Jesus at the center of your life and glorify God in all things, consider putting the following suggestions into practice.

Know What Jesus Would Do

The modern world is full of distractions, many of which are disguised as things that are “normal” and presented to us as harmless. You can develop your discernment about what’s worldly vs. Godly and continue to grow spiritually by guarding what you put into your mind and your heart.

To know Christ is to have the capacity to live a holy life. Regular Bible study and fellowship with other believers will help you understand the heart and mind of Jesus, which in turn will help you make decisions that glorify God. With the Holy Spirit inside of you, ask yourself “what would Jesus do?” in situations where you might otherwise make an imperfect decision that can displease God.

Be Present in the World

Jesus gave His life so that we may have eternal life in the Kingdom of Heaven, but also so that we may enjoy the heaven on earth God has created for us. In the Bible we see how Jesus loved the world and was continuously present in it. To live for Christ, then, means to be present in the world and to appreciate the gift of life that has been given to us. Unfortunately, this is usually easier said than done.

Digital entertainment, social media and general busyness are just a few of the distractions contending for our attention. If you want to be closer to Jesus, start by limiting the unfruitful distractions in your life and being more present in the world around you—including with the people around you. Which brings up another point about getting up and getting outside: it allows you to share the Good News with more people than you’d meet if you spent all your free time playing on your smart phone.

Look for New Ways to Share the Good News

Of course, face-to-face evangelism isn’t the only way to share the Gospel. There are benefits of having access to digital technology. Putting Jesus at the center of your life doesn’t necessarily mean you must forsake things like video games, TV series or social media, but that you should instead look to use these amazing tools to do as God commands and spread the Word.

For example, you can record your testimony and upload it to YouTube to witness for God beyond your immediate sphere of influence. Instagram and Snapchat can also be used to share moments that glorify God, such as a breathtaking sunset or the birth of a child. When sharing these moments, be sure to give thanks and praise to Him so that others may experience your love for God and in turn experience the love He has for them. There are some people who have been able to evangelize through online gaming. There are many ways to reach people.

Push Back Against Lostness

Jesus came to seek and save the lost, and through Him, you, too, have the power to share the gospel and lead others to a relationship with God. The 21 st century has been marked by a sad increase in the number of lost people in the world. Living for Jesus means doing your part to extend God’s Kingdom on earth. There are many ways you can make a difference: donate to missions offerings, share your faith with your friends and family and to the rest of the world online, and pray for the specific lost people that God put’s on your heart that He will open their eyes to the truth.

You can also choose to support the efforts of the North American Mission Board (NAMB), which trains and resources missionaries across the United States and Canada. 100% of your donation to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering is used by NAMB to support missionaries engaged in compassion ministry and church planting in the most unreached areas. Every dollar of your gift makes a difference for the Kingdom.

How to Share the Gospel like Jesus

I used to be really afraid of sharing the Gospel. I mean really afraid, as in scared to death. Whenever I thought about sharing the Gospel, a little voice in my head would take over and assault me with all kinds of questions:

  • Would they laugh in my face?
  • Would they just ignore me?
  • Would they react with hostility?
  • Would they ask me questions I don’t have the answers for?
  • Has that little voice paralyzed you with fear just like I was?

Then I met a man who taught me a few things that removed the fear. Now, I am happy to meet new people, talk with them about spiritual things, and sometimes share the Gospel with them. What did he teach me? Just three things made all the difference in the world for me.

First, he took the pressure off by reminding me that it usually takes five or more conversations before someone accepts the Gospel. But what about all those who seem to lead people to Christ on a daily basis? What about those evangelists who talk to stadiums full of people and see thousands of conversions. To be honest, I don’t know what is going on there.

What I do know is Jesus said that most people will ultimately resist the Gospel. One out of four, in fact, if you believe what he said in Luke 8:4–15. We mostly hear about the people Jesus spoke of in Luke 8:13. Those are the ones who have a strong emotional response to the Gospel. Most of the time, however, the situation is more like Luke 8:15 where the seed of God’s Word falls on fertile soil, but it takes a while before any result of the sowing is visible. So my job is just to sow, not produce. That is God’s job.

Second, he set my expectation that sometimes I won’t get to share the Gospel, and that’s OK. My part may be just to leave them something to think about. Then someone else will come along and reap where I have planted. In 1 Corinthians 3:6, the apostle Paul understood that he was a planter, Apollos was the waterer, but God actually caused the growth.

As a planter, Paul was fully successful in just planting seeds. As the waterer, Apollos was fully successful in nurturing the seedlings. In the same way, your job might be to just “put a stone in their shoe.” That is, plant a thought or raise a question the Holy Spirit will keep churning in their mind to eventually bring them to faith.

Finally, he encouraged me to begin by engaging someone in a spiritual conversation using five questions. They are easy to remember, and they allow you to simply start a conversation about eternal things.

Here are the five questions:

1. Do you have any spiritual beliefs?

Just listen to their answer—don’t challenge or critique them. In fact, show genuine interest. Expect to get some really crazy answers to this one. You won’t believe what some people think! However, don’t let them just ramble on. With courtesy and respect, move them on to the next question.

2. To you, who was Jesus?

Again, just listen. I have heard people tell me: “Jesus” is the name of a hallucinogenic plant popular in ancient times in the Middle East, he is a prophet of Allah, he is the God of the Gentiles but not the Jews, or he is a myth made up by the Jews to scare the Romans. As much as you will want to dive in and start correcting them, DON’T! Just listen patiently and look for a chance to move to the next question.

3. What do you think happens after death?

Ever notice how people love to tell you what they think? At this point, your conversation partner is probably on a roll. They are enjoying this encounter with you and are anxious to explain what they believe and why. But as you have been doing all along, just listen to them. Don’t try to start explaining what the Bible says yet. After all, Jesus told us to be discerning and to not throw your pearls (the precious truths of God) to swine (those not ready for them yet).

4. If you were to die today and stand before God—and He might ask, “Why should I let you into heaven?”—how would you answer?

Even if their answer to the previous question was something like, “I don’t think anything happens; you just cease to exist,” go ahead and ask this one anyway. The last question was kind of out there and theoretical. This one is personal. You are asking them to think about their own death and afterlife. I have had numerous people give the answer that “nothing happens” after death, and then start to list the reasons why God should receive them into heaven.

5. If what you believe is actually wrong, would you want to know?

You guessed it—all the other questions were leading up to this one. So far, you have given them something to think about. Now, you offer them the answer. If they say “no,” thank them for the conversation and move on. You have given them something to think about—put a stone in their shoe—and as far as God is concerned, you are an evangelistic superstar.

On the other hand, if they say “yes,” then they have just asked you to share the Gospel with them. God is at work in them. Perhaps, he has prepared their heart to receive the seed of His word (Luke 8:15) and has given them faith to believe (Eph. 2:8). They have opened the door to learn about God’s plan of salvation. Now is the time share your pocket-sized Gospel of John and offer them God’s gracious gift of salvation.

Put this to work today—order some pocket-sized Gospels of John. After you have received your Gospels, start to engage people in this spiritual conversation and put these five questions into practice. Then share your stories with us. I would love to hear about your experiences. Not only that; remember, PTL will be praying for you!