I just put together a powerpoint presentation of all the blogs on fiverevealed.com on the topic of evangelism. Review and reflection always causes one to think, to analyze, to question, to want to know more.
Open air meetings by Whitehead in the 1700’s, the Camp Meeting movement in the 1800’s, the out door Jesus festivals and huge evangelistic crusades in sports arenas in the 1900’s, but a decade has already passed, and what is happening with evangelism in the 21st Century.
The Billy Grahams, Oral Roberts, and Pat Robertson’s are aging or deceased, but who is rising to fill the gap? Instead of tents and arenas, the Church has build big edifices, mega-church structures with great theatrical capabilities to “draw in” the lost rather than “reaching out” beyond their walls.
The internet with social networking has brought on a new mentality of social interaction. Relationships are not just local community but world wide, but not based on the face to face meeting each other’s needs level. In the book of Acts, 5000 were saved in one day, but then the Church began building a network of communal collection to give to the poor, meet the needs of the widows, taking care of the sick, the imprisoned, etc. How is the Church to build a network built for the internet, social network, facebook generation?
Every generation of youth questions the validity of Church structure and relevance, with this generation doing the same, for their world has expanded beyond the local church at every corner to local, state, national, and even international websites, blogs, tweets, and facebook messages. Paul wrote letters that took days to get to their destinations. What would he think of email today? Would he have “blogged” for all the Churches to read?
Often, my frustration with the Church was to get them off of their pew, out the door, go into their local community and walk the walk, sharing with everyone about Jesus. Today, the challenge remains to get one away from their computer to have direct, face to face, meaningful relationships in daily lives with one’s neighbor. Christians have always had “talking the talk” down, but Jesus wants us to “walk the walk”. In a “social networking” context of a lot of talk, how is the Church to respond to the walk? That is the challenge of the 21st Century evangelistic fervor of the Church today!