How to help a new believer
- 2001 15 Oct
What to do when someone receives Christ:
- Ask them some questions.
- How many sins has Christ paid for? It is clear that Christ died for all of us and all our sins. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2).
- How many of your sins does Christ remember? You may want to remind the new believer that Hebrews 10:17 says, Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.
- Where does Christ live? Galatians 2:20 says, I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. This is an important concept the new believer needs to understand.
- Ask to pray with them. It's important to teach the new believer how to talk with God. Just say, Heavenly Father, then have the new believer tell God what's on his or her heart. When you're done say, I ask all this in Jesus' name. These prayers can last 10 seconds to 10 minutes. The length doesn't matter. What matters is that the process of prayer has begun.
- Ask who has been praying for them. Usually they know that someone has been concerned about their spiritual life for some time. Suggest calling that person right then and share the good news. This reinforces their decision for Christ. If you confess with your mouth, Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God is raised Him from the dead, you will be saved (Rom. 10:9).
- Offer to take them to church. It is important for the new believer to become a part of a church fellowship. Pick up your friend for church the next Sunday. This will help remove his or her fear of the unknown. Introduce your friend to the pastor and others in the congregation. If the new believer lives far away or can't attend your church, ask if he or she has a church home in mind. If not, you may have to do some research - but with a few phone calls you can find a church in his area that matches his/her preferences. Call the pastor and give him your friend's name and number.
- Read the Gospel of John. Give your friend an assignment of reading John. Tell them, I promise that when you read the Gospel of John tonight, it will seem different to you.
- Call the next day to discuss the book. Tell them that the book didn't change, but it had new meaning for them because they are a new creature.
- Why bother with all this? A new believer is much like a baby. He/she needs a lot of care and feeding. His/her growth to adulthood will come from time spent in prayer, reading God's Word, fellowship, worship, and service. You have a responsibility to provide everything the new believer needs in order to grow.
From Share Jesus Without Fear by William Fay and Linda Evans Shepherd, copyright (c) 1999. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman Publishers, Nashville, Tenn., 1-800-233-1123.
William Fay was the president and CEO of a multimillion-dollar corporation. Prior to his conversion, he had ties to the Mafia and owned one of the largest brothels in the United States. In 1981 he committed himself fully to Christ. He left his former lifestyle, graduated from Denver Seminary, and took up the mantle of an evangelist. His booklet How to Share Your Faith Without an Argument has 3.5 million copies in print. He and his family live in Englewood, Colo.Linda Evans Shepherd is an award-winning author and a popular speaker for women's retreats around the country. She was named 1997-98 Colorado Christian Author of the Year. She lives in Longmont, Colo. with her husband and two children.