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— "Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; and looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God! And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou? He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour. One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ. And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone." John 1:35-42

We sometimes feel that we are not capable of leading others to Jesus if we do not have a formal degree or specialized training. But Andrew, who had only himself been directed to Jesus by the witness of John the Baptist - saying that Jesus is "the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world" - first went and found his brother Simon and told him, "We have found the Messiah," and brought him to Jesus.

Of course, knowing the rest of the story, Jesus called Simon, "Cephas," (which, in the Greek form, is Peter, and means A Stone). Peter became an important leader among Jesus' disciples and, after his fall, boldly bore witness to Jesus as the crucified and risen Messiah and Savior.

While followers of Jesus will want to learn more and more of Him and His Word, even a new follower of Jesus, or untrained believer, can still tell others, "I have found the Savior." Though a person may not know theological terms or formal Christian dogma, he can still tell people that Jesus died for the sins of the world and rose again, and that in Jesus we have forgiveness and life everlasting!

Nor should anyone minimize the importance of such witness for Jesus. The Holy Spirit can and does use the weak, the simple and even the uneducated witness of believers to call others to faith in Christ Jesus. Even if it is simply a "come and see" or "come and hear" witness, the Holy Spirit can, as He did in the case of Jesus' first disciples, call people to learn of Jesus and bring them to trust in His sufferings, death and resurrection as the source of comfort, forgiveness and new life.

We learn, too, that Jesus' disciples came to know Him and trust in Him by spending time with Him;

for not only did they spend that day with Jesus, they spent three years walking with Jesus, hearing His Word and witnessing His mighty works and power. We too can spend time with Jesus by reading and studying His Word. The Scriptures were written to make us "wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." (2 Timothy 3:15).

And through the Scriptures, the Spirit reveals to us Jesus - we see Him for who He is and we witness for ourselves His love and mercy toward sinners and learn of His love and mercy toward us!

Dear Jesus, reveal Yourself to me through Your Word and grant that I know You and Your love and mercy toward me. And, Lord Jesus, give me the opportunity to tell others of You and direct them to You that they too might come to know and trust in You as their Savior. Amen.

Opinion, Pages 5 on 09/23/2009

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