What do you think of when you hear the word “evangelism”? Maybe you see a picket sign with harsh words of judgment splashed across it.
Or you might even experience a twinge of fear or guilt at the thought.
What do you think God intended when he asked us to go into the entire world with His message of hope and why would he ask us to do it? Let’s think it through.
Here are some good reasons for us to evangelize…
To share the joy of the Lord in our hearts:
Consider all those who were healed by Jesus. Their hearts were filled with Joy, and though Jesus asked many of them to “tell no one”about their experience with him, they simply had to tell others about this Jesus.
Or consider the apostles and the disciples at Pentecost who received the Holy Spirit and could not hold in the message that Christ was risen from the dead. They were given power by the Holy Spirit to speak to others about the saving power of Jesus. We have the same access to the same Spirit and know this same truth today!
To obey and to show our love for him:
Mark 16:15 : “He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.’”
Matthew 28:19 : “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
John 14:21 : “Whoever had my commandments and keeps them is the one who loves me.”
We are, all of us, followers, disciples of Jesus and this is his command and commission to all those who claim to be His!
Why not evangelize?:
1. Worst case scenario in normal, everyday situations for you telling someone about Jesus: they get mad at you and yell. Best case scenario: someone’s life is changed and they come to the Lord. When you put those side by side it makes it a little harder to let fear stop you!
2. Secondly, check out this powerful video made by well-known comedian and atheist, Penn Jillete:
You might still be feeling nervous and anxious; wondering how you can do this and maybe thinking it’s too hard or too scary. Here are some tips to make things a little less overwhelming:
Share your personal story with someone:
When we live for God, the change is noticeable and it is likely that others will ask us how things have changed in our lives. Be prepared to tell anyone you might meet how God has changed your heart and life for the better, should the situation present itself.
Reach out in love and kindness (servant evangelism):
– John 13:34-35 says that people will know that we are the Lord’s disciples by seeing our love for one another. There are a lot of ways we can show God’s love and be an example without even saying his name.
o Invite your neighbors over for brownies, or maybe some homemade soup. People love free food and an open door!
o Write note of encouragement to co-workers or classmates.
o Volunteer and serve in your community.
o Think of practical ways you can show kindness to others!
o Learn more here: http://www.servantevangelism.com/
A slightly more direct form of evangelism that I have found successful and encouraging is something you can try out next time you’re out to eat. When your waiter brings you your food, let them know that you usually pray for your food and ask them if there is anything they might want prayer for. I was very nervous about doing this, but I have done it on several occasions and I have never heard a “no”from anyone!
Live your life:
Probably the best way to share God’s saving and changing power is by living our lives in tune with him. His power and work in us will be obvious because we will serve, testify, and love in His name.
Evangelizing doesn’t have to be scary or judgmental. With practice doing these things will come naturally, from the overflow of joy in our hearts that has been given to us by a God who loves us.