A) Primary Aim:- To sow seeds of salvation.
B) Challenge:- How to get strangers who are non-believers interested in listening to the gospel and to believe in it.
C) Early Days – Rejections:- When I started PE 5 years ago, I was inexperienced. Just trembling and stumbling along in search of open ears. My usual approach was to start with offering gospel tracts. Before I could begin talking about Christianity, the shutters usually closed.
Rejection is a natural reaction because a person’s religious faith and spirituality is a matter of the heart and identity of a person. Introducing Christianity to a non-believer is opposing to his / her heart and personal identity. So the result was 80% rejections and 20% open ears. Very discouraging.
D) Common Reasons For Rejections:- I’m a Buddhist or Taoist, All religions are the same, I’m an atheist, I’m a free thinker, I’m not interested in religion.
E) Methods:- Methods are important because they influence the non-believers either to reject my approach or open their ears. Each evangelist adopts his / her own methods, based on personal experience. Mine evolved in search of the master key to open ears. Nowadays, with improved methods, my result is 80% open ears and 20% closed shutters.
F) Typical Format Adopted:- I find this format generally very effective.
- Prove that Jesus is the True and Living God by using personal testimony. Related Bible verses are quoted to invoke God’s Words.
Giving personal testimony is like telling story. This helps to put listeners at ease. And they cannot dispute the truth presented.
- Prove that the Holy Bible is the Word of God. This is critical because the gospel is based on the Holy Bible.
(Steps 1 and 2 are deployed first to serve as pre-emptive strikes to demolish the common reasons for objections listed in (D) above. So I hardly ever face such objections nowadays. These 2 steps keep the non-believer’s ears open, because it is reality, not airy fairy tales.)
- Impress on the hearer how important it is to know God’s message for him / her.
- Man’s hopeless hope and unreachable heaven.
- Sin and consequences of sin.
- Only God has solution for sin.
- God’s spiritual laws on salvation.
- Hearer’s hope for his / her parents, grandparents to go to heaven.
(Young people are normally not anxious about their own eternal destiny. But they are always concerned for their parents and grandparents who would normally die earlier. Bringing them into the picture injects into the hearer, a sense of urgency and also imposes on the hearer a duty to help the parents and grandparents. So there is purpose in knowing about God’s salvation.
When I start dialogue with a person and sense his / her indifference, I switch this step to step no. 1 to get the hearer interested.)
- Q & A.
- Decision to receive Christ as Lord and Saviour.
- Handouts given after my sharing:- Gospel tract, Personal Testimony, The Bible is the Word of God, God’s spiritual laws on Salvation. These are to remind the hearer of what I shared.
G) Above all, I am dependent on the Holy Spirit for wisdom, discernment and inspiration in evangelizing.
Brother Richard Chng