Greetings in Jesus!
Since coming to this forum it would seen that for whatever reason, the Lord has chosen to draw me to Art Katz Sermons. What a blessing!
I recently watched the video taped interview in which he gave his personal testimony, in which he told about how he came finally had turned from unbelief to faith in Jesus.
It really gripped me hearing how this Jew come to Jesus, and the account he gave of how it had all came about that he finally did.
Of course, all Christians are obligated to be a witness for Christ.
But just what exactly does that mean?
Often I have found that many of us often confuse testimony and preaching!
Preaching is presenting the the truths of God's Word directly, but testimony is "witnessing" or "being a witness."
Testimony is speaking from experience and incidents that relate to the Word of God and confirm the truth of God's Word.
For instance, if we are preaching a message on healing, we preach the principals on which God heals, and offer His promises of healing.
But if we are testifying about healing, we speak about an incident in which we experienced God healing us.
So testimony and preaching are both related to the Word of God, but they approach it from different angles.
Testimony in basic to Jesus' strategy of reaching the whole world with the Gospel.
He unveiled this strategy in His closing words on earth as He stood on the Mount of Olives with His disciples, about to leave them, as found in Acts 1:18 (NIV) ---- But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and to the ends of the earth.
We notice, first, that to be effective witnesses for Jesus, we need supernatural power.
Our testimony is supernatural.
It needs to be backed and enforced by supernatural power, the power of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus did not permit His disciples to go out and begin testifying until they had been endued with the power on the Day of Pentecost.
Secondly, Jesus did not say, "You will witness," which is what a lot of religiois people say today.
He said, "You will be ... witnesses."
In other words, it is not just words we speak or the tracts that we hand out but our total lives are to be witnesses to Jesus and the truth of the Gospel.
Being a witness for Christ is just simply telling others what Jesus has done for you.
And we are all, all Christians (including preachers) can do that, and are obligated to do so when we receive opportunities to do so. That is, in situations that are of course, appropreiate for us to do so.
Thirdly, Jesus envisaged an ever extending circle.
He said to start where you are in Jerusalem. Go and tell people. Let them believe, and let them be filled with the Holy Spirit. Then let them go and tell others.
He said it would start in Jerusalem, move out to Judea, then to Samaria, and would not cease until it reached the outermost part of the earth.
Those were the last words Jesus spoke on earth.
His mind and His heart were in the uttermost part of the earth. He would never be satisfied until that has been reached.
And His basic strategy for reaching it was for all God's people to become witnesses, witnessing to and winning others.
Those, in turn, were to become witnesses and win until, like the expanding ripples from stones cast into a pond, they reached the uttermost part of the earth.
Looking back in history, when God's people applied this strategy, it worked. Within three hundred years, it had conquered the Roman Empire. I believe that great basic spiritual force that overthrew the pagan Roman Emprire was testimony of thousands and thousands of Christians believers from different backgrounds, races, social levels, and religious persuasions.
They all said, "JESUS CHANGED MY LIFE!"
Never under estimate the power of even a few words or simple words used in telling other what Jesus has done for you in the power of the Holy Spirit!
If you had watched or if you watch the video taped interveiw you will receive a demonstration of what I am talking about!
God bless you,
dear brothers and sisters.