Read Acts 26.
If you studied Paul’s evangelistic sermons in the book of Acts, you would learn many interesting things from them. But one of the most interesting things we learn is Paul’s use of his testimony – Paul would often share his testimony as a way of sharing Christ with others. Some of the best examples are found in Acts 23 and Acts 26.
But have you wondered why does Paul does this? Why not just jump straight to sharing about the Jesus, the Cross and His resurrection? Why not talk about repentance and redemption? Why not give an intelligent rational proof of God?
Why does Paul choose to share his testimony? Let me venture 2 reasons:
Theological – It comes down to a simple yet profound point: because we are not just the messenger, we are also the message. The message of Jesus Christ isn’t just a story, a discussion or a sermon sharing. It is meant to be so much more, it is meant to be life-changing! That’s why the best evidence of the message of Jesus Christ is the messenger’s life! That’s why testimony works brilliantly! Because we’re proving the message of a life-changing Saviour through the message of our changed lives.
Social & Emotional – Even if we think from our friend’s perspective, this is a brilliant way of evangelising. Think about it – wouldn’t your friends be willing to learn more about your life? If we simply gave a rational explanation of Jesus, we’ll probably bore most of our friends. But if you share how and why Jesus changed your life, I’ll bet they would listen to you, and probably quite intently too. In any case, many of them want to know whether this life-changing Saviour really does change lives!
We often wonder how to share and whether the sharing of testimonies are in any way effective. However, Scripture and specifically the evangelistic strategic of Paul points otherwise. Sharing our testimonies can potentially be very effective in sharing of Jesus Christ. Just like Paul’s answer to Agrippa above, our testimonies may not directly cause people to accept Christ, but it can be used by God to shape our friend’s understanding of who God is. Slowly but surely, we pray that they and all who hear our testimonies may come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ! Let’s ready our testimonies of God in our lives!
Rev. Dr Jeremy-Joe Tan