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1 Corinthians 9:11
"If we sowed spiritual things in you, is it too much if we should reap material things from you?"

 

 

 

 

 

Evangelism:
The Time Is Now!

Section 1, Chapter 3

Why All Christians Need
Training
In Evangelism

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Study Questions:

  1. What is the Holy Spirit's normal way for leading us?

  2. What did Jesus do before He Baptized His Apostles in the Holy Spirit and sent them out?

  3. What is the mistake that most Christians make?

  4. What does Training in Evangelism do for a Christian and how does this relate to the leading of the Holy Spirit in our lives?

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While attending a Christian University, I developed and taught a class on Evangelism. In this class I taught in four areas: Evangelism, Discipleship, Basic Counseling and Apologetics. In Evangelism I taught the student how to explain to a total stranger what it means to be a Christian and how to become one.

The development of this program came about as the result of Christians coming up to me constantly and saying, I want to share my faith with my friends and others, but I just do not know what to say or how to go about it? Will you teach me how to share my faith with others?

These Christians were Holy Spirit Baptized believers. I am a Holy Spirit Baptized believer with evidence of speaking in tongues. They knew all about the power of God and the gifts of the Holy Spirit. What was the problem then? They discovered that experiencing all the gifts of the Holy Spirit was not enough. What they discovered was that the Holy Spirit does not work in a vacuum. Normally, The Holy Spirit leads us by what we know.

I was walking to Chapel one day with one of the students in my training program. A female student that was one of his friends came walking up along side of us. As we were talking she looked at me and said, "Donít I know you from somewhere?" My friend said to her in response, "He teaches a class on Evangelism!" She said in response, "What do you teach in this class?" I responded, "I teach students how to share the Gospel with others." She said in response, "Donít you believe in being led of the Holy Spirit?" I did not say it out loud, but I thought to myself, "If this is her concept of what it means to be led of the Holy Spirit, then why is she going to school?"

This young lady makes the same mistake that many Christians make and that is that they think that being led of the Holy Spirit means to be empty headed. But what did Jesus say about the Holy Spirit? We read in the Gospel of John 14:26,

"But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you."

Jesus taught us in His Word that the Holy Spirit does not work in a vacuum. The Holy Spirit leads us according to the knowledge that we have. Jesus educated his disciples for three and one-half years. He next Baptized them in the Holy Spirit and then they went out. Today most Christians have the cart before the horse. They understand the importance of the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives but are deceived about the importance of Education and Training in Evangelism. Training stores your library, the mind, with necessary information that the Holy Spirit can use when appropriate in any given situation.

A CASE EXAMPLE

Several years ago, one night after Church, some brothers and sisters and I went to a restaurant to have some coffee and fellowship. After we had been there for a while a couple of sisters walked in all excited because they had been sharing their faith with some truck drivers outside. One of these sisters had been a Christian for ten years, the other for four months. I pulled out a couple of Evangelism Tracts and handed them to them and said, "Go back out and share these with them." With that they went back out.

About an hour later we all got up to go home. When we walked out of the restaurant I noticed that the two sisters were still talking to the truck drivers. I decided to stay around just to be sure they would be okay.

Twenty minutes later one of the sisters walked over to me to find out why I was standing there waiting. I told her I was just making sure nothing would happen to them. She wanted me to join them, but I felt it was Jesusí opportunity for them and told her I would wait until they were done.

Another twenty minutes passed and she came over to me again. She explained to me that though they knew how to share what Jesus meant in His relationship with them, they did not know how to tell these men how to know Jesus themselves.

When I walked over, one of them had gone to sleep and they were just chatting with one of the fellows. I picked up my Bible and began going through Scriptures I had memorized through training in Campus Crusade for Christ, Navigators, and Evangelism Explosion as Jesus was leading me by the Holy Spirit. I went through all of these programs at one time in my past. An hour later the young man accepted Jesus into his life by repeating a prayer similar to what is in the back of my Evangelism Tract titled, What Is Eternal Life?.

One of these girls had been walking with Jesus for ten years and yet could not lead this man to the Lord. This was because she had never been trained how to. On the other hand, I too had been walking with the Lord for ten years up to that point, but had been through many Evangelism Training Programs in the past. Because this was so, Jesus through the Holy Spirit had a vast reservoir of information in my memory banks to bring to my memory as it applied to the situation at hand. Because this was true, the Holy Spirit was able to success fully lead this man to Jesus through me.

These two sisters knew what it meant to receive Jesus Christ into their lives, but they had never learned how to effectively communicate it to others. Because this was true the Holy Spirit did not have an adequate reservoir of knowledge from which to draw upon to successfully lead this man to Jesus through them.

In John 14:26 Jesus plainly tells us that the Holy Spirit does not work in a vacuum but is sent to be our helper by teaching us and bringing to our remembrance what we have been taught by Jesus in the past through the Holy Spirit, through His Word and through others. This is certainly true in Evangelism. It is not wrong for us to receive training in Evangelism. The more we know, the more the Holy Spirit has to work with in leading us in our efforts to minister to others effectively.

As a young Christian I realized how important training was. For this reason I signed up for and went through every Evangelism Training Program that came along. I did not want there to be any situation in Evangelism that the Holy Spirit could not use me in because of ignorance. The Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy,

2 Timothy 2:15 "Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the Word of Truth."

The Apostle Peter wrote,

1 Peter 3:15 "But sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence."

I find nothing in the Bible which indicates that to be led of the Holy Spirit means to be empty headed. Everything in the Scripture commands us to study to be prepared to adequately present and defend the Gospel in any situation.

THE BENEFITS OF TRAINING

The PURPOSE OF TRAINING is to:

  1. One, give you the ability to communicate clearly what it means to be a Christian and how to become one.

  2. Two, teach you how to lead a person into prayer for salvation.

  3. Three, teach you how to disciple the new Christian so he grows in his relationship with Christ and becomes a stable fruitful Christian.

  4. Four, teach you how to respond to difficult questions you will encounter on the field when sharing your faith.

  5. Fifth, teach you how to properly counsel people concerning their problems and needs and to show them how to draw upon Jesus as the answer to all their needs.

  6. Sixth, teach you what the leading of the Holy Spirit is and what it is not.

  7. Seventh, teach you Witnessing Ethics: which is what and what not to do when sharing the Gospel with men.

The BENEFITS OF TRAINING in Evangelism are:

  1. Clarity in communicating the Gospel.

  2. Boldness in witnessing since you know exactly what to say and how to say it.

  3. The ability to keep the conversation centered on Christ and not get side tracked to other non-essential issues.

  4. And leaving with a satisfied feeling of knowing that you have communicated clearly what it means to be a Christian and how to become one whether the person accepts Christ or not, because then when the person is ready he will know what to do and how to do it and who to get in contact with when he does.

The first step to successful ongoing Evangelism is going through a Training Program in Evangelism. In the next Chapter we will talk about what   ingredients are necessary in an Evangelism Training Program in order for it to equip you to do Evangelism successfully and how this school of Evangelism more than meets these requirements.

Bibliography & Notes
Section 1 Chapters
Chapter 4

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