All the things we have discussed so far in previous blogs, with the resolve to pray over them, will help us with boldness. Being aware of the harvest will make us more compassionate in our boldness. Seeing the horrors of hell, the shortness of the time, and our grave responsibility to witness will make us more urgent in our boldness. But I think the most helpful thing is to have a Christ-like love for the lost and to be excited to share with them. This is what I think we should really concentrate on.
With that said, I would like to talk more now on love, then on hope, and last on faith in an effort to make us bolder in witnessing.
Boldness by love. Jerry Wiles says that boldness is “born of love.” He says, “Lack of boldness is very likely related to a lack of love for others.”3
Wiles quotes from 1 John 4:17-18: “Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts our fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.”4
How can we be made perfect in love? The only way I know of is by accepting or putting on the love of Christ, because His love is a love that is perfect. It is a selfless love, which is a sacrificial love. It is a love, says Andrew Murray, “[that] will become in us the spirit of intercession…”5 Hence, it is a love that is always sacrificially praying for others. We get this love through reading the Bible and by observing His love, next by accepting it and by obeying it. The greatest way Christ loved us is by dying for us on the cross. And that is the way we must love God and others—by giving up our life as He did.
Moishe Rosen has written about this sacrificial love and how it helps us with boldness. He writes,
Those of us who have encountered that passionate Calvary love and wholeheartedly desire to serve Him must do likewise. We must take up the cross and be crucified with Christ. Success in serving God demands a willingness to endure rejection, ignominy, humiliation and death to self. A crucified person can afford to be bold. Some of the greatest truths have come from the lips of those who awaited the hangman’s noose or stood lashed to a burning stake. One’s own death is a great incentive to speak directly and truthfully, even concisely. Those soon to be dead have no trouble telling the truth with proper zeal. Boldness springs not only from being right, but from having nothing to loose by stating what is right. The consciousness of eternity’s value structure rather that our earthly value structure gives us the courage to act boldly.6
Boldness by hope. Rosen later goes on to say, “[Though boldness is always] willing to suffer loss and to risk pain,…it does not allow its possessor to dwell morbidly on thoughts of pain, loss or death. It sees beyond the present life, beyond the curtains of tears. It sees into eternity, where there is victory, triumph and unending joy in the presence of our loving God.”7 Thus boldness is always full of hope, hope that God will remain with us as our advocate—to help us out of any trouble.
Listen to David, from Psalms 59:16-17, as he sings this beautiful song of hope and boldness: “…I will sing of Your power; Yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; for You have been my defense and refuge in the day of trouble. To You, O My Strength, I will sing praise; for God is my defense, My God of mercy.”
Boldness by faith. Ultimately boldness requires faith, faith because we must believe that when we pray for God to fill us with the Holy Spirit and make us bold, He will actually do it. And we must believe that when He fills us He will also help us to overcome the satanic powers against us, and will empower us with courage and with the great love of God for others. We have a wonderful example of this in Acts 4:29-31. Here, Peter, John, and all those who were gathered for prayer prayed for boldness to speak the Word of God. And verse 31 says, “And when they prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the Word of God with boldness.” Let us pray with faith for this same boldness.
3 Jerry Wiles, How to Win Others to Christ, p. 56.
4 Ibid., p. 56.
5 Wesley Duewel, Mighty Prevailing Prayer (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Francis Asbury Press, of Zondervan Publishing House, 1990), p. 74.
6 Moishe Rosen, “Holy Boldness – Toward Bolder Witnessing,” Harold of His Coming, Oct., 1997, p. 3.
7 Ibid., p.3.