Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
Email Preach Him with Dr. Jim

Why Witness
Luke 24:46-49

46 and He said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and rise again from the dead the third day; 47 and that repentance for forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48  "You are witnesses of these things. 49" And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high." NAS

The story is told of a small dog which had been struck by a car and was lying by the side of the road. A doctor, driving by, noticed that the dog was still alive, stopped his car, picked up the dog, and took him home with him.

There he discovered that the dog had been stunned, had suffered a few minor cuts and abrasions, but was otherwise all right. He revived the dog, cleaned up the wounds and was carrying the animal from the house to the garage when suddenly it jumped from his arms and scampered off. "What an ungrateful little dog," the doctor said to himself.

He thought no more about the incident until the next evening when he heard a scratching at the door. When he opened it, there was the little dog he had treated with another hurt dog.

1.    Because We Are Witnesses. Luke 24:48-49

48  "You are witnesses of these things. 49" And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high."

A.    We are . . Pronounced Witnesses by Christ. v 48 a

B.    We are . . Powerful Witnesses by the Holy Spirit. v 49

Illustration Witnessing, Telling your Story
Paul Tournier was a famous Swiss physician and a dedicated Christian author of many insightful books. After he had written his first book, he returned to his medical school to visit his favorite old professor.

Granted an afternoon of the venerable man's time, Tournier read his new book to his old teacher. As he completed his reading, he looked up to find tears in the old mans eyes. "Oh, Paul," said the professor, "that's a wonderful book. Everyone of us Christians should read that." Tournier was surprised. "I didn't know you were a Christian, professor. When did you become one?" "Just now, as you read your book," replied his old teacher.


We are witnesses, what kind of witnesses are we?

2.    Because of What We Know. 1 John 1:3

A.    We have Found the Message of Christ. 1 John 1:3
v 3 what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, that you also may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ. NAS

        1.    John Saw and heard.

        2.    John Proclaimed.

In his little book "And Peter," J. Wilbur Chapman told the story of travelers were making their way across the desert. Their water was gone and they were pushing on with the hope that more might be found. As a last resort they divided into groups and sent them on, in a sort of "leapfrog" march.

If the advance group found water, they were to shout the news to the group nearest to them, and on down the line.

The long line reached far across the desert. Men were fainting when suddenly everyone was cheered by the good news. The advance party found water. They shouted to the next group, which then shouted to the next group and so on, until the farthest man heard: 'Water! Water!' The word went from man to man, until the whole company heard and soon all were drinking to their hearts' content!


Because of what we know we should witness.

2.    Because of Who Needs to Know.     John 1:45, & 4:28-29

A.    Simon First Found His Brother. John 1:45
v  45 Philip found Nathanael and said to him, "We have found Him of whom Moses in the Law and also the Prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." NAS

B.    The Woman at the Well Found those She Needed to Tell. John 4:28-29
v  28 So the woman left her waterpot, and went into the city, and said to the men, 29  "Come, see a man who told me all the things that I have done; this is not the Christ, is it?" NAS

In 1981, a Minnesota radio station reported a story about a stolen car in California. Police were staging an intense search for the vehicle and the driver, even to the point of placing announcements on local radio stations to contact the thief.

On the front seat of the stolen car sat a box of crackers that, unknown to the thief, were laced with poison. The car owner had intended to use the crackers as rat bait. Now the police and the owner of the VW Bug were more interested in apprehending the thief to save his life than to recover the car.

So often when we run from God, we feel it is to escape his punishment. But what we are actually doing is eluding his rescue.

There is a wonderful story about a young family moving into a new house. The move had been scheduled weeks in advance, but when the day approached the husband announced that an important meeting had been called at the office, and he would be unable to help. Consequently, the wife had to handle the move by herself. After the moving van had pulled away, the wife found herself standing in the living room of the new house surrounded by boxes to be unpacked, appliances to be hooked up, a screaming baby, and a five-year-old who decided to throw one of his metal toys through the picture window. Fortunately, the child wasn't hurt, but the jagged glass was scattered everywhere and a brisk wind was blowing through the opening. The wife was now so upset that she simply had to tell her husband what was happening. When she called him on the telephone, a secretary informed her that he was tied up in the meeting and could not be disturbed. The secretary asked, "Would you like to leave a message?" This didn't help her at all because from past experience the wife knew that he could be extremely lax about returning telephone calls home. So she figured out a way to get to him. She replied, "Just tell him the insurance will cover it. Call home for details."

The moment he got the message, he called home.

Maybe we need to learn from this some ways to arrest people with the message of God's coverage for sin. Maybe we need to rephrase the headlines of our faith for each generation in ways that will seize their minds and demand their attention!