Witnessing God’s Way

Bible Reading: Colossians 4:2-6

Colossians 4:5-6, “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”

C. T. Studd, “Some wish to live within the sound of Church or Chapel bell; I want to run a Rescue Shop within a yard of hell.”

One thing of note in our passage is the interrelationship between making the best use of our time and how important we make use of that time in our witnessing efforts.  We are to measure our walk (how we live) and talk (what we say) before those outside of the faith, in terms of the opportunity provided to us make Jesus known.  In view of the brevity of our lives here on earth, and the eternal destiny (heaven or hell) that awaits every soul, we must value every opportunity and seek to make the best use of it. 

In fact, there are lots of reasons for us to be motivated to witness well for Jesus.  It’s only natural that we’d want to pass on to others what we ourselves have experienced in being saved from our sins.  Paul spoke of the gospel as “the gospel of the glory of the blessed God” (1 Timothy 1:11).  To proclaim such a truth about God and His gracious work is an act of worship.  Jesus is coming soon.  Judgement awaits those without Christ (2 Thessalonians 1:8-9).  It is our duty and privilege to work to rescue the perishing. 

Of all the things that we can spend time on, giving attention to our witnessing efforts is a matter of preeminent importance.  That requires of us, of course, that we be in the Word (Colossians 3:16), and that we be devoted to prayer (Colossians 4:2).  But it is important to keep in mind that time spent in the word and prayer are not a goal unto themselves. The goal of each is to instruct and equip us that we might know Jesus better and make Him known. 

It is as Wayne Barber has said, “Making the most of the time means to redeem the time. To redeem the time means to purchase it. That is one thing that we all have in common. Every one of us has exactly the same amount of time. You’ve got 24 hours, and what you do with it is your business. You’ve got to make choices…Life is filled with one choice after another choice after another choice…Now to be the right choice, it has to be a choice that honors Christ and what His Word has to say. That is the way I purchase time. I have only got one time around, and I must learn to make proper choices. How many choices did you make yesterday?”

In 1878, a visiting preacher asked C. T. Studd, a well-known cricket player, if he was a Christian. When Studd knelt in prayer and thanked God for saving him, peace and joy flooded his soul.  Unfortunately, he did not share his faith with others, and for six years grew spiritually cold in his love for the world.  But then, Studd went to hear Dwight L. Moody speak. His love for Jesus was kindled afresh and immediately he began to tell others about Jesus.  He would later say that he had tasted of the pleasures of the world, but that nothing gave to him so much pleasure as bring his first soul to trust in Jesus.

Two years later, C. T. Studd sailed for China to join Hudson Taylor as a missionary. He dressed like a Chinese, ate Chinese food, and learned the Chinese language. While in China, he turned twenty-five. Under his father’s will, that is when he would inherit a large sum of money. Reading the Bible and praying, he felt convinced he should give his fortune away to show the world that he relied not on money but on a living God. The Lord, he was sure, would bless him a hundred-fold in non-monetary ways and provide him sufficient money to live on. “If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him,” he argued.

C. T. Studd served as a missionary in China and India and Africa.  He was zealous in his witnessing efforts until he died.  Some criticized him for being too zealous.  His response?  “How could I spend the best years of my life in living for the honors of this world, when thousands of souls are perishing every day?”

He once wrote a poem that has since been much read.  He lived his life according to its truths.  We do well to make to follow in his example:


Two little lines I heard one day,
Traveling along life’s busy way;
Bringing conviction to my heart,
And from my mind would not depart;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one,
Soon will its fleeting hours be done;
Then, in ‘that day’ my Lord to meet,
And stand before His Judgment seat;
Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, the still small voice,
Gently pleads for a better choice
Bidding me selfish aims to leave,
And to God’s holy will to cleave;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, a few brief years,
Each with its burdens, hopes, and fears;
Each with its clays I must fulfill,
living for self or in His will;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Author: looking2jesus13

Having served as pastor at Lewis and Clark Bible Church, in Astoria, Oregon, for almost three decades, my wife’s cancer diagnosis led to my retirement and subsequent move to Heppner to be near our two grandchildren. I divide my time between caring for Laura and working as a part time hospice chaplain and spending time with family and spoiling my chocolate lab.

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