The topic of sharing about the Gospel invariably leads to questions about what that message in fact is. I have often wondered what the bare essentials of the Good News which we have been entrusted to share are. What do we say when we share the Gospel? Last week, I argued that sharing the Gospel does indeed mean speaking. But what exactly is it that we are to say?
I study theology and the Scriptures a lot (one of the perks of the job!). I am always impressed at how expansive the Gospel Story is. The message runs through the entire Bible. It implications are personal, cosmic, social, and so on. It contains the greatest and most beautiful truths ever to be made known to the world. But we still have to tell people in simple ways. What would we communicate if we only had a few minutes?
Well, what would you say if you only had five minutes to share the Gospel?*
Imagine you’re on a bus and an opening to ‘share the Lord’ comes up. Imagine you’re sharing a pint with a friend and an opportunity to tell them Good News presents itself. Imagine you’re at someone’s side while they’re on their death bed and you feel you must say something. What would you say? You’ve got five minutes…
I find this simple test always helps me reorient myself and gets rid of my tendency to over complicate. It also is good practice for when I do speak to people. Given the chance, how would you tell the Gospel in five minutes?*
* Big Caveat – I know that this exercise is somewhat artificial and silly! I know full well that everything about the Gospel can’t be communicated in five minutes. I also know that implications of the Gospel can/must be lived out. Moreover, the product of the Gospel is the visible Church community and her love and that must be shown not talked about. But…the test is still useful so stop delaying and try to answer for yourself.
Better yet, share it with someone who needs to hear!