Summary: Following the last command Jesus gave us, as found in MATTHEW 28:19, 20.
Even as Christians, many of us try our best to avoid uncomfortable situations. But sometimes, it is within those uncomfortable situations that we find our deepest levels of faith. We are going to discuss one of those situations this morning, but first, let us open in prayer to the Father.
When I was in high school, my thoughts were; to graduate, get a really good job and make lots of money and then live happily ever after. So, you can imagine what ran through my mind when I saw my ideal job being advertised in the paper. The ad read something like this:
I need one young man who is a self-starter, who has visions of making a lot of money and someone who wants to be his own boss. Call . . . . .
They were talking about me! I went down as fast as I could to secure my job. When I got there, I met a secretary that looked like she just came out of a Roger Rabbit cartoon, and after about a two-minute interview, she called her boss out to meet me. She told him that they had just found their man. Boy! I was so excited. With the snap of a finger, I had just been hired at what they said was a very prestigious company, and I was going to make lots of money because they said I had what it took.
After a one-day training seminar, I went out to sell my first vacuum cleaner door to door. I will never forget the first door I knocked on. This older lady came to the door. She must have been all of 28 to 30 years old. When she answered, I smiled and held a brush up in front of me and said, You don’t want to buy a vacuum cleaner today, do you, ma’am? She said, ""No" and shut the door.
Where did I go wrong? I had the energy and the ambition. I had the smile and just tons of charm. So, why did she shut the door? I had failed to make a sale for several reasons. I did not know my product very well, I did not know how to sell it very well, and my focus was on all the wrong reasons to sell in the first place.
There is an old saying among salespeople: Know what you are selling and be able to tell people why they need it. If I had just had that information before that first door, I might have made some money in that job. But, after selling one vacuum cleaner to my parents, the job soon lost its luster and I quit to become a janitor at a car lot where I made a whopping 52 cents an hour! And, as they say, the rest is history.
That story is true, and it reminds me so much of how we normal everyday Christian are when it comes time to evangelize. All churches tell us that we must evangelize, but how many of them explain anything about it or how to do it?
Today, I want to discuss some things that will hopefully give you some understanding of why the e word is so important and how to do it. It really isn’t as scary as we might think.
1. WHAT IS EVANGELISM?
The word evangelize comes from the Greek word ’euangelos’, meaning ’a messenger bringing good news.’ Have you ever brought good news to someone? Isn’t it a very good feeling to know that you have just brought news to someone who really needed to hear it very much?
When you go see a really good movie, you tell everyone you know about it, don’t you? If you go to a really good restaurant, you do the same. And when you tell others just how good that movie or the food was you don’t really care if someone disagrees with you, do you? If somebody has a problem with what you think of the movie or the food, you kind of let it just stay their problem, right? You don’t even give it a second thought.
So, why are most Christians thrown into a state of panic when the thought of sharing Jesus with others goes through their minds? Most Christians are scared to death of evangelizing because they dont really know what it is or what it means. Many of us are very hesitant about sharing religion with somebody who may not want us to. We are overly focused on what others think.
I worked at the Post Office, and we were told not to recruit people into our religion. I don’t even want to do that. Let me explain it this way: Religion is something I try to stay away from because religion was written by man and for man. It has man’s agenda written all over it. Besides, religion never got anyone into Heaven. Therefore, I don’t ever want to try and recruit anybody!