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Message of the Gospel

A most wonderful thing happened one day to a business woman in Macedonia as she went down to the river to meet with her Ladies Prayer Circle. Lydia was a Gentile who was drawn to worship the God of Israel, the One God and Creator of all things. On this particular day, a Rabbi from Jerusalem was present at the usual spot for prayer (apparently he heard about the prayer group). He asked if he might share a few words with the ladies. They said yes, and he shared a message he had shared hundreds of times before—a message of God's king rejected by His people, a message of forgiveness by God's grace granted to us in the same king, who is God's appointed savior, Jesus, crucified, risen, ascended and coming again.

The Rabbi, Paul, shared what the Bible calls the Gospel, which means the good news. Lydia listened. Beside Paul and Lydia, another important person was present that day—the Holy Spirit of God. Lydia listened to Paul, but she believed the message because of divine action. Acts 16:14 says:

...and the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul.


All evangelism that leads to repentance and faith is a work of God. He alone can open the heart to believe. Nothing in evangelism needs to be based on psychology, or salesmanship, or manipulation, does it? How can men accomplish what only God can do?

The main thing for us in leading others to Christ is simply sharing the truth about Jesus Christ and what He did for us. The old "Romans Road" still provides a helpful outline for the content of what needs to be shared:

  • We all fall far short of God's standard of righteousness. (Rom 3:10-12, 23)
  • The result of sin is death, but God freely gives eternal life in Jesus Christ. (Rom 6:23)
  • Christ died for sinners, to save them from God's wrath. (Rom 5:8-9)
  • There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (Rom 8:1)
  • We become Christians by confessing Jesus as Lord and believing that He is risen. (Rom 10:9-10)

We need to be people who are Gospel focused. We wouldn't know the Lord if someone had not shared with us. The elders are working on encouraging everyone to get the Gospel out. We all have different personalities, so we won't all do it the same way (though we should have the same message!), and that's fine. But we all need to remember that faith comes by hearing. I'm excited for the new evangelism class on Wednesday nights under Chris Carr's leadership. It's a good opportunity to think through the content of the Gospel message.

We should all have a burden for the lost. Don't be too shy about sharing. Rejection shouldn't dissuade you. Consider it seed planting! Remember Lydia. We don't open the heart, God does. And He is at work. Pray you will see the opportunities God provides to tell others about Jesus. And there are many ways to share. Sometimes you can invite people and let others bring out the content of the Gospel (at church, a Bible study, the Seeker's Class, the Easter drama, etc.), but you always want to know the Gospel well enough to follow up. You don't need to have "all the answers" to share. There's nothing wrong with telling someone, "I don't know the answer to that. I'll find out." Trust that God is at work. He uses the message. Just share it! We are here so others can hear.

Yours in Christ,


Pastor Wayne Wilson

Originally printed in The AFBC Pony Express. Vol. VIII, No. 3, March 2015.


“Give ear and come to me, hear me, that your soul may live.”

– Isaiah 55:3