Archive for the ‘Biblical Evangelism’ Category

There is a need for a ministry, denominational funded urban city evangelism strategy. This strategy should mobilize committed soul winners, to work alongside churches, to mentor and equip Christians/churches across the US landscape to intentionally evangelize people of all walks of life. Why?

Studies show people are moving back into the cities, the majority are lost and without Christ. I have a strategy to mobilize, equip and reach lost people with the gospel.

In one article published by USA Today, March 27, 2014, the population shift can be seen. [1]

A new merchant in the East Harbor section of downtown Baltimore was begging people to shop at his establishment. “Young people are not going to make that plunge to a suburban house because they think there’s risk to it,” he says. “And on top of that, they can’t afford the down payment.”

There are some churches and organizations starting new church work in Baltimore. But as one expert in evangelism and strategy, who was the denominational leader in the state, said, “if you start a new church in an inner/urban community and you invite individuals, addicted to heroin and other drugs, they are not going to attend your church.”

“Harbor East symbolizes a population shift taking place across the nation, reflected in new data released today by the Census Bureau. It finds that population growth has been shifting to the core counties of the USA’s 381 metro areas, especially since the economic recovery began gaining steam in 2010. Basically, the USA’s urban core is getting denser, while far-flung suburbs watch their growth dwindle.”

William Frey, a demographer at Washington’s Brookings Institution, a research and policy group, stated, “People are hanging tough in urban areas,” he says. “Some of them are going to stay there for the long term. The trend also is driven by increasing numbers of young people delaying or foregoing marriage and childbirth, which often prompt moves to the suburbs.

Frey says many outlying suburbs once grew in spite of whether the cities they orbited were thriving. Now, he says, the equation is changing. If exurbs are “part of a prosperous region” like Washington, D.C., they’ll survive. If not, he says, “Those places aren’t going to come back.”

So what should the strategy look like? The strategy should be comprehensive and include, a three step plan to equip, evangelism and gathering new believers into new churches. I have developed and tweaking and using such a plan. Mission teams of trained men, have resulted in thousands of professions of faith.

The weakest link to evangelism is always follow up. Most churches in the inner cities are not ready to take in the harvest when God provides it. This is why new church starts should be equip in this strategy.

Over the span of fifteen plus years, I have personally mentored numerous men and women, and some youth, how to evangelize in the inner city.  The team members on these inner-city mission teams are committed Christians who are still using this plan, in their locations.

There are men who are ready to go and lead by example how to engage lost people with the gospel and how to transition into a decision for Christ. We just need the funding to mobilize the team.

If you are any other organization is interested in helping us mobilize trained soul winners who can mentor others contact me. In the meantime, thousands of people are being misled, and dying who headed for an eternal hell.

M28evangelism.com/ M28evangelism@gmail.com

Other articles on young people moving back into the cities:

  1. Why Young College Grads Returned to American Downtowns in the …

https://www.citylab.com/life/2016/02/urban-revival-america-college…/470415/

Feb 23, 2016 –

  1. Why Millennials Still Move to Cities – Newsweek

http://www.newsweek.com/2015/…/why-cities-hold-more-pull-millennials-cloud-317735.ht…

Mar 30, 2015 –

  1. Back to the City – Harvard Business Review

https://hbr.org/2010/05/back-to-the-city

  1. So Are People Moving Back to the City or Not? – CityLab

https://www.citylab.com/design/2011/11/so-are-people-moving-back-city-or…/487/

Nov 14, 2011 –

  1. More Americans Moving to Cities, Reversing the Suburban Exodus …

https://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2014/03/…moving-to-cities…/359714/

Mar 27, 2014

 

 

 

 

 

[1] See below for more links on population shifts into the cities.

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In 1984, the year I was saved, churches had a Pastor of Evangelism and staff. He helped keep the church focused on the Great “Missionary” Commission. Then came the day when churches did away with the Staff Evangelism person and team. This was the trend in early 2000 – 2001, 2002, 2003-.

