Thursday, March 13, 2014
Here's a way to become "that guy" ...
I responded that I wouldn't consider myself just an "evangelism guy" because my passion isn't limited to just sharing the Gospel with the lost. I also want to see them surrender their lives to Christ, be fully discipled, see them equipped for ministry, see them become disciple-makers, and make sure they're shepherded well. I want to see the same for those who already know Christ. I want to see lives transformed to the glory of God. But that all starts with evangelism, which has been a big part of my ministry for almost three decades, so it's not uncommon for other ministers to think of me as an "evangelism guy."
In our culture today, the gist is not to become known as "that guy." You know, the guy who always steps into pictures and ruins it with his funny faces and stealing away the focus. Or that guy who still goes to high school parties after he has graduated high school. Or that guy who always makes a fool of himself in social settings.
You know, "that" guy!
How sad it is that ministers who still have a passion for evangelism and discipleship have become known in some church leadership circles as "that guy." But if having a passion for bringing people to Christ is being "that guy," then we need a lot more people who are "that guy"!
Research into being "that guy" --- a Christian who will share the Gospel with others --- has produced a staggeringly tragic statistic. The data indicates that 96.7 percent of all Christians will never share the Gospel with anyone in their lifetime!
What a massive failure that is of Christ's commission to His church:
"Jesus came and told his disciples, 'I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age'," Matthew 28:18-20.
The Apostle Paul says that all of us who are followers of Christ are supposed to be "that guy" ...
"And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people's sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. So we are Christ's ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, 'Come back to God!'" 2 Corinthians 5:18-20.
A primary contributing factor to why so many Christians don't share the Gospel with anyone is because they don't know how to do so. Not only has the church failed at carrying out the Great Commission, its leaders have failed at one of their most important responsibilities ...
"Now these are the gifts Christ gave the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God's people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God's Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ," Ephesians 4:11-13.
Even though it is the responsibility of church leaders to equip the saints, most churches are not doing anything to teach believers how to share the Gospel with others.
Let's change that!
One service the Scott Free Clinic provides in consulting with and serving churches is offering training that equips Christians in how to share the Gospel in a simple, concise, but comprehensive and effective way. If your church isn't currently equipping believers in how to share the Gospel and you would like to change that but need some help, let me know and we will develop a plan to help you train your congregation. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll work together to equip your people so they can join the ranks of "that guy" which we all need to be.
What is your church doing to make disciples? To disciple new believers? To equip the saints for ministry?