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January 30, 2017

4

The 30 Second Elevator Witness

by Dave Malnes

Alone in an elevator, another person steps in and presses a button for the 12th floor. An angel of the Lord taps you on the shoulder and whispers that you have thirty seconds to proclaim the gospel before they step out.

What would you say?

Writers tell us that we only have two or three sentences before a reader will determine to read your article or not.

Companies only receive thirty seconds to sell their product or services on television.

Marketing professionals, development officers, and start-up entrepreneurs are encouraged to have a thirty second “elevator speech.” When meeting people, there is only a short window of opportunity to pitch your product or service before people either start to lose interest or desire to learn more.

We live in a time where technology dominates our culture and convenience permeates our decision-making. Christians with a desire to proclaim the gospel may only be provided with a small window of opportunity.

Perhaps Christians ought to consider preparing themselves with an elevator witness to tell others what Christ has already done for us.

Only thirty seconds… since most people would rather not be bothered by religion.

Only thirty seconds… since most people don’t have the time or the attention span.

Only thirty seconds… since most people who are comfortable with their life and are fooled that they are right with God.

What would you say when the Lord provides a divine appointment to proclaim a message of salvation to a lost soul?

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Jesus provides an interesting example of how he trained his disciples to provide an elevator witness.

When he sent them out to go door-to-door proclaiming the gospel in Galilee, Jesus only gave them six words to say.

“The kingdom of God is near.”  (Matthew 10:7)

That’s it.

We are not given anything more.

The rest of the chapter, Jesus gives them instructions, warnings, and promises. The bottom line: Evangelism is not easy. Be prepared for rejection, and remember the power is in God’s Word and not in ourselves.

We could safely assume that the disciples furthered the conversation with those who expressed interest or their curiosity was piqued. But I find it interesting that Jesus grasped the importance of a very effective marketing concept… messaging is important. And you can do that in very few words.

In only six words, Jesus provided a very clear message to a targeted audience who fully understood its meaning.

The Messiah has come. He is here right now in our midst. Receive his message.

I think Christians can apply this in today’s world.

Proclaiming the gospel does not necessarily mean providing a long discourse, nor does it have to include a series of memorized Bible verses. Evangelism does not mean that you must be prepared and ready to defend Christianity and have arguments and counter-arguments to meet every objection.

The gospel is a simple declaration of Good News. The kingdom of heaven is near.

To proclaim the gospel does not mean to convince a person to believe, but to invite to believe.

To share a gospel message with a lost soul does not mean to persuade a person to believe, but to deliver a message.

Christians come with a God-given authority and a commission to provide a message from THE Authority. It’s a message from the King who lived, died, and rose again for all people.

The Lord works through his Words no matter how few of them are used. The intent is not to stand up to the plate and hit a home run, but simply to stand up to the plate. God provides the rest.

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If you were given thirty-seconds to proclaim the gospel to a lost soul, what would you say?

How can we express God’s motivation, desire, and action on our behalf in a way that is sincere, real, and conveys his truth?

How about this as an example:

“I know this may seem weird or awkward, but God knows you and wants you to know that He loves you very much. He wants you to know that you can receive joy and perfect peace through the assurance and confidence that you are fully forgiven of all your sins right now, because of what Christ has already done for you. Believe. Jesus has done it all.”

 

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4 Comments Post a comment
  1. Jan 30 2017

    WOW, Dave! You always set me to thinking with your posts. I will be thinking about this one for a long time and praying that God will help me come up with an “elevator witness”. That is quite a challenge and a test of faith to actually try that and trust that God will give me the words and open the heart of the one to who I speak.

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    • Jan 30 2017

      Thank you Norma. Let me know what you come up with. Then try it the next time you go shopping. The Lord will provide a unique opportunity for you. Thanks for the comment.

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  2. Jan 30 2017

    Reblogged this on Mission for God and commented:
    Evangelism can be easier than you think
    “If you were given thirty-seconds to proclaim the gospel to a lost soul, what would you say?”
    “To proclaim the gospel does not mean to convince a person to believe, but to invite to believe.

    To share a gospel message with a lost soul does not mean to persuade a person to believe, but to deliver a message.”

    Like

    Reply

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  1. Why a Christian can never mess up when proclaiming the gospel | WITNESS WELL

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