Examples of Evangelism

There are dozens of passages in both the Old and New Testaments which call upon us to learn from the lives of others. Notice Roman 15:4, "For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope." In this verse the Holy Spirit through the apostle Paul instructs us to learn from those who have gone before. By looking at the commendable character traits and imitating them, we can find favor with God. Likewise the mistakes of the wicked can also be noted and avoided.

Noah an Example of Consistency

In the area of evangelism, we should look to the Bible and the great evangelists recorded therein. Let’s notice the Patriarchal evangelist Noah. This faithful man of God preached to a wicked generation. His audience could not be moved to repent. Over one hundred years he labored in word and work, yet no one responded. He preached while he built the ark, and was persistent with the words of God. The fact that the crowd refused to accept the message of God, did not move Noah to change his preaching.

Many evangelists today need to learn from Noah. We are to preach the truth because it is the truth; and only the truth can set us free (John 8:32). Perhaps the most heartbreaking aspect of the mealy-mouthed, no-substance-whatsoever-preaching is that is cuts the lost off from the only divinely revealed word which can save their souls (Acts 20:28). If Noah’s message had been heard, believed and obeyed, more than eight souls would have survived the flood. If men would believe and obey the gospel today, they too would be saved by the billions, but unfortunately most will not.

Moses and Example of Patience

Another tremendous evangelist was Moses. He came preaching first to Pharaoh, then to his own people. Pharaoh was a belligerent hearer, who listened only after ten horrible plagues. Moses went back time after time to Pharaoh. Far to often many of us attempt to teach the gospel to a friend or neighbor, and when it doesn’t work out, we quit. We need to increase our patience. The souls of men are precious and worth every effort to present the gospel to them . Christ displayed this type of patience in His personal ministry; let’s follow His divine example.

The patience of Moses is further illustrated in forty years of preaching to the rebellious children of Israel. On more than one occasion they blamed Moses for their discontent. While he was on Mount Sinai the people built and worshipped a golden calf. When Moses came off the mount he threw the stone tablets containing the Ten Commandments to the ground causing them to break. Yet, he didn’t give up on the people. Though they often let God and Moses down by their lack of faith, he never quit trying to get them to the promise land. We too need to be that patient with people. Everyone is not at the same place spiritually speaking. Let’s imitate the patience of Moses in our evangelistic efforts.

Paul an Example of Courage

Perhaps the most courageous of all the evangelists was the apostle Paul. Notice the problems and persecutions he endured, "Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft. Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches" (2 Corinthians 11:23-28). Nothing could deter Paul from preaching the word of God to the entire world. Courage is lacking in many pulpits today. Far to many preachers are more worried about offending the audience than preaching the truth. Regardless of the consequences, the truth has to be preached. Paul affirmed to the Ephesian elders that he had preached the "whole council" of God to them (Acts 20:27).

Later He would charge the young evangelist Timothy, "Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables" (2 Timothy 2:2-4). We are to preach the word, whether people want to hear it or not. It is tempting when facing a person or audience we know are hostile toward the truth to compromise or soften the truth. Paul left us a sterling example of how Christian courage can overcome the trials of evangelism.

Let’s be emboldened by these three examples of great men of God who excelled in evangelism. We can do the same if we are totally dedicated to evangelism.

By: Michael Light

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