These are the notes for our final session of Focus on the Family’s Who Is Jesus? study. Click on the links below for the other posts in this series.
- Who Is Jesus, Session 9: Is Jesus the Only Way?
- Who Is Jesus, Session 8: The God Claim, Part 2
- Who Is Jesus? Session 7: The God Claim (Part 1)
- Who Is Jesus? Session 6: The Resurrection
Answers to “Quote/Unquote” on page 94
- We need to draw near to Him.
- All truth flows from the very character and nature of God.
- “Look! You’re not listening to me. I saw Him!”
- They didn’t just believe that Jesus rose from the dead…; they were there.
- To be effective in persuading people today, we have to do it in a relationship.
- Sometimes you can get yourselves into a no-win situation.
- Admit what you don’t know.
- Pray before, pray during, pray after.
- We are increasingly a culture of skeptics.
- People are afraid of the real Jesus.
We are talking about “handling” the questions; not “answering” the questions. It may be easier to just give someone an answer, but chances are they will just move on to another question, another objection.
Our quest: To know Him, and to be His faithful, effective witnesses (Acts 1:8)
15 but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, 16 having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.
The more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in battle.
“How can you be salt and light if you’re never around meat or darkness?”
- 2 Corinthians 5:11: “Knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others.”
Keys to effective persuasion:
- Develop relationships with lost people.
- Choose your battles carefully. Remember, you aren’t trying to win an argument; you are trying to win a person. Our ultimate quest is to know Jesus, not to know answers! (John 17:3)
- Admit when you don’t know the answers. You will never get someone to admit they are wrong or don’t know something if you never admit you are wrong.
- Always gentle, always respectful
- Pray! Pray before, pray during, pray after! If we hope that God will grant them repentance (verse 25), then we should be asking for that.
5 Act wisely toward outsiders, making the most of the time. 6 Your speech should always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you should answer each person (Colossians 4:5-6)
23 Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. 24 And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, 25 correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, 26 and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will (2 Timothy 2:23-26)
“We should not see unbelievers as enemy combatants, but as prisoners of war.”
What we can expect when we engage unbelievers:
- Fear: People don’t reject Christ because they’re afraid of not having enough knowledge. They reject Jesus because they are afraid of not having enough control.
10 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
The most important question you will ever face is the one Jesus asked Peter: ‘Who do you say I am?’