Living Witness

Sandra Moats
Executive Director
+ New Hope For Adopted
International Kids
A living witness is one who speaks and walks with Jesus Christ. It is here on earth that we walk in the tests of our faith. A living witness is known by their words and deeds. Words spoken only confirm what has been seen in their lives.
Scripture calls each and every believer to be a courageous living witness in the world where we live. Courage releases strength that will enable us to endure any trial or danger. Some define courage as lacking fear in a circumstance that would normally generate it. Others say that courage has fear, but enables us to confront it in the face of pain, danger, uncertainty or intimidation. Courage enables us to take action in the face of fear. Courage comes from God. It is motivated and unctioned by His love flowing through us. Often times our deeds speak louder than our words. Others can hear what we are saying before one word is spoken out of our mouths.
Some years ago I led a team into China and we were all arrested for prayer walking the Brick Prison where they held over 6,000 prisoners. Many of those prisoners were Christians standing in their faith. They charged my interpreter and I as spies. The prospect of getting out of that situation looked bleak, but in the height of interrogation a Chinese brother showed up to help us.
My friend, who was prominent in the House Churches leadership in that province, got wind of our situation and came to help us. It was in the middle of the night when he came to help us, even though he was recovering from a serious surgery, and was still using a walker. He shuffled slowly into the place where we were being interrogated and spoke on our behalf without fearing it would put him in grave danger.
He risked the possibility of losing the favor he himself had with government officials in his province. By God’s grace he persuaded the police to let him take us to the capital city where he had friends in the government. But while we were driving the calls from the police made it clear that there would be problems there also for us.
Instead of going to the arranged hotel he took us to the US Embassy. They quickly arranged to get us on an outgoing plane while our friend held the police off by driving around for as long as possible. We all were able to get on that plane and fly safely to Beijing, and them home to the USA. He became a living witness for us, and for Jesus Christ.
Each Christian is called upon to be a living witness of Jesus Christ throughout his or her life while walking through tough situations. Our lives in Christ give witness to the values we hold of the Gospel, both by our words and deeds. This may mean at times we will stand alone in our families, in schools, in our work places, and in society for the sake of the gospel. This is part of the testing we all walk through to remain that living witness on our journey.
Dr. P.P. Job from India worked hard to spread the gospel for many years. His work agrivated radical hindus. He was viciously attacked, and then his son was killed. He had witnessed too much. Now in his deeds his pledge to follow Christ at all costs was tested. Keeping his pledge Dr. Job said, “I feel as if one of my arms has been cut off, but with whatever I have left, I will continue to serve Christ’s kingdom.” Since his son’s death he increased in winning thousands to Christ in his crusades.
Earth is our testing ground so we may enter Heaven. Here we walk through various tests of our Christian character that will purify and refine us. In each test we have the opportunity to choose to be a living witness. May He grant believers the grace to overcome every situation.
Russian interrogators told Pastor Khamara that they would cut out his tongue if he did not quit sharing Christ. He said, “Praise the lord Jesus Christ. There, I have said the highest words that can be said! And if you wish you can now cut out my tongue.” He was committed, he put out the effort to speak, and he endured to the end. He died a martyr’s death.
A living witness will seek to meet the needs of the world in self-giving love as they walk yoked with Jesus Christ. Living witnesses are called to willingly share in the fellowship of His sufferings by walking in His strength, for He has given us all things that pertain to life and godliness. 2 Peter 1:3.
If our being a Christian seems to be no different from anyone else, then we are leaving no mark on our communities. If this is so then we need to ask ourselves seriously, what kind of Christian lives are we leading? And what kind of witness to the Gospel are we giving? I Peter 2:12 says, “Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation.”
It is not enough simply to gather together once a week to worship God in a building. Our lives need to be a living witness is our justice halls, walking in truth, serving those who are in need and defending those who are not able to do so.
To be a living witness to Christ may generate some hostility among people we know. For instance, when we insist on being honest, rather than melting in with others who think differently from what the Bible teaches. Our witness is made by both what we do, and what we avoid doing. We must let our manner of life “be worthy of the gospel of Christ” Philippians 1:27, “and not be conformed to this world” Ro 12:2. Deuteronomy 30:19 says, “I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants.”
Brother Miao was sent to a China prison for sharing his faith. He won so many to Christ in prison his sentence was extended. During a harsh winter the guards found him stiff as a board in his prison cell and thought he was dead. They took him to the morgue. But he was still alive, and praying. He saw an angel come and blow upon him and he felt warmth enter him. He rose up and knelt in prayer as he thanked God, then walked out of the morgue and found the prison doctor. Horrified, the doctor thought he was seeing a ghost. Brother Maio said, “Don’t be afraid, God restored me to health and sent me to show you the way to God.”
The doctor bowed and said, “Your God is real.” He knelt and accepted Christ as His Savior. Ps 118:15.
We may meet with hostility from family or friends when we are friendly, and fair to all, but it is better to be right with Christ than wrong with the crowd. It benefits all to be a living witness as we travel on the path to Heaven. Let our words be known by our words and deeds.