Yesterday I introduced this short throw-back series with the story of a rock slide on I-40 on the NC/TN border that happened in 1997. That rock slide caused a lot of detours for months, and in the pre-GPS days, you had to pay attention to the road signs.
At the same time, the church I was serving was going through a “rock slide” of its own: the sudden resignation of the senior pastor, with practically no warning to anyone – including his staff! Our leadership teams had just begun working through Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Church. I had just returned from a PDC seminar at Saddleback.
Isn’t it amazing how we think we are in control and have it all together with our plans – until we encounter a rock slide!
When a rock slide closes the highway, and you have to take a detour, you learn to rely a lot on road signs…
One Way is a most appropriate sign for evangelism. Christian evangelism is believers sharing the gospel with persons who aren’t believers. It is asking them to repent of their sins, to put their faith in Christ for the forgiveness of their sins and the free gift of eternal life, and to follow Him forever as Lord. Evangelism is the good news spoken by believers and lived out in their lives.
We must never replace evangelism with anything else. Everything we do individually and corporately in the church ultimately should b a witness to lost people and work toward making them disciples. When this is not the case, the church is not healthy, no matter how busy we are and how much we seem to accomplish.
Every Christian is responsible for declaring the good news of Christ’s coming and his death, burial, resurrection, and return. If we do not, we will give an account to the Father. The manner of delivering the message is not the crucial point. The responsibility for delivering the message is the decisive issue.
Evangelism under the lordship of Chris is the only way to make disciples. Whatever else churches do, they must make disciples. Evangelism is unique in that the need for the gospel is universal and the message is universal and effective in all cultures. Evangelism is believers sharing the gospel with a non-believer in ways both understand.
We are God’s method for evangelizing the world. He has no other. We are His plan, and our obedience means growth in the kingdom and the churches where we worship and serve. God save us to send us into the world to speak, live and show His good news of salvation to persons separated from Him.
That is what evangelism is all about. That is the “one way.”
part of a series taken from presentations 16 years ago, introducing the Purpose Driven Church principles to a church leadership team
brought back today to connect to Auxano’s release of the first Team UP resource, featuring the Top 100 Quotes from Purpose Driven Church, with applications and exercises from Church Unique