I believe that Christians should be actively leading others to Christ. Not because we get extra brownie points for it or something, but because Christianity is worth sharing. For two reasons: (1) God promises eternal life in Heaven and avoidance of Hell for those who are in Christ, and (2) true Christianity gives a better life here on earth. Witnessing gives others a chance to have a relationship with the God of the universe. How could we not share that?!
You were probably already convinced witnessing was a good thing to do anyways, but I’m just making sure. Here are five tips to help you witness to unbelievers.
If you fail to use Scripture, you’re making a big mistake. Imagine using your hand to pound in a large nail instead of a hammer. When it comes to witnessing, we need to use the right tool. It’s okay to talk with your own words, but if you’re not guiding the conversation with Scripture, there’s something wrong. Scripture just does something that your words won’t do. Maybe have the person read the verses, or you can read them out loud, or whatever.
Take It Slow
Don’t pick fruit before it’s ripe, and don’t rush to have someone “pray the prayer” until they really want to. Getting someone to pray certain words when they’re not ready will give them an assurance of salvation, even if their heart wasn’t in it. Wait until all you have to do is touch the fruit for it to fall off. Trust God to do the rest.
Don’t Correct Everything
Yes, they’ll have misconceptions. But you don’t need to correct them immediately. Don’t go down a rabbit trail talking about what Heaven is actually like, or explaining what every theologian thinks about people who have never heard the gospel before they die. Stick with the basics, and help correct their misconceptions later on.
Give Them Tools
You can’t be there for them all the time, so tell them to read their Bible and pray. Maybe give them a little plan or direct them to a good website that will get them in the Word. Invite them to your church, or find them a good church in their area. During the first months, you should stay in touch and try to resolve any issues that arise. If you can, meet with them on a regular basis and go through a book together or something.
Prepare them for the inevitable. They will have times of doubt, and they will have some persecution from those around them. Tell them that it’s okay, and lead them to Bible verses that help. Just recognizing that these things will happen will give them hope, and they’ll be less afraid of them.
Here’s a little saying that my grandpa uses in witnessing for this purpose:
Never doubt in the darkness what God made clear in the light.
- Be nice!
- Stay calm.
- Be a good example.
- Don’t pick fruit before it’s ripe.
I acquired these ideas while watching my grandpa witness to someone and lead them to the Lord. You can find his website here. (Also: He has a very good post he wrote on Islam here that everyone should read.)
Go give people the good news!