Where do you start if you are seeking to get people moving out in evangelism? How do you choose an evangelism program and implement it?
Before you answer those questions, here is an important preliminary question: What am I seeking to accomplish?
If they are being honest, many people would answer, “I am seeking to find that magic bullet that will work instantly and in all situations.”
I see so many churches churning different evangelism programs, based upon this answer, with what I call the “program of the day” approach. Churches try something once and then judge whether it is that magic bullet they seek. If not, they try something else. Finally, they get tired and stop trying.
Here is what I believe is the answer to the question, “What am I seeking to accomplish?” I want to see people in my church come to love, live, and tell the gospel.
If that is what you are seeking to accomplish, you should understand that it is a process that takes time. It cannot be accomplished by continually trying the next new thing.
With that answer in mind, as you examine and choose an evangelism approach for your church can you find something that helps ordinary Christians in your church come to love the gospel more and more? Can you find something that helps people understand more clearly who Jesus is, why he came, and what it means to follow him? Can you find an approach that helps ordinary Christians understand the implications of the gospel on their lives? And can you find an approach that gives your people confidence in the Word of God as the primary evangelistic tool?
Working through questions like these, and doing your homework to be sure you know where you are going, will help you develop an evangelism approach that is good for the long haul.
It was more than thirteen years ago that Countryside Community Church, located in Sherwood, OR, was looking for an evangelism approach. They found Christianity Explored.
Here is how Peter Kozushko, the Pastor who oversees outreach and evangelism, describes what they found in Christianity Explored:
“We have been running Christianity Explored at our church three times a year for the past thirteen years and God has used the course to bring many people to faith in Christ as well as excite and equip our people to engage in the evangelistic mission of the church. We are grateful for how God has blessed this ministry. But even if the Gospel growth had been meager, we would still have run the course because it is theologically aligned with our church, it’s engaging, and it presents the Gospel with integrity (i.e. it doesn’t tip toe around sin, God’s wrath, and repentance). We must set forth the truth plainly and trust God for the results.”
We encourage you to do your homework and to know what you are looking for. Then consider if Christianity Explored is a resource that can help for the long haul!