Biblical Evangelism, Part 3: The Mandate and Motive for Evangelism

Why should we witness for Christ?

First, because Jesus Christ commanded us to, Matt 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16; John 20:21. In light of Christ’s command,

Evangelism requires taking the initiative–“go therefore and make disciples.” We cannot wait for the lost to come to us; we must make a concerted, determined, intensive, and aggressive effort to win the lost to Christ.

Evangelism results in making unbelievers into followers of Christ–“make disciples.” This involves instruction and persuasion from their present position to a radically different one. A disciple or follower of Christ believes, obeys, and promotes Jesus Christ.

Evangelism results in public profession–“baptizing them…” The only way a follower of Christ can be identified is if he/she has made a public profession of faith, and the first step of obedience that Jesus set forth for making that public profession is through baptism. If someone maintains that they are a disciple but will not be baptized, he/she is not following Christ!

Evangelism results in training–“teaching them to observe all that I commanded you.” The new convert must be taught how to live right, recalling the lifestyle they are coming out of (Col 1:13; 1 Pet 2:9). All training must be centered on the Bible and focused on Jesus Christ.

From Jesus’ commands in Luke 24:46-49 and Acts 1:8 we learn additionally the following about evangelism:

Evangelism involves a message–“repentance for forgiveness of sins” (Luke 24:47). We must inform unbelievers of their state before God and Jesus Christ as their only hope of deliverance.

Evangelism involves an activity–“proclaimed in His name” (Luke 24:47). This is the means that God has established by which the message is brought to sinners.

Evangelism involves a plan–“to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem” (Luke 24:47; Acts 1:8). This is the scope and object of executing the means of bringing the message to sinners. There are no exceptions, whether racial, social, political, economic, or geographic.

Evangelism requires empowerment–“clothed with power from on high” (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8). Apart from God’s enabling power it is a hopeless task. With God’s strength and enabling help you can have real confidence in evangelism.

Pastor Greenfield taught this lesson during the Wednesday Bible study, September 12, 2007

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