As Jesus’s followers, we’re all called to share the Gospel and make disciples (Matthew 28:18-20). Unfortunately, that call intimidates many Christians, even those who’ve followed Jesus for many years.
It doesn’t have to be that way. In Acts 8:26-40, we see an account that outlines five simple steps we can follow to share the Gospel with the people we encounter in our everyday lives. They are:
1. Obey the Prompt.
The story opens with Philip, a Jewish Christ-follower who had left Jerusalem after Pentecost and was preaching in nearby Samaria. One day, an angel of the Lord tells him to head south to a road that went from Jerusalem to Gaza. As he’s walking along the road, he sees a chariot carrying an Ethiopian eunuch—an important government official who had traveled to Jerusalem to worship. At that point, the Holy Spirit gives Philip his next direction:
The Spirit told Philip, “Go to that chariot and stay near it.” (Acts 8:29)
Philip didn’t hem and haw or wonder if he’d heard God right. Instead, he obeyed immediately. The very next verse says:
Then Philip ran up to the chariot… (Acts 8:30a)
To ensure you hear the prompting to begin with, I encourage you to start every day by asking God to give you an opportunity to tell someone about Jesus that day. Then listen for the prompting—and obey right away when you hear it!
2. Ask the Question.
Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked. (Acts 8:30)
Often, the best way to engage is to ask a question. Maybe the question you begin with is as simple as: “How are you today?” Then, after conversing for a while, you could move to a spiritually focused question, such as:
- Do you go to church around here?
- What’s your spiritual background?
- Is there anything I could pray for you about? (I often use this one with servers at restaurants.)
If you already know someone well, stay attentive to opportunities to ask questions that turn the conversation toward the Gospel. You’ll likely be surprised by how often topics arise that touch on spiritual things.
Whether you already know the person or not, the goal is to spark a Gospel conversation—which leads to the next point.
3. Accept the Invite.
“How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?”So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. (Acts 8:31)