GREAT NUMBERS OF WOMEN PREACHED THE WORD.
‘The Lord gives the command. The women who announce the good news are a large army’ (lit. translation paraphrased by Patricia)
The worker’s compassion
When talking to someone about Jesus, begin the conversation with the object lesson that presents itself at hand. If at the surf, talk about the wonder of the tides. If in the snow, bring to their attention the difference in every snowflake and the wonder of creation. Look at nature in a new light. Look at the natural visible creation for a parable to teach about the invisible. This is one of the most enjoyable ways of witnessing that I know.
So, you are keen to begin? Here are some tips.
Everyone is called to witness, it’s a sure sign of a grateful heart. However, I notice that very often that boldness in street evangelism is particularly associated with those newly saved. Having recently come out of the world, they can identify with the run of the mill populace. They readily display their ‘leprous scars’ to those they encounter. It is no great culture shock for them to return to the world, carrying precious seed.
Once they start to study, become ‘rooted and grounded’ in the love of God, they can ‘grow up into all things’. Once firmly established in Christ they will lead many souls to the Lord. They know what they have been delivered from. They carry a torch, often going into dark places where as the saying goes ‘angels fear to tread’. They have a burning desire in see others living in the darkness, as they once were, come into the glorious light (1 Tim 2:14; Jude 3).
The worker’s zeal
Certainly in my own experience, the new believers seem to be the ones who are zealous to share the good news. On the other hand, I have met many who have been Christians for years who long to win souls. They read every book and attend every seminar on evangelism, trying to catch the fire needed to GO! (Isa 40:1-3; Heb 13:13-14; 11 Chron. 29:11).
Those who came to faith when young often feel they lack something because they don’t have a startling testimony of a former sinful life. It’s all very well to have a startling testimony. However, bear in mind, effective evangelism is not based upon somebody’s testimony, but upon what took place 2000 years ago at the cross and the resurrection of Jesus. It is not even necessary to have a dynamic testimony of instant conversion.
My advice to those of you who fit the second category is to get alongside new converts; meet their friends, socialise with them, spend some leisure time with them. (Ex 4:12: Isa 60:1; 1 Cor 7:29-31).
Finally, it is those Christians who are experiencing the grace of God in their lives and pass on this testimony who will win others to Christ (Jer 1:7-8; 17-19; Isa 58:12).
Develop a desire to carry out the Great Commission by reading inspiring biographies, studying books such as this and by prayer. Pray to God. Cry out for a burden for those you are witnessing to. Get alongside someone who does it. It’s definitely catching. Preaching the good news is a command (1 Cor 15:58).
I went, but not because I heard a loud voice from heaven commanding me to go. In 1985 when I set off to go into the world to preach, I did it because the Word says ‘Go into all the world and preach’. I answered the Great Commission. I said “I will go Lord, send me” (Isa 6:8).
The evangelist is not necessarily one who is forever ready to give testimony of their experiences, however amazing they may be. Instead, develop the art of being a patient and compassionate listener. The one who chatters on regardless, always ready to tell his or her life story, with no interest to hear the life experiences of others, will not be as successful as the one who listens (1 Cor 13:3; Gal 6:9).
Learn how to clearly express yourself verbally. The ‘nit picker’, who must interrupt every sentence or explain every facet of the conversation to the ‘nth degree’, will fail to communicate the gospel effectively. Here are some examples of effective preaching 
The worker’s diligence
Practice sharing the Gospel wherever you go. When no one else is doing it, you do it. Be diligent, (Ecl 9:10; Gal 1:10; 1 Cor 9:17). Read every tract you come across. Doing so will help you to learn how different people share the Gospel. Write a tract with what you want to convey.
