Setting Up The Study
1) Pray to God to help you to say the right thing, in the right way. Pray for open doors, for wisdom & strength to take advantage of the opportunities. Pray for open hearts and for the prospect to have ease of understanding.
2) Until a study is set up it canít be conducted. To set up a study we must ASK. We should not be afraid that we are going to make a mistake in asking a person to study the Bible with us. The only person who never made a mistake is the one who did nothing for fear of making a mistake, but he made the biggest mistake of all by doing nothing. If we have sincerity and love for lost souls then what we say will not be so important. We must realize that everyone has a precious soul. Remember to always strive to gain a study appointment with a definite time and date rather than just answering questions on the spur of the moment.
3) Different people should be approached differently. Jude 22-23 says, "And on some have compassion, making a difference; and others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh."
4) Be genuinely sincere when we are talking to someone about his soul. His soul is the most important thing in the world, and if he thinks we think so then he will see how important it is. If we could only realize how precious a soul is, then we would not despair any effort to teach them the truth. Love of the lost will lead us to an untiring effort for the salvation of others. If we really love the souls of people, we cannot bear the thought that they will be lost forever. People donít care how much we know until they know how much we care. People will be more willing to listen to us if they really believe we care.
5) Be genuinely interested in the interests of others. In choosing His apostles, Christ was interested in the fishing of Peter, Andrew, James, and John and He helped them catch some fish. We should help people in time of need and they will be grateful to us. If we are not interested in people, they will not be interested in what we have to say about the gospel.
6) Donít be intimidated. The vast majority of people are a novice and their knowledge of spiritual matters is quite limited.
7) Get the person alone. Christ talked to Nicodemus, Zacchaeus, and the Samaritan woman alone. It is difficult to talk to a person about his soul before others.
8) Spend time in getting people ready to hear. Jesus did. He often healed and fed people and then they were in a proper frame of mind to listen.
9) Invite non-members to eat with you. Christ ate with Zacchaeus. It is said of the Lord in Matthew 9:11 that He ate "with publicans and sinners." We should be making friends with those who are not Christians so they can be led to Christ.
10) In talking to another we should remember that his convictions are just as sacred to him as ours are to us. What he believes may seem foolish to us, and it may be easy for us to see his error, but it is hard for him. It is difficult for him to give it up.
11) Never, never, never argue and always maintain a calm composure and tone of voice when talking to people about their salvation. If you argue, a soul will be lost. Many people want the truth and will welcome it if it is presented correctly.
12) Avoid a belligerent, haughty, excited, argumentative, or angry attitude. If we donít then a wall of opposition springs up. (A) If you say "Iíll prove it to you", in his mind he thinks "Iíd like to see you do it." (B) If you say "Let me show you", he thinks "Maybe so but I wonít accept it from you if you do." It is better to say "could we see what the Bible says." Donít quote scriptures to him. Ask him to read the scripture.
13) We should not make the other person angry. Most people donít get angry because of the truth but because of the way or attitude in which it is presented. Some go to the other extreme and spend so much time trying to be nice and are so careful to try to keep from hurting someoneís feelings that they never get around to setting up the study or presenting the truth. Too many times we may care more for a person's feelings than we do for their soul.
14) Be alert for people who are undergoing trauma such as death of loved ones, serious illness, divorce, automobile accidents, financial difficulties, etc. In times like these, people realize how vulnerable they are and many times are looking to God for help. Many times this provides a great opportunity to talk to people about their souls.
15) A person must see that he is lost and needs the study. Do not allow the person to jump around with you. Examples of poor soil: (A) "Let me check with my husband." (B) Would you check back latter?" (C) "I will study if it doesnít take too long." (D) "I would like to ask my preacher." (E) Being passive.
"What To Say"
Copyright © 2005 Ron Boatwright