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The System That’s Working

February 8, 2019

Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect. 1 Peter 3:15 NIV

Since the days of Jesus and the early church, all kinds of evangelism problems have surfaced. There are door-to door strategies, marketable programs such as Evangelism Explosion, The Four Spiritual Laws—on and on. Nothing is wrong with those, but for sheer effectiveness and integrity, you can’t beat the system of the early church. There’s no coercion, no manipulation, nothing to memorize—it’s all authentic and respectful. Peter explained how it works.

Live a life so pure and good and uplifting that you inspire curiosity. The world leans toward what is bleak, cynical, and self-centered. The bottom line for most people is to take care of themselves first, and only do for others if there is anything left over. The tendency is to fear and despair. In the midst of this landscape, anyone who is a giver, full of character, and a beacon of hope stands out. You get noticed. They ask questions. They want to know what makes you different; why you handle things the way you do.

Prepare yourself to answer. You can be authentic and real. After all, you are a witness, sharing your own story, telling what you know for a fact to be true. Don’t force it. Wait on God’s timing. The God who is FOR them is committed to working with them and helping them become receptive. Coercion and manipulation are not necessary nor helpful.

Be gentle and respectful. This was the mode of both Jesus and the early church. They were FOR people, so they never focused on the end result in such a way that they insulted or ran roughshod over the person. They loved, presented the answer, and respectfully let the person choose, and then continued to love, no matter what.

As a result, they won their world. They started with barely over 500 on the Day of Pentecost, but the gospel spread until we are where we are today. We are here today because of this strategy.

The way to win the world is not with a powerful program—it’s with pure people, living out the gospel of Jesus.

  • Pray to get ready, live purely, and then have the courage to respectfully walk through the doors your life opens.