HOW IS THE HOLY SPIRIT INVOLVED IN A PERSON’S SALVATION?

Answer 4: The Spirit reveals the truth of the gospel to a person.

Are you ever discouraged when you are having spiritual conversations with a person, that they don’t see Jesus for who he really is – the son of God? Take courage, God is at work. Remember, it is not you but God himself who reveals the truth of the gospel to a person.

In Matthew 16 we read of the time when Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” Lots of people who encountered Jesus didn’t see Jesus for who he really was. They mistook him for a someone else. Today, many people still make the same mistake. They see Jesus as just a good person who once lived or a great teacher or religious leader, or maybe just a folk legend and not a real person at all.

We read on in Matthew and Jesus said to his disciples, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven.”

Jesus makes it clear to Peter that God himself had revealed the truth of who Jesus was to him. And it’s the same for the person you are sharing the gospel to. Yes, you need to know the gospel. Yes, you should take every opportunity God gives you to share it with the world around you. But realise that as you share the gospel it is not you that reveals the truth of the gospel, this is the role of the Holy Spirit in a person’s salvation.

So today, pray and ask God to reveal himself and the truth of the gospel in a real, personal, and practical way to the people you are sharing the gospel to. Intercede for those you have shared the gospel to asking the Holy Spirit to minister to them in a way that they would see the truth of the gospel. Pray, asking the Holy Spirit to convict them so they see their need for Christ. Then, continue to share, knowing God is at work!   

Best Bible verses to use in conversations with non-believers

John 10:9-10

I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.  

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

What a great verse to share with people who are searching for answers, who feel a void in their lives that they just can’t fill. The picture Jesus paints of peace and contentment that is found in a relationship with him is beautiful.

You might be afraid to use this verse. What if people object to the idea that Jesus is the door and that people have to enter by him to be saved. Aren’t there other ways to be right with God?

The exclusivity of Jesus Christ is a very controversial issue today, isn’t it?  In fact, my own extended family doesn’t agree about eternal death apart from faith in Jesus alone.  That’s not all that surprising; but listen, as kids we were raised in the same church denomination.  We even went to the same Bible college.  So now as an adult, how should I interact with my family members who know the gospel but believe something different than me about what the gospel says?   

It’s one thing for a Hindu or a Muslim to reject Jesus as the only way to find redemption for sin and experience the abundant life internal.  It’s easier because we expect to hear that from them, right?  We mentally and emotionally prepare for it as part of cultivating the witnessing lifestyle.   

But within the broad institution of the church today, the lines are blurred, and people are beginning to question whether there could really in fact be eternal damnation apart from the saving grace of the Son of God, Jesus Christ. 

Our culture today screams inclusivity.  For example, we are taught that when you are working on a team there is no individualism. We share everything on Facebook because we love the community.  In an effort to find peace as a community, we don’t, or at least we shouldn’t, discriminate against those who are different from us.  And our culture socially punishes behaviours that rebuke the minority.  As a result, we, as followers of Jesus, can so easily become indifferent to the exclusiveness of Jesus and water down the truth of the gospel to make it more palatable.  We must not.  If we do, then what?  Would we then still see the saving power of the gospel transform people’s lives?  Certainly not. 

So how should I interact with someone who finds this verse about the exclusiveness of Jesus Christ to be an obstacle to their faith in Him?  Should I speak and potentially cause relational tension, or not speak and potentially keep an artificial form of peace?  Even when I speak about Jesus being the only way to a right relationship with God I must remember that Colossians 4:5-6 says, “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.  Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”

Never forget that the exclusiveness of Christ in John 10:9-10 is the source of humanity’s overwhelming hope.  These verses help humanity understand the meaning behind why the world is in so much pain, and it guides the pursuit of a human’s search for happiness & true purpose.

Might I challenge you today to act wisely, making the most use of the time.  Always be full of grace, season your speech with salt.  And focus on using John 10:9-10 to share the hope, meaning, happiness and purpose you’ve found in Jesus Christ with those relationships with people who have never yet heard the gospel.

Settle in your own heart what the Bible clearly teaches—no one comes to God except through Jesus.

When sharing these beautiful verses with people who are searching, don’t assume they will object to this verse and feel like you need to make all the explanations about his exclusivity. Rather, just share what the verse shares, that if a person is struggling to find peace and contentment because of the brokenness in their lives, they will find only find those things in Jesus. Then share what Jesus has meant to you.

