Mark 16:15 instructs Christians to go into the world and preach the gospel, but what do you do when you encounter someone who has already heard the gospel and simply chooses not to believe?
Because we are called to love one another in the same manor that Jesus loved us, giving up on unbelievers is not an option; but we also need to be very cautious not to allow our ministry attempts to escalate to the point of harassment, as this tends to push people further away. So how do we as Christians reach out to people who don’t want to be reached without crossing any lines or disregarding boundaries?
The first thing that we need to remember is, who the gospel message is for.
The message that Jesus died and rose again is intended for people who have never heard it, and for people who have heard it but desire to learn more. When you are dealing with an unbeliever who has already been exposed to the gospel, what they need is not to be repeatedly bombarded with the facts but, instead, given a reason to believe them. This can be accomplished by
Letting our lives be our ministry.
The gospel message is essentially that Jesus came and died not only to save us from the consequences of sin, but to transform us and set us free from the captivity of sin. Romans 12:2 tells us not to conform to the patterns of this world. That means that as Christians, we shouldn’t blend in and behave like everyone else. We have been born again and as a result, we should conduct ourselves like it. We are intended to stand out from the crowd. We are walking, talking, advertisements for Christ and everywhere that we go we should represent Him accordingly. People should see something in us that they desire for themselves, and ultimately that desire should lead them to Christ. Our every day actions have the power to lead people toward salvation or assist them on their road to Hell and in the end, we will be held accountable for that.
The most important step that we can take to reach nonbelievers in our lives is to
Pray for them.
Rebellion against Christ is always the result of a hardened heart and as humans, that is something that we are powerless to change. We don’t have the ability to transform anyone else’s heart, but God does. Ezekiel 11:19 tells us that God has the power to take hearts of stone and replace them with hearts of flesh.
Because God has given us each freewill, salvation always has to be a choice. God will never force someone to follow Him, or believe in Him, but prayer, a transformed heart, and exposure to Christians who are setting a proper example, can create the perfect atmosphere for a person to give their lives to Christ.