At a monthly, regional meeting of church elders in central Ontario, my colleague and friend, William Han, spoke about evangelism.
He’s served as a pastor, as the Executive Vice President at Lausanne Canada, and is currently a church planting catalyst with the North American Mission Board.
The more he spoke, the more passionate he became. Afterward he told me that his level of enthusiasm had even surprised him!
But I was so glad he shared his passion with us. I think God wanted to give us a verbal charge of power—like those pads doctors use to zap your chest after your heart has stopped beating!
One of the things Will highlighted was that Christians need to preach the good news about Jesus to themselves first. We need to know it personally, to experience it personally, to rejoice in it personally. In Jesus, God has come to us personally and victoriously to renovate all things through his teaching, work, crucifixion and resurrection. He offers us hope, love, forgiveness, salvation, truth, and purpose.
But you can’t share powerfully what you don’t know personally.
Jesus has come—for you.
Jesus gives hope—to you.
Jesus pours out love—for you.
Jesus offers forgiveness—to you.
Jesus gives salvation—to you.
Jesus shares strength—with you.
Jesus speaks truth—for you.
Jesus sets out a purpose—for you.
No one else can do what Jesus has done, is doing, and will do—for you.
In Romans 1:16 Paul says the good news about Jesus “is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes…”
Do you think the good news about Jesus is primarily for someone else? Well, it’s certainly for them. But it’s also for you. God sees you. He knows you. He reaches out to you. He loves you. You’re not perfect. And yes, you mess up on a pretty regular basis. But God still gives a life-changing gift that no one else can give—to you.
You can’t share powerfully what you don’t know personally.
So know it. Personally. Powerfully. And don’t be shy to honestly share or show the good news of Jesus that has changed—and continues to change—your life.
By Matthew Ruttan
–This Sunday I’m preaching on Romans 8:18-30 with what I hope will be an uplifting message for a bummer time of year. If you’re close to Westminster in Barrie, join in!
–“Up!” is published 5 days a week and returns on January 20th.
–Bible quotes are from the NIV.