Evangelism should be an enjoyable task that all Christians participate in. It is, after all, the preaching of “the good news”. However, talking to others about our faith can be intimidating for a variety of reasons. Some of the obstacles that prevent us from sharing the gospel might include the fear of being rejected, the fear of not knowing enough, or even the fear of talking to a complete stranger concerning a topic so important. Evangelizing to a lost world that may or may not be receptive to the message can be a bit overwhelming, however let’s consider three keys that have the intention of helping us overcome these fears and some practical ways of spreading the gospel.
We evangelize because it is commanded
Perhaps the most obvious motivator we should have to preach is because as followers of Christ we have pledged to submit our will to the One who possesses all authority (Matthew 28:18). Because He holds all authority, He commands His disciples to, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Amen” (Matthew 28:19, 20).
In Matthew 28 we see a direct command. In 2 Corinthians 5 there is not a direct command, but the language used by the Holy Spirit certainly indicates that preaching the message of God is expected
from us. Verse 18, 19 of 2 Corinthians 5 state that the “ministry of reconciliation” and the “word of reconciliation” has been committed to those who are in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). However, is any good accomplished if the message that reconciles man to God is idly laid down? Not only has the message which reconciles man to God been delivered to us, but verse 20 commissions us as ambassadors for Christ and therefore charges us with the responsibility of making it known to mankind. The privilege we have to serve as ambassadors, or representatives, of Christ should propel us to do our part in reconciling this world to God through the preaching of His word.
We evangelize because we believe
We do not only preach because we have been commanded to, but also because it is an expression of our faith in the message that God provides. Consider how this works in your own life: when you have discovered a fantastic weight loss plan, found an incredible cleaning supply for cheap, or are raising money for a fundraiser where you are particularly invested, do you not tend to be more vocal regarding these things because you believe in them and have seen their benefit firsthand? In a similar manner, having tasted that the Lord is gracious in bringing about our salvation, should we not proclaim that which we know can save us? This is the exact point Paul makes in 2 Corinthians 4:13: “And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to that what is written, ‘I believed and therefore I spoke,’ we also believe and therefore speak”. Since we believe in the hope which awaits us, let us verbalize that hope that others may be partakers.
We evangelize in order to fulfill the Golden Rule
While the “Golden Rule” is not a biblical term, the principle it is commonly associated with is a golden one. “Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the law and the prophets” (Matthew 7:12). As Christ is concluding His sermon from the mount, He asks His followers to treat others as they would want to be treated. I cannot think of a better way to treat someone than to share the good news with them. Call to remembrance your own conversion. How thankful are you than someone took the time and effort to preach to you? Perhaps it was your parents. Thank them and do the same with others. Maybe it was a stranger that preached to your family somewhere down the line. Be grateful and do the same with others. Whatever the case, let’s proclaim the message knowing that we would want someone to do the same for us.
Practical ways of spreading the word
- Distribute the Chapman Acres business cards. These are great to leave with someone when a long conversation may not be convenient, because of the fact that they carry so much information and have space for a personal note. Leaving one with the waiter at a restaurant works well too.
- Use the old-fashioned method: door to door.
- Use social media. Our website is easy to navigate which in turn makes it easy to share various links to sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. With so much of people’s lives being concentrated on technology, this may be most efficient way of reaching the largest audience.
- Imitate Phillip’s actions in Acts 8. If you see someone already reading a bible, approach them and try to generate a spiritual conversation. Bibles are often placed in locations where long-waiting times occur (medical offices), and this could be a perfect opportunity to start a conversation.
- There are so many other ways to evangelize, but the key is looking for and acting on those opportunities.
The words spoken in 2 Kings 7 are referencing an earthly treasure, but could the same not be said of a spiritual treasure? “….We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news, and we remain silent. If we wait until morning light, some punishment will come upon us. Now therefore, come, let us go and tell the king’s household” (2 Kings 7:9).