Thursday, February 9, 2012

There is a BIG difference beween "What" and "Who."

Are you sharing “What” or “Who”?

Jim and Tony, had both just recently became Christians.  These twin brothers both worked under the supervision of Barry Wilkins, who was the district supervisor for a national insurance company.  They often went on the road together and Jim and Tony had many occasions to discuss the gospel with Barry who had never been immersed.  They introduced me to Barry and suggested that I have a personal Bible study with Barry and his wife Nancy.  I agreed to this plan and asked Barry to give me a call when they were ready (I really didn’t expect to hear back from him!).

Barry did call and asked that I come to their home on a Saturday morning.  We sat down around their dining table and opened our Bibles.  After prayer I got their permission to ask a “personal question.”  I asked, “Have you reached a place in your spiritual life where you know for sure that if you died today that you would go to heaven?”  They both answered that they had, and we started our study of Romans.

When we reached Romans 8:1 which states, Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”  I asked, “Are you in Christ?”  They both said they were.  I asked, “How did you get into Christ?” They answered, “We invited him into our hearts.”  To which I pointed out, “They may be how Christ got into you, but this scripture states there is no condemnation for those that are IN Christ.  We need to see what the Bible says about getting into Christ.”

Earlier we had read from Romans 6, “Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4    We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.”  I asked, “Have you ever been buried with Christ in baptism?”  When Nancy started to process what this meant she left the table and went to her bedroom weeping.

After a period of silence, I asked Barry, “What are you going to do?”  He replied, “I’m just not ready to receive baptism!”  I said, “Barry, I did not come over here to get you to receive baptism. I came over to share Jesus with you.  You are not saying no to baptism, you are saying no to Christ.  Barry responded, “Boy, it’s not hard to say no to baptism, but it is difficult to say no to Christ!”

Barry and Nancy were both baptized the next Tuesday.

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