TODAY'S WORD FOR Friday, March 23, 2018:
Testifying to what is known by personal presence; testimony giving evidence from personal experience.
You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the world.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Most people when they hear the word witnessing think of someone who has just seen an accident or one who is sitting in a court of law ready to express his or her testimony of what he or she personally saw, heard or experienced in a given situation.
A person that knows Jesus as his or her Savior has a different definition of the word witnessing. Witnessing basically are the words and actions that we share with others about our faith in Jesus. It is the giving of evidence as to how Jesus has changed our lives. We are testifying to what we have personally experienced as a result of our accepting Jesus as our Savior.
It is very difficult for many believers to meet someone and start the witnessing process. It may be because of fear of not being able to answer questions or it may be the fear of being ridiculed and even losing friendship. No matter how we might react it is God’s commandment to us to be His witnesses to the world around us. Note the verse we put above. Where it refers to Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the world in those days it means for us, our home town (Jerusalem), our county and state (Judea and Samaria) and the world as we know it today.
We mentioned above, words and actions. Witnessing goes beyond what we say to people. It includes how we act. As believers we need to be reminded that our actions include such things as where and how we spend our time, what we do, who we consider our friends and much more.
The story is told of a woman (and it could have been a man) who every morning pried the jaws of her dog open and forced some liquid vitamins down the dog’s throat. She would always think that the dog just did not know what was good for him and needed to be forced to take the vitamins. Then one day the bottle of liquid vitamins fell over and spilled all over the floor. At the same time she lost her hold on the dog. The dog sniffed at the liquid and then began lapping it up. He actually loved the vitamins but simply objected to being coerced.
There are some people that force their testimony on others making them feel coerced. Many people do not respond to the “in your face” type of confrontation. Unfortunately, such action usually drives that person away from ever wanting to listen to another Christian’s testimony.
The apostle Paul reminds us in the verse we have put above that when our Lord taught His disciples to witness, He first made a promise. He promised that the Holy Spirit would come upon them and would give them power to be effective witnesses. When our testimony is rejected we can only pray and wait for God to open the door of opportunity.
Our responsibility is to share the gospel with those around us. It is not our responsibility for someone to accept or reject Christ. It is not our job to convict someone of sin. That is the responsibility of the Holy Spirit. Witnessing is about testifying about what God has done for us, not trying to show what we can do for God.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Hebrews 10:36.
For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise.
Make me a faithful witness and help me to learn to let the Holy Spirit work through me and convict the heart of the person that I may be witnessing too. Give me new opportunities each day and then give me the words and actions to be an effective witness to those I have the opportunity to spend time with.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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