10 Hints on how to share the Gospel—Keep it simple

I was sitting in a high profile meeting with mature, highly capable men when one of them leaned forward and asked, “What is the gospel, can you explain it simply to me?”.





If you were asked this question, how would you respond? What would you say? Where would you begin?





Many sincere God-loving Christians struggle to know how to simply articulate the core truths of the gospel in a sentence or two. I know I once did. You may be asking, is it even possible to explain the essence of the gospel in a sentence?





Today I want to share with you a key passage that will help you know how to simply explain the gospel. You no longer need to wonder what you will say when you are given an opportunity to share the gospel.





As all those men waited for a reply to that question, I was grateful the Lord reminded me of the words of the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:3-5 that says:





“For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. And that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.”





In these few short verses, we see the gospel in its simplest form wrapped in two core truths. If you can remember these two core truths, you will be able to share the Gospel with anyone. Can you see the two core truths? Take another look at the passage.





The two core truths are these – 1. Christ died for our sins, and 2. He was raised on the third day. These two truths are so profound and yet the gospel is still that simple. One sentence that captures the gospel – Jesus died for our sin, and he was raised to life so we can know him personally.





This is the one sentence I used to respond to the men waiting for my answer. This is a sentence you can keep in mind to begin simply explaining the gospel to someone. Your conversation no doubt will begin where the person is at, but with these two truths locked in your mind, you can naturally explain the beauty of the gospel in conversation in a way that is simple and relevant to the person you are talking to.





Christ died for our sin – Jesus took the punishment we deserve upon himself, giving us peace with God.

He was raised on the third day – Jesus is alive, and we can have a personal relationship with our living saviour.

This is the simple message our world needs to hear. This is the simple message God has sent you to share!





Today, God wants you to relax in your conversation when it comes to sharing the gospel and with these two gospel truths in mind, keep it simple.





Who has God sent you into relationship with that needs to hear these two gospel truths?





Take a moment now to re-read the passage again and ask God to give you an opportunity to share these truths with them.

What encouragement can we get from 1 Corinthians 15:3-5 when it comes to keeping it simple?





  1. Keep the Gospel your priority

For Paul the simple unchanging message of the gospel was of primary importance. He says, I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received. If there is one thing Paul wanted people to know and understand, one thing he wanted them to remember and prioritise in life, it was the simple message of the gospel. So, keep the gospel your priority.  





  • Keep the gospel, the gospel.

The gospel, Christ died for our sins and he was raised so we can know him personally, is the one unchanging message that has been preached around the world, throughout generations, in different languages, to men, women and children. This is the one unchanging message that has transformed countless lives and brings hope to all humanity. This is one message we never change. This is the message we share in its entirety. It is the power of this message alone that brings life and peace. So, keep the gospel, the gospel.





  • Keep confident in the truth of the gospel.

Can you see the evidence in the passage that supports the truth of the gospel?

  1. The proof that Christ died is he was buried. Jesus Christ actually died and was actually buried in a tomb.
    1. The proof that Christ was raised is he appeared to Cephas, the twelve… and in the very next verse Paul says he appeared to over five hundred others at one time, most of who are still alive when Paul wrote this account.
    1. The proof that this was all part of Gods plan is that these two events took place in accordance with the Scriptures. Nothing is a surprise to God; he can be trusted.

How do we build intentional relationships with people?—By overcoming our fear of being rejected!

One of the most significant barriers in building meaningful and intentional relationships with people who need Jesus is the fear of being rejected. Fear paralyses us when we want to say our first hello, extend ourselves to form a friendship, communicate on a deeper level and build trust to bring the relationship closer.

 

Rejection stings, and as humans, it is natural for us to shy away from things that will bring emotional or physical pain. Due to this, many people develop a fear of rejection. I can relate to this as I grew up lacking self-confidence and was severely shy. I can say that I have missed out most of my school years because of the dread of being rejected!

 

How can you step past this fear and into meaningful relationships? Avoid awkward silences by being chatty to start a conversation. Don’t know what to chat about? Before the conversation starts, think of a few questions you could ask. This will almost always lead to a good conversation.

