Wednesday, June 19, 2019
If ever there was a passage of Scripture that encapsulates the commission to be witnesses this is it. It is a prophecy of Isaiah that is quoted by Jesus Christ at the beginning of His ministry when He went to Nazareth and proclaimed that it was being fulfilled in His life. It contains all the basic essentials of being a powerful witness for Jesus Christ.
Isaiah 61:1-3 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD’S favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion – to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.
Here are the essentials of personal evangelism:
- Holy Spirit Empowerment – Jesus promised us the same power that equipped Him to be a witness to the Good News – the fullness of the Holy Spirit.
- God’s Anointing – this is the consecration of our lives by God to a divine purpose. He has called us and set us apart to be His witnesses. When He saved us by the blood of Jesus, He commissioned us to be His witnesses and anointed us to accomplish that task.
- Preach the Good News – don’t let this scare you, you don’t have to be a preacher to be a witness. The Hebrew word means to be fresh, or full of cheer when making an announcement. Every day as God works in our lives we are being filled with fresh material to share fully with others. That’s preaching, and you can do it!
- Compassionate Ministry to the Hurting – a huge part of our witnessing is in our relating to people in their need. Look at what Jesus proclaims:
- He will bind up the brokenhearted – be empathetic towards people’s hurts.
- Proclaim freedom and release – Jesus recognized that the needs of mankind are first and foremost spiritual, and when the spiritual need is met there is freedom from the bondage and captivity of sin and its consequences.
- Comfort for those who mourn – to feel the pain of another’s loss and join them in their grief. In doing so we will accomplish three things in their lives:
- Bring back a focus on the beauty of life rather than the ashes of death.
- We will be an anointing oil that brings a smile back to their face.
- We will assist them in solidifying their faith so that they are able to praise God for Who He is even when the circumstances stink. So complete will be this healing of their spirits that they will be called oaks of righteousness! WOW!
- A joyful proclamation of Heaven and a fearful proclamation of Hell. All our witnessing must at some point center on the justice of God against all sin and the grace of God to find favor with those who have come to Jesus for salvation.
There they are – the 5 basic elements of all witnessing. Spend some time in prayer right now and ask the Holy Spirit to fill you with the joy of witnessing, and be thankful that He has equipped you to do it.