Do not be put off by the criticism of others who are not zealous for the gospel’s spread (Jn 9:4). Develop your own style and technique. Ask God for discernment in the different situations you encounter. Be prepared with a word in season for those you meet who are weary (2 Cor 8:23). Pray God to give you a like-minded partner to work with you (Rom 12:11). Collect a selection of comprehensive tracts (Matt 5:13-16)
Develop yourself in all areas, seeing it as a ministry and a call: God will make a way (Col 4:17; Jn 6:27; Acts 26:16). Abraham Lincoln said, “I will prepare myself and my time will come”. Study the Bible for insight and wisdom (Prov 11:30; Dan 12:3; Eph 5:15; 6:14-20). You must be a wise person in order to win souls. It cannot be done haphazardly (Col 4:5). Remember, some that think they have it, do not, and others who have barely dreamed they have it, do! So, if you are not sure but have the desire, go to it and God will confirm with signs following.
The God we serve is a just God, a God of equal balances and weights, and Wisdom is justified of her children! The field is the world, the good seed is you and me scattered throughout the whole world, witnesses of God’s majesty. Planted like trees of righteousness, ready to bring forth fruit in its season. Whatever we do shall prosper, if we heed God’s Word.
Women are in a good place to be witnesses to the women they meet in many places that mainly women frequent. This might be school, shopping centres, coffee-mornings, etc. However, sometimes women retire from leading any kind of a public life. Women in the church have been so pushed down and squeezed into moulds of man’s making that they are afraid to show any signs of courage, force, strength of mind virtue (Heb ‘chayil’). Let’s take heart from the examples in the Old Testament.
Be like Deborah, the judge of Israel, who called Israel to war. She was tired of the social injustices against women and children. It says that the streets and the highways and villages were unsafe to walk through, until she decided to take some action; ‘I, Deborah arose, a mother in Israel’ (Jdg 4 & 5).
Jael’s family were blacksmiths. She had plenty of practice using the tent-hammer! Her husband was a friend of Sisera, the ungodly marauder (who represents the world). However, Jael was on the side of good. A friend of Israel, she defeated the enemy in her own house, by her own ingenuity (Jdg 4:21-22).
Abigail was married to Nabal a drunken, inconsiderate fool. Nevertheless, she took the situation into her own hands. She staved off a war that would have wiped out her and her household, not to mention the life of David, the future King of Israel. Nabal died and she became David’s wife. (1 Sam 25).
Sarah was tired of Abraham’s nonsense and demanded that her household be brought back to a monogamous relationship, placing the blame squarely on the shoulders of Abraham. She cried out in the Spirit, ‘The Lord judge between thee and me’. God told Abraham, ‘obey your wife’ (Gen 11 – 25).
Five daughters of Zelophehad
The five daughters of Zelophehad did not accept the status quo with unjust decisions that excluded them from inheriting land. They demanded their rights, Moses sought God for direction, and they won! God told Moses that they were correct, that women could inherit the land (Num 26: 3; 27:1; 36:11; Josh 17:3).
A young Moabite woman, Ruth, is called a ‘virtuous woman’. In simple English this means she was courageous. Because of God’s graciousness. She was a Moabite yet through marriage was brought straight into the covenant relationship God had with Israel. Moabite men were not to enter the sanctuary for ten generations (see Deut 23.3). But ‘entered the sanctuary of the Lord’ and indeed is counted in the genealogy of Christ as the wife of Boaz. The seed of the woman was not restricted to race. She was not an Israelite by birth. Note here the original covenant God made concerning the Seed of the woman was with Eve. There were no restrictions placed upon women by God then, nor has there ever been.
Ruth might have chosen the traditional road, to return home to Moab to live a fruitless life in widows’ rags. However, she knew there was an inheritance that was rightfully hers and she purposed in her heart, together with Naomi, her mother-in-law, to gain it. Naomi applied pressure to the situation. By sending Ruth to the threshing floor, she demanded that Boaz fulfil the law and act as her kinsman-redeemer; that she might take back all that was belonging to her from her dead husband (Ruth 3:11).
