The Complete Evangelism Guidebook: Expert Advice on Reaching Others for Christ

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Icon Jan 24, 2014
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I can’t remember how much I paid for this book, only that I picked it up for cheap from a Koorong stand at Belgrave Heights Men’s Convention a couple of years ago.

From a brief glimpse at the back cover and contents, I could tell it was a pretty good deal – over 70 chapters of practical advice from nearly 60 evangelism experts covering a whole range of considerations and tactics and statistics and apologetics and types of people and angles to consider…

It has been great Summer reading – 70 short chapters, each by a different author, and each chapter covering the topic of evangelism in a slightly different way.

Here are some of the notable nuggets of wisdom I jotted down:

  • Evangelism is about saving people from dying without Christ. But it also about saving people from living without Him.
  • There is no greater thrill, privilege and joy than leading people to Jesus
  • Matthew 22:37-39 – Love God, love people – this is why we evangelise
  • Put your faith in He who is faithful (Lamentations 3:21-23). We are saved by faith, not works. But our works are a response to our saving faith.
  • Servant evangelism – evangelise through acts of service and love e.g. paying for customer behind you in drive-through
  • Someone suggests individuals usually experience 12-20 ‘anointed moments’ before they come to Christ i.e. 12-20 experiences of Christian love and truth in action
  • You don’t argue people into the kingdom of God, you show them
  • Show before you tell. Touch the heart before the head
  • Ours is an experiential culture i.e. people want to see and understand Christianity in action before/as they believe it’s propositional truth
    • Does it work for me?
    • Does it make me feel good?
    • Does the experience work?
  • Every revival there has ever been has always been grounded in an explosion of prayer and evangelism
  • The most effective evangelists and the most obedient and faithful, not the best trained
  • THE POWER OF PERSONAL TESTIMONY – nobody can argue with your own subjective experience. But use it to clearly make Jesus the hero.
  • You may not be able to argue the theology perfectly, but you can still tell of your own authentic, real, heartfelt experience of being lost and hopeless, but now you are alive and with purpose
  • Look to integrate your faith into the fabric of your everyday experience. Look to illustrate the gospel in how you live i.e. what does it look like to love your neighbour, what does it look like to have peace and eternal security?
  • Tell AND show AND do i.e. not enough to use just words, but consistent actions and attitudes as well. Witness with our lives as we witness with our lips
  • 1 Peter 3:15 is a key verse
  • In the NT, the witness of believers always demonstrated fearless, intentional, passionate sharing about Jesus out of the overflow of radically changes lives
  • If there is a problem, the gospel has an answer
  • Before there is a harvest, the seeds must be planted e.g. 2 years before amidst rejection and seemingly unsuccessful evangelistic efforts
  • Be encouraged – we are not commanded to be successful, but to be faithful
  • 1 Peter 4:14 – Don’t fear rejection. Expect it.
  • The problem is not that we have limited opportunities to bring up Jesus. My day is full of opportunities.
  • What is the best way to encourage someone in their faith? It may be different depending on the person e.g. modelling, direct instruction, experiential?
  • Christianity is not ‘caught’ – it needs to be actively shared, spoken, taught
  • Make it personal – tell people what has happened to me, and not just abstracted objective truths. This is a way of being non-confrontational and articulating your own worldview without ‘imposing’
  • Be faithful, steadfast in prayer, compassionate, and believing He is in control
  • Men are searching for significance
  • The bible is full of characters who are working full-time in the workforce, yet still on mission for God
  • Relationships are at the very centre of life, so we should work hard at them
  • 80% of time adults become Christians through the influence of a trusted friend
  • Jesus used everyday objects to explain truth. Work with the context you are in.
  • Don’t just disciple people who are just like me. Consider Jesus – a friend of sinners. He didn’t just gather people like him as his disciples – he deliberately sought out people furthest from him
  • Be bold. Don’t try to be their buddy first. People need Jesus more than they need you as a friend
  • In John 4, it takes Jesus about 37sec of conversation with the Samaritan woman to share the gospel
  • Building long term relationships is the best way to lead a man to Christ – win trust, stick in for the long haul, treat him like a man