The key to sharing the gospel is having Jesus in your heart. Perhaps it is just that simple, and serious.
You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it. (Matthew 7:13-14)
The Key to Personal Witnessing
Back in college I was active in one of the Christian student centers on campus. One of the sponsored activities was a drama group who would go to local churches and put on a performance to raise money for missions work.
Some of the skits were funny, some were serious. Being faith-based, they all had a message.
One of my personal favorites and a staple of our performances was called The Key to Personal Witnessing.
Maybe you’ve seen something like it; I never learned its origin, but I always assumed it was a skit that had been passed around.
It would start with one of the team members “sharing” about some personal growth they have been experiencing. Eventually, they would lead to “and now I have discovered the key to personal witnessing, and it’s daily Bible study. In fact, let me share a passage with you that’s relevant…”
About this time, another drama team member would come up on stage and “disagree” with the first person, telling the audience that “everyone knows the key to personal witnessing is prayer.”
Then the two of them would argue, until another person joined in with their own answer, leading to more arguing.
As the skit progressed, each person’s “key” would get more and more ludicrous. Usually, the last person on stage would say something along the lines of “Christian bumper stickers”.
With everyone arguing, one final person would get on their knees with a bucket and towel and mimic washing the arguers’ feet. As each person’s feet were washed, they would freeze in place and go silent, until everyone on stage wound up that way.
The skit would end with the person holding the bucket and towel turning to the audience and saying, “The key to personal witnessing is having Jesus in your heart.”
We Aren’t Sharing the Gospel
It was always a well-received skit. Every time that last line was said, I couldn’t help but think “ok, but now what?”
Having Jesus in your heart may be the key to personal witnessing. Then why are so few followers of Jesus Christ doing it?
In 2019 Lifeway Research conducted a poll of Protestant churchgoers and found that a little over half had not shared the gospel with someone once in the prior six months. Less than 25% had shared the gospel three or more times in that same time period.
My goal is not to shame anyone, only to illustrate the point that “personal witnessing” is not happening to the degree that it seems it should.
Jesus gave us all the Great Commission with the expectation that we would proactively make converts to the faith, teaching them how to follow Christ. It was every believer’s assignment.
The Narrow Gate
Could it be that there is so little sharing of the gospel happening because there are fewer authentic disciples in the church today than we think?
Jesus Himself tells us that not everyone who claims to be a believer is one. In fact, there will be many who will face Christ one day claiming to have done many great things in His name, only to hear Jesus say to them, “I never knew you” (Matthew 7:21-23).
This should be a sobering statement to all of us who claim to follow Jesus Christ. Because so few of us who claim to be His followers are sharing the gospel.
The mark of a true disciple, Jesus tells us, is obedience. He tells us that those who love Him are those who keep His commands (John 14:15).
The Great Commission was Jesus Christ’s last command to His disciples before ascending into Heaven.
Simply put; an obedient follower of Christ should be about the work of sharing the gospel.
Do We Have Something to Share?
We could list reasons why a follower of Jesus Christ may not be sharing the gospel. However, when we examine the statistics and hold them up to the light of the words of Jesus, the question becomes, “How many professing believers are true disciples?”
Understand, if you think I’m pointing a finger at you, I’m pointing it at myself first.
If I am not ashamed of the Good News, I need to take the responsibility of sharing it seriously. But it may also mean I need to examine my heart.
Perhaps at one time we were following Christ but have let sin damage our witness or become distracted by the world. If that is the case, there is a way back.
When we sincerely confess and repent, we will find that God will cleanse us anew and we can live faithfully again.
In doing so, you may find that all it takes to renew your zeal is to remember what it means to live as a forgiven person. Shame dies where forgiveness lives.
If we are true disciples, we should be seeking to live as light and salt in the world. This begins with abiding with Christ. It is Christ and the Holy Spirit that empower us to live in faith before a curious world.
Abiding with Christ in His word will help us better understand the gospel.
Abiding with Christ in prayer will make us sensitive to sharing our faith.
Abiding with Christ in fellowship with other believers should encourage us to share our lives with the lost.
When we live in authentic faith, opportunities will open for us to share our faith in Jesus Christ and invite others to start their own journey.
For that to happen, we must have a watchful eye to seize the opportunity when it presents itself.
Sharing the gospel is a foundational act of obedience as a follower of Jesus Christ. We must be prepared to obey this call.
Here are some more verses about sharing the gospel:
Psalm 105:1; Isaiah 6:8; Romans 1:16; 1 Corinthians 9:16; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 2 Timothy 4:5