The Plan of Evangelism.
The Purpose of Evangelism.
The Promise of Evangelism.
Seven essentials for effective evangelism.
Obstacles to Evangelism.
Lack of Gospel Knowledge.
The Three E’s of Evangelism.
The Meaning of Evangelism.
The Ministry of Evangelism.
The Motive of Evangelism.
The Message of Evangelism.
The Methods of Evangelism.
2 Timothy 4:1-5.
In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge:
Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage, with great patience and careful instruction.
For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.
But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.
Now although making converts is not the same as making disciples, there is a need and a responsibility on the shoulders of each of us to do evangelism in the sense that it is generally understood, and that is to share the Gospel with the unsaved.
Paul said that his calling was not to baptise and yet on a number of occasions when no one else was around to do the baptising, he did baptise new believers.
How much more important then is it to preach the Gospel to unsaved folks who are in our circle of influence, especially if we are the only avenue available for the Lord to reach them.
1 Corinthians 1:13-17.
Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, so no one can say that you were baptized in my name.
(Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don’t remember if I baptized anyone else.) For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom and eloquence, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
Timothy had the responsibility of pastoring a church and teaching, discipling and caring for believers at different stages of maturity, yet Paul urges him to do the work of an evangelist.
However, I believe that evangelism is not only just planting the seed of the Gospel, but that there is a process of Discipleship in which planting the seed is only a part. I will deal with that in the next message on the stages of Evangelism.
1 Corinthians 3:5-9.
What, after all, is Apollos?
And what is Paul?
Only servants, through whom
you came to believe, as the Lord
has assigned to each his task.
I planted the seed, Apollos
watered it, but God has been
making it grow. So, neither the
one who plants nor the one who
waters is anything, but only God,
who makes things grow.
The one who plants and the one
who waters have one purpose, and
they will each be rewarded according
to their own labour. For we are co-workers in God’s service.
Five stages of evangelism.
Preparing the soil.
Planting (Sowing seed)
A farmer first prepared the ground, planted the seed, and then cared for the plant.
These steps were all necessary before a harvest could be expected. After reaping the harvest, steps had to be taken to ensure that it was preserved .
5. The Methods of Evangelism.
There are various methods of Evangelism, but before we look at them I want to examine the difference between Outreach and Evangelism.
Outreach and Evangelism.
In the English language we have two terms that are used synonymously to describe the sharing of the Good News, evangelism and outreach.
There is a difference between outreach and evangelism.
We often feel that we have fulfilled the Lord’s command to preach the gospel through evangelism, when in reality we have been involved in outreach.
While both are noble pursuits and bring honour to God, it is evangelism that fulfills his command to take the Good News to all the world.
The word euangelion is found throughout the New Testament and is often used to express collectively the gospel doctrines; and ‘preaching the gospel’.
It is often used to include not only the proclaiming of the good tidings, but teaching men how to avail themselves of the offer of salvation, and the declaring of all the truths, precepts, promises, and threatening's of Christianity.
Evangelism is more than telling people that Jesus loves them or that He died for them.
It is telling people that they have offended a Holy God and stand before Him as condemned sinners.
Unlike evangel, the term “Outreach” is not found in the Bible, though the idea certainly is.
Outreach implies action more than message.
When a church engages in outreach, it is reaching out to the community in order to meet needs, or to let people know of its existence. The Salvation Army is an excellent example.
When tragedy strikes, especially in the case of natural disasters, Samaritan’s Purse is often on the scene, providing food, clothing and other necessities.
This is outreach. Unbelievers are given a glimpse of the love of Christ through believers. Believers take their love for the lost into the community and allow them to see changed hearts in action.
There is usually nothing offensive about outreach, and it is often regarded as noble, even by those who are opposed to Christ.
The “Great Commission” was given by our Lord to direct the actions of His church from the moment of its birth until He comes again to take it to Himself.
Jesus’ words imply not outreach, but evangelism.
We are to go to all nations and share this awe-inspiring message with people of every nation, race and creed.
We are to share the full truth of the gospel.
Needless to say, we can only share such news with our words.
Our actions are important and should not be underemphasized, but people are not saved by actions, they are saved by the message which holds the power to convict men’s hearts.
1 Corinthians 1:21 tells us “it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.”
This speaks of both the method, which is preaching, and the message, which is the Gospel. When we share the Gospel, then, we share a message that is offensive to the natural human mind. No human likes to be told that he has offended God and stands before Him as a condemned man.
No human, in and of himself, would humble himself before this God and seek repentance. It is only through the power of God through the message of the Gospel that people can be saved, for God has ordained that he will work through this message to save his people.
God uses this seemingly foolish and offensive message to reach people’s hearts and turn them to Him.
When we evangelize, we share this message in all its offense, for in the offense of the Gospel there is power!
