How many people do you know evangelize regularly? How often have people tried to share the Gospel with you? I’m guessing that you could answer both of those questions and count the people / times on both hands…and perhaps have fingers left over. Why is that? Why is it that on the average, only 2% of the church shares their faith regularly? Could one of the reasons be FEAR? I think it is – I know that at times it cripples me in my evangelism. How then do we overcome fear? These few comments below represent my notes from a recent evangelism conference I attended.
2 Timothy 2:15 states this, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the word of truth.” This word “ashamed” has the idea of “shrinking in shame”. Ask yourself, as you examine your evangelism habits, “Am I ashamed of Jesus and His Word?” This question is not intended to saddle you with guilt, unless it is absolutely true! If we, I include myself here, are truly not ashamed of Christ – what then keeps us from speaking about Him and the Gospel?
I really am excited to share with people as I understand Ray Comfort’s encouragement of using the Law to bring about the knowledge of sin. (Romans 3:19,20). Too often I would attempt to do battle with people’s intellect, trying to persuade them that they actually needed Jesus in their life…when they weren’t convinced of the need. The Law closes their mouth (their self-justification; Romans 3:19) and brings, not only the knowledge of sin to them, but the understanding of being held accountable to God for breaking the Law. All of this is in Romans 3:19,20. Allowing the Law to deal with their conscience prepares them to be amazed with the grace found