Tag Archives: evangelism

A Model for How to Teach About Jesus From the Old Testament (Matthew 1-2)

In Luke 24:19-27, we see Jesus explaining the gospel. One of the things that makes this passage interesting is that he teaches about himself from the Old Testament:

And he said to them, “What things?” And they said to him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning, and when they did not find his body, they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.” And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it

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Q&A: Is it Ever Right to Use Such Terms As “Turn from Sin,” “Yield,” “Surrender,” or “Repent” when Sharing the Gospel?

For the unbeliever, all of the terms will likely be unclear and require definition.  I think they are all fine, if properly defined, but some are more easily accessible in a biblical text (and thus more easily accurately defined) than others.

For the sake of this conversation, I will suppose a definition of repentance at conversion as recognizing that sin is actually wrong and has incurred God’s wrath.  With repentance and faith in Christ comes a desire to be obedient from the heart (Romans 6:17).  There is a continuing effort of repentance for the believer (as, possibly, in 2 Corinthians 7:9) that involves conviction of sinful behavior and involves resolution on the part of the believer to be against that sin and be rid of it.  That continued effort of repentance is not in the scope of this discussion, in my opinion.… Keep Reading

Instruction from the Book of Acts for Sharing the Gospel

In the book of Acts, we find a treasure of information concerning the foundation and operation of Christ’s Church. As recipients of this revealed Word, we do not only receive historical facts, but we also receive a model for ecclesiology, fellowship, and, among other things, strategy for evangelism.  Given the broad range of audiences that hear an evangelistic message from the early Church, we would expect to see a diversity in approaches and strategies—and that is exactly what we find.  With that said, we (maybe predictably) find this in common for every attempt at evangelism in Acts: the top priority is always to proclaim Christ as savior (Acts 4:12 and Acts 17:2-3).

1. Sharing the Gospel with Those Who Have a Biblical Foundation

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Review & Analysis: “Evangelism and the Intellectual,” from Billy Graham

Billy Graham addressed Harvard University Law Students in 1962. Justin Taylor describes how the audio is a treat to the present day listener: “For those of us whose only image of Dr. Graham is of an older man speaking slowly in a stadium while giving the simple gospel message, it’s quite interesting to listen to the 43-year-old evangelist quoting contemporary psychologists and playrights and philosophers as he seeks to explain sin, atonement, conversion, and meaning to an audience of skeptics.”

This is my analysis, observations, and takeaways from the surprisingly relevant lecture.

In an address to intellectuals about how Christian evangelism interacts with “the intellectual,” Billy Graham is very transparent and direct. As his speech will reveal, he is quite aware that there are likely many in the room who do not think much of the authority or relevance of Scripture. To make a case for the relevance of the gospel, Graham demonstrates that society—and humanity—has a problem.

Symptoms of Humanity’s ProblemKeep Reading

Q&A: Is it Appropriate to Invite an Unbeliever to “Ask Christ to Save You”?

It is clear that sharing the gospel involves more than just broadcasting information. In order to be saved, one must profess faith in Christ. It is incumbent on the Christian that shares the gospel to, at some point, appropriately make an invitation on behalf of Christ and proclaim “be reconciled to God” (2 Corinthians 5:20). There are a number of ways one could invite a person to “be reconciled to God.”  Is it appropriate to invite an unbeliever to “ask Jesus to save” them?

The Example of Jesus

 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and his livestock.” Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will

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How Should We Define the “Gospel” when Sharing our Faith?

Some might see this title and say that it doesn’t matter how you define the gospel so long as the person sharing the gospel encourages the hearer to “believe Jesus.” That claim has a good motive; it expresses a desire to not over-think the conversation or burden it with many words. It is possible to over-complicate an explanation of the gospel and do harm. But a claim that “believe Jesus” expresses the essentials of saving faith is also dysfunctional. We can do harm by over-simplifying the gospel message to the point that it is no longer the gospel at all. Defining what constitutes the gospel message is a faithful task that honors God and demonstrates love for our neighbor. What is necessary to understand the gospel? What are the essentials of saving faith?… Keep Reading

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