I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power. 1 Corinthians 2:3-5
Here is a simple way to help people understand the Gospel, which I picked up from Young Life years ago. All you need is a Bible, a piece of paper, and a pen.
Have the person read aloud (so the person can hear and see) these verses in this order:
1. Romans 1:16: (God's Plan is peace and life!)
2. John 1:12: (Our problem is we are separated from Him by our sin!)
3. 1 Corinthians 15:1-4: (God loves us and gave us the Gospel!)
4. Romans 10:13: (God's solution is the cross that pays our debt of sin!)
5. 1 John 5:11-12: (Our solution is to receive Him as Savior and Lord!)
Then, draw a valley between two cliffs. Explain, on one side, we stand; on the other, Holy God stands. Say, "There is nothing we can do to reach the other side; no religion, works, morals, or pedigree can cross the barrier from our sin to His love and eternity. Only the Cross can do that, by what Jesus did."
Then draw a cross as a bridge. Go over these witnessing verses in this order: Romans 3:23; 6:23; 5:8; Ephesians 2:8-9; Revelation 3:20; 1 John 1:12.
Use illustrations from your own experiences. Give them time to ask questions and reassure them of God's love for them.
Remember, you do not have to prove the Gospel; the Spirit does that. All you need to do is share who Jesus is and what He has done for you. If the person is not ready, close, and pray for another opportunity when they will be ready. If they are ready, ask for a response.
Some More Salvation Plans
That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched--this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. 1 John 1:1
Modified Billy Graham/Bill Bright Four-Step Process
The "Four Spiritual Laws" tract is also an excellent way to share with someone step-by-step. Have them read the Scriptures (pick out two that you are familiar with for each section and then go to the others if the person wants more). Then, ask the person, what does this mean to you? Explain the concepts to them as illustrated below.
Step one: Understand God's Deep Love For You! God wants us to have purpose, peace, and love. God wants us to experience peace and abundant, eternal life. He desires companionship with us. God wants to make us better, stronger, and more content. He wants us to be fulfilled and satisfied. Read one or more of these verses to find out more: Psalm 16:11; 107:9; Proverbs 3:5-6; Isaiah 26:3; Romans 5:1, John 3:16, 10:10; 14:21; Galatians 5:16-21 verses 5:22-23; 1 John 1:7-9; 2 John 4.
Step Two: We Have a Deep Problem of Separation From God! This brings no peace or fulfillment. God created us in His own image to have abundant life. He did not make us robots to automatically love and obey Him but gave us the gift of free choice. Hence, we chose to disobey God of our own will, which resulted in our separation (Romans 3:23, 6:23). We no longer have fulfillment, real joy, or peace. We are full of sin, seeking corruption and our own destruction, thereby making us enemies of God. He wants us back, but our attempts through the ages have failed to bridge the gap. Thus we are filled with frustration, selfishness, guilt, anger, bitterness, and dissatisfaction even when we may not see it. Read these verses to find out more: Proverbs 14:12; Isaiah 59:2; Mark 7:21-22; Romans 3:23; 7:18; James 1:13-15.
Step Three: God's Remedy Is the Cross. Jesus Christ is the only answer to this problem. He died on the cross, rose from the grave, and paid our penalty. Read these verses to find out more: Proverbs 28:13; 1 Timothy 2:5, 1 Peter 3:18, Romans 5:8; 6:23.
Step Four: Our response is to receive Christ and accept His forgiveness as payment for our sins. We must trust in Him by personal invitation, asking Jesus Christ to be Lord over our lives, and forsake our sin. (Pray with the individual and make sure they are discipled.) We need to go through our personal lives and see where we need to repent. We then need to learn and grow in the Word, first focusing on the basics, which include prayer, Scripture, devotional life, accountability, and discipleship. That way, we can seek Him, grow in Him, and receive our Grace and fulfillment. Read these verses to find out more: Psalm 32:5; 119:30; Daniel 1:8; John 1:12, Romans 10:9; Colossians 3:2; 1 John 1:9; Revelation 3:20.