 

Try to find people with common interests—join a local sports team, book club, or volunteer with other parents in your children’s school, creative group, 4WD group or even camping groups. If the idea of joining a group is not applicable in your current situation, strike up a conversation with someone in a public place: a coffee shop, restaurant, library, park, in a plane or a taxi. Again, use questions to start these conversations. Your next God appointment might just be sitting beside you at the train station! I say this because we have known three families in our life group whom my husband and I have met as total strangers inside the train and on the train station itself on separate occasions!

 

We have to accept the fact that not everyone will be interested or ready to form a friendship with us or to receive the gospel. It might be tempting to think that we should have kept quiet rather than shared the truth. Rejection should not retract our devotion to Jesus and our commitment to the Great Commission. No relationship is more precious, none more important than our relationship with the Lord! In the same way, there is no life as fulfilling as when you have lived for his purpose!

 

Remember the rejection Jesus experienced during his lifetime, on the cross and his sacrifice up to this day. He was rejected by the Jews, by the Pharisees, his hometown, and by HIS FRIENDS who pledged they loved him and would never leave him! Ultimately, Christ suffered tremendous rejection when his own Father, turned his face away from him on the cross. We serve a Saviour who suffered in the flesh for our sake. Though he did not sin, he bore our sins so that we might be saved. Remember that because of what Jesus has done for us, we will never face the rejection of God again (1 Samuel 12:22).

 

Capturing this in my mind makes me cringe to think that I am even concerned or bitter when I receive rejection in my quest of building redemptive relationships. I encourage you, the next time you are rejected, to take time to consider the most unfathomable painful rejection our Lord received!

 

“The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.” Luke 10:16 With this in mind, do not take rejection personally, because it is never about you!

Why the gospel is relevant in today’s age?—Because we are gripped with guilt!

It never ceases to amaze me how God could ever forgive me.

 

I haven’t always been a Christian. I was a young adult when I got serious about my walk with Jesus and surrendered my life to his authority.

 

Before surrendering to Jesus, I was living life my own way. I was knowingly making selfish decisions; I lived a life that displeased God and sinfully turned my back on him time and time again. However, there came a point in my life that I understood Gods deep love for me and was gripped by a deep sense of guilt and shame that was almost paralysing.

 

I’m so grateful God never gives up on us. I’m so grateful God’s love for us is greater than our love could ever be for him. I’m grateful it’s not what we do that makes us right with God. I’m grateful that it’s what Jesus did for us in laying down his life on the cross that gives us peace with God.

 

A huge percentage of people’s lives are driven by guilt, which leads to so many other problems of depression, hopelessness and despair. This is why one of the best ways into a gospel conversation with someone is a discussion of guilt.

 

The idea of freedom from guilt is like a dream to many people. Jesus not only took the penalty of our sin on the cross, he took the very guilt of our sin and then also paid its penalty. The Bible says, “God the Father made Jesus, who knew no sin, to be sin (guilty) for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in him.”

 

The gospel is not only beautiful truth—it is also relevant truth to so many who are dominated by the guilt that drives them. So talk with people about the freedom from guilt that Jesus brings!

 

Why the gospel is relevant in today’s age?—Because it answers people’s search for purpose and meaning in life!

Trying to find a job can be very disheartening. All of my kids are youth or young adults, so between them and their friends I spend a lot of time with young people. I see the agony of trying to find a job. One application after another gets rejected. They move from excitement about jobs that they want to an acceptance of any place that will hire them. After multiple rejections comes a discouragement about your self worth and why you exist in this world.

That’s not just the experience of young people. Anyone in search of work has these same feelings, as does someone who has retired and wonders if they have lost all their value now that they aren’t working any more. This longing for purpose is also felt by people who don’t really enjoy their work or their life in general.

We were made in the image of a purposeful God and people know that they should be living with purpose. This makes the gospel so very relevant and can be a great starting place for a spiritual conversation.

God’s purpose for us is so central to the Christian message that I try to share it whenever I share the gospel. When you turn to Christ in faith, God forgives you, you start a new life with him at the centre of it, and most exciting of all, you become part of the stream of his activity in the lives of other people you know who are searching for answers. God wants to reveal himself to them through you!

When you recognise that God’s purpose for you doesn’t require you to be a preacher or have an exciting job, then everyday becomes an adventure as you look for doors God is opening and you find ways that God wants to use you in the lives of the people around you.

This purpose of God through you is one of the most compelling parts of the gospel.

Why don’t you start a conversation with someone today with the question, “What is your purpose in life?”