When we remove the offense, we remove the power.
1 Corinthians 1:22-25
Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.
For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.
Direct Approach (Confrontational)
1. Direct Approach (Confrontational)
This is the Apostle Peter’s approach in Acts 2, boldly proclaiming the Gospel to whoever would hear. Evangelists who use the direct approach are often equipped with Gospel tracts and ask questions like, “If you were to die tonight, are you 100% sure that you would go to heaven?”
Direct evangelists get straight to the point, preach Christ, and seek a response. Chuck Colson, Billy Graham, Mark Cahill, and Ray Comfort have modeled and born much fruit with this approach.
When people evangelize, what, exactly, are they doing?
Remember that Christians are not the only ones who do this.
Evangelization is nothing more than expressing one’s worldview beliefs for the purpose of convincing other people to convert to those beliefs.
So not only do Christians do it, but Atheists also do it, Muslims do it, Jehovah’s Witnesses do it, Mormons do it, and on and on. Everyone who has a worldview belief does it.
A Christian can use set questions or even a survey to determine whether a person understands the basics of the Gospel.
2. Intellectual approach.
The intellectual approach to evangelism is what Paul modeled in Acts 17 when he reasoned with philosophers and the deep thinkers of Athens and is today practiced by apologists and other logical thinkers.
If you are a person who likes ideas, evidence, logical thinking, and Christian Apologetics, you might be an intellectual evangelist. Josh McDowell, D. James Kennedy, and William Lane Craig model this approach.
Evangelism isn’t about winning arguments.
2 Timothy 2:23-26.
But avoid foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they generate strife.
And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance,
so that they may know the truth, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will.
Atheists who converted to Christianity.
Kirk Cameron - American actor. Cameron was an atheist in his early teens. When he was 17, during the height of his career on Growing Pains, he became a born-again Christian.
Hugh Ross (astrophysicist) - Canadian astrophysicist, Christian apologist, and old earth creationist.
Francis Collins - American physician-geneticist noted for his discoveries of disease genes and his leadership of the Human Genome Project. He is director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, USA.
Alister McGrath - Northern Irish scientist, theologian, priest, intellectual historian and Christian apologist.
Alexis Carrel - French surgeon and biologist who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1912.
Lee Strobel - American Christian Apologetic author. He has written several books, including four which received ECPA Christian Book Awards (1994, 1999, 2001, 2005) and a series which addresses challenges to a Biblically inerrant view of Christianity.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn - Russian novelist, historian. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1970.
Czesław Miłosz -Poet, prose writer, translator and diplomat. He was awarded the Neustadt International Prize for Literature, and in 1980 the Nobel Prize in Literature.
How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind
There were two factors in particular that were decisive.
One was my growing empathy with the insight of Einstein and other noted scientists that there had to be an Intelligence behind the integrated complexity of the physical Universe.
The second was my own insight that the integrated complexity of life itself, which is far more complex than the physical Universe, can only be explained in terms of an Intelligent Source.
I believe that the origin of life and reproduction simply cannot be explained from a biological standpoint despite numerous efforts to do so.
With every passing year, the more that was discovered about the richness and inherent intelligence of life, the less it seemed likely that a chemical soup could magically generate the genetic code. The difference between life and non-life, it became apparent to me, was ontological and not chemical.
The best confirmation of this radical gulf is Richard Dawkins' comical effort to argue in The God Delusion that the origin of life can be attributed to a "lucky chance." If that's the best argument you have, then the game is over. No, I did not hear a Voice. It was the evidence itself that led me to this conclusion.
As a Christian, I should always behave in a respectful manner when presenting the Gospel. People who are genuinely seeking truth will like the former atheist CS Lewis, often make the best Christian apologists.
3. Testimonial approach.
Personal stories of transformation carry a lot of weight, especially in cases where a person has experienced a radical transformation or encountered great hardship and come through victorious .
This is clearly seen in the blind man of John 9 who was healed by Jesus and then testified about Christ:
“Whether he is a sinner I do not know. One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see!”
John 9:3. Jesus explains that the reason this man was born blind was “that the works of God might be displayed in him.”
That means that God custom-made this man specifically for this evangelistic approach!
Examples of those who use the testimonial approach are Joni Erickson Tada, Nick Vujicic and Louis Zamperini.
The women at the well and the demoniac are good Biblical examples.
Motivational speaker Nick Vujicic, 39, was born to Serbian immigrants in Melbourne in 1982. Throughout his childhood he was bullied for his tetra-amelia syndrome but became a born-again Christian and his faith got him through.
Vujicic believes it was God's plan for him to suffer so that he could inspire others. In 2008 he did his first TV interview and has since taken the world by storm giving speeches and talks all over the planet.
