Charles Spurgeon said, “A man’s life is always more forcible than his speech. When men take stock of him they reckon his deeds as dollars and his words as pennies.” There is no substitute for a gospel witness that is matched by a gospel life. When we fail to live as we should, we forfeit what is meant to be a mainstay of our witness.
Paul instructed the Philippian church to live in a way that was becoming to the gospel. Our very lifestyle should adorn the gospel that we share with others. For example, how ridiculous would it have been if, when the shepherds came to visit Christ in the manger, Mary and Joseph were loudly complaining about the raw deal they had been given—having to bring Jesus into the world in a stable? There probably would not have been much worship taking place that night.
Even so, everything about our lives—our speech, our demeanor, our habits, our responses, our relationships—all of it, either gives credence to or discredits our message. If our lives do not reflect that our faith is real to those we meet, it is not likely that they will be interested in listening to any message we give them.
The central message of the Bible is that Jesus came to save us from our sins. And Christ has commissioned us, His people, to actively share this message. Yet if our lives are not what they should be, we will not be effective in winning people to the Lord.
Live in such a way that your conduct matches and strengthens your witness to others.
“Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God.”
Philippians 1:27-28 ESV