Thinking Out Loud

July 6, 2009

Forced Evangelism: Enough Already!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — paulthinkingoutloud @ 10:01 pm

It’s contrived, it’s forced, it’s usually too simple, and it’s definitely formulaic.   But there are certain methodologies being taught that are extremely popular with some Christians.

Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s important that we look for opportunities to plant seeds, to be “salt” in our world, and to share a verbal witness.   And I believe that every Christian should always be ready to give an answer to explain or describe the hope that lies within them.   I believe every Christian should experience what it’s like to be talking with someone and not worrying about what they should say, knowing that the Holy Spirit is providing the words.   I believe that every Christian should bear fruit, reproduce after their own kind, and know (and perhaps be in ‘follow up’ mode with) people they have introduced to Jesus.

But I believe these things should happen organically.  There is no other way.   When Jesus reached out to people it was natural and authentic and unique to every individual.

So I kind of resonate with a post written by Jon Reid last week entitled, 14 Reasons to Stop Evangelizing Your Friends.    Is the title an overstatement?  Definitely.    Are his points well taken?   Absolutely.   Read it.

Don’t strive to be an evangelist.    In fact, don’t strive at all.

Related post on this blog:  Deborah Drapper – 13 Year Old Evangelist (May 15/09)

Related post on this blog:  Evangelism in a Box (June 12/09)

Related post on this blog:  Religion versus Spirituality (February 27/08)


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3 Comments »

  1. Paul, thanks for the link. It’s not often I can write, “I agree with everything you just said.”

    Comment by Jon Reid — July 7, 2009 @ 8:13 pm

  2. Thanks, Paul, for linking us to Jon’s site. I love his graciousness. His post is a couple of weeks old now, but since you brought it up, I thought I would just mention that the relative absence of two points really struck me:

    1)”Conversion” is the work of the Holy Spirit — no amount of conversation or friendship can convert anyone. Sure conversation (‘witnessing’) can help – or it can harm. I once had a friend who considered himself a gifted evangelist, and according to him, he had a lot of ‘notches on his gun’.

    His method included walking up to a stranger on the street, slapping them on the back and saying, “So, friend, are you still on your way to hell?” !!

    2) Prayer. Prayer is always the key to everything!! Especially to the changing of the heart and mind of an ‘unbeliever’! And especially it’s the key as to how we ‘witness’ to our friends, family. Whenever I know I am going to be with someone who has not yet come to faith in Jesus, I pray and ask the Holy Spirit to guide me in all I say and do. If there was not a chance to actually have a conversation about Jesus and salvation, I don’t come away disappointed. I trust that my life, and the Holy Spirit in and through my life, spoke volumes — and I continue to pray that Jesus would reveal Himself to them. It is awesome to watch the Holy Spirit at work in person’s life!

    Somehow, it seems to me to come down to the difference between relationship vs. the law and faith vs.religion.

    Comment by kaybee — July 8, 2009 @ 11:13 am

    • kaybee, those are excellent, excellent points. Yes and yes, and thank you for the reminder. We would do far better regardless of “approach” if we just prayed, and kept praying, for the Holy Spirit to work.

      Comment by Jon Reid — July 8, 2009 @ 11:06 pm


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