Summary: This is the final sermon in a series of 8 on discipleship. This sermon finishes the look at evangelism and ties the whole series together.
Some of the ideas in this sermon come from "Essentials in Discipleship," by Francis Cosgrove.
Tonight is the last week of our 8 week study on discipleship. We began to wrap up the study last week by finishing up with evangelism. Tonight we will finish our look at evangelism and hopefully go from here being more comfortable in our roles as disciples, more disciplined in our walks with God, and ready to go and make disciples. Our message and our challenge tonight comes from Matthew 9:37-38, “Jesus said, the harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” We know that evangelism is important, because there are not near enough workers for the harvest that is available. There are many more unbelievers then there are believers.
Last week we talked about how to get started in evangelism. The key thing we talked about was the fact that evangelism is about building relationships and loving people as God loves us. If we don’t show love to others, it will be hard to convert them to Christianity. So first and foremost we must love people and take the time to get to know them. Once you do that, you have opened up the door to begin sharing the good news with them. As we said last week, one of the best ways to start doing that is by sharing your testimony. Share how God has worked in your life and how your life is different because of Christ. We also talked about being in constant prayer so that you will be ready to do evangelism. Pray for boldness, so that God can use you. Pray that God will lead people into your life that you can witness to. Pray that God will reveal someone or some people to you that you can effectively witness to. Continue in prayer throughout the whole process, because God is the only one that can empower us to do this great task. Finally we closed last week by saying that doing all of this should be natural and not some sort of formula. There is no specific formula to evangelism, there is no right way to do it. But, now that I’ve made that clear to you, I want to share some ways that can make evangelism easy. These aren’t necessarily the best way to do evangelism, but they are 2 different ways that can be very effective.
I want to share two effective plans with you for how to get to the meat of evangelism. Loving someone and sharing your testimony with them is the best way to start, but at some point you have to speak the truth to them and tell them what Christianity is all about and why it is so important to accept Christ as your savior. As long as the plan that you use truthfully portrays the gospel and the price that Jesus Christ paid for our sins and the saving power that his blood has on our lives, then you will be effectively evangelizing. However it’s important to have a plan because it will enable you to be prepared at all times to witness. It will enable you to have a biblical presentation point by point without leaving something essential out. It will provide direction because often times it is easy to get off on a tangent. You don’t want to live and die by the plan, but you should have a plan so you can be the most effective witness possible.
The first plan I want to share with you is a simple presentation of the gospel using six main points. This is an easy plan that uses six words to represent six essential concepts from the gospels.
The first is DISEASE. You need to begin by sharing with a seeker that we are all infected with the disease of sin. It is an indisputable fact that all human beings are in a constant struggle with sin and that nobody can be free from sin. You can use Romans 3:23 to back this point up. “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
The second point is DEATH. Sin will always lead to a spiritual death. Once we become engulfed in sin our bodies and our minds surrender to its power and instead of allowing God to be in control, we have allowed sin to take control. You can use Romans 5:12 to back this up, “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned.” You can also use Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”