Huldah the Prophet
Look at the virtue, the courage, force, and strength of mind of Huldah, the Prophet. Huldah interpreted the law to the High Priest, the Prophets and the King. Her teaching started a mighty revival (11 Kings 22:14; 11 Chr 34:22).
Sherah who built fortified cities
Sherah would not accept the defeat of mind displayed by her parents. Their sons, her brothers, had been killed, Philistine cattle rustlers slaughtered them. Sherah arose and built three great cities in Israel. Solomon later fortified these cities. High in the highlands where the enemy could be held back, she left her imprint on one city she named after herself ‘Uzzen Sherah’, for her posterity, and presumably, to live in and govern and rule in her virtue (1Chr 7:24).
Lydia: the first church in Europe
The New Testament also has something to say about women of boldness, courage, and substance. Lydia was found beside a running stream when Paul arrived in Phillipi. Scholars agree this was most likely the site of a synagogue. There is ample proof that women were mothers, elders, and leaders of Jewish synagogues in this era. A businessperson of great wealth, Lydia planted the first church in Europe. Perhaps God is calling you to do the same in your suburb or district. Never underestimate God.
The woman at the well planted the seeds for the first church in Samaria (Jn 4). Perhaps it was she who opened her house to Phillip and others when they came down later to minister. Why not?
Anna the Prophet
Anna, was the daughter of Phanuel. Some say this means ‘Peniel’, because Anna, like Jacob, wrestled with God and prevailed. Anna was of the tribe of Asher. When Jesus was brought to the temple for circumcision, Anna, at 84 years of age, became the first herald of the good news. She praised God and went out to ‘speak about the child to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem’ She was the first to announce to them the arrival of their Messiah (Lk 2:38).
Women at ease
Why am I telling you this? To exhort women as well as men to arise and fulfil the call of God on your life, to become what God wants you to be!
Time does not permit, nor is it the chief goal of this lesson to teach on women in ministry, except to say half, nay, near three-quarters of the church is muzzled. Woman you an evangelist? Then take heed, stir up your gifts, and use them.
No husband or church leader will answer for you on that day when you stand before the Lord, the governmental head of the church and your spiritual head, the One who will separate the sheep from the goats.
You must give an account for the gifts that the Spirit bequeathed to you and show how you have used them. ‘The host that publish the Word is a great company of women’ (literal translation: Ps 78).
The worker’s responsibility
The worker has a responsibility to speak. The Holy Spirit has work to do through us. The Spirit goes before us, preparing the way to carry out work that we are unable to perform without the Spirit. Understanding the power (ability) of the gospel inspires us to share with people the good news about Jesus and what he has accomplished on our behalf.
There are so many examples we can give when some opportunity presents for us to share from the mundane things of life. We are assured, as we walk in the light, as we stay filled with the Spirit, we will see the results we desire of God. So, use every opportunity, know that the Holy Spirit is with you, and bear witness to the truth of the Gospel of God’s grace.
For he was a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith: and much people was added unto the Lord (Acts 11:24).
The silent witness
Is there any such thing as a silent witness? For example, is your idea of aggressive evangelism, dial-a-prayer? Or, is it a bumper sticker on your car? Do you think that just by you driving to church on Sunday morning will win the neighbours to Jesus?
The worker’s emotions
When you are witnessing, there is always a great flow between the mind and the emotions. This is a passionate witness for the Lord. When we are excited about something, then our emotions are involved. What we think is often expressed by how we feel. Another words, our spirit is frequently expressed through our emotions. If we do not mix our feelings with our spoken words then we will not have a great impact on the hearer. This is what makes for great preaching.
Jesus was feeling passionate about his message and the lost state his nation was in when he drove out the money-lenders out of the temple (Jn 2:13-16). Jesus, on the great festival day, made a passionate plea to the listeners. He stood up and cried out, saying, “If any one thirst, let them come to me and drink”. Such a heartfelt address would have the effect of motivating the hearer. The result of this was division! So there was a division among the people because of Him. Jn 7:40
She that believeth on me as the word says, out of her belly shall flow rivers of living water! (Jn 7:38).
