Jesus gave his followers the task of communicating an important message from God to the whole of humanity. The message concerns God's kindness toward his broken world, a message about the offer of his eternal friendship to all who ask.
The Bible uses different words to explain the message, eg., "The kingdom of God is at hand, repent and believe the gospel." To a Jew in the first century, waiting for God to come to Israel to gather a people to be with him for eternity, a coming kingdom is easily grasped. Not so for us children of the twenty-first century. In John's gospel the term "eternal life" sums up the message: "Come to" Jesus, "believe in" Jesus, and ours is the gift of "eternal life." I tend to explain the message this way: "because Jesus lives, we can live also, live both now and for eternity. All we have to do is ask him."
Jesus told his followers that they had to be ready, willing and able to explain their faith, and that goes for his followers today. I like the following six-point presentation. Some young people even use colored beads, either as a bracelet or necklace, to remind themselves of the six points. The colors serve as an easy reminder for each point of the gospel.
The 6 Beads:
Green: This is God's beautiful world, made for us to enjoy, enjoy with him.
Purple / Black: But we have ignored the Creator, gone against him, so now it's a mess, and we're in a mess .
Red: God has done the only thing you would expect him to do, he has sorted the mess out through Jesus who gave his life for us.
White: You can't keep a good man down, so Jesus broke the bonds of death and because he lives we can live also.
Yellow: All we have to do is ask him.
Blue: And if we do, then its blue skies above, eternity is ours.
If you want to make a set of Jesus Beads, just go to any craft shop and buy round colored wooden beads. Also buy some finely cut strips of leather and thread a set of the beads onto one of the leather strips or platted cord. This is a very easy way of remembering the gospel, and the beads themselves can serve as a conversation starter.