Please read When Loved Ones Aren't Saved as an introduction to this Bible study.
When we've experienced the forgiveness and salvation of our Lord, it's hard to know that some of our friends and family are not saved.
What can we do?
1. Believe what Scripture says about salvation.
It's important that we never forget that Jesus is the only way of salvation and no one who rejects him will be saved.
See Are there Many Ways to Heaven? and A Simple Misunderstanding.
Sometimes people with unsaved loved ones try to convince themselves that God will make exceptions. This makes us less serious about sharing our faith and leads to greater self-deception.
Colossians 4:2: Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.
Even if our loved ones don't want to hear about our faith, we can pray for them. Read the parable in Luke 18:1-8 about persevering in prayer.
3. Share the gospel whenever God gives opportunity.
Ephesians 5:15-16: Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.
Sometimes we think we need to push our faith on others, sharing everything at one time and expecting them to immediately repent and turn to Christ. While this can happen, it's rare. Coming to the Lord is usually a process.
So we can add a little "salt" to our conversations, offering to pray for our loved ones' problems, sharing how God is working in our lives, speaking about things we're learning in Scripture.
It's best to avoid arguments and be patient. Self-righteous attitudes push people away from Christ, not toward Him.
2 Timothy 2:24-26: A servant of the Lord must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people. 25 Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth. 26 Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants.
For more about natural ways to share Christ with our loved ones, see:
4 Natural Ways to Share Christ
Pause and Listen
Jesus Asked Questions
4. Trust God's love.
God loves our friends and family more than we do, and He will give them every possible chance to follow Him into eternity.
1 Timothy 2:1-4: I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. 3 This is good and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.
5. Draw closer to God.
God will give us wisdom, comfort, and peace no matter what happens. We need to take our fears and doubts to Him.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4: Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.
6. Put Jesus first.
We can't let disappointments affect our love for God. We don't understand all that God allows, but we can trust His perfect wisdom and love.
Proverbs 3:5: Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.
We should never blame God or pull away from Him if our loved ones continue to ignore His offer of salvation.
Matthew 10:37: If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine.
copyright 2019, Gail Burton Purath, BiteSizeBibleStudy
Bite Size Bible Study