The second part of my lesson on evangelism for this week was on the living example of Jesus. There are numerous examples to draw upon like the calling of the 12 or Nicodemus or the rich, young ruler. In fact, I would recommend that you read all of those and learn from Jesus encounters.
For today my focus was on two passages.
1. Jesus and Zacchaeus
This story is about an outcast who has a spiritual longing and is found in Luke 19:1-10. I find this extremely relevant because he is wealthy. The idea is that his wealth did not bring him the fulfillment that he thought it would. (Much like many people in our culture) We need to evangelize the weary of the world but they are not the only ones who need to hear the message of Jesus.
Jesus then notices the man’s search for meaning and responds to it. The man’s life is changed and Jesus states that salvation has come to his house.
The final part of the story is that Jesus gives us a mission statement. He says that he has come to seek and save that which was lost. Most Christians understand that Jesus came to save, but he is also seeking those who feel the spiritual void in their life.
2. Jesus and the woman at the well
This is the story of an encounter at a well Jesus has with a Samaritan woman and is found in John 4. Here Jesus gives us a useful model of sharing our faith.
First – He varies his routine and meets someone new.
Second – He starts a conversation. This conversation starts by general chatting about water. It moves on into questions about her. He takes it slow and is never condemning.
Third – He addresses the need behind the question. She has a spiritual longing and tries to veil it by talking about the temple and worship. She is really looking for a God who will love her and fill the void in her life she has tried to fill with men.
Fourth – He shares that he is the messiah.
In the end there is this great response that she tells everyone, I have found a man who told me everything I have done. She is no longer filled with shame but uses her past as a place to teach others about Jesus.
Once again, there are lots of lessons from the life of Jesus, but I found these two to be essential to Christians today to begin sharing their faith.