3 Minutes to Live
What would you say to someone if they had only 3 minutes to live and they were afraid of meeting God?
Could you present the essential truths of the gospel in 3 minutes?
Gospel conversations. That's what we want to have. And hopefully, they will be more than 3 minutes long!
Always and everywhere the servants of Christ are under orders to evangelize, and I hope that what I shall say now will act as an incentive to this task. – J.I. Packer, Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God, p. 13.
But we need to be able to simplify the gospel in our own minds so that we can share it briefly, if needed, and explain it in more depth, if possible. That's what this presen-tation of the gospel in Two Ways to Live does.
We are to teach the gospel.
Evangelism is teaching the gospel with the aim to persuade. – Mack Stiles, Evangelism: How the Whole Church Speaks of Jesus, p. 26.
In order to teach the gospel we must be able to simplify it first.
It is by teaching that the gospel preacher fulfills his ministry. To teach the gospel is his first responsibility: to reduce it to its simplest essentials, to analyze it point by point, to fix its meaning by positive and negative definition, to show how each part of the message links up with the rest- and go on explaining it till he is quite sure that his listeners have grasped it. (Packer, p. 48)
We can 'reduce it to its simplest essentials' in a number of ways (that usually work best together, one way or another):
Truth Story Questions
God Creation Why is the world the way it is?
Man Fall What has God done about it?
Jesus Redemption What must we do?
Faith Consummation How then are we to live?
You can hear more about this by going here and listening to Simple Questions, Profound Answers.
In seeking to engage in these gospel conversations, we need to remember that we are like lambs in the midst of wolves (see Luke 10:1-9), but we have a great and good Shepherd who calls us to be:
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
1 Thessalonians 5:18
2 Corinthians 8:12
You can hear more about this by going here and listening to The Shepherd of the Lambs in the Midst of Wolves.