Witnessing is a common term
which is commonly misunderstood. "Ye shall be witnesses unto me" (Acts
1:8) is the simple statement of Scripture; but, tragically, it is
terrifying to many even to think about it. A clear understanding will
help Christians witness and enjoy it.
In order to witness one must have experienced something and must be
sure of it. One will never be found talking much about salvation until
he has experienced it himself and is sure of it. Paul could say, "I
know whom I have believed" (II Tim. 1:12). No wonder he spoke of it.
When a witness in court is put on the stand, the lawyer must first
establish his character. Often when there is a difference in one's
practice and his profession, his mouth is sealed as tight as a tomb.
In order to be a witness, a Christian's life must back up his lips.
Paul speaks of "holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience"
(I Tim. 3:9).
A witness must appear at the right place to tell what he knows. When
God says "be ye separate" (II Cor. 6: 17) He is not advocating
isolationism. Jesus ate with sinners in order that He might witness to
them. Christianity is contagious; but if Christians quarantine
themselves, no one will ever catch what they have.
Witnessing is simply telling what one knows and has experienced
oneself. It' is not defending the faith nor defining doctrines nor
denouncing the sins of the world. God has not called many to be
lawyers, but he has called all to be witnesses. The blind man of John
9, now healed, did not know anything about the theology of Jesus; but
what a witness he was when he said, "One thing I know, that, whereas I
was blind, now I see" (v. 25). If Christians had the concept of simply
telling about something wonderful that happened to them and how others
could have the same, it would take away the fear of witnessing.
"Ye shall be witnesses unto me," said the Saviour. The chorus, "Let's
Talk About Jesus," is a good admonition. Present Christ and you will
never feel you are being rejected. I used to feel people were
rejecting me until I learned this lesson. Witnessing is one poor
beggar telling another poor beggar where to find bread.