How many times in your life have you looked back on something and said the words, “I wish that I would have _________.”
Often in life we are equipped with the knowledge about things, but we choose not to act on that knowledge. That’s because having knowledge without knowing what the future holds creates a level of doubt or uncertainty in our minds, so we don’t trust in our faith in God and act on what we know we should do.
The Real American cartoon hero of the 1980’s, G.I. Joe, used to say, “And now you know, and knowing is half the battle.”
In his message Sunday at Trinity Baptist Church, Pastor Andy Coats shared that as Christians, we have to do more than just know about God. Knowing God is only half of our battle as Christians to defeat the enemy. We also have to take action.
4 Action Steps to Take to Win the Battle
Step 1: Be Prepared for Opportunity
In order to tell others about Christ, you must be armed with biblical knowledge. That means you need to study the Bible. You need to pray and spend time in God’s word. Then when people come to you with a problem, you can respond with Biblical advice.
**** 2 Timothy 4:2 ****
Preach the word, be ready in season and out of season, convince, rebuke, and exhort, be unfailing in patience and in teaching.
God has given you the responsibility of preaching his word to others. He has given you an opportunity to minister to others. He has placed you within a unique circle of influence so that you can live out your purpose of bringing others to Christ.
Oftentimes as Christians, we are afraid to tell others about Christ. Sometimes that is because we know we cannot solve their immediate problems. But it’s not our job to play God. It’s our job to point people to God, so that He can solve their problems.
Sometimes as Christians, we are afraid to have conversations about Christ because we fear we don’t have all the answers. We should turn our fear into faith and let go of the pride that is holding us back in those moments. Be prepared to respond when you don’t know the answer with, “That’s a great question. Let’s research it together.”
Step 2: Be Committed to Truth
We live in a world that hates Christ. We live in a culture where even churches have rewritten God’s word to fit accepted norms and ultimately reach more people. Instead of condemning sin, our culture accepts it. Many Christians have become ambassadors for the “American Way” instead of ambassadors for Christ.
**** 2 Timothy 4:3-4 ****
For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander into myths.
The actions we take should always mirror Christ’s character. The advice we give should always mirror the commandments we have been given to live by.
It is easy to find experts out there who will tell you that how you (mis)interpret the Bible to fit cultural norms of today is okay. But just because they are an “expert” doesn’t mean what they are teaching is accurate. People today utilize Christianity as a form of self-help instead of a form of salvation.
The enemy tempts us repeatedly with things that feel good in the moment but are designed to ultimately destroy us. Affairs destroy marriages with the fleeting promise of fun and the spark of a new love that will ultimately burn out in time. Alcohol destroys our bodies and relationships with the fleeting feeling of escape. Anger destroys those around us with the illusion of power in the moment. The list goes on and on…
Step 3: Be Faithful to Your Calling
Life seldom goes as we plan it, but it always goes according to God’s plan. Don’t give up on what God has called you to do just because times seem tough.
**** 2 Timothy 4:5 ****
As for you, always be steady, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfil your ministry.
It is easy to fall into the trap of avoidance. We avoid telling others about Christ today because it is outside of our comfort zone. So we get busy doing other things and use them as the excuse for why we don’t have time to fulfill our ministry. Find accountability partners who will keep you in check and help you serve as a disciple.
Step 4: Be an Example Worth Following
The quality of the legacy you leave behind as a Christian comes from your best years, but the memories of your legacy will come from your last years.
**** 2 Timothy 4:6-8 ****
For I am already on the point of being sacrificed; the time of my departure has come. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
To become an example worth following, you have to go from knowledge to action. Of all the legacies you can leave behind when you leave this world, leaving behind a path of other Christians you’ve introduced to Christ to carry on the message is the greatest gift you can give this world.
Click here to watch the full message.