Who Is Beside You?
I have look at evangelism from several different angles over the last dozen and a half blogs. It has been a fascinating and enlightening experience to study the history of evangelism from outdoor meetings that Wesley vehemently rejected at first only to embrace and perfect later to the refinement of mass evangelistic crusades reaching thousands in large sports complexes. In spite of all our efforts to reach large groups with a single swoop, one-on-one evangelism still proves to be the most effective method because it requires us to be a part of it. One of the greatest thrills in a Christian’s life is leading someone else into the kingdom. Seeing the physical birth of one’s child is an unbelievable experience, so is witnessing someone’s spiritual birth. The Birthing Process is a beautiful experience, physically and spiritually.
Yet in the midst of this beauty the Church has also witnessed controversies: large evangelistic crusade teams ripping off financially local towns, churches, and municipalities; huge “reaping” of the lost only to lose them back to the world again because of lack of follow up after the evangelistic endeavor; the evangelist being a parachurch ministry, leaving town after the evangelistic endeavor instead of being part of the ongoing ministry of the local congregation; because of the lack of follow up the need to have yet another evangelistic endeavor again and again to fill in for those who dropped out of the church or returned to the world.
Personally, I have been involved in all kinds of evangelistic endeavors as I have shared in my blogs, but looking back, their failures glare with their successes. With televangelists flooding America’s airwaves, Christian radio easily found on America’s radio dials, Christian blogs, tweets, web sites, chat rooms, and streams on the Internet, then why is America progressing away from being a Christian nation?
An evangelist needs a pastor/shepherd to “feed my sheep” or nurture them in growth. An evangelist needs a teacher to teach these newly born sheep in the tenants of faith according to the Holy Spirit’s teaching of all truth through the Bible. An evangelist needs a prophet to hear the revelation of truth, teaching one how to live the Rhema Word, the living word, beside the Logos Word, or written word. An evangelist needs someone with apostolic insight, or point of view, to “see over” the whole process of nurturing a believer from birth towards being in the likeness of Jesus.
If an evangelist is missing one of these components, one of these passions, one of these points of views from encircling him in love and mercy in the Church, he will never see the fullness of the harvest he has dreamt of.
Stick with me in future blogs, as we examine those who support and are grateful for the evangelist and how they work together to “equip the saints” now that they are birthed.