A False Commitment to Evangelism

When it comes to evangelism, there are things that people can be committed to that really isn’t evangelism. These things may look good, sound good, and makes us feel good, but are not true evangelism. We can be tempted to substitute good things for evangelism in an attempt to make us feel as though we have done our job.

Here are two concerns I have about evangelism.

1- I am concerned that people are outsourcing evangelism and thinking that doing so alleviates their responsibility.

I have talked with a lot of people who think that because they give money to the missions program of their church they are fulfilling their evangelistic responsibilities. While I am all for giving to missions, evangelism is not something that we can outsource or pay someone else to do. It is a personal responsibility to which each believer in Christ must be committed.

2- I am concerned that people think that as long as they are involved in corporate evangelism there is no need for involvement in personal evangelism.

I am afraid that people don’t understand that there are really two types of evangelism. There is both corporate evangelism and personal evangelism. Corporate evangelism is what the church does as a whole. Special services, evangelistic meetings, ministries, and programs would all fall under this category. Personal evangelism is each individual intentionally being a witness to those they come in contact with on a daily basis such as co-workers, family, friends, and neighbors for the purpose of evangelism.

We must understand that involvement in a ministry of the church that can be considered evangelistic does not automatically make someone evangelistically-minded. Helping out in corporate evangelism is needed, but does not negate our responsibility to be involved in personal evangelism.

Evangelism is a personal responsibility. It is not something that the church does for us. It is not something that we can pay someone else to do instead of us. It is something to which we must be committed.


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5 Benefits of Big Days

This past Sunday our church had a big day. We highlighted our after school program that ministers to over 110 families in our community. We spent over a month personally inviting all of them, we sent mailers, we offered a free lunch, and we scheduled the kids in the after school program to sing in one of our morning worship services.

The result? We had over 40 visiting families (most of them unchurched). Here are some of the benefits I have noticed to having big days such as the one we had last week.

1- It builds excitement in the church.

Just the thought of having a big day builds excitement. But when the planned big day turns out to actually be a BIG day, the excitement continues. People love to see the church building overflowing with people. They see that with some hard work it is possible to have a lot of visitors.

2- It exposes your church to more people.

The vast majority of those who attended our big day had never attended before. It was their first exposure to our worship service. Some of the people I talked to had preconceived ideas about our church that were not accurate. Them coming allowed that to be corrected.

Now, as a result of our big day, more people know who we are and what we do.

3- It increases your prospects list.

This is common sense, but because of how we encourage visitors to complete guest registrations cards (read about that HERE), we now have many more prospects with which to follow-up.

4- It leads to increased attendance.

Many studies have been conducted that support this fact. Whenever a church has a big day where attendance significantly spikes up, ongoing attendance remains higher than it was before the big day. Obviously, not all who attended will continue to attend, but some will. Some members who have not been attending regularly will see the excitement the church has about reaching out and be drawn back in to regular attendance.

5- It is an opportunity to preach the gospel to the unchurched.

This is by far the most important point. Big days provide the opportunity to preach the gospel to people who may have never heard it before. We should be encouraged by the fact that Jesus was proclaimed to people who have not yet acknowledged their need for Christ.

Are big days a lot of work? Yes. Do big days require the involvement of many volunteers? Yes. Is it worth it? Absolutely. Schedule several big days throughout the year and you, too, will see the many benefits.

 

7 Hindrances to the Gospel

As believers we should strive to communicate the gospel to the people God has placed in our lives. In doing so, we must remember that how we communicate the gospel is crucially important. Some people communicate the ‘gospel’ in a way that actually hinders the true message of the gospel. Here are a seven ways this takes place.

1- A Wrong Attitude About the Gospel

It is possible to have an attitude about the gospel that stands in the way of the message of the gospel. Remember, it is the truth that should cause division, not our attitude about it. Our attitude should demonstrate a love and concern for people.

2- Dumbing Down the Gospel

Some people dumb down the gospel so much that it ceases to be the gospel. The gospel is more than reading a prayer or reciting a cliché catch-phrase. The gospel is such ‘Good News’ because of the reality of the bad news – that we are sinners who deserve the just wrath of God and on our own we cannot remedy our lost condition.

3- Americanizing the Gospel

As David Platt said in his book Radical, “We need to explore how much of our understanding of the gospel is American and how much is biblical.”

4- Socializing the Gospel

As much as Christians should be involved in helping the poor and feeding the starving; that is not the gospel, it is a result of the gospel. Man’s primary need is spiritual, not physical.

5- Gold-Plating the Gospel

The gospel is not a prosperous, get-rich-quick scheme. As soon as that is a focus, the true gospel has been deserted.

6- The ‘Me’ Gospel

The gospel is not about worshipping ourselves, it is about glorifying God. Any gospel that does not accomplish this purpose is not the true gospel.

7- A Focus on Issues instead of the Gospel

There are some who spend so much of their time focusing on and arguing about non-important issues that the gospel is lost. Do the people in your life know more about your stance on insignificant issues or about your passion for the gospel? Keep the main thing the main thing.

We must be sure we are accurately communicating the gospel in a way that is consistent with the message of the gospel.