Directly hearing Jesus’ voice isn’t some kind of weird mysticism. It’s normal Christianity. Jesus said: “My sheep hear My voice.” Spiritual deafness is abnormal and substandard Christianity. Begin to listen to and obey the risen Jesus! (If you don’t hear the living Jesus talking to you, it’s probably because you don’t want to.)
The risen Jesus lives inside of Christ-followers and can express Himself thru them. All we need to do is to listen to His voice and then say and/or do whatever He tells us to. This results in supernatural demonstrations of His presence.
Jesus said: “I will build My town meeting.” (The Greek word that Jesus is quoted as saying in that statement is ekklesia, which was the official name of the town meeting in Greek city/states.) A Jesus town meeting is a forum for Him to express Himself thru everyday Christians.
Historically church has tended to have one man talk about the Gospel every week with little or no demonstrating of the actual presence of the risen Jesus. Talking about Jesus without demonstrating His presence and reality falls short of sharing the Gospel.
True Christianity is more than mere explanations about Jesus. It’s actual demonstrations of Jesus’ presence and power through present-day Christ-followers. When human energy takes the place of God’s power, you have religion without the supernatural demonstration of Jesus.
Doing good things for people is nice, however, Muslims, Hindus, Christians, Jews and people from every other religion can do that. Even nonreligious people do good things for others. Thus, being nice and serving others demonstrates human kindness, but it doesn’t necessarily demonstrate the reality and love of the living, present, and active Jesus.
I’ve always tended to be uncomfortable telling people about Jesus. I’m better at sharing Jesus thru writing and speaking to groups than talking to people one to one. I guess that is because I still struggle with shyness, fear of man, and the intimidation of the devil. I’ve tried to overcome that by will power and self-help. I’ve also prayed to have more boldness for talking about Jesus to people one on one. For 5 1/2 years I was a counselor and chaplain in a Salvation Army alcohol and drug rehab center with 86 beds. In that setting I found that I was able to freely talk about Jesus to individual men without intimidation. Another thing that helps me is that I find it easier to ask someone if I can pray for him or her. The majority of people I ask say yes, so I close my eyes and talk to Jesus on their behalf. Many times, people will have tears in their eyes afterwards.
I think that if churches would give people the opportunity to talk about Jesus by giving their salvation testimony during church services, it would help train Christians to talk about Jesus to others. It would be quite simple for a church to schedule one or two people each week and put them on the Sunday program to give their salvation testimony. That simple action would make a powerful difference in any church courageous enough to implement it.
There are many parts to the body of Christ, but too often church only recognizes two parts–the preacher and the congregation. Perhaps it is time to recognize every individual member as being an active part of the body instead of being confined to the mere role of a passive attendee.