In our text today we are introduced to an interesting thought Ð evangelism in our homes. We talk much about evangelism in our congregation, community, and the world, but what about our homes where some have yet to meet the Savior?
As the Gospel was preached in the church of the apostles, many people committed themselves to faith in Christ as their Savior and Lord. From the text, and from early church history, it appears that more women converted than men. This caused some problems. The wives were anxious to have their husbands receive Christ, but the husbands were not interested in the Christian faith. In our text Peter talks about the problem.
We have the same situation in many of our congregational homes today. So today I speak to you on the theme, “Evangelism in the Home.”
When I conducted premarital counseling during my years as an active pastor, we discussed the spiritual life of both the man and the woman planning to be married. One time, a young lady came to visit with me about her upcoming wedding. In our conversation I asked about her fiance’s church home and she told me that he, and his whole family, had no church affiliation. When I asked if she thought this could be a problem in their marriage, like any young lady madly in love, she replied, “No, I am sure that he will join the church after we are married. I don’t want to push him right now.”
I pointed to the Scripture, II Corinthians 6:14, “Do not be mismated with unbelievers,” and asked her to give it some prayerful consideration. She was concerned about having a Christian home, and she discussed it with him. He consented to be a part of my class that people who were joining the congregation were asked to attend. He asked many questions in the class and I believe was very interested in what he was learning. After completing the class he was baptized and became a member of the congregation. However, following the wedding, she began to attend church alone.
We visited about her problem, and she told me that something in their marriage was missing. She had suggested to her husband that they have a devotion daily, but he wasn’t interested and told her that he didn’t know how to pray. “What,” she wondered, “would happen when they had children?”
Then she opened my eyes when she asked, “Why didn’t you talk to us about this when we were in confirmation class?” You can be sure that, from that day on, it was a part of my instruction to these young people.
Well, the story has a great ending. She stayed with her husband and remained faithful. When the children did come, he began to realize that Christ was necessary in their home and in his life, and he received Christ.
How encouraging it is to have such an ending! Sad to say, not all of them end that way.
Perhaps you have lived in a divided house as far as a relationship with Christ is concerned. Your words to make your husband respond have not made it happen.
The words of other people have not created an interest either. Then, why not turn to God’s Word and see what the Bible teaches.
This could be called “behavioral witnessing.”
1. “Wives, in the same way be submissive (respect) to your husband so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives.”
In our day that word “submit” is offensive. Therefore, we will change the word to respect. You are not being called to follow him in matters that are contrary to your conviction. However, if he thinks differently than you, respect his opinion. In other words, cut down on some of the irritating arguments.
2. Let them witness “the purity and reverence of your lives.” This means a kindness, a willingness to forgive, and being thoughtful of other people’s needs. This is your way of life. It is the way you have been raised in a Christian home, and now you let it shine in your own home.
Then the day may come when your husband responds to the workings of the Holy Spirit, and he says to you, “I am so thankful to have you for my wife. You have been true to your conviction. What makes you so different?”
This is the hour you have been waiting for through the years. You can look into your husband’s face and say, “What makes me different is Christ, and a personal relationship with Him. You can have this relationship, too. Just spend a few minutes each day with His Word and in prayer talking things over with Him. Life will become different for you as it has for me. You will not only have a Savior, but also a friend to whom you can turn for guidance and strength.”
This is not theory, this is fact. Millions of people have been won for Christ through evangelism in the home. What better place?