By Brother Ron Jaworski
Evangelism sounds simple. When you say evangelism, it simply means you share the gospel, talk about your sins, the need for a Savior and your final destination. It seems like a broken record playing when you hear about it because you have heard it so many times. You know it, I know it. What is new? You were probably raised by a Christian family or even born in one. But for some people, like me, the gospel is shared to them by other people, little by little. It cannot be done in one sitting.
There are many different approaches to evangelism. Mass evangelism is when you have big events. There is one to one evangelism where you share the gospel and sometimes use gospel tracts. Other people sow seeds on their own. The goal remains the same but there is no formula. The effectivity of evangelism is determined by your relationship with the Holy Spirit. It is determined by how you value that relationship because when the Holy Spirit speaks to you and you respond, then you become effective for evangelism.
Regardless of all these types of evangelism, I want to share a side of it with you so that you would greater appreciate what you have in Christ and you can better explain it to other people when you share the gospel. There is no tried and tested method and technique. But the word of God and its truth is enough to show you what a Born Again Christian is, why you would want to be one, and why you will thank God that you are one. A lot of people misunderstand the term “Born Again.” Some think that it is a kind of church. They say that they received Jesus Christ. But do they really know what they received? There is so much that the Holy Spirit gives once you accept Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior.
Most people would start off with one of the central verses of evangelism, which is Romans 3:23. It says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” God’s standard is perfect. He is holy and blameless. Therefore, it does not matter who has the least or more sins than anybody else. Everybody is a sinner. It does not matter whether you lie, you shoot someone or kill someone, or think of obscene thing. You are still a sinner. All sin is unacceptable to God. You cannot be an unholy vessel in the presence of a Holy God.
Most people would also share John 3:16 which says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” The wages of sin is death. But this is the good news. We are all sinners. We needed a Savior. We were bound for hell. Jesus came to give us everlasting life. And now we can go to heaven. But it does not stop there.
Evangelism has been so focused on going to heaven or hell. It has been centered around escaping torment in hell. But if that is the only premise that we present, then our relationship with Christ will just revolve around that too. It is very seldom for a person to delve more into the more that can be. So many people hear the gospel and are given gospel tracts but that is all. They go to church every Sunday, have a Bible study group if time permits and that is it. Is that all that Jesus Christ died for? To give us a ticket to heaven? Or is there something else that is included in the price that he paid that is equivalent to His life?
Everybody talks about heaven and hell, sin, death and punishment. You go to heaven and then there is forgiveness. Evangelism revolves around that. Nobody talks about everlasting life. What is it anyway? John 3:16 talks about it. It says but have, not will have. Whoever believes in Him now has everlasting life. It begins the moment you believe in Jesus. It is not when you die and go to heaven. The Kingdom of God begins when you receive Jesus. Luke 17:21 says, “...the Kingdom of God is within you.” The Kingdom of God inside you comes alive when you receive Jesus. From that moment on, everlasting life begins. You do not just escape hell and enter heaven. You become a new creation. You have been given a new life, a new personality, and new form. You did not just escape the punishment of death. There was something given to you too.
Galatians 2:20 says, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Your life right now is not the same as your life before. You received something new. And it is no longer you who lives but Christ lives in you. And the life that you now live in the flesh, you live by faith in the Son of God. Your everlasting life is now. You do not wait until the day you die. In the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus said, “Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” We can bring down heaven on earth. Did you know that? We were given the Holy Spirit because we are called to manifest heaven here on earth.
If you live in a foreign country, you need to adapt. You cannot force yourself into their culture. There are so many things you need to accept and change. You learn their language, rules, culture, and how to do things. Nobody will adjust to you. In Colossians 1:13-14, it says, “He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.” Your citizenship has changed when you received Jesus. You were transferred from the kingdom of darkness to the Kingdom of His Beloved Son in whom you have Redemption. You cannot force the old into the new. You are no longer a slave to sin. You have Christ in you! You have the Holy Spirit in you! Christ will fill all the voids of emptiness in your life. You will never be alone. (Hebrews 13:5, Matthew 28:20) 1 John 5:19 says, “The whole world is under the control of the evil one.” But you are now in the Kingdom of God. You have the power to fight the enemy. (1 John 4:4) You are now standing on the Word of God.
