When it comes to sharing the gospel, opposition and rejection are inevitable. Sometimes we wonder why we got rejected. Was it the message? Was it the readiness of the hearer’s heart? Or could it be the messenger?

Whatever the reason is, we need to learn as early as now how to deal with the possible rejection we may face, and the discouragement that comes with it. In light of this, there are two things to remember:

1. The gospel is offensive.

Everyone has sinned and fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23). Everyone is destined for eternal separation from God. When it comes to our sinful condition, none of the world’s offered “solutions” could cure our deep need for forgiveness and salvation. It is only by putting our faith on the finished work of Christ on the cross that we will be saved.

The gospel is offensive to a person when they cannot accept that they are incapable of saving themselves. In a culture that promotes self-sufficiency and independence, the need to be saved is something that hurts someone’s pride.

Some people may also get offended by the gospel when they cannot admit that they are sinful like the rest of us. They would compare their sins with others, and think that they’re a lot better off.

Similar to how it took us some time to digest the truth about the gospel, others also need time to reflect and evaluate their lives before being open to receiving the truth of the gospel. When this happens, continue to build a relationship with these people, all the while being in faith that they would realize their need for God.

2. We are not God.

No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. John 6:44

We are not the Savior. Jesus is. That said, not even our giftedness in speaking can convince anyone of the gospel truth. We cannot force anyone to believe in Jesus no matter how prepared we are, or how eloquent we deliver the message. Here’s another verse to remember:

and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.

As 1 Corinthians 2:4-5 (ESV) shows, Paul focused on the message of the cross instead of relying on beautiful or persuasive words. He didn’t want people to put their trust in human messengers. He wanted them to put their trust in God.

The power of the gospel is not in our delivery, persuasiveness, or wisdom. Rather, its power is found in the Holy Spirit who speaks to the person, and reveals to them how much they need Jesus in their life. Our role is to faithfully and clearly present the complete gospel of Jesus Christ.

As we go and preach the gospel, let us bear in mind that it is simply our  responsibility to plant the seeds of the gospel in the hearts of the people God has brought in our lives. God, in turn, will make those seeds grow in His perfect time. Having this mindset takes off the pressure we feel when preaching the gospel.We realize that it is not anymore on us to change the person, so we can continue to pray and love them.

I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. 1 Corinthians 3:6

As we preach, we don’t just wait for that one person to accept, but continue to preach to our other friends, family, and classmates. We’ll never know who God has called to say yes to His message.