1. TV evangelists yelling at me from a pulpit in front of a congregation of thousands of people.
2. The folks knocking door to door asking, “Do you know if you’re going to heaven?”
I didn’t know that as a Christian, Jesus asked each and every one of His believers, who were now disciples also, to:
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” ~Matthew 28:19-20
Ok, so we know what we have to do. How?
You get on a plane for 2-3 flight. You sit down and introduce yourself to the person sitting next to you. He sees the cross around your neck and immediately says, “I’m an atheist.”
Now, if you’re a pastor, you probably know how to handle this, but for the average Christian, our first thought would be to get on the defensive. Start defending God and Jesus and rattling about how we’ve been saved and the joy we have, etc.
Not the right strategy.
- The belt of Truth
- The breastplate of Righteousness
- The shoes of the Gospel of Peace
- The shield of Faith
- The helmet of Salvation
and lastly, “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
Do you realize that the sword is the only offensive weapon? Everything else is defensive – to protect you. The sword is meant to thrust to attack.
The only way to arm yourself is to READ THE BIBLE. And not just cover to cover. But methodically.
If you want to be prepared to converse with an atheist whether it be on a plane or on Twitter, you must be armed with the undeniable Truth of God’s Word. Take some time each day to read it. The best time is in the morning when your mind is fresh. Hey, read it in the bathroom. God has no rules as where you have to be when you read it! If you need a guide, use one or more of the millions of devotionals out there. One of my favorites is Our Daily Bread. It’s online or you can probably pick it up at your church.
So how do you converse with the atheist on the plane when he proudly informes you that he doesn’t believe there is a God? Here’s your reply:
“Really, why’s that?”
Then shut up and listen to his story. (Remember, you’ve got a couple of hours.) Then and only then, you reply with, “Well, did you know that Jesus said,…’Truly I tell you….'”
Soli Deo Gloria!
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