The Truth of the Matter
When you look across the landscape of the world’s population as it relates to religion, the statistics are staggering. In a 2015 study conducted by the Pew Research Center, 84% of the world at that time believed in or practiced some type of religion. There was only 16% of the world’s population who didn’t affiliate themselves with any particular religion. This tells us that the large majority of people are looking for truth. And, though some have found it, the truth of the matter is too many are on a path that leads to destruction.
I read an article a couple weeks ago that said only 5% of Christians share their faith on a regular basis. That statistic alone should cause us to feel really sad. And, if we’re not careful, we’ll use that statistic to justify ourselves instead of examining ourselves. As followers of Jesus Christ who have the truth, we are falling short –big time!
Romans 10:14-15 MSG
But how can people call for help if they don’t know who to trust? And how can they know who to trust if they haven’t heard of the One who can be trusted? And how can they hear if nobody tells them?
So, why aren’t we telling others about the Good News? Maybe it’s because we’re afraid of what people might think of us. If we are insecure in our ability to tell others about the love and grace of God, we’re not as secure as we should be in God’s love for us. When we hold other’s opinions higher than we do God’s opinion, who loves us unconditionally, there is a “disconnect”.
The confidence we need to evangelize begins in the love of God. The Bible tells us that perfect love [complete and full-grown love] casts out/expels fear. When we abide in that love, fear is squeezed out. Abiding in the love of God leads to bearing much fruit which includes, among other things, reconciling others to God through Jesus Christ.
The truth of the matter is followers of Jesus Christ have a living hope. A "living hope" has life in it and therefore can give life to us. Because it has life, it grows and becomes greater and more beautiful as time goes on. Time can destroy most hopes; they fade and then die. But if you’re a follower of Jesus Christ, your hope grows more glorious every day. Peter called this hope an inheritance, that being the final and complete salvation of our souls. This inheritance is totally unlike any earthly inheritance: it is incorruptible; it is pure; it will never grow old; it cannot wear out; nor can it disappoint us in any way.
The truth of the matter is if we’re not excited about the hope we have, we won’t be able to convince anyone else about it.