Answering the Tough Questions Part 3
2 Corinthians 5:20
The Apostle Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 5:20 “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.”
What is an ambassador?An ambassador represents someone usually a ruler, a king, or a president.They must have many skills to be the best representative; these can include:
1.Knowledge:A good ambassador knows who they represent.
2.Wisdom:Must be skilled in diplomacy; can communicate what the king or ruler wants in an attractive manner.In conversation must display gentleness and respect.
3.Character:Actions reflect the person you represent.
So who do we represent?Paul tells us; we are ambassadors for Christ.We must be like Jesus in our speech and in our life. Paul says it is as though God is making His appeal through us.This is a high calling to be an ambassador for Christ.We need to be a good representative of the King.
A Good ambassador for Christ…
1.Cares About People
·Whenever you share with a person think in terms of a long term relationship. This means you don’t have to try to close the deal and lead them to Christ during your first encounter.Through an ongoing developing relationship, over time you can gently move them towards belief.I have non-Christian friends I continue to discuss spiritual issues year after year.Since it is God who saves, I just keep doors open for the spirit to work in their life.
·It is also important to stop when they’ve had enough.A good ambassador is sensitive to the needs of the listener.A person can only handle so much information.What maybe an exciting topic to you, may not be as exciting to your listener.Once their interest wanes change subjects.
·How do we evaluate readiness to hear more about Jesus Christ?My suggestion is to watch for sheep.Jesus talking to the religious leaders in John 10:26-27 “…but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.”
-If the person you are talking to raises his or her head and responds positively to what you are saying, then you are talking to one of His sheep or soon to be a sheep.They hear the voice of the savior through you.You should focus your conversation on Jesus Christ.
-If the person continues to graze on the ground and not lift their head then they are not one of His sheep.This is a person who rejects what you are sharing and gives reasons for his or her unbelief.When you end the conversation leave the door open for future discussions.
The majority of the people I talk to are God haters; they are far from Jesus Christ.My job as a good ambassador is to gently move them closer to considering belief in Christ.I do this by clearing away the bad thinking and presenting clear evidence for belief.In part 3 I will continue to share tactics of being a good ambassador for Christ.