The worker and opposition
When you become so passionate about the people around you, that you stop bowing to the fear of what people might think about you, you enter into a new freedom. You become free to effectively witness and preach. Start yielding to your convictions, and you will encounter the same success (and opposition) as Jesus did.
With this opposition in mind, I am writing here especially for those radical passionate loud mouths in the body of Christ, who everyone keeps telling to be quiet. You know who I mean. Those dear folks who actually think God is saying, “Go and tell everyone unless I specifically tell you not to.” They are so passionate about what they believe they just tell everyone! This is a word of encouragement for all you loving fanatics.
Please remember that you can laugh, you can cry, you can radiate joy. Your emotions can be spontaneous, but still controlled by God’s Spirit. The going forth of the word coupled with the corresponding emotions will assist the Holy Spirit to work in people. Our spirit is released through the spoken word. If we remain silent, how can our spirits be released? How can people be saved?
When you live a life dedicated to being a loving witness for Christ, all of your living will then also act as a witness to your faith. This may cause you to experience opposition from some people. Persecution comes from the most amazing quarters and often when you least expect it. People who say they are walking in the light but are actually living in the flesh will come out of their corner fighting.
The gospel and revelation
It says of Jesus that ‘he went about doing good’. Jesus’ words and actions brought opposition. For example, the thoughts, and intents of the Pharisees’ hearts were revealed by their words and action as they opposed him. As their minds closed off to truth, they found themselves in opposition to God and God’s Anointed One. When this happened, their understanding was closed.
It is possible for people to completely shut out revelation coming to them from the Holy Spirit as you share what the Word says in everyday language. This is a precarious place for them to be in. They cannot receive from the Spirit of God. Those refusing to accept the light attempt to find fault with the truth, and the light of God is closed to them.
This state is different to people who are ignorant, or who, for some reason or other, have turned off because of disillusionment, say, with the church. When you encounter people who have hardened their minds to what they know to be true, do not argue with them.
Many times, I see zealous people, young in the faith, sharing their faith in the street, and my heart is glad. However, on occasions, I see people doing personal evangelism arguing with people they are talking to about the Lord. It is better to be quiet than to argue, trying to prove a point. Debate and discussion are one thing but when the witnesser begins to argue with others it is quite another.
If people have shut themselves off from God’s revelation, be assured your argumentative spirit will not break through. You must leave off from trying to convince them and pray only as you walk the walk before them. Only God in His mercy can find a way.
The worker’s motivation
There are two kinds of wisdom spoken of in the Word of God: worldly wisdom and divine wisdom. When Paul visited the Corinthian Church, he mentioned them both.
For Christ sent me to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ be made of non-effect. (1 Cor 1:17).
We first encounter worldly wisdom ‘a thing to be desired’, by Eve, in the early chapters of Genesis. Scripture tells us there is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the Lord. Worldly wisdom is misleading, ending in death (Prov 21:30).
There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. (Prov 16:25). It is folly and increases sorrow. (Eccl 1:18).
The wisdom that comes from the Lord is easily recognisable. Scripture says,
But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. (Jas 3:17).
The wisdom that comes from God is pure. It is not mixed with the religious teachings, the pagan religions, or occult or anything the New Age offers. Next, it is peaceable. Arguments play no part and nullify the righteousness of God found in Christ. Gentleness is a beautiful attribute in any Christian worker. Gentle people are easily entreated and full of mercy and good fruits. All workers for the Lord must at all times examine their motives when preaching to ensure their words bring life to the hearer.
The worker’s patience of faith
To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life (Rom 2:7).
Be patient toward all. (1 Thess 5:14).
Gentle, able to teach, patient. (2 Thess 2:24).
Having heard the word, keep it and bring forth fruits with patience. (Lk 8:15).