The decrease in salvations and baptisms recorded the following years soon followed among leading churches, both were already on a downhill slope. The decision to eliminate a key role in the local church accelerated the decline.

If a church wants to impact its community, then the focus on prayer and evangelism are foremost.

And the bigger a church gets the more evangelistic it must become, or face becoming a memorial in the community.

Is it time for churches to retool their staffs and get back to prayer for the lost, and evangelism as the major emphasis. The battle for the souls of men and women continues as many churches have sat unengaged on the sidelines.

In the book of Acts, we learn that the apostle Paul carried the Gospel to Rome, the capital city of the world of his day, by doing intentional evangelism in the metropolises, towns of his day. Then he gathered believers into house church groups.

Your evangelism efforts should be done with skill and excellence. Our faith should lead us to strive to excel on the job. Don’t let your witnessing hurt your work effort. Be mindful that you are paid to do a task. As the Apostle Paul reminded us, “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men.” Colossians 3:23. Are we giving our employer the value of our work for the task they pay us? To fail in our witness as an employee, can become a serious integrity barrier with co-workers we seek to reach with the gospel.

You should conduct yourself ethically. Unbelievers are quick to spot a phony. They know or at least expect us to live a godly life. If we are hypocritical, they feel a right to disregard our message. Go the extra mile to avoid questionable practices.

You should build relationships. Get to know your coworkers.  Ask questions about them and their families. Share about your family with them, this will usually open a door for conversation. Get to know your colleagues, make a list or keep a journal about things they share. You can refer to these for future conversations. Many people are glad for someone to listen to them. If they know you care, they may turn to you in a time of need.

You should keep an office stash of evangelistic materials to give away—books that share Jesus story, gospel tracts, pocket New Testaments, and your testimony on CD or Christian athlete and on a variety of topics. Choose materials that are appropriate for your coworkers.

You should pray daily for your colleagues. Keep a list of needs they share with you, or find out about at work, and pray through that list regularly. Let them know you are praying for them.

You should not neglect your job to witness. If you can be in the process of completing your work effectively while talking to someone, that is a worthy goal. But, if your witnessing hinders your work, then consider witnessing during breaks, lunches, and after hours.

You should not overwhelm your listener with too much information. It can be easy, especially for a passionate believer to share more than can be processed. Remember, you work with the person and you will see them again. It is best to offer wisdom nuggets and let the person digest the information. You can always talk again at the next break or day. Remember to exercise wisdom. Evangelism involves three, the work of God’s Spirit, the work of the witness and the work of God’s word. You want to whet a person’s appetite, and stimulate curiosity. Workplace evangelism is a building process with your witness a step at a time. Remember, you want them to make a solid, thoughtful commitment, not a hasty one.

You should never be ashamed of your faith, Romans 1:16. People hold onto and believe all sorts of crazy things. Most people today are not embarrassed about their beliefs. As a matter of fact, many are very outspoken. You should never be ashamed of your faith in Jesus Christ? If you have built friendships with your coworkers and treated them with respect, they will probably be willing to listen to you.

You should always seek ask “does what I have been sharing make sense to you?” And, “are you willing, and ready to place your faith in Jesus?” “Are you ready to surrender your life to Jesus and ask Him to be your Lord and Savior?”

You should have them read, Romans, 3:23; 6:23; 5:8; 10:9-10 and 13.

You also consider having them read Luke 18:9-14 about the tax collector you prayed to God asking for a blood atonement.

The apostle Paul in his letter to the church in Rome made it very clear of the importance of obeying the Great Commission, Matthew 28:18-20. In chapter 10:13, Paul quotes an Old Testament passage, Joel 2:32, “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Robert Mounce wrote, “If everyone who calls upon the Lord will be saved, it is important that everyone have the opportunity to hear.” (The New American Commentary: An Exegetical and Theological Exposition of Holy Scripture- Romans)

“Apart from hearing the message no one can believe” wrote Mounce. He points out Paul’s exposition states clearly that “No one can believe in one of whom they have never heard.” (Romans 10:14) Paul makes a profound statement, “And how can they hear without a preacher?” Paul is reaffirming the Great Commission in this verse and with his statement. Unless, the Christians and the church is intentionally going and evangelizing, that is making Jesus known to the world, lost people will not know, he wrote.

