The Stewardship of Evangelism, Part 2
Remember evangelism is the overflow of the grace to the lost out of the heart of a joyful believer.
So far, I have presented the idea that we shepherds must minister to the hearts of the sheep so that their hearts will minister through their mouths and proclaim the good news of Jesus.
Mark Dever says, “Evangelism, in other words, is not doing everything we can to get a person to make a decision for Jesus—attempting to force a spiritual birth. Furthermore, evangelism is not the same thing as sharing a personal testimony. It’s not the same thing as presenting a rational defense of faith. It’s not even doing works of charity though all three of these things may accompany evangelism. Nor should evangelism be confused with the results of evangelism, as if to say we’ve only successfully evangelized when a conversion follows. No, evangelism is speaking words. It’s sharing news. It’s being faithful to God by presenting the good news—that Christ, by His death and resurrection, has secured a way for a holy God and sinful people to be reconciled. God will produce true conversion when we present this good news. In short, evangelism is presenting the good news freely and trusting God to convert people. Salvation comes from the Lord.”
I have strongly felt that part of my stewardship at this point is to stay alert to local opportunities for evangelism and bring them to the attention of the congregation. I like to scout things out for them, knowing that prepared hearts will look on their own. Sometimes your approval or caution will encourage them to move out more freely. Here are some common ideas.
Teach them to build redemptive relationships with unbelievers.
Teach them to use their homes as gospel centers.
Give some training in how to give a clear gospel witness.
Cast a vision for outreach events where the gospel will be preached. Team evangelism let even the timid have a part.
Teach them how to be alert to divine encounters where a Christian with a prepared heart encounters a lost one who has had God drawing his heart. This is a sweet experience which encourages alertness.
Introduce them to local ministries available and looking for volunteers (jail ministry, crisis pregnancy centers, rest homes, rescue missions, women’s shelters, mentoring programs in schools, etc.). Help them see things and reach out.
Ordain elders. Be ready to “lay hands” on the faithful and send them forth.
A true reviving from the life of Christ should eventually move us out of our comfort zone into the multitudes with a full heart and a fervent message that Jesus paid it all.
According to Acts 2:42, the New Testament church believed the same truth (doctrine), shared the same love (fellowship), remembered the same gospel (breaking of bread), depended on the same source (prayer), and committed to the same cause, “To know Christ and make Him known.”
The Titus Roundtable video series was never meant to be an exhaustive content of each stewardship. Nor was this content meant to offer some mysteriously new material or insight. Much has been written concerning all these stewardships. You are totally capable of adding to each one. My heart here has been to reveal an order which reflects a pattern in the way God, through Jesus, works. In their order, they reflect the ways of God. If we heed them, we can enjoy God’s best. Remember that revival is the experience of the church which overflows into evangelism as its expression. Let the servants be glad and press on—
Within the church
Into the world.