“It’s the word of faith that welcomes God to go to work and set things right for us. This is the core of our preaching. Say the welcoming word to God—’Jesus is my Master’—embracing, body and soul, God’s work of doing in us what he did in raising Jesus from the dead. That’s it. You’re not ‘doing’ anything; you’re simply calling out to God, trusting him to do it for you. That’s salvation. With your whole being you embrace God setting things right, and then you say it, right out loud: ‘God has set everything right between him and me!’
Scripture reassures us, ‘No one who trusts God like this—heart and soul—will ever regret it.’ It’s exactly the same no matter what a person’s religious background may be: the same God for all of us, acting the same incredibly generous way to everyone who calls out for help. ‘Everyone who calls, ‘Help, God!’ gets help.’
But how can people call for help if they don’t know who to trust? And how can they know who to trust if they haven’t heard of the One who can be trusted? And how can they hear if nobody tells them? And how is anyone going to tell them, unless someone is sent to do it? That’s why Scripture exclaims,
A sight to take your breath away! Grand processions of people telling all the good things of God!
But not everybody is ready for this, ready to see and hear and act. Isaiah asked what we all ask at one time or another: ‘Does anyone care, God? Is anyone listening and believing a word of it?’ The point is: Before you trust, you have to listen. But unless Christ’s Word is preached, there’s nothing to listen to.” Romans 10: 8b-17 (MSG)
Public speaking is one of people’s top fears. Many people would rather do anything besides speak to a group of people. Yet, through taking the step to share our knowledge with others, we have the opportunity to add value to people’s lives. And, when we take time to share with others about Jesus, He has the power to completely change their life.
In Paul’s letter to the Romans, he addresses some key theological issues. As he wrote chapter 10, he began telling the people about the need for Israel’s salvation. There was an issue of having religion as the focus versus receiving what only God could do for someone through faith. Paul clearly understood one thing about God’s grace. No matter your religious background, the same opportunity is available to everyone. By placing our faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection, our sin debt is paid. Yet in order to believe God’s message of salvation, it has to be heard. Although Israel had already had opportunities to hear about Jesus, not everyone had placed their faith in Him. There was still a need to preach God’s truth. How would people be able to respond to the Good News about Jesus if they hadn’t heard?
So, where do we fit into this message of hope? People need to hear about Jesus, and we have the opportunity to tell them. Many times, we want someone else to go. We would rather write a check and send someone else than reach out and invite our neighbor to church. While there is a place for both giving and going, we have to evaluate the motive in our heart. We might not step out, because it is scary and intimidating. But, there might be someone who lives on our street that has never even heard the message of Jesus. We can sense that gentle tugging in our hearts when we need to step out and talk to someone about Jesus. It can make your heart beat fast and your palms sweat. Sometimes, we would rather reach out to people in any other way except to tell them with our words. While it is important to love people through our actions, it can be easy to assume that everyone knows since we know about Jesus. We can think that someone else will tell them or they will hear about Jesus on TV, online, or from their grandma. However, this just isn’t the case. Reaching out to someone requires courage. We need to ask God to give us boldness to share the Good News about Jesus. Once we recognize how much Jesus loves our friend and neighbor, then introducing someone to Jesus is just an extension of that love. You might hear “no.” But, we have to come to the place of risking a “no” for a possible “yes.”
You don’t have to be a theologian to tell someone about Jesus. If Jesus has saved you, then you have Good News to share. God wants to use you to reach the people in your world. If faith comes through hearing, then I have to be willing to speak. And when it’s all said and done, I don’t want to let my fear stand in the way of my friend knowing Jesus.
Scripture taken from THE MESSAGE. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.