Therefore, brothers and sisters, you must be patient as you wait for the coming of the Lord.
7 Therefore, brothers and sisters, you must be patient as you wait for the coming of the Lord. Consider the farmer who waits patiently for the coming of rain in the fall and spring, looking forward to the precious fruit of the earth. 8 You also must wait patiently, strengthening your resolve, because the coming of the Lord is near. 9 Don’t complain about each other, brothers and sisters, so that you won’t be judged. Look! The judge is standing at the door!
10 Brothers and sisters, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord as an example of patient resolve and steadfastness.
Those who serve on mission fields in areas where Christian faith is not the dominant religion quickly come to understand a central truth: when one is sharing the gospel, one must have a place to start the conversation. If the person being addressed is unfamiliar with Christian concepts and terms, one must pick up on things with which he or she is familiar and relate these to the Christian message. Without this middle ground, there can be no effective witness to God’s salvation in Christ. Everyone who shares the good news today, Robert Tuttle points out, would do well to learn this basic truth for communicating the gospel. While the Christian message is universal—intended for all persons, everywhere—the language we use to convey this message may not be. The key is always to be sensitive to the deep questions with which one’s friends and acquaintances are struggling, and to look for ways to relate the life-changing message of the gospel to these questions.
The lively and direct writing style offers a clear, user-friendly guide to sharing one's personal faith. Illustrations and examples are drawn from the contexts of both North America and outside of North America. The material is focused on the crucial and difficult task of communication the gospel to persons who have not grown up with the language and symbolism of the church. Readers will understand that in an effort to communicate the gospel to persons unfamiliar with its terminology and concepts, they must first learn to identify a common middle ground from which to begin. They will learn the basic tools for communicating the gospel, including how to relate the life-changing message of the gospel to the deep questions people ask.