Word Study Wednesday is a day that Prayer in Every City dedicates to Bible Study. For the past few weeks, I have been teaching on the different witnessing situations in the book of Acts. Check out my other posts on the book of Acts: Introduction to Witnessing, Acts 2, Acts 17. If you don’t want to take the time to look at all of them, at least read the introduction so you will understand how to analyze each of the witnessing situations. There are at least 11 witnessing stories in the book of Acts, but we will only look at a few. I have tried to include the different types of audiences such as Jews, Gentiles or Idol Worshipers. Acts 26 tells about Paul’s appearance to King Agrippa, who is the great-grandson of Herod the Great. He is not a Jew, but is an expert on Jewish customs. In this particular witnessing encounter, Paul gives his testimony. I have taken several different witnessing courses over the years and one of the courses said that the most important way to witness is by your testimony. Their reason for this is that no one can argue with your testimony. If there are 11 different witnessing encounters in the book of Acts with only one including a testimony, then I find it difficult to reason that giving your testimony is the most important way to witness. I will not say that it is wrong to do this, because Paul does it, but keep in mind that we have learned other methods that the disciples used as well. We really should learn more than one approach when witnessing, because one method will not work for all people. We need to rely on the prompting of the Holy Spirit to know the best way to speak to an individual.
If you would, please read all of Acts 26. I will ask you some questions below so you will know what to look for while reading. You can then read my summary at the bottom. You might also like to look at Mark 1:14-15 and 1 Corinthians 15:1-8 to learn what the gospel message is. If you have not worked through any of my Acts Bible Studies, then take a look at my Introduction to Witnessing.
- Look at verses 1, 24 and 30 to determine who Paul’s audience is. (Bernice is King Agrippa’s sister)
- In verse 4, what period of Paul’s life does he begin with while giving his testimony?
- What was Paul’s life like before he met Jesus in verses 9-11.
- What event changed his life in verses 12-15?
- What did Jesus commission Paul to do in verses 16-18?
- What did Paul do after his encounter with Jesus? Was there a life change?
- In verse 18-23, what part of the gospel message did Paul speak about?
- What was King Agrippa’s response in verse 28?
Paul’s audience for this witnessing encounter was his own trial in front of King Agrippa, Festus, and Bernice. In this particular encounter, Paul gives his personal testimony. This is the only time we see an apostle give his testimony in the book of Acts. When giving his testimony, Paul begins with what his life was like before Christ. He then tells about his life changing encounter with the Lord Jesus and his commission from the Lord. After his life change, he tells what his life was like after he was saved. This is a very good way to present your testimony to a person. Begin with what your life was like before you were saved, then tell about your salvation experience and conclude with how your life has changed after Christ. Don’t forget to include the gospel message, because a person cannot get saved without knowing how. Paul speaks of repentance in verse 20 and then talks of Christ sufferings and resurrection. He also says that he witnesses to both Jews and Gentiles. If you look at Mark 1:14-15 and 1 Corinthians 15:1-8, you will see that these are a necessary part to the gospel message. It is very important to memorize scripture so you can be ready in season and out of season to share your faith. Please join me on Memory Verse Monday so you can practice memorizing salvation scriptures.
In conclusion, Jesus has commissioned everyone of us to share our faith. In the Great Commission, Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus tells us to go into all the world to preach the gospel and then teach them all things. Not only are we to lead others to Christ, but then they need to be discipled. I think the church is failing miserable today when it comes to discipleship. We win them to the Lord and throw them in with the wolves. One more opinion I would like to add. Please let them say their own prayer. The “sinner’s prayer” appears no where in the scripture. If they need assistance, then help them but let them use their own words. If they are truly repentant, then they will be able to figure out what to say. I always ask people to silently confess every sin that they can think of. If there is no repentance, then there is no salvation. They can say a “sinner’s prayer” but fail to repent. Just a thought!