Episode 072: Evangelism: What and How

In this episode Andrew, Glenn Packiam, and Jason Jackson sit down to talk about how to tilt the culture of our churches towards evangelism, and how they’ve seen the Spirit use the ministry of Alpha to help.

Barna did a study about evangelism and while there was agreement that Christians should be witnesses for Jesus and that it is good for people to come to know Jesus, there was more ambivalence on whether or not it was wrong to try to convince someone to become a Christian…  

It seems that many people would like folks to come to know Jesus, and they believe that it’s the best thing that could happen to a person, but at the same time they think it might be morally wrong to “impose” their beliefs on another person…

Part of this is that we’re trying to figure out what “tolerance” means… so, when I start talking about my beliefs with you, is that a form of intolerance? For many, especially millennials, it’s easy to get hung up on that…

There might be a righteous impulse here… underneath our fears, the righteous impulse is that we believe that evangelism works best when Jesus is presented in a way that creates maximum space for the Spirit to work…  

Evangelism is living in a way that embodies the reality of Jesus in the world so that it is something that the church does in their life together… 

Alpha is a great example of this… in the 70s or 80s a church on the west side of London called Holy Trinity Brompton created a new believers course… what they discovered was that it was a great way for nonbelievers to enter the conversation about Christianity in a safe way…

Its values became focused around hospitality… creating a space where people could ask questions and just be heard…  

What I love about it is that it checks all the boxes… there’s space for the Holy Spirit to do something through prayer and worship, there’s a talk that presents an idea in a winsome and compelling way, and then it makes space for wrestling and questions… somehow it all works… 

They recommend that all of this happens around a meal… meals are great equalizers… where I’m getting to know you and you’re getting to know me…  

Learn more about Alpha at https://alpha.org/

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