Andrew Fountain - The Gospel 4: How to Give your Testimony
- On two occasions Luke records Paul giving his testimony.
- (he probably gave it 100’s of times, but we have just these two representative examples)
- There are actually a third account of Paul’s salvation in Acts, because as well as Paul telling the story in Acts 21 & 26, there is the actual account back in Acts 9
- I put all three of them in parallel: gpia-paul-testimony-3col.html
- But we are going to focus on two of them: just the two occasions that Paul re-told his story to unbelievers
Opportunity to Speak
- Describe background...
- Paul had a golden opportunity at both of these times to tell them a regular Gospel message about their sin, their need for forgiveness, the death of Jesus as means to forgive us our sin etc...
- But instead... he tells his testimony!
Birth and Upbringing
- Notice how careful he is to identify with the listeners
- he picks out anything that can be a point of contact so they can see themselves in his position
- If I have a story that you cannot possible relate to, it won’t make so much impact on you
- If I say “I was a cannibal and used to eat people”, most of you won’t say, “Hey, I can identify with that!”
- Agrippa might not understand it so well, so Paul explains
The Kind of person Paul was before he met Jesus
- Jews: I was just like you (they knew). I was even more zealous than you. I did it by the book!
- Agrippa: Explained in more detail just what a horrible person he was
Events leading up to meeting Jesus
- The tension rises as he approaches the climax of the story
Encounter with Jesus
- The key events are very similar, but he expands a bit more in Jerusalem
- However, when talking to the Jews he totally leaves out of the story the reference to the Gentiles because that will shut them down and they will stop listening to him
- As we will see, he leaves that till later...
Immediately after Meeting Jesus
- When speaking to the Jews he spends a lot more time telling them about Ananias
- He makes the point that this is another good Jew
- Someone they would respect
Jesus Sets a New Direction for Paul’s Life
- He had put this bit in earlier for Agrippa
- Paul is now a changed man!
- Not killing, but giving his own life to bring the message of peace and hope!
Paul Begins a New Life of Following Jesus
- Now I follow Jesus!
- But he doesn’t hold back from mentioning the Gentiles
- He could have... (see thesis)
Reaction from Listeners
- He planted seeds!
- Share your stories!
Updated on 2009-09-28 (r.76) by Andrew Fountain