Patience of faith in personal evangelism equates as friendship. Make friends with folk. Show interest in what they are interested in. Become a good listener. Allow their need to surface because until it does, you are not going to win that one to Christ. People cannot be saved until they know they have a need. Get involved in peoples’ lives.
Invite them for a meal; go to their home for a coffee and supper. Genuinely admire and love their children, their home, and their achievements. Praise them and be genuine about it. Cultivate their friendship Win them to Christ, not drive them away. No one is going to share secrets with a stranger. They have to feel they can trust that you are the genuine article. Therefore, be genuine, not a false worker, pretending friendship, defrauding them, that is the way of the cults.
The worker’s preparation
Preparation is a lifetime commitment. What we do with the time God gives us every day begins to tell as we go on in our Christian experience. Let me explain further. You may be just a few years old in the Lord and have not really settled down to daily study and prayer. You may be zealous of good works and running around feverishly, ‘serving’ Jesus and the local church, but your personal life lacks lustre. Time will tell.
The race is not to the swift. (Ecc 9:11).
This life with Christ is not some one-hundred-yard dash and the fast talkers and energetic, charismatic types are the ones who have ‘got it’. No! We must practise as if we were preparing to be long distance runners. We need to daily stop for our intake of living water, our communion with God in the Word, saturated in God’s Life Giving presence.
This is not dependent on how fast you can run. It is entirely dependent on the indwelling Christ. Jesus warns “without me you can do nothing”. So stop! Take stock of your life. Are you preparing yourself for the years of service ahead, or are you the ones Paul speaks of who are destined to be castaways?
They made me the keeper of the vineyards; but mine own vineyard have I not kept. (Song 1:6c).
The worker’s opportunity
Opportunity is around us all the time, but we so often miss it because we have not prepared. To be truly effective in this work of God we must prepare. It is not just attending Bible College or listening to CD/DVDs. We must commit ourselves to study for the rest of our lives if we are to be effective, and it starts today. Begin to discipline your lifestyle. Give quality time to the Word and determine in your heart to be the best you can be for God. Finally, people want to come and pick fruit from you. Study to show yourself approved unto God, a worker that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
And they shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth their fruit in his season; their leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever they doeth shall prosper. The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff, which the wind drives away. ( Ps 1:3-4).
The worker’s joy
Here is the secret of a spirit filled joyous heart. Jesus said these words:
For whosoever hath, to them shall be given, and she shall have more abundance; but whosoever hath not, from her shall be taken away even that she hath (Mt 13:12).
Acting on truth will multiply that truth in your life. The slogan is, ’use it or you’ll lose it’. Wherever joy is mentioned in the New Testament is in relation to obeying the Word of God.
The seventy returned with joy after obeying Jesus commandment to go, preach, and teach. (Lk 10:17).
Jesus said, “keep my commandments and you will be full of joy!” (Lk 15:10-11).
There was great joy in Samaria because Philip obeyed the Holy Spirit and people were being saved and healed (Acts 8:8).
The disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit (Acts 13:52).
In other words, when we give, it produces joy. If we are just receiving all the good teachings God has sent, and not giving it out, then dear friends, we are deluding ourselves. We are not retaining it or growing. In order to fulfil the dominion charter, given to the first man and woman, which says, ‘be fruitful, multiply, and replenish the whole earth’. To be a blessing, give where you are able to give rather than receive.
The worker’s’ faith in action
And the little maid said unto her mistress, Would God my Lord were with the prophet that is in Samaria! for he would recover him of his leprosy (2 Kings 5:3).
Here, in this verse, we see the witnesses’ poise. The little maid had confidence in herself, she trusted in God. She reveals an assurance in God’s power and in God’s Prophet, Elisha, who typifies Jesus, healer and Saviour. She is forward and bold in speech.
Her boldness and faith are directly linked to her love and empathy for this couple. By this she is enabled to identify with the needs in this family. Perhaps her mistress broke down and wept one day in her presence. This will only happen when mutual trust is built up. People will only share their innermost thoughts and feelings when they trust you, and you have been willing to share your own needs with them.
Her statement reveals she is full of faith in God. That which he has promised, he is able to perform. Snatched from her family and friends at a very young age, the little maid is living in a strange culture and household.
She is like Daniel and the young men with him in the palace of Babylon. She determined to live the life before her captors. She knows her God. Daniel 11:32, 33 says but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.’ ‘And they that understand among the people shall instruct many.
The eyes of her understanding had been enlightened. Like Queen Esther, the little maid knew the hope of her calling. Esther had counted the cost. She said, ‘and if I perish, I perish’. And ‘who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?’ (Est 4: 14-16).
The little maid‘s actions act as a good example of friendship evangelism. She has put her whole trust and confidence in the God of Israel. Likely, in the time she had been there, she had built up a reputation of honesty and dependability, for his glory. Then, when she spoke these words she was believed.
The Worker’s Privilege -Turning water into wine, seeing the invisible.
Witnessing is done in obedience to the direction of the Holy Spirit. The way to introduce the Lord into your conversation and begin teaching the people about spiritual things is best done through everyday conversations and events. The bible teaches that there is a visible and an invisible world (Romans 1:18-21) that the unseen reality is made plain by the material visible realm. The things we see, feel, touch, taste, and smell are a ‘type’, or, a manifestation of the spiritual truths they convey. Can you see it? God created this world and everything in it to teach us the spiritual or the unseen reality behind the visible.
Evangelists intent on sharing the gospel, have to find ways to turn water (the natural) into wine (the spiritual). Turning water into wine, was Jesus’ first miracle, at the wedding in Cana. This example provided the foundation for the three and a half years of His ministry here on earth. Jesus explains this same approach to Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. “How can I teach you spiritual (heavenly) things when you can’t even receive and comprehend and understand earthly things.” (John 3).
From the moment Jesus stood up in the synagogue, ten days after the Rosh Hashanah feast, (his purported birth date according to the Messianic Jews). He read from the book of Isaiah the prophet, (Ch 61:1).
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised; to preach the acceptable year of the Lord (Lk 4:18-19).
Why did Jesus choose that particular day to read these words? Because, on that same day, every three and a half years, those words were read again in the synagogue. The Torah and other related Scriptures were read every Sabbath in the synagogue, and it took three and a half years to complete the cycle. (It is now read in one year). From that time on, Jesus began to manifest, through his life, actions and words, the full and total physical manifestation, the embodiment of the Logos, the written Word of God.
That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life. (1 Jn 1.1).
Jesus the Logos, fulfilled every text read out on the Sabbath throughout the week, even the jot and tittle was fulfilled. From this time forth, He turned the water into new wine.
For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and show unto you that eternal life, which was with the father, and was manifested unto us (1 Jn 1:2).
And the life, the eternal zoe, the written text that we hold in our hands, (and gathers dust on some bookshelves of so called believers), was manifested before their eyes.
They heard the word read aloud on the Sabbath, and actually saw the Word in action through the daily life Jesus’ lived through the week. His teachings (doctrine) astonished the Jewish leaders. He was followed by the multitudes. If you had lived in that day wouldn’t you run to the synagogue to hear the reading on the Sabbath, then follow Jesus to see the Word take on flesh and blood, as ‘the Word became flesh’, to those present throughout the week?
2 Corinthians 3:16-18 The Message (MSG)
16-18 Whenever, though, they turn to face God as Moses did, God removes the veil and there they are—face-to-face! They suddenly recognize that God is a living, personal presence, not a piece of chiseled stone. And when God is personally present, a living Spirit, that old, constricting legislation is recognized as obsolete. We’re free of it! All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of God’s face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him.
 2 Chr 15:1-15, Jn 3, Acts 2:14-41, Acts 8:5-12 + 27-38, Acts 9:20 + 13:16-43; Ps 96: 2,3,10.
 Request: ‘Pattern for Evangelism’. Rwvm.online