The word evangelism is derived from the Greek euaggelion (yoo-ang-ghel’ -ee-on), from which we get our word “Gospel”. Or “Good News” or, by some interpretations “Glad Tidings”.
Thus, evangelism is nothing more or less than Gospel-ism, or Good News-ism – the means of propagation for that which is contained in the Gospel.
So that we who first hoped in Christ [who first put our confidence in Him have been destined and appointed to] live for the praise of His glory! 13 In Him you also who have heard the Word of Truth, the glad tidings (Gospel) of your salvation, and have believed in and adhered to and relied on Him, were stamped with the seal of the long-promised Holy Spirit. (AMP)
Therefore an evangelist is a messenger of the good news or rather the bringer of the good tidings
An evangelist is a person who has been given the gift of evangelism.
And His gifts were [varied; He Himself appointed and gave men to us] some to be apostles (special messengers), some prophets (inspired preachers and expounders), some evangelists (preachers of the Gospel, traveling missionaries), some pastors (shepherds of His flock) and teachers. (AMP)
The gift of evangelist is the special ability God gives to certain members of the body of Christ to share the gospel with unbelievers in such a way that men and women become Jesus’ disciples and responsible, fruitful members of HIS body.
1. In a compelling, persuasive way the evangelist urges the hearer to make a decision to follow Christ as a natural step of commitment. The evangelist is a persuader, born of the conviction that a person without God is headed for eternal punishment. He is passionate about rescuing the perishing and caring for the lost.
2. Although all Christians should be able and eager to tell others what Christ has done for them (Mark 5:19 But Jesus refused to permit him, but said to him, Go home to your own [family and relatives and friends] and bring back word to them of how much the Lord has done for you, and [how He has] had sympathy for you and mercy on you.(AMP)), not all are called to be in the office of an Evangelist. It is a distinct gift given by the ascended Christ to some of His servants.
3. The evangelist will tell the story—proclaim the good news. The word evangelist contains the smaller word evangel, which literally means good news. The evangelist is also able to give a reason and defense of the faith against false and untenable claims.
4. The evangelist works within the body of Christ. Along with other gifted ones, the work of the evangelist is to prepare people for God’s work in the harvest – work that extends naturally to discipline those who are born into the Kingdom and nurturing of God’s people.
His intention was the perfecting and the full equipping of the saints (His consecrated people), [that they should do] the work of ministering toward building up Christ’s body (the church),(AMP)
MISCONCEPTIONS OF EVANGELISM
Modern denotes a change from that which is old-fashioned or out of date. It refers to a period that is distinct and apart from the past.
The biblical way of approaching way of evangelism remains the same since then to now. There should not be any change because:
A clear minded evangelist should have in mind that Christian tradition is not what we preach but rather the Gospel of Christ. Traditions can change as generations change but the word of God remains the same.
We can fix evangelism into our boxes so as to fit us but rather we should fit ourselves to it. And be part of it for we change but it’s just as it was.
a. Man’s condition has not changed
The heart is deceitful above all things, and it is exceedingly perverse and corrupt and severely, mortally sick! Who can know it [perceive, understand, be acquainted with his own heart and mind]?(AMP)
For we have all become like one who is unclean [ceremonially, like a leper], and all our righteousness (our best deeds of rightness and justice) is like filthy rags or a polluted garment; we all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away [far from God’s favor, hurrying us toward destruction].(AMP)
b. The gospel has not changed
The gospel of repentance and a God that cares about kind remains to be the same. This gospel don’t change in fields of evangelism to pull masses through motivation. We should speak the right gospel
Such [former] ages of ignorance God, it is true, ignored and allowed to pass unnoticed; but now He charges all people everywhere to repent (to change their minds for the better and heartily to amend their ways, with abhorrence of their past sins),(AMP)
And saying, Repent (think differently; change your mind, regretting your sins and changing your conduct), for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.(AMP)
c. The God We Serve Has not changed Malachi 3:6
For I am the Lord, I do not change; that is why you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.(AMP)
Like a mantle [thrown about one’s self] You will roll them up, and they will be changed and replaced by others. But You remain the same, and Your years will never end nor come to failure.(AMP)
2. To make the gospel fit the modern man we have another misconception… the means of evangelizing
The means and focus of evangelism must be updated and made more palatable for “modern” man – as if the 21st century human is depraved and dead in sins to a different degree than his counterparts in other times. Accordingly, the means of evangelism has been perverted. We now show movies and perform skits, set up hotlines and counseling centers, host basketball tournaments and hayrides, and give away ice cream and bicycles in an attempt to cajole people into hearing a watered-down, compromised Gospel
i. True and the right means of evangelism is from the word of God
And [the man] said, then, father, I beseech you to send him to my father’s house–(AMP)
For I have five brothers–so that he may give [solemn] testimony and warn them, lest they too come into this place of torment. (AMP)
But Abraham said, They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear and listen to them.(AMP)
But he answered, No, father Abraham, but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent (change their minds for the better and heartily amend their ways, with abhorrence of their past sins).(AMP)
He said to him, If they do not hear and listen to Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be persuaded and convinced and believe [even] if someone should rise from the dead.(AMP)
The entrance and unfolding of Your words give light; their unfolding gives understanding (discernment and comprehension) to the simple.(AMP)
ii. The best means of evangelizing is by preaching
But how are people to call upon Him Whom they have not believed [in whom they have no faith, on whom they have no reliance]? And how are they to believe in Him [adhere to, trust in, and rely upon Him] of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without a preacher? And how can men [be expected to] preach unless they are sent? As it is written, how beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings! [How welcome is the coming of those who preach the good news of His good things!](AMP)
1 Corinthians 1:21
For when the world with all its earthly wisdom failed to perceive and recognize and know God by means of its own philosophy, God in His wisdom was pleased through the foolishness of preaching [salvation, procured by Christ and to be had through Him], to save those who believed (who clung to and trusted in and relied on Him).(AMP)
Modern evangelism movement has been in regard to the stimulus and motivation of evangelism. The focus of modern evangelism has been to gain a decision, to make a psycho-emotional appeal that triggers a positive, corresponding response, and to effect an intellectual resolution in line with what is desired. It finds the means of effecting these goals in corrupted psychology, mind control, and emotional prompting.
