There are a number of responsibilities associated with being a Christian. Here we want to note the importance of teaching others.

When one becomes a Christian, he is grateful for the change in his life and all the blessings he enjoys in Christ. Being of this attitude would naturally cause him to want to share it with others by telling them about it. And this is in agreement with what is expected of us in God’s word. For instance, Paul told the Romans, "I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ...", (Romans 1:16). His was implying that we should not be ashamed either. Jesus taught the importance of this attitude in a number of passages. During the sermon on the mount, Jesus taught of being a proper example, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven." (Matthew 5:16). Our proper example is one way that we can teach others about God and our salvation. Later on Jesus taught, "Therefore, whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven." (Matthew 10:32-33). To confess Jesus before men means to acknowledge Him wherever we are and whenever we have opportunity to do so. On another occasion Jesus taught His disciple saying, "By this My father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples." (John 15:8). A part of bearing fruit is producing more of what you are, Christians. A further study of the New Testament reveals various examples of both those who were not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, and others who were. In these you can see the importance of teaching others.

In addition to our grateful attitude, we see numerous examples in the scriptures of the gospel being spread by Christians taking the opportunity to teach others. In fact, you will find that the only way the gospel spread in the first century was by Christians teaching others. Even on occasions where we see the Holy Spirit involved, the actual teaching of the gospel was done by men. For instance, in Acts 2, on the day of Pentecost, we read of the Holy Spirit falling upon the Apostles and they speak in tongues (2:1-4). But even with this, the gospel was presented in plain language by Peter and the other apostles. Note verse 14, where we read, "Then Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, ‘Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words...". Then Peter preaches to them. In Acts 10, where we read of the Conversion of Cornelius, we note that he has a vision to send for Peter (vs.3-4). Peter then comes to preach to him and his household.

Other examples in scripture include Acts 5:42 where we read, "And daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ." Acts 8 gives one example. Recording events leading to the spreading of the gospel beyond Jerusalem and Judea, verse 4 says, "Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word." Note this passage does not refer only to the leaders, but all who were scattered. Paul said in Acts 20:20 to the Elders of Ephesus, "how I kept back nothing helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and form house to house." These are but a few of the examples we find in the New Testament that show the need for us to teach others.

Then there are other passages such as 2 Timothy 2:2 where Paul tells Timothy, "And the things that you have heard form me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also." Note how the gospel is passed from one group to the next. You have here four "generations": Paul, Timothy, other faithful men, and others also. The Hebrew writer rebuked those to whom he wrote saying, "For by this time you ought to be teachers..." (Hebrews 5:12). Please note, he is note speaking merely to preachers, but all mature Christians. Colossians 4:6 says, "Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one." 1 Peter 3:15 says, "But sanctify the lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear;" This is yet another passage that involves the Christian defending his faith by telling others about it.

So we can clearly see that a part of the Christians life involves sharing the gospel with others. But how do are we to teach others? We have already mentioned the importance of being a proper example. This will do more than any program you might set up. But in addition to this, we should pray to God for help in finding lost souls that we interact with on a daily basis and look for opportunities to teach them. If for some reason you are not ready, you can at least make arrangements for someone who is to teach your friends. And you can go with experienced Christians and learn from them. What ever the case, just remember, if you truly appreciate what you have you will want to share it with others also.





Copyright 2003 [Rose Avenue Church of Christ]. All rights reserved