The secret of evangelism
Want your friends to become Christians? It's easy with this one simple trick...
What if there was an easier way to bring people to Jesus? What if the secret of evangelism was a question that unlocked anyone’s heart to Christ?
Wouldn’t it be easy? No more worrying about the opinions of others. No more worrying about if you’re going to be rejected. No more worrying about if you’ve got the right words! You’d have a silver bullet, ready to pierce the hearts of others.
The secret revealed
Here’s the secret of evangelism: it’s not about you.
What’s more, there is no ‘one simple trick’ that will make someone a Christian. Sorry.
Sometimes, when we think about evangelism we want God to provide us with something easy, we want a silver bullet. But God doesn’t give us that, he promises something much better.
What does God promise?
In 1 Corinthians 3:6, Paul writes, “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth.” The promise is that in evangelism, God does the growth.
This takes a great weight off our shoulders, God doesn’t leave it all up to us when we share the gospel with our friends, he is the one who does the growth.
So, what does God give us?
God gives us seeds to sow that bring new life. The seed that God gives us is the Gospel – the good news.
We have news to share – Jesus has beaten death, Jesus brings new life!
God doesn’t give us a silver bullet; he gives us seeds to plant. Jesus in the parable of sower tells us as much. In Matthew 13:18-23, Jesus calls the seeds the sower plants, “the word of the kingdom”.
What should we do about it?
Our job is to plant seeds, to share the good news of Jesus with our friends and family.
There are lots of different ways this might look. For example, take my friend Aaron who isn’t a Christian.
I might start by asking Aaron who he thinks Jesus is, and sharing a story about Jesus.
This is where a bit of preparation comes in. I need to ask myself, ‘what stories do I know about Jesus that would be helpful for Aaron?’
Aaron thinks Jesus is ‘all about rules and stopping me having a good time’. So maybe I could share the story in John where Jesus turns the water into wine to keep the party alive. In this example, Jesus’ actions surprise Aaron, and leave him wanting to find out more.
Why it’s hard to plant seeds
Planting seeds can be tough work! Not all ground is as receptive to hearing the good news as others. If you’ve tried to share the gospel with another person, there’s a good chance that it didn’t go as smoothly as you might’ve hoped.
We can sometimes feel like we alone are responsible for the salvation of our friend or family member, but remember God is the one who does the growth.
When planting seeds, don’t walk alone
If we return to 1 Corinthians 3:6, we see that evangelism involves more people than just you and God. Paul says that, “Apollos does the watering”.
What this looks like for us is remembering that there are other Christians who we could bring into relationship with our non-Christian friend.
I know Aaron would get on well with my Christian friend Glenn. Aaron and Glenn both like the same music, they both love going to the beach and they both like to dress the same way. So, if I invite Aaron to church, I might make sure that he is introduced to my friend Glenn.
For you, it might look a little different. You might want to invite one of your friends to your youth group or to a lunchtime Christian group at school.
You’re not alone
Remember, the secret to evangelism is not you. There isn’t one question that will be the silver bullet to the conversion of a friend.
Instead, we plant seeds that are about the good news of Jesus, trusting that God will do the growth. We plant seeds remembering that we are not alone, trusting that God will use other Christians to water that seed and that he will do the growth.