Evangelism is something we are clearly called to do throughout Scripture. It is a pivotal way in which we obey the Great Commission and spread the absolute supremacy of Christ through our community and the earth. Evangelism is a big word that simply refers to communicating the gospel to lost sinners.
While church services are predominantly for the believer, evangelism focuses specifically on the lost. The reason we engage in open air preaching is to take the gospel into the highways and byways of our society and preach Christ publically. Part of the church’s duty is to equip the church to go out into the world for gospel ministry (Eph. 4.11) with the message of reconciliation (2 Cor. 5.18-21). Although preaching on a street corner, at a university, or civic event is not the only way evangelism is and should be done, nevertheless it is a very effective way to get the raw truth of Christ crucified to a sinful world.
The short answer to this question is that we are commanded to do it (Mt. 28.19; Acts 1.6-8; 2 Tim. 4.5). At our church we see this as a means by which we can spread the fame of Jesus Christ and bring Him glory. In addition to the Great Commission, we see the issue of God’s glory as primary. We long to see Christ made much of in the world through the advance of the gospel. We desire for the glory of God’s name and truth of His word to be spread to all the peoples of the world (Acts 6.7;9.42; 12.24; 13.49; 19.10, 26; Phil. 1.13-14; 1 Thess. 1.8).
How we do this is by meeting weekly at a designated location for the sole purpose of spreading the good news of Christ crucified (1 Cor. 2.1-2). Our desire is to see God’s people filled with a passion to take Jesus to the street, the highways and byways of the world and witness for Christ (Luke 14.23). In a sense it is making the pulpit public. We are committed to making sinners sensible of their sin through the word of God, the law, and ultimately through the scandal of the cross (1 Cor. 1.18-20). For this reason we should preach Christ crucified through such open doors as one-to-one encounters at home, school, with family and friends
in the community. We also use gospel tracts, we can engage in door-to-door evangelism, convalescent home ministry and by preaching the good news of Jesus Christ in any “market place” context God may put us is (Acts 17.17).
Here I will build a case for why you should, if at all possible and with the oversight and involvement of the local church, “adopt” a University for evangelistic purposes. After years of campus ministry at the University of North Texas and other places, I would prefer to share the gospel on a college campus almost over any other context. There are several reasons for this: 1. College campus is filled with young people who are at a crucial worldview determining point in their development and life; 2. College campus is an open environment where the free exchange of ideas is welcomed and, for those places where free speech is still tolerated, accepted; 3. College students are starving for information. Although this could be good or bad, good motives bad motives etc. it is nevertheless a tremendous opportunity for us to communicate the facts of the gospel; 4. Campus ministry can be a place where ongoing dialogues and friendships can be fostered. I have had countless follow up conversations with young students who have “opened up” about their upbringing, their past, their reasons for rejecting religion etc. On a pastoral level this is yet another multifaceted opportunity for the gospel; 5. Campus ministry welcomes apologetics and causes believers to grow in their own theological convictions. All in all, there is no good reason why every campus and university cannot be “adopted” by a local (biblical) church.
Pray for Us
“Finally, brethren, pray for us that the word of the Lord will spread rapidly and be glorified, just as it did also with you” 2 Thessalonians 3:1
Emilio Ramos is the preaching pastor of Heritage Grace Community Church. Pastor Emilio is committed to the expository and exegetical teaching of the Word of God. Emilio is also the author of Convert, From Adam to Christ and the founder of redgracemedia.com- a media ministry devoted to the glory of God’s redemptive grace through Jesus Christ. He and his wife Trisha live in Dallas, TX.
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