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Colorful Truths Vol 1. As followers of Christ, the quality of our witness to the world carries eternal implications. Unfortunately, Jesus has been poorly represented by many of his followers. I am not saying that I am the perfect Jesus Follower—I am not. But if we those who follow the teachings of Jesus could represent him authentically, the term "Christian" or "Christ-follower" would be more likely to illicit a positive response than a negative one. Jesus was a close friend to hated tax collectors like Matthew and Zacchaeus.
He was called " Friend of Sinners " in Matthew If we are his followers, we ought to be accused of being a friend of sinners too.
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Jesus didn't quarrel with people. Our heated debates are not likely to draw someone into the kingdom. Titus says, "But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless. If we follow the way of love, we team up with an unstoppable force. This passage makes a strong case for being a better witness simply by showing love:.
When we spend time in the presence of Jesus , his character will rub off on us. With his Holy Spirit working in us, we can forgive our enemies and love those who hate us, just as our Lord did.
By his grace we can be good examples to those outside of the kingdom who are watching our lives. The Apostle Peter commended us to, "Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. One of the finest examples in the Bible of a faithful believer who won the respect of pagan kings is the prophet Daniel :.
Romans chapter 13 teaches us that rebelling against authority is the same as rebelling against God. If you don't believe me, go ahead and read Romans 13 now. Yes, the passage even tells us to pay our taxes. The only time we have permission to disobey authority is when submitting to that authority means we would be disobeying God. The story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego tells of three young Hebrew captives who were determined to worship and obey God above all others. When King Nebuchadnezzar commanded the people to fall down and worship a golden image he had built, these three men refused.
Courageously they stood before the king who pressured them to deny God or face death in a fiery furnace. When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego chose to obey God above the king, they didn't know with certainty that God would rescue them from the flames, but they stood firm anyway. And God delivered them, miraculously. God opened a tremendous door of opportunity through the obedience of his three brave servants. What a powerful witness of God's power to Nebuchadnezzar and the people of Babylon. In our eagerness to be witnesses for Christ, we often rush ahead of God. Only by seeking the Lord in prayer are we led through doors that God alone can open.
Only by prayer will our witnessing have the desired effect. The great Apostle Paul knew a thing or two about effective witnessing. He gave us this trustworthy advice:. Hodges, D. Encyclopedia of Illustrations: Signs of the Times p. Share Flipboard Email. Mary Fairchild is a full-time Christian minister, writer, and editor of two Christian anthologies, including "Stories of Cavalry.
Updated February 19, Here are five practical approaches to being a better representative of the gospel. Jesus taught us to how to share the gospel by showing our love to others in John As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. Now about your love for one another we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other. Yet we urge you, brothers and sisters, to do so more and more, and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.
Now Daniel so distinguished himself among the administrators and the satraps by his exceptional qualities that the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. At this, the administrators and the satraps tried to find grounds for charges against Daniel in his conduct of government affairs, but they were unable to do so.