When the world says you're not good enough get a second opinion, Vujicic told 60 Minutes in an interview.
He recently achieved his biggest dream of starting a family with his wife. The Christian minister married his wife Kanae Miyahara in 2012 and since then the pair have had four children, two boys and identical twin girls.
4. Interpersonal Approach.
This is also known as friendship evangelism
Not everybody is drawn to knowing apologetics or sharing their Christian testimony. For those who have the natural ability to relate to people and love being with others, the interpersonal approach to evangelism is a natural way to share Christ. You know you can be effective with the interpersonal approach when you are able to share your faith with others out of a growing friendship.
After this he went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax booth. And he said to him, “Follow me.” And leaving everything, he rose and followed him. And Levi made him a great feast in his house, and there was a large company of tax collectors and others reclining at table with them.
Within 7 years of coming to Christ, most Christians do not have any non-Christian friends.
Yet some of the most fulfilling times in our Christian walk are developing friendships with non-Christians, with a goal of leading them to Christ and helping them grow in their new relationship with God.
Leading people to Christ is one of the most rewarding experiences that you will have as a Christian. It is one of the greatest joys of a Christian’s life. If you talk to people who have been involved in bringing others to Christ, you will find they had great fulfillment and joy from it.
Who doesn’t want to lead their friends to Christ? Everyone can do friendship evangelism.
5. Invitational Approach.
The invitational approach is like the interpersonal approach, but as its name suggests, thrives on inviting people to events like a church service, a retreat, or a Bible study.
This is one of the most natural ways newer believers can reach out to others even if they may not have the right words to say.
The Samaritan woman Jesus met at the well in John 4.
After Jesus struck a conversation with her and revealed he was the Messiah, this woman ran back to her town and said to the people “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?”
Then he said to his servants, The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find. So, the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests.
The Biblical mandate to followers of Jesus is clear:
“Go and invite.”
God has prepared a sumptuous banquet for all people and followers of Jesus are called to invite others to that banquet.
We are “Extenders of the invitation."
Our job is to leave the banquet hall and go to where the people are and invite them to attend the banquet God has prepared for them.
In a Gallup poll of the unchurched in America, people were asked,
“Would you join a church?”
More than half said that they would!
Then, when asked why they had not joined a church, they said,
“No one has asked us.”
Andrew and Philip set an example for us.
“We have found the Messiah! Come and see for yourself”
Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of the two who heard what John had said and who had followed Jesus.
The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and tell him, “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ). And he brought him to Jesus.
Philip found Nathanael and told him, We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.
Nazareth! Can anything good come from there? Nathanael asked. Come and see, said Philip.
6. Service approach.
If you naturally notice the needs of others and enjoy serving them, you might prefer the service approach to evangelism.
People who prefer this approach often enjoy sharing the love of Christ through deed over word. People with the gift of hospitality often fall into this approach.
The biblical example of this approach is Tabitha (also known as Dorcas) in Acts 9:36-42. She is described as “full of good works and acts of charity,” who used her gift of making clothing for God’s glory. In this biblical episode, Tabitha died, causing much grief among the widows who knew her.
Her ministry touched many widows as we can see in verse 39,
“All the widows stood beside him weeping and showing tunics and other garments that Dorcas made while she was with them.”
They called the apostle Peter to help, and Peter raised Tabitha to life.
MAN DROWNS AT PARTY FOR LIFEGUARDS.
NEW ORLEANS A man drowned while attending a party for New Orleans lifeguards who were celebrating their first drowning-free swimming season in memory, officials say.
Jerome Moody, 31, was found on the bottom at the deep end of a New Orleans Recreation Department pool at the end of the party Tuesday, department Director Madlyn Richard said. Moody was not a lifeguard and was at the party as a guest.
He had not been swimming and was fully dressed, she said. Four lifeguards were on duty at the party and more than half the 200 people there were certified lifeguards, she said. The body was found as the pool was being cleared at the close of the party.
Lifeguards pulled the body out and attempted to revive Moody until emergency medical attendants arrived. An autopsy confirmed drowning. The lifeguards were really upset. It's a real tragedy, Ms. Richard said. This was the first annual party in memory where they could celebrate a trouble-free season.
How many people are drowning on your watch?
We all have our circles of influence, family, friends, neighbours and work colleagues, are you looking for and making opportunities to share the Good News of the Gospel with them or are you content to see them drown in their sins and go to a lost eternity?
A sick Church!
A church that doesn’t reproduce is sick. Its total evangelism program is summed up by one item: the annual revival meeting (if that). However, there will be no effort by the members to share their faith in the community, no evangelism through Sunday School classes, no training in soul winning, and no sense of the need to have such.
When the guest preacher shows up for revival, any unchurched person in the building is there strictly by accident.