Since Hinduism is foreign to many of us, fear can stop us from sharing the gospel with Hindus. A common fear is not knowing enough to “destroy arguments and tear down every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God” (2 Corinthians 10:5).
However, this lack of knowledge doesn’t mean we lack the power to break through the walls of Hinduism with the gospel. As people who no longer live in fear of God’s judgment, we have the confidence in Christ to share this same hope of forgiveness with our Hindu neighbors, utilizing the basic principles of prayer, patient pursuit and open love for Jesus.
The need for prayer is so obvious that we often neglect it. When Christ commands us to make disciples of all the nations in Matthew 28, He gives us the promise of His presence and His authority, which He supplies through the Holy Spirit (see Acts 1:8). In other words, the responsibility Christ gives us demands utter spiritual dependence — including the practical act of praying regularly.
The Hindu worldview acknowledges a wide realm of powerful and capricious spiritual beings. As we address this worldview with the message of Christ, we need the power, protection and peace that we can only find through prayerful dependence on God. Ephesians 6:10-20 guides us as we pray for help in the spiritual battle we are entering and for boldness in sharing the gospel.
Listen wisely . Some of us may have experienced that awkward moment when our Hindu friend responds to hearing the gospel by saying, “That’s great! I believe that, too. I also believe in every Hindu god and think that they are the same as Jesus Christ.” The pluralistic colorings of the Hindu religion can make simple communication of the gospel seem impossible.
When unfolding the gospel over the course of multiple conversations and meetings, it’s important to remember Proverbs 21:22: “A wise man scales the city of the mighty and brings down the stronghold in which they trust.”
Rather than becoming impatient with a Hindu friend, embrace the opportunities to learn more about what and why they believe. Instead of trying to destroy their entire worldview in one blow, focus on how it falls short of the glory of God and let His preeminence take center stage. The allures of little gods are no match for the perfect beauty of the God who saves us.
Again, at the risk of sounding obvious, talking about Jesus all the time is the best way to break through the chinks of the Hindu religion with the light of the gospel. Even in brief encounters with a Hindu, we can share what God is teaching us in our daily quiet time or share our testimony.
Hinduism is richly and darkly supernatural, filled with stories of gods and demons. In Hindu villages, real life stories of demon possession still abound.
For many Hindus, then, the stories of the gospel are as tangible and powerful as they are written to be — not as tame as many of us in the West have made them out to be. Even for those Hindus whose faith is mere tradition, these powerful stories can awaken longings for the eternal. The Gospel of Mark is a great starting point since it provides concise accounts of Jesus’ supernatural nature and acts.
Time to share It’s time for us as followers of Christ to stop viewing Hindus in America as foreign, strange and threatening. It’s time for us to embrace the calling of love that has been given to us through the forgiving love of our Savior.
If you have not yet shared the gospel with a Hindu, pray for the opportunity. Pray against spiritual warfare, and pray for boldness and effective communication.
As you share the good news, be prepared to be unsuccessful, but use failure as an opportunity to see your Hindu friend’s beliefs more clearly and put Jesus on display more brightly. As you grow more experienced in interacting with the Hindu community, never abandon simple praise of Jesus by sharing the stories that show His glory.
We may have much to learn about the Hindu religion, but we have nothing to lose by speaking the good news of Jesus into the lives of people who are craving supernatural light and truth.
Editor’s Note: Liz C. serves as resident missionary among South Asians. Her name has been changed to protect her identity.