Also, Paul clarifies who is supposed to go. “How will they preach unless they are sent?” (Romans 10:15). Therefore, it is necessary that a messenger (Mounce), an evangelizer be sent. The New Testament Greek Lexicon, defines the English word “sent” as “I send forth” or send away. The New Testament Greek word is a compound word, “apo” (away) and “stello” (send), and the tense is “passive”.

The passive tense means that the person being sent is not making the initial decision to go. It means a Superior, a leader, is making the decision for him. The structure of the Greek language in Romans 10:15 is best understood as “sent on a defined mission by a superior.” (Biblehub.com/Lexicon) This is clearly understood that God sends us to go evangelize our community and the world.

In verses 14 and 15 of Romans Ten, Paul primarily deals with evangelistic preaching. The Greek word “kerusson,” is the more commonly used verb for preaching. (Mounce) The Lexicon defines it this way as “to preach (announce) a message publicly and with conviction (persuasion).” Evangelistic preaching is supposed to with conviction and persuasively. Paul affirms this thought in 2 Corinthians 5:11, “Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men, but we are made manifest to God; and I hope that we are made manifest also in your consciences.”

The Greek word for persuade, “peitho’” is also in the passive tense. Which would also mean the messenger is not the one trying to persuade lost people to believe that Jesus is Lord and Savior. No, by no means. The passive tense means that it is God Almighty, God’s Holy Spirit, speaking through you persuading lost people to believe in Jesus Christ.

Again, Paul makes this clear in 2 Corinthians 5:20. “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.” It is God who is making the appeal through us. It’s source is from God.

So the question every Christian must answer, “Is God sending me?” Yes, He has, according to Matthew 28:18-20 and Acts 1:8. You are sent. Now Go and Tell others about Jesus Christ.

A study in the New Testament Greek of the Matthew 28:19-20, grammatical and linguistically and an exegetical exposition gives us a clear understanding of Jesus Great Missionary Mandate to the church to go evangelize the lost peoples of the world.

A Chronological and logical interpretation of Matthew 28:19-20 helps us to grasp the true message. A dear friend of mine, Dr. Thom Johnston, Professor of Evangelism at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary has spent numerous years studying in the various translations and languages the verses of Matthew 28:19-20.

Dr. Johnston gives us a profound understanding as written to earlier Greek manuscripts of the Gospel of Matthew passage. Plus, earlier translations of the Bible.

Here is a chronological and logical interpretation of Matthew 28:19-20
(1) Go!

(2) Win disciples to and for Christ! (3) Baptize those who are won! (4) Teach to obey (make disciples) those who are won and baptized!

(3) Baptize those who are won! (4) Teach to obey (make disciples) those who are won and baptized!

(4) Teach to obey (make disciples) those who are won and baptized!

Go! reveals a church that is not stagnant, not staying within the four walls of the church. We are to be a going church.

Win disciples to and for Christ! The church is to be actively evangelizing lost people that are around the church. As the church members are in its normal daily patterns of life, they are to be looking to speak to individuals God sends our way. We are to tell everyone we speak to about Jesus Christ.

Baptize those who are won! Jesus Christ gave us the example, He is our role model for how the church should begin the disciple making process. Baptism is an identification process. Jesus identified with us, sinners before He was crucified through baptism . We identify  with Jesus as our Savior, through baptism, because He was crucified.

Teach to obey those who are won and baptized! The church has an active role in making disciples. By church, this is inclusive of all spiritually mature believers. The church is to teach new believers, make disciples by teaching God’s word, Jesus teachings, teaching biblical principles of the Bible.

