Evangelism is defined as, “the God-given ability to share the gospel with non-believers in a relevant, practical, and engaging way so that they choose to become followers of Jesus.”
This definition encapsulates the heart of the great commission—to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature (Matt. 28:19-20; Lk. 14:23; Mk. 16:15).
What exactly is the gospel? The gospel is the good news that God saves sinners. When God the Father sent His Son to die on the cross, he made an atonement for our sins. In other words, Jesus paid our penalty and reconciled us back to God by taking our place and living a perfect life. This is good news because salvation is a free gift, not of works, but by grace through faith in the sacrifice of Jesus.
By accepting the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ by faith, we are brought into union and no longer stand guilty before God. Acts 2:38 tells us: “Repent, and be baptized for the forgiveness of your sins, and you shall receive the gift of eternal life.” Baptism symbolizes our death to the old self when we go under the water of judgment, and newness of life in Christ when we come up from the water.
After a person repents and believes in the gospel, they are ready to share their faith with others. Notice that evangelism—sharing our faith, is not defined by our ability, but is a God-given ability through the power of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, only a believer who has the indwelling spirit of God can adequately share their faith with non-believers.
The goal of evangelism is to implore, encourage, and engage with unbelievers the reasons why Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. As Christians, we are commanded by God to be prepared to give an answer to the hope that is within us, with gentleness and respect (1 Pet. 3:15). When we speak this truth in love (Eph. 4:15), we pray that God converts the hearts of the people we share this gospel with. It is not in our ultimate control whether one accepts or rejects it—but we must be faithful to share it.
What are some defining characteristics one should have when sharing their faith? First, it’s vital to have a passion for people to be transformed by the power of God. Second, when there is great joy in your heart, you know this is a spiritual gift God has given to you. Third, you want to practice tolerance and express empathy, no matter whether they are kind or rude. Finally, you should have a firm grasp of the gospel message and use relevant examples for unchurched people to comprehend.
If you want to learn more about the gospel, I wrote an article entitled: “What Is The Good News of Jesus?”. May the Lord bless your endeavors. Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!
article written by Chad A. Damitz