As we continue to explore our spiritual backpacks and better understand how to use some of the essential pieces of our God-given faith-sharing gear, let’s take a look at another key pieces of gear: God’s Word.
How should God’s Word fit into your students’ evangelism efforts?
Some Christians seem to think it’s pointless to refer to God’s Word in a spiritual conversation with an unbeliever. They fear it will make no sense to the unreached, or worse, shut the conversation down cold.
Granted, shouting and spouting Bible verses of condemnation is not a particularly effective style of evangelism. But does that necessarily mean there’s no role for the Bible in touching the heart’s of those who have yet to embrace the reality of its divine inspiration?
Of course not. Truth is truth. Regardless of whether someone acknowledges it as such or not. And God’s Word is truth.
The following two passages make it crystal clear that there is something internally powerful about God’s Word. It is sharp like a sword or a surgeon’s scalpel. When we listen to it, it can cut deeply into our consciences and speak to our souls with its searing truth. And it always accomplishes its goal, whether it be conviction or conversion.
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account. (Hebrews 4:12-13)
So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:11)
What does this mean for your teenagers as they share their faith? Simply this: As they talk about spiritual things with others, it can help to use spiritual truths from specific Bible verses. Not to be preachy, not to be spewing forth rote words rattled off at a million miles an hour. But in the context of a loving, caring, deep conversation, the Word of God can help move the discussion beyond “my opinion vs. your opinion” and drill down into the soul.
Using specific truths from God’s Word will also allow your students to redirect the discussion and say things like… “Hey, I’m not the one who said this or that…(i.e., Jesus is the only way to God). God said it in the Bible—and there’s a reason it’s the bestselling book of all time…”
So load your teenagers’ spiritual backpacks up with a few key verses that can help them as they communicate God’s truth. If they don’t already know some key verses, it’s time for them to memorize a few. Be the coach and challenge them to get with the drill. Here’s a list of easy-to-memorize verses that I think every Christian teenager should know by heart:
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
“I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting life.” (John 6:47)
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)
The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
Memorizing these verses and sharing them in a caring, thoughtful way will give your students some useful truths from God’s Word to pick from when they are discussing spiritual things with their friends.
God’s Word goes deep into the lives it touches. Let the surgeon’s scalpel do its work!