Courage to Share Your Faith
Courage to Share your Faith
1 Corinthians 9:16-27
1. The command to share our faith were the last words of our Risen Saviour.
2. Sharing our faith is known as the “Great Commission”in the Word of God.
3. Personal evangelism is one of the greatest failures in most churches.
I. Compassion is the first word-vs. 19 & 22
C̵OMPAS´SION, n. [It. compassione; Sp. companion; Fr. compassion; Low L. compassio, compatior; con and patior, passus, to suffer. See Patience.]
1. A suffering with another; painful sympathy; a sensation of sorrow excited by the distress or misfortunes of another; pity; commiseration. Compassion is a mixed passion, compounded of love and sorrow; at least some portion of love generally attends the pain or regret, or is excited by it.
A. Saul the proud Pharisee, would never have spoken these words.
B. Saul met Jesus and his life was changed forever. See-Acts 9:1-8; 17-22
1. This new convert became filled with compassion for the lost.
Paul was free to do what he wanted, but bringing people to Jesus was more important to him than using his freedom selfishly.
What a paradox: free from all men, yet the servant of all men! “Ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake” (2 Cor. 4:5). Because he was free, Paul was able to serve others and to set aside his own rights for their sake.
2. He pursued the unsaved.
Who are you pursuing today, for the gospel? Can you think of one name?
3. He prayed for the unsaved.
Would you pray for the financial need of somebody who’s in financial need when you have money and you’re not willing to give them any? Would you pray for the lost—a lost brother, sister, neighbor—and you’re not willing to witness to them, not willing to be a soul winner? Do you pray for someone’s needs to be met, whatever the need is, and you’re not willing to be a part of the answer? You know, there’s something better than getting an answer to prayer—and it’s being an answer to prayer.
Any sincere prayer is important. But not all prayers are specifically for evangelism. Many churches, perhaps most churches in America, focus their corporate prayers on physical needs—sickness, bereavement, and hospitalizations. While these prayer needs are valid and need fervent intercession, the eternal needs of those without a relationship to Jesus Christ are critical. Several church leaders interviewed in this study indicated that both the attitude of the members and the atmosphere of the church improved significantly when prayer included prayers for the lost.
As an Arkansas pastor told our research team, “Praying for the lost did more to refocus our church than any single factor. We became a church with an outward focus after being an inwardly focused church for years.”
4. He pleaded with them:
C. Compassion conquers cowardice; compassion creates courage.
1. Rescues from Hell:
2. Makes us obedient to God:
3. It is our(my) responsibility(have church repeat this phrase):
II. Communication is the second word-vs. 22
A. Communication requires proof of “truth”-learn to serve others.
c. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some: We should not think Paul changed his doctrine or message to appeal to different groups (he denies this in 1 Corinthians 1:22–23), but he would change his behavior and manner of approach.
What separated Jews and Gentiles in that day? The Law and the covenants (Eph. 2:11–15). In his personal life, Paul so lived that he did not offend either the Jews or the Gentiles. He did not parade his liberty before the Jews, nor did he impose the Law on the Gentiles.
Was Paul behaving in an inconsistent manner? Of course not. He simply adapted his approach to different groups. When you read his sermons in the Book of Acts, you see this wise adaptation. When he preached to Jews, he started with the Old Testament patriarchs; but when he preached to Gentiles, he began with the God of Creation. Paul did not have a “stock sermon” for all occasions.
It is worth noting that our Lord followed the same approach. To the highborn Jew, Nicodemus, He talked about spiritual birth (John 3); but to the Samaritan woman, He spoke about living water (John 4). Jesus was flexible and adaptable, and Paul followed His example. Neither Jesus nor Paul had an inflexible “evangelistic formula” that was used in every situation.
It takes tact to have contact. When the people I witness to tell me about their experience of confirmation, I tell them that I too was confirmed. I express my appreciation for the pastor who taught me and prayed for me. Then I tell them, “A year after I was confirmed, I met Jesus Christ personally and was born again.” A good witness tries to build bridges, not walls.