When you evangelize, nobody talks about what you have in Christ. Everybody just talks about heaven and hell. In 2 Corinthians 5:17, it says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
The old has gone and the new has come. What does this exactly mean? They believe they are a new creation but do not know what exactly happened. This has to be explained to everybody because this is the same truth that has to be meditated on until you meet Jesus.
You are a triune being made up of body, spirit and soul. They are all different parts. 1 Thessalonians 5:23 says, “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Many people think that the spirit and soul are one. They are not. If you are handsome before you receive Christ, you will still be handsome after you receive Him. So what changed? You cannot see the change in the mirror. Your body is what you can see and touch. Your soul is your mind, will, emotions, and character. It makes you unique to who you are. Your spirit is the life God gave to you. And there’s the rub. Romans 5:12 says, “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—“ When Adam sinned, death entered the picture. So what makes you a sinner? It is not your act of sin that makes you a sinner. It is the sin nature inside you that makes you a sinner. That is what you inherited from Adam. When you evangelize and non-believers hear this, they get turned-off. They hear this and feel condemned. Although this is Biblical truth, is this kind of evangelism effective?
When Adam ate the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, he did not die on the spot. But, you say, God said he will die when he eats? How come he still lived 930years? Adam did not die physically but his spirit died. He became spiritually disconnected with God. Just like all non-believers today. He became spiritually dead and the sin nature came alive. Nobody is guiding the body and soul anymore. So it answers all the calls of the flesh. It feels all the jealousy, anger, and lust. Since this is so, you become a slave of the flesh. Galatians 5:17 says, “For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.” Do you know the song, “Gusto kong bumait pero di ko magawa?” This holds true because the spirit is disconnected. Flesh rules your world. For the spirit to rule, you need to be born again. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” Because of Adam’s sin, the spirit is dead. When Jesus died on the cross, He took this sin nature and nailed it to the cross. He then gave us a new person. Born again.
This is the point of evangelism. The soul and the body is your fallen flesh that is sinful. The sin nature was taken by Jesus and nailed to the cross. It is dead and now, you are born again in the spirit. You now have a spirit that is connected to God, holy, blameless and perfect. Now you have the ability to control your flesh. You can now tell it that you will not sin and bite into temptation. When you receive Jesus Christ, the sinner is crucified. You are no longer just a sinner. You were a sinner saved by grace.
Born again is a spiritual state. The old, sinful nature in you is dead and a new life has come. You cannot live two lives at the same time. One has to die first for the other one has to come. You are now a saint. Romans 8:15 says, “For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” You do not hide from God anymore. You can even call Him Father.
When you evangelize, preach and explain the full gospel. You are not just evading hell. You are not just going to heaven. You have everlasting life now. You have a new spirit, a new identity, a new life. You have been saved. You are made whole. You have been healed. You have been made prosperous. You have a God who lives in you who provides, protects and strengthens you. You can now overcome the temptation that comes your way because you have the Holy Spirit. This is God’s grace. It is not just forgiveness. it is what will lead to you live a Christ-centered life. Titus 2:11-12 says, “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age.” If you understood God’s grace properly, your spirit will dominate and your flesh will fall. Your spirit will lead and you will live a life that is righteous, sensible and godly. You will turn away from ungodliness and worldly desires. This cannot be forced. If you know your new identity in Christ, this will all follow. As you renew your mind in the word of God, you will be transformed in the image of Christ.
God said, “Be holy for I am holy.” He did not say act holy, do holy things or be busy with holy things in church. God said , “BE HOLY.” Live out your identity. Assume your identity in Christ.
It is not the fear of hell that brings people to heaven. Fear is not your motivation to come to God. Fear is not your motivation to come to repentance. Fear is temporary. When you get past it, you will go back to the flesh. Fear is not a good motivation. Romans 2:4 says, “Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?” You want people to repent, introduce them to the real God. God is love. If you see how good God is and how much He loves you, you will be ashamed to sin. If you want to have a successful effort to evangelize, show them the goodness of God.