As of late, one of my favorite texts in Acts comes from the mouth of Festus (Roman Governor of Judea). While describing to King Agrippa who Paul was and why he had been in prison for the past two years, he says, "When the accusers stood up, they brought no charge in his case of such evils as I supposed. Rather they had certain points of dispute with him about their religion and about a certain Jesus, who was dead, but whom Paul asserted to be alive" (Acts 25:18-19).
I love this. It paints such a clear picture of the differences between us as believers in Jesus Christ and those who are outside faith in all He promises. This truth changes everything. Jesus is indeed alive, and we should live in such a way that the truth of His rising is easily seen.
But how do we do that? In the next chapter Paul, in his defense to King Agrippa, says, "To this day I have had the help that comes from God, and so I stand her testifying both to great and small" (Acts 26:22). There is a commission on our lives to testify to the characteristics of the almighty God.
"By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father sent his Son to be the Savior of the world" (1 John 4:13-14). One of the ways to assess whether or not God's Spirit abides in you and you in Him is whether or not you testify to the message He has given you.
We have a duty to tell people about the transformation God has done in our lives. God has poured His grace out on you for a very specific reason, and it's not so you can keep the news to yourself. In His infinite wisdom, God has decided to use His elect to be ambassadors in His conquest to reconcile all things to Himself. He has given us a specific role in it all. Let's play it well.
I spoke to our high school students on this very topic last week at Crave, our high school Bible study. I've heard a lot of push back from students and adults alike on testimonies, and it has mainly come in one of two veins: either "I don't have a testimony" or "My testimony is no good."
The first one is easy. 1 John 5:10 clearly states that all who believe in the Son of God have the testimony within themselves. There should be no debate on whether or not the believer has a testimony. Also, to make the claim that your testimony is "no good" would be to refute the miracle of regeneration in the heart of a believer. We were dead in our trespasses and the uncircumcision of our flesh but made alive in Christ.
Within each one of us who confesses Jesus as Lord lies a testimony equal to the grandeur of Lazarus being raised from the dead. We have been raised from the dead. We were spiritually dead, but now we are alive in Christ Jesus who gave Himself as a ransom for all who would believe.
So, when you share – not if you share – keep these things in mind:
- Do so simply. God doesn't need your eloquent words or splendor of speech (1 Cor. 1:17). Your story of rebirth is splendid enough in itself.
- Do so boldly. There is no need to apologize for interjection of opinion when speaking of the gospel. He is fact.
- Do so with the power of the Holy Spirit. Testimony of life change rooted in what Jesus did at Calvary has the power to overcome Satan himself (Rev. 12:11).
- Do so with the right message. What is our message? "The Father sent his Son to be the Savior of the World!"(1 John 4:14).
We are all in need of a savior, and Jesus is the only one. If you have indeed seen and heard this great news, by all means, testify to its greatness.