 

 

 

Does prayerwalking work? I learned how to prayerwalk from Foreign Missionaries while in a foreign country years ago. We prayerwalked for hours each day. I learned how to pray specifically and generally over people, in neighborhoods, in communities, and in the cities. I prayerwalked, prayed on buses, prayed on ferry boats, and on sidewalks. What an experience and mentoring moment it was for me. Having gained this knowledge on prayerwalking, since that time, I have taught and conducted classes on prayerwalking. I have led teams prayerwalking in inner cities and communities all across our nation.

Prayer and Prayerwalking still work. Recently, I received a testimonial from my son, who is Senior Pastor in Georgia. He has been preaching and teaching his church members how to be intentional in sharing the gospel and praying. Recently, he encouraged the church to prayerwalk their children’s campuses. Here is a story how prayer does impact our communities.

“As I sit here and read Colossians 4: 2-6 I want to thank you for your challenge you gave us Sunday. As we visited (our daughter’s) school yesterday I asked the principal, her teacher and her paraprofessional- “How can my family pray for you this year?”  Each was surprised 🙂 but their response was awesome! The teacher and para-pro were appreciative and shocked. They both stated no one has ever asked them “How can my family pray for you this school year” – the para pro- got a little misty eyed and stated – “That gave me goosebumps”.
I’m not sharing this to boost but once again to thank you for listening to God and preparing His words for us each week. Through this opportunity, I believe a door was opened with my daughter’s teacher and para-pro that probably would not have if we just had a simple greeting. Stay in the word, continue to seek God’s will for our church and keep preaching the truth!
Love ya brother,“

What an amazing story! This story contains several important facts for the Christian who is living an intentional Christ-like life. (1) Teachable spirit – church members allowed God’s spirit and their pastor to teach and encourage them how to be intentional Christians. (2) Intentional spirit – church members are obedient to the Great Commission to go and make disciples. (3) Celebratory spirit – God rejoices, but so does the church when we go in obedience and connect people to God through Jesus, through prayer and the gospel.

I will never forget what a teenage drug dealer said, after one our mission teams, on a Saturday morning, had engaged a group of young men with the gospel and prayer. They said, “We cannot know that God loves us unless, you guys, (the church) comes out here and tells us.” If your community does not know God loves them, that the Jesus died for them, and that Jesus rose from the dead and conquered sin, death, and the devil, then go tell them. Then your community will know.

Let me pray for you.

Dear Jesus, we ask that you empower us and sent us out in Your Holy Spirit’s power to go and make disciples. Give us favor with people in our communities. Give us the words to say during each witnessing encounter. And allow us to see people born into Your kingdom by Your Spirit as they believe in You Jesus as Lord and Savior.  In Jesus Name!

I am a believer in using a demographic study of your community to help develop a plan for evangelizing your community. A demographic study is a key component in discovering who lives in your community. What areas in your community are unchurched? A demographic study will reveal what pockets in your community needs a Bible group that could become a church. Statistics are good in shaping an evangelism strategy. But Statistics are not an evangelism approach. Statistics are what they are.

Personal evangelism is about connecting, and engaging people with the gospel through personal relationships. Without personal, evangelism God’s kingdom is not being advanced. Without personal, evangelism God’s church is not impacting the community by seeing lost people come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Get your demographic study in hand. Get your statistics in hand and then through prayer and seeking God, craft your strategy for evangelizing your community. Then train your church in an evangelistic approach that will give the hearers an opportunity to turn and trust, to repent and believe in Jesus Christ. As Jesus proclaimed, “Unless you repent, you will likewise perish,” Luke 13:3-5. “He who has ears, let him hear,” Mark 4:9.

Jesus Christ gave us the mission, to “Go make disciples of all nations.” Matthew 28:19-20. We get our vision from God’s heart. We are empowered by God’s Spirit to go and evangelize. I say we get back to the basics. Let’s get back to God’s word, and take Him at His word. “Go make disciples by evangelizing lost people with the gospel.