Facts and Findings on the Local Church and Evangelism

Posted: January 30, 2015 in Awakening to Urgency for Evangelism, Church Revitalization, Evangelism Dynamics, Revival Evangelism
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Since June of 2014, I have been in contact with some 500 plus churches. I have been resourcing the local church from various Christian denominations with evangelism resources produced by an Evangelistic Association known around the world. These resources include prayer cards, to list the names of lost friends and family, evangelistic videos that offer an evangelistic appeal, and a Bible study book for new believers. I have personally met with pastors, spoke with pastors on the phone, and emailed pastors. I have also been in touch with para churches leaders, and church leaders.

The results and facts have given me insight to the attitude some pastors and Christians hold about evangelizing lost people today. Of the 500 plus churches, they have automatically categorized themselves into three groups. About one-fourth, of the churches or 125 originally indicated they would participate in an evangelistic emphasis within six to eight months. Another, almost half of the churches decided they would not participate in the nationally driven evangelistic emphasis, even though the resources were provided as free materials by the world-wide acclaimed Evangelistic Association. And another fourth, just never returned my calls, emails or other communications.

Of the churches that had verbally committed and others by filling out a registration card, ninety-four followed up with ordering the free resources, prayer cards, DVD and follow-up books. Another third did not order the resources. Of the churches that ordered resources, one-third or thirty of the churches have planned and followed through with an event. Another one-third are still trying to determine a date for their evangelistic event. And the last third has not made a commitment to plan an event at all.

So what does the research reveal to us about the pastors, and churches? I see that some pastors are very concerned for reaching lost people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In another category, I have observed some church members who are concerned for reaching their lost community with the Gospel. Then there is another group that has not decided yet, that Jesus mandate to proclaim the Gospel as a priority.

So what can we conclude about the pastors and churches who had an opportunity to receive free evangelistic resources to reach and reduce lostness in their immediate communities? First, maybe the individual or church has lost its first love for Jesus. Second, the pastor and church need to reprioritize about what things are good and which are of kingdom significance. Third, the pastor and church need help with ideas how to be creative and “what has worked for other churches.”

I believe that all pastors really want to do what is of kingdom significance. Some pastors and staff need help, because their daily calendars are full of so many other assignments and responsibilities.  Usually, during a phone conversation, personal meeting, or by social media or email, I am asked, “What have you seen has worked with other churches?” This is where I get to share from my findings and facts what has worked and didn’t work.

Sometimes an event didn’t work well because the weather just didn’t allow for the plans to develop. In other cases, the church did not take time to properly promote their event in the correct circles of lost people. For example, if you invite friends and family, co-workers, to your event, you will see some fruit. In other cases, the timing was wrong. The impact of your event is affected by attendance due to a holiday break, school break, summer time vacations, and exam week at school. For those churches who did think through the details, timing, location (church or neutral site), audience, the results were fruitful.

Then there are those churches who try something one time and they throw in the towel on evangelism. Have they forgotten that Jesus said, He would empower us and guide us and give us the words to say when it comes to evangelism? Jesus has not changed His mind. He has not retracted His Great Commission Mandate. The last time I read the Bible, Jesus command to go and evangelize the world is still in everlasting. Not even Jesus had a full commitment from all those who heard Him or saw Him. Of the thousands who followed Jesus at some point in His earthly ministry, only 500 were present to see Him ascend into Heaven.

When you sit down and think about why a church is in plateau or in decline or dying, there is no really reason for a church to be “just surviving”. Well there is one reason, disobedience to the Great Commission is the only excuse for a church dying out. If we say that Jesus is our Lord and Savior, then why are so many “Christians” afraid to make Him known? Why is there even a fear of sharing the Gospel? Jesus gives all we need to be His witnesses!

Maybe doubt has crept in. Maybe discouragement has replaced passion. Many of our pastors and churches are in need of fresh wind of God’s Spirit. I pray that if you are in this present condition, may the Lord Jesus fill you and reignite you to once again have a passionate heart to win lost people to Christ.  May your ministry see a harvest of lost souls.

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