By Brad Harrub, Ph.D.

Do you want to know what someone is really passionate about? Spend just an hour listening to them talk and you will quickly discover their passion.

Maybe it’s their career. Or maybe they are passionate about decorating and having just the right “Magnolia” Fixer Upper look. Or maybe they are passionate about their children or their golf game. Whatever it is, sooner or later that person will talk about it—and when they do, you can almost see their face light up, as they begin chatting away.

It is somewhat distressing to me that Christians—who are supposed to be passionate about Jesus Christ—don’t talk about Him more often. Sure we may occasionally talk about something that was mentioned in a sermon or we may even offer a “God bless you” when someone sneezes.

But the reality is we often don’t talk about our Savior very much in public. And when we do, it is usually guarded and with a great deal of reservation. I have heard from literally dozens of Christians, who are troubled by the fact that their denominational friends talk about Jesus and religious matters more openly than most New Testament Christians. Yes, we believe He is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6), but sadly we don’t bring Him up in everyday conversation.

Here’s what I intend to teach my children regarding talking about Jesus.

Let me start by admitting I don’t know the precise history on this one, but my understanding—having talked to many faithful Christians—is that more than fifty years ago there was a concerted effort for New Testament Christians to separate themselves from the Pentecostal movement. Pentecostals were viewed as those “Holy Rollers” who spoke in tongues, raised their hands, clapped during worship, and often talked about being filled with the spirit.

In an effort to separate us from them, New Testament Christians shifted the pendulum all the way to the other side and avoided anything that could even remotely be viewed as being Pentecostal. In doing so, many members of the Church stopped openly talking about their faith and stopped talking about Jesus. Oh sure, we would occasionally talk about doctrine, but we didn’t want to be viewed as weird or one of “them.” And so we grew silent.

Here’s my first piece of advice about this one: Don’t be afraid to talk about Jesus. After all, if we are passionate about Him and want to share the Truth with others, then we should feel good talking about Him.

Second, get comfortable talking about Him when you are young. If it becomes a part of your everyday speech then you won’t feel awkward later on in life trying to fit Him into your conversations. Part of being ready and able to give a defense of the hope that is in you (1 Peter 3:15) is being able to talk about Jesus.

Third, never ever forget the confession you made at your baptism (Acts 8:37). I want you to soberly consider what Jesus said: “Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32-33). I believe many people deny Him by simply remaining silent and not defending Him and His teachings. Later on Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome and declared, “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10:9-10).

Notice that with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. Does that sound like Paul wants people to be timid or shy about Jesus? Understand that in talking openly about Jesus some people may be offended. Try to be respectful and kind, but also keep in mind the desperate need they have for His cleansing blood. Additionally, you may make some Christians uncomfortable by openly talking about Jesus. They may not be use to hearing someone talk freely about Christ and their appreciation for Him. But stop and think about what that really says about their beliefs and their love for Him.

Do you really love Jesus? Are you thankful for what He did for you on the cross? Then don’t be afraid to shout it from the mountains or talk about it on the subway! Who knows, it might just open some doors for you to talk to others about Him.