True evangelism finds power and essence in.
I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit. However, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing.(AMP)
We can never and not eliminate God from our evangelism life and expect fruit. He gives abundant to the branch that abides to him.
EXCEPT THE Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; except the Lord keeps the city, the watchman wakes but in vain.(AMP)
The knowledge of man’s incapacity
Then said I, Woe is me! For I am undone and ruined, because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!(AMP)
O Lord [pleads Jeremiah in the name of the people], I know that [the determination of] the way of a man is not in himself; it is not in man [even in a strong man or in a man at his best] to direct his [own] steps.(AMP)
The fact that Christ saves
For it is by free grace (God’s unmerited favor) that you are saved (delivered from judgment and made partakers of Christ’s salvation) through [your] faith. And this [salvation] is not of yourselves [of your own doing, it came not through your own striving], but it is the gift of God; Not because of works [not the fulfillment of the Law’s demands], lest any man should boast. [It is not the result of what anyone can possibly do, so no one can pride himself in it or take glory to himself.](AMP)
Thus, the sustaining power of evangelism is the knowledge that we are fundamentally incapable of doing God’s Will in our own power, and yet that it pleased God to use us as His servants. Furthermore, beyond doing our duty as messengers, we must recognize that results are solely of God.
The Fourth Misconception – “Results”
The fourth misconception that the world holds regarding modern evangelism is in relation to its results. It is a sad fact that only a small fraction of the multitudes converted by modern methods ever darken the door of a church. Instead, it is perfectly acceptable that bars and strip clubs and other establishments of evil remain open in the wake of great “evangelistic outreaches”, while periodical services are held so that the lost conscience may remain assuaged by “rededication” to the Lord.
Despite this, true evangelism leads to:
1. A. Repentance of Sins and departing from the evil ways
Now when they heard this they were stung (cut) to the heart, and they said to Peter and the rest of the apostles (special messengers), Brethren, what shall we do? (AMP)
Many also of those who were now believers came making full confession and thoroughly exposing their [former deceptive and evil] practices. (AMP)
Submission to Baptism and a Commitment to Walk with Christ
And they declared the Word of the Lord [the doctrine concerning the attainment through Christ of eternal salvation in the kingdom of God] to him and to all who were in his house. (AMP)
And he took them the same hour of the night and bathed [them because of their bloody] wounds, and he was baptized immediately and all [the members of] his [household]. (AMP)
And they steadfastly persevered, devoting themselves constantly to the instruction and fellowship of the apostles, to the breaking of bread [including the Lord’s Supper] and prayers.
True Fellowship with Other Like-Minded Believers
Now the company of believers was of one heart and soul, and not one of them claimed that anything which he possessed was [exclusively] his own, but everything they had was in common and for the use of all.(AMP)
Establishment of, and Addition to, a New Testament Church to the Glory of God
Constantly praising God and being in favor and goodwill with all the people; and the Lord kept adding [to their number] daily those who were being saved [from spiritual death].
In conclusion, the knowledge of all the above should impact our evangelism. It should not only make us conscious of the God-centeredness of every aspect of true evangelism (John 15:5), but it should also make us acutely aware of our unworthiness before Him, and our need to submit ourselves and our efforts unto Him on a continual basis. At the same time that it should burden us for the lost, it should make us draw closer to that precious faith for which our forefathers in the faith suffered – and for which faith they preferred all the terrors of Heb. 11:36-38 rather than give an inch in their beliefs. In every aspect of our Christian life – no less in our approach to evangelism – may we also be prepared to live as decidedly and uncompromisingly as they?
Ev. Godfrey blessed son.