The Roman Road
This is another method called "The Roman Road." "The Roman Road" is a group of Bible verses from the book of Romans that are used to help people better understand salvation, and to lead people to Christ.
Romans 3:23, 5:8, 6:23, 10:9-10, 10:13
The first thing you have to realize is that WE ALL are sinners! Romans 3:23 states, "For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God." But, God loved us, so He sent His son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for our sins.
Next, realize that God loves YOU! Romans 5:8 says, "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." There is no greater love than that of someone who would lay down his life for a friend. That is what Christ did for us.
Without Him, you are literally doomed! Romans 6:23 tells us, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ." Yes, the wages of sin is death, but God has given us the privilege of eternal life in Christ. It is a gift; you do not have to work for it, just ASK. What a gift!
Confess your sins! Romans 10:9-10 says, "That if you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord', and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved." And in Romans 10:13 we read, "For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
That's it. That is all you have to do. Call on the name of Jesus, and ask Him into your heart, and you will be saved from the eternal pits of Hell to eternal New Life. Perhaps you may rather say to the person, "welcome to the Kingdom of God!"
Which is the best one? The one you choose to use, the one that fits your personality and style. God does not need formulas; He desires to use you. Whatever approach you use, never argue or condemn the other person's beliefs. Focus on God's love for the person. Jesus' perfect life, His death on the cross for our sins, and His resurrection were all a substitution in our behalf because we are not perfect. Every person needs to make a personal commitment to follow Christ. (Invite the person to actually pray with you and commit his or her life to Christ.)
The Classic Sinner's Prayer. Say, "If you, in your heart, honestly believe everything that was said here, pray this prayer:
Dear Jesus, I KNOW I am a sinner. I know that You were sent by God to die on the cross to save me from my sin. I ask You now to forgive me of the sins I have committed, and come into my heart. Thank You for dying on the cross for me. From this day forward, I will follow Your will and serve You. AMEN."
If the person prayed this prayer, and believes that Jesus saved him or her, welcome him or her to the kingdom of God. Be there to answer any questions that person may have and assign a mentor to help him or her get to know the new life in Christ. Encourage the person to share this decision with a friend or family member, and make sure he or she knows that the church would love to hear about the decision, too.
Do They Want to Know More?
So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. Isaiah 55:11
Now is your opportunity to share the Good News of our Lord; you do this from His Word. God's Word is the power and the Spirit is the heart softener; you are the communicator, the means He uses to bring His Word and Truth to another person. But, it is always good to be prepared to give an answer and have a plan; and, here it is:
The Scriptures to know and share are in this order. It is best to have these memorized or at the very least have a small Bible with the verses highlighted and booked marked. You could even write them down on a 3x5 index card.
1. Romans 3:12
2. Romans 3:23
3. Romans 6:23
4. John 3:3
5. John 14:6
6. Romans 10:9-11
7. 2 Corinthians 5:15
8. Revelations 3:20
Ask, "If what you believed in was not true, would you want to know?"
Then, engage the person with one of the questions in the following section; when he or she wants to learn more, share the first verse. Have him or her read it aloud; if they will not or cannot, then you read it aloud and ask the person, What does this mean to you? Having them read it aloud is important; that way, they are less distracted as they hear it for themselves from themselves.
Take your time; do not rush through the verses unless they are at death's door right then. Your job is to allow God's Word to speak and answer any questions they might have. If you do not know the answer, it is OK. Just say, I will find out and get back to you. Now, you have a second opportunity to engage them in dialogue.
Then go on to verse number two and so forth. Do not give them your interpretation; let them figure it out unless they ask you. That way, they cannot say to you, well, that is what you may think, but I think….
Then ask if they are ready to accept Christ into their heart and explain what that means to you. Then go through the "sinner's prayer." After saying the prayer, pray together.
Keep it simple; it is not about your words-it is about His Word. If they do not understand the Scriptures, go over the "Four Spiritual Laws" from Campus Crusade in the next section. Sometimes it needs to be explained to them further and in a logical step-by-step way.
© 2006, Richard J. Krejcir, Ph.D. Schaeffer Institute of Church Leadership, www.churchleadership.org