This is a excerpt from the book Breaking the Evangelism Code. The author deals with the origins and practice of giving the evangelistic or persuasive appeal for people to respond to God’s message. God’s message always carries a need for response from the hearer(s).

Old Testament Evangelistic Invitations

Invitations in the Bible were most always public announcements that required a public response. With very few exceptions, God called followers publicly, and He  still calls today in a public manner. The prophets of the Old Testament preached publicly and gave public appeals to their listeners that required public responses. Prophets such as Moses, Joshua, Ezra, Nehemiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Hosea, Joel, Jonah, Amos, Malachi, and others gave public invitations for people to follow God.

Th e fi rst evangelistic appeal recorded in the Bible is in Genesis 3:9, where God publicly called out to Adam and Eve after they had sinned. He said, “Where are you?” Mankind had sinned and was separated from God. Because of disobedience, Adam and Eve had broken their relationship with God Almighty. As mentioned earlier, the Old Testament has a record of the prophets calling people to repentance and right relationship with God. Noah, while he built the ark, extended an invitation to those who mocked him and his sons. We can estimate that for at least seventy years, Noah extended an invitation to repent. Th e invitation lasted up to the moment “God shut the door” of the ark (Gen. 7:16). God kept giving the people opportunities to repent right up until the time He shut the door of the ark.

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