Time was running out and our conversation was going nowhere fast. The two nice ladies politely informed us that they had to leave in about ten minutes. My sister-in-law had invited these Jehovah’s Witnesses to her house, but the one doing most of the talking looked quite ready to “shake the dust off her feet” as soon as she got out of the door. I knew I might never have the opportunity to speak to them again.
“If I may,” I cut in as she was launching into a minor doctrinal point, “I think our main disagreement comes down to who Jesus is.”
“Who Jesus is?” she repeated, a slightly confused look on her face.
“Well, I mean that Jesus is Jehovah.”
Her bemused expression instantly changed to a more incredulous one. “Now, where does the Bible say that?” She began listing objections. “How could God die? How can Jesus be the image of God’s person and also be God?”
I attempted to briefly explain the Godhead to her, pointing to 1 John 5:7, but she stopped me short with, “That verse isn’t in the original manuscripts.”
I showed why the verse belongs, but it didn’t make any difference to her. She had already been convinced that this crucial verse had never been Holy Scripture. Missing verses and doubting footnotes can have a startling impact on our evangelistic efforts.
I tried a different tack, pointing her to Isaiah 43:10: “… before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.”
I asked how Jehovah could be Almighty God and Jesus could be “a mighty god”, as she had been insisting throughout our conversation, unless Jesus is Jehovah. She had no answer, and stood up to leave, multiplying polite farewells to my brother’s family, and declaring that she was “leaving broken-hearted.”
If your Bible has Jesus commanding us to “make disciples” this encounter might not sound like a success. But thankfully, Jesus didn’t require us to do anything so difficult.
Jesus commanded us to “teach all nations” (Matthew 28:19, KJV). Obedience to His command is not hard. The Holy Ghost inspired the apostle John to write, “…his [God’s] commandments are not grievous” (1 John 5:3).
We don’t need to know a man’s entire belief system before we can talk to him about Jesus; all we need to do is talk to him about what we know of Christ from the scriptures.
Many believers, relying on modern Bibles that alter the Lord’s command, shy away from talking with people of other religions, fearing that they don’t know enough to “make disciples.” But any Christian who knows the gospel can “…preach Christ crucified,” (1 Cor. 1:23). If you deliver the gospel, you have fulfilled the great commission, whether or not they choose to become a disciple of Jesus.
Chick tracts make it even easier. All you have to do is hand one to someone and you are actively fulfilling Christ’s command. You don’t need apologetics or polemics (or any other “–ics”) to share Him with those around you. All it takes to make an eternal difference in a lost soul’s life is to show them who Jesus is: the Son of God, “Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.” (Rom. 4:25)