Sharing your faith with others by Cynthia Moore
Pastor Don’s wife, Cynthia, spoke to our women’s group recently about sharing God’s Word – the proper and improper ways to do it. It blessed us tremendously and I am excited to share it with you.
Mark 16:15-18 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
Cynthia asked us, why do we need to bring people to God?
1. Why. 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
God wants ALL to come to repentance and live with Him in Heaven. God is love and He loves us.
2. We don’t have much time left. Many are saying the end times are close and people are talking about Jesus’ returning soon. We can’t be sure of the exact time, but there are those who want to deceive us into thinking we have all the time in the world. But we do not want to be deceived. We want to be busy now doing what God wants us to do. And God wants all to be saved.
2 Timothy 3:1-5 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!
These false teachings are more prevalent and harder to discern than ever before. We will see more and more of these false teachings, and they will grow stronger and stronger as the last days draw near.
Matthew 24:5-8 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.
3. Their lives will be better. God will touch their lives, change them, and make their lives better. When they get with God and do right their lives will improve.
Cynthia shared that she has seen lives changed dramatically when God came in. She spoke about a friend who had a family member kill themselves and God took away her agony and replaced it with the Father’s love. She has seen alcoholics come to the Lord and now instead of being in a drunken stupor, they have good jobs. One of our member’s sister was healed of fibromyalgia because of prayer and the Holy Spirit. Cynthia has seen people who have been abused by their parents heal and have better lives, becoming reconciled with estranged family members. Whenever God comes into a life it improves.
4. Get the Word out and the World will be a better place. There is strength in numbers. Right now there is legislation that is anti-God, there are classes on protecting yourselves against bullying, old ladies are run down. Our world would be better if it was filled up with Christ’s love expressed through people.
5. God said so.
Then Cynthia asked us, why don’t we do it?
1. Fear. We don’t trust God that we can do it and we wonder what people will think. We need to realize that if God tells us to do it, He will equip us and His Holy Spirit will help us trust God and do His will.
2. Religious pride, religious spirit. Those with religious pride and a religious spirit tell themselves that the people won’t get saved anyway so why talk to them. This type of rationale shows ignorance and does not hold water.
3. I’m just too busy, it takes time. We are so caught up with getting our coffee, our pets, children, spouses, housework, activities that we fill up our time with that we think that we don’t have the time to take and reach out to others.
4. Lazy. We tell ourselves we will get to it later.
5. Shifting or vacillating. We tell ourselves we will do it tomorrow, but we don’t want to postpone. We aren’t fully sure of our own faith, and go back and forth.
6. Ungrateful. We, in our ingratitude, are not considering what Jesus has done for us, and then wanting to do what He wants which is to share the Gospel with others.
Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.”
We want to do God’s will. We want to have everyone ready for when He comes so that none are excluded. Cynthia then read the Parable of the 10 virgins, five were prepared, five weren’t. We want to be prepared.
Matthew 25:1-12 “Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. “And at midnight a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’ Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’ And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut. “Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ “
Cynthia told us this may seem a bit mean that the unprepared virgins could not enter the feast. But she reminded us this parable comes right after Jesus told His disciples about the end times in Matthew 24. He told us what to look for, told us to be ready and to preach. We don’t want him telling us, “I do not know you.” If Jesus tells us what to look for and to be ready, there is no excuse to not be ready. He could easily say, “I told you what to do, I don’t understand why you are not ready.”
How do we share?
If we are cooking a meal we buy the stuff, take it home, assemble the ingredients, prepare, cook and serve. It is the same with sharing the Word. We read the Word of God, put it in our hearts, getting ready by assembling the Scriptures into our minds and hearts by praying, going to Bible study, going to church, and learning. Then we take this information we have and serve it to others, sharing the Word of God under the lead of the Holy Spirit. It has to be under the Holy Spirit’s lead so we say and do what is in the person’s best interests.
1. Prepare Know the Bible, know the authority and the power that you have. Be ready to go. Know the purpose.
Then Cynthia had some members of the group act out skits showing what we should NOT do. She later told me that she has experienced all these things or watched people do them and saw how they did not work. These were a few of the scenarios.
1. Going up to a person at work, and going into wild shaking, rolling your eyes in your head, and telling the person you are feeling something in the spirit, that God wants you to tell them. It ends up scaring the person with your weirdness. When God does this it is always in your control and you can choose to give in or not – and God would not want you doing these kinds of actions in a place that would scare a person away, not draw them closer to Him.
2. Going into work and going up to a person and telling them that God had given you a burden to pray for them because they are backslidden. God will deliver them from the generational curses, they are washed in the blood. Pull out your holy oil and offer to anoint them, and tell them what the Holy Spirit has declared. While at times it is appropriate to take a person aside and find out about what is going on in their lives and help it is never appropriate to do it in an office environment where you can embarrass the person, and in a judgmental way. There is a timing and order that comes with pointing out things to other believers. And it has to be done under the leading of the Holy Spirit. When God convicted us of our sins He did not go out of His way to cause us massive embarrassment in a place that is so public.
3. You bring a friend to church and then loudly announce, “Look who I brought to church – I thought they would never be saved.” Our you let people know that you have been praying for this person for a long time and now they are saved because of YOU. Or if the person is having a problem you gather three or four friends around the person all touching them and praying over her because their is strength in numbers – but really the person is embarrassed, wanted to quietly have their problem dealt with and watch. They will not come back when so much attention is brought to them before they are ready, and when their problems are so publicly announced before they are ready to deal with them publicly.
4. You got delivered from something, like smoking – and you expect that any one else who has a similar problem can be delivered in exactly the same way that you have. You begin to get a sense of pride and being better than the other person because you were delivered and they were not. You begin to go up to the person and criticize their habit, even though you had it for so many years and it took God a long time to get you to the point where you could get over the problem. We are not patient and we need to listen to the Spirit. If the motives are right, the way you approach the person may still be wrong.
Cynthia brought in Pastor Don’s Bible Dictionary and looked up the word anointing. Some of the things the dictionary told her was to apply oil to a person or thing. There are three kinds of anointing, ordinary, sacred, medical. Sometimes oil is used in a person’s beauty program (toilet), or as a sign of respect. In Psalm 23 a person’s head was anointed with oil, and that could prepare a person to be king or priest, or just as a sign of respect. Anointing is used in the sacred dedication of things, the tabernacle, a stone, a person. Solomon and the kings received the Holy Spirit after being anointed with oil. The Lord’s anointed are not to be touched. Jesus is called the Anointed One. Oil was used for medical reasons. Cynthia read more from this dictionary.
James 5:13-15 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.
If we use oil we are imparting the blessings of God or imparting a gift we have or a healing for the sick. Know how to use anointing oil properly.
Then Cynthia spent time reading material from our discipleship manual on the laying on of hands. pp. 160-161 “Blessing is activated by laying on of hands, as the greater lays hands on the lesser. i.e. Israel blesses Ephriam, Manasseh and Joseph (Genesis 48:13-20). Father to children, owner to heirs, prophet to students, etc.
Stay prayed up. Know the Word. Our Spirit will help us stay in God’s will, and will get stronger. He will guide us what to do and not do. We need to make sure our swords are sharpened.
Then Cynthia handed out a FAQ sheet of questions we may receive from nonbelievers and possible answers.
Q: Why does God do bad things?
Q: My life is good. Why do I need God/church?
Q: I prayed and it didn’t work so why should I believe?
Q: I don’t have time.
Q: Church people are hypocrites.
Q: How do you know you are going to Heaven when you die?
We closed with the following verse that we read together:
Isaiah 6:8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”
Hoping your day is blessed!
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