Reaching out to non-Christians can feel like one of the most challenging things for a Christian to do, but in reality it shouldn't be – simply because we were non-Christians ourselves before Christ reached out to us. His love should allow us to love others, too.
That said, why is it so difficult for us to bring some people to the church? Why is it so difficult for us to convince certain people that Jesus saves, changes lives, and sets people free from sin?
Maybe it's because of our own tongues.
Why the tongue?
The tongue is a very powerful thing. Proverbs 18:21 tells us,
"Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit."
Our tongues can spell life or death for many. What's more, our tongues can either lead people to Christ or drive them away from Him. James 3:9-10 tells us,
"With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so."
That said, we should be careful to bridle our tongue so that it will only speak what brings glory to God and life to men.
Things not to say to non-Christians
Now that we've established that the tongue is very important in bringing people to Christ, let's talk about some of the things that we who follow Christ should never say to someone who doesn't.
If God didn't condemn you for your sins, but rather gave His only begotten Son so that you could be saved from it, then who are you to condemn someone who hasn't known God? There can be a "holier-than-thou" attitude among Christians that we really shouldn't have.
While we should condemn sin, we must avoid condemning the person who sinned. We must instead attempt to share the Gospel in such a way that they'd be convicted of their sin, not condemned for it.
Also, God doesn't like sticking our past sins down our throats. Once we genuinely repent, God forgets our sin and we are given another chance to make things right. Don't be the devil's advocate and condemn a person for being a sinner. You were a sinner too and are being sanctified daily by the blood of Christ. Choose to speak about God's provision for our forgiveness through Christ instead and be generous and gracious with your thoughts and words instead.
2) Discriminatory/derogatory remarks
As Christians we are not prohibited from speaking strong words, provided they are not maligning, slandering, and destroying someone. We can point out sin, issue rebukes and corrections, only for the purpose of bringing a person to repentance and into Christ.
We shouldn't, however, talk down on anybody. Would you want that done to you? Instead, we are to speak God's love to people in the face of Christ. We are to speak to non-believers of God's provision for their salvation and ours. We are to speak the truth of God's word to them and the hope that is available in Christ.
Oh no, don't lie. Not to a believer, not to an unbeliever. The Lord Jesus said blind guides will lead blind followers into a ditch (see Matthew 15:14). We can't pretend to live "Godly" lives while our tongue is controlled by the father of lies (see John 8:44).
Knowing this, stop speaking deceitfully. Stop lying. Stop manipulating non-believers, even your fellow believers in Christ. Lying will only drive people away from us and from the God we say we follow.
And of course, lying includes watering down the truth of the Gospel or parts of the Bible to make them more 'acceptable' to non-believers.
So in whatever you say, remember the Lord sees and hears you, and will hold you accountable.