You’ve got 30 seconds with an outspoken atheist. How to share your faith in a ridiculously short time.
Let’s say you’ve just stepped out of the subway and bumped into a co-worker who happens to be an outspoken atheist.
You notice he looks sad. So you ask him what’s wrong. He lays this on you: His wife left him that morning.
As he talks, his voice cracks–and he won’t look you in the eye.
You walk with him over the concrete sidewalk, through the revolving door and turn the corner into a brown burnished hallway.
All the while he’s telling you life’s meaningless.
Just as the elevator opens–full of people–he turns and levels his eyes at you. He says, “So, you’re a Christian…what do you think?”
Introducing the Elevator Pitch
With such a short period of time, it’s obvious: You need an elevator pitch.
What’s an elevator pitch? It’s a ridiculously short summary of what you believe. And your elevator pitch should be grounded in these two principles:
Now listen: In your short discussions, never get distracted by side issues like “Isn’t God compatible with evolution?” or “What does the parable of the sower really mean?”
You don’t have time for that.
You make it plain. You make it simple. And you stick to the point. To help you create your own elevator pitch, let’s look at these key points.
Authority of the Bible
How do we know that the Bible is the ultimate authority? The argument goes something like this:
1. Jesus affirmed the Old Testament to be the inerrant, imperishable and inspired Word of God.
2. Jesus promised the same for the New Testament.
3. And if we know that Jesus is God, then what he says about the Bible must be true.
Your next point centers on the uniqueness of Jesus.
Exclusivity of Christ
Three things to note here.
1. No other world teacher claimed to be God.
2. No other world teacher proved his claims to be God through fulfillment of prophecy, a sinless life and resurrection from the dead.
3. And no other religious leader offered salvation by faith…apart from works…to clear guilt for human sin.
Throughout the Sermon on the Mount Jesus made it clear: he only offered two choices. One that saves and one that condemns. The narrow gate or the wide gate.
This Is What I Would Say
So, what would I say if I was about to step onto that crowded elevator? Something like this:
You know, I believe the Bible is the standard for truth. And the Bible says that God sent his son Jesus to reconcile a rebellious people to Himself. You and I are rebellious. But I believe if we confess Jesus to be our Lord and Savior and repent of our sins, we’ll receive forgiveness, avoid the punishment of our sin and enjoy eternal life with God.
Now, I’m not saying this would be easy. More than likely my chattering teeth would sound like pounding hooves.
Neither am I saying this is the perfect formula to persuade people to become a Christian. He’ll likely think I’m mad.
But it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that I said it.
Cheat Sheet for Your Own Elevator Pitch
Having trouble coming up with your own elevator pitch? Then memorize 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10.
Or Ephesians 2:4-6.
And once you’ve memorized it…practice reciting with your friends.
Do you have an elevator pitch for the Gospel you use? Share it with us in the comments.
**Part of the Curmudgeon’s Guide to Sharing the Gospel series.**