Every Christian has what we call “a testimony.”
A testimony is an account of how a person became a Christian. Testimonies can include dramatic events that tell of obvious changes in a person’s behavior after coming to faith in Christ. Or they can tell of quiet conversions of a person who moved from unbelief to belief without much notice from others. Some people are young when they enter life with Christ. They come to believe what they have been taught by their parents and in church. Others are older, and their road includes twists and turns, periods of questioning and consideration before they are converted.
The varying testimonies we hear from Christians lead us to believe that people come to Christ differently. That’s true, but only in the times and circumstances. In reality, all who come to faith in Christ do so the same way. God uses what we call evangelism.
Romans 10:14-17 shows us how a person becomes a Christian. Of course, the Bible tells us more than what we read in this passage. Other passages speak of God choosing us from before the foundation of the world, of the Holy Spirit causing us to be reborn, and of being granted the gift of repentance that leads to life.
But this passage tells us how a person becomes a Christian in the evangelistic sense; how we come to hear about Christ so that we can believe in him.
We can see in this series of four questions the way God gets the message of Christ to people. We learn here how evangelism works.
How will people call upon Christ if they don’t believe in him? They won’t. Faith in the heart produces the call upon Christ to be saved.
How will people believe in Christ if they don’t hear about him? They won’t. They have to hear the good news that Christ saves sinners.
How will they hear this news unless someone tells them, or they read about it in a book or a Bible? They won’t. Preaching, books, Bibles, conversations, and communication in some form is necessary for people to hear the gospel. It must be made known.
How will the gospel be made known to people unless God sends others with the word of Christ to share it? It won’t. But God does.
God sends out his word through people, Bibles, books, blogs, and numerous other means of communication. The gospel is proclaimed. People hear the good news. The good news is used by the Holy Spirit to open the heart to believe. The person of faith calls upon the Lord to be saved.
This is how it happens.
The details of each Christian’s testimony are unique. But the similar way of evangelism, which is getting the good news to people so they can believe, runs through each story of the redeemed.
This is how it happens still.
This Sunday we will consider Romans 10 and God’s way of evangelism. This weekend, read this passage and pray. Pray with me for the glory of God to be seen as grace extends to more and more people, leading to a great ingathering of people to the kingdom as they call upon his name to be saved.