Podcast Transcript: To Listen to the full episode click HERE or scroll down to the bottom of the page.
I don’t know about you, but as I look forward to the new year I am often motivated to reevaluate my priorities and set goals for the upcoming year.
These goals for the most part fall into three categories: Personal (usually related to improving my spiritual and physical health) Relational (usually related to my family and friends) and Professional.
I am sure you can relate.
But one goal category that I often omit from my list is evangelism. How do I plan on personally sharing the gospel in the coming year and what am I hoping to see accomplished through my efforts?
I mean if I am a Christian and am taking it at least remotely serious, then there is no way I can ignore what God has actually asked me to do with my life, right?
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.”(Matthew 28:19–20 NKJV)
So as a Christian, if this is what Jesus has asked me to do – then why wouldn’t I automatically include it in my yearly goal setting exercise?\
And most of us have left it out – and some of us may have never in our lives as Christians included it on our list?
Because some of us doubt whether or not it is even right to do anymore.
We believe Christianity is good for me – but we are not sure whether it is ok to share with someone who may or may not be interested in hearing what we have to say.
In fact, in a recent Poll Barna found that 50% of young adult Christians agreed with the following statement:
“I believe it is wrong to share one’s personal beliefs with someone of a different faith in hopes that they will one day share the same faith.”
So obviously if up to half believe it is wrong to share our faith with someone with the hopes that they will become a Christian, then not many of us are going to make it a goal to accomplish it in the coming year.
In commenting on these startling findings, Baran President David Kinnaman said,
“Cultivating deep, steady, resilient Christian conviction is difficult in a world of ‘you do you’ and ‘don’t criticize anyone’s life choices’ and emotivism, the feelings-first priority that our culture makes a way of life, As much as ever, evangelism isn’t just about saving the unsaved, but reminding ourselves that this stuff matters, that the Bible is trustworthy, and that Jesus changes everything.”
In light of this current trend to move away from evangelism I wanted to explore it more with someone who really has a pulse on this. Thankfully In this episode I was able to Interview Dr. Alan Parker – who currently serves as a professor of Missions and Evangelism at Southern Adventist University. Originally from South Africa, Alan has been heavily involved with conducting evangelistic seminars as well as training young people how to preach and share their faith effectively formally through the Amazing Facts College of Evangelism and now through SALT which stands for Soul-winning and Leadership Training.
I hope as you listen you will be encouraged to set a personal evangelistic goal for yourself in 2020