The Mind of Christ
Boldness: Speaking Truth When Everyone Else is Speaking Lies
(Copyright 1997, Evangel Tabernacle Assembly of God, Fresno, California)

My father was a bold Christian, yet few people who knew him casually would have seen
him as such.  He was a quiet, reserved man.  In fact, he was quite shy.  On the job, he
didn't hang out with the guys.  Nevertheless, everyone who knew him knew he was a
Christian.  Men at work would come to him with their problems to talk. When they did,
he would listen and say something like, "I can't help your problems, but God can" and in
a few seconds tell them about the Lord and promise to pray.

 "If you have been working at a place for any period of time and they don't know
you're a Christian," he would tell me, "Then there's something wrong."

 Many of us think that boldness is equated with loudness or pushiness.   We see it
as a swaggering attitude and a loud mouth.  But is that what the scripture speaks of when
it talks of boldness.  Again, a look at the life of Christ can give us some insight here.
Jesus was never pushy or offensive.  Nevertheless, he never backed down from the truth.
He spoke the truth in love and with authority.  He wasn't fearful of telling the truth.  He
never judged the value of truth by it's popularity.

 What about us?  Do we equivocate around our unsaved friends?  Do we remain
silent when lies are spoken?  Are we consistent?  Do we speak the truth with boldness on
Sunday and then compromise in word and deed on Monday?  Are we more interested in
pleasing our friends or in pleasing God?

 These are serious questions indeed.  Being bold means being unashamed of the
gospel in whatever setting we are found.  Here are some characteristics of boldness:

1. Readiness to Share Jesus with Others.  You don't have to be an evangelist to say to say
like my Dad, "I can't help you , but God can." Then share the plan of salvation.  And
remember, it is not your responsibility to "close the sale."  It is your responsibility, when
you have the opportunity, to share Christ and your own testimony.

2. Living Your Christianity Openly.  Many of us have heard the story of the person who
testified in church one Sunday that he had been on the job a full week and "praise God"
no one had found out he was a Christian.  Everyone who knows you should know about
your Christianity.

3. Acting Morally when Others are Acting Immorally.  I've worked in advertising which
is a really competitive business environment.  Many times I've had to tell my bosses or
coworkers, "No, I will not do that. It's dishonest."  It has meant lost income at times.  One
time I even lost a job because I wouldn't come to the company parties which were
nothing less than excuses to get together and get drunk.  In your world do you have
friends, coworkers, family members who would have you engage in unethical, immoral
or sinful acts.  Being bold means saying "No."  One other thing my father told me, "You
never have to explain or apologize for saying no to something that is wrong. Just say No
and mean it."  And this was many years before "Just say No" became popular.

Boldness is not easy.  I don't think it was easy for Jesus.  But in the long run it will pay
off.  Because the Bible says if we confess Him before men "I will confess also [him]
before my father in heaven." Matthew 10.32.  Of course, if we don't confess him before
men...Well, you know the rest of that verse.

Study Questions

Matthew 28. 18-20
A. Who has all power in heaven and in earth?  Why should knowing this give us
B.What are we to do with this power?

Acts 19.8
A. What did Paul do for three months?  Where did he do this?
B. Do you think it was easy for Paul to go to the Synagogues and preach Jesus?  Where is
it difficult for you to witness.

Acts 4.13
A. What did the people see in Peter and John?
B. Where do you think this boldness came from?
C. What was the result of this boldness?

Ephesians 6.20
A. What does Paul call himself here?  What does he say is a result of this?
B. How can difficulties such as Paul faced increase our boldness?  Have you ever faced
persecutions which made you more determined than ever to live for Christ?  Tell about it.

Ephesians 4.14-16
A. How are we to speak the truth?
B. What can we do to insure that we speak the truth in love?  How do we do that?

Romans 1.16
A. What do you think it means to be "ashamed of the Gospel"?
B. Why do we not have to be ashamed of the Gospel?

Daniel 3.16-18
A. What is it that the Hebrew Children said they were "not careful" about?
B. What should we be bold about in our lives.

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