Looking through the April 2014 “Evangelicals Now” newspaper caused me to ponder upon the issue of how many evangelism conferences and courses there are. I am not talking here about evangelistic events or courses where we seek to reach people with the great news of the gospel. Rather I refer to those conferences and courses which are arranged to seek to stir and equip believers to engage in evangelism.
I am left wondering why we need so many of these. Now don’t get me wrong – I believe in the need for training and equipping. I believe in the responsibility of church leaders to labour so that the church is equipped for service. Paul in Ephesians 4:12 speaks of how leaders are given among God’s people to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.
However, my thought is that there seems to be a lot of training in and talking about evangelism and not much actual evangelism.
The pattern of scripture appears to be that of the people of God coming together to meet with the Lord and with one another and then disperse to be for Christ share of Him, their beloved Saviour, with others.
So here are some issues:
- Is there a problem with our preaching? Why is it that people are not being enthused to go forth and share of their Saviour?
- Is there a problem with our praying? Are we really praying for people to be saved? Are we praying for opportunities to speak of Christ? Prayer puts us in touch with our Lord and gives us the power for evangelism.
- Are training courses actually counter-productive? By this I mean do they convey the impression t0 people that they have to be able to say this or that to people or be able to answer this or that question? This can put people off speaking for the Lord because they feel a sense of inadequacy.
- Simply we need to testify to Christ and His great salvation.
- Simply we need to love people and want to engage in their lives.
Spirit of the Lord, may you yet invigorate us to be an evangelistic people longing to share of our great Saviour.