Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Presbyterian Outlook: Reclaiming Evangelism

Presbyterian Outlook: Reclaiming Evangelism:
"On April 5, the Presbytery of the James hosted a conference on evangelism. I found it a thought-provoking experience.

Evangelism is a word that makes a lot of Presbyterians squirm. We have a big need for evangelism, however, whether we like the word or not. As a denomination, we are losing members. So we must think how we can reclaim evangelism. It is our lifeblood as well as the core mission of the church.

Conference attendees offered many definitions of evangelism. One struck me by its simplicity and clarity. Evangelism, this person said, is “telling good news joyfully.” Only four words. Yet each conveys an essential ingredient in authentic evangelism. ..."
The "E" word makes people squirm. It made me squirm many years ago until I came to realize what "good news" meant. What good is the Good News if you keep it to yourself?

The first of the Great Ends of the Church is "the proclamation of the Gospel for the salvation of humankind" and such activities are part of a healthy, vibrant, and faithful church.

You may have to register to read the full Outlook article, but it is free, and worth taking the time.

1 comment:

Evangelism Coach said...

Thanks for sharing the link. I was able to read the whole article.

I was one of the presenters there, and the definition that Lindsay referred to is found in a series I did on evangelism:

Part I: http://www.evangelismcoach.org/2007/03/what-is-evangelism-part-1

The full definition used is this:

Joyfully sharing the good news of the sovereign love of God, and calling people to repentance, to personal faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, to active membership in the church, and to obedient service in the world.
(Definition adopted by the 202nd General Assembly of the PCUSA, 1990).

I find it to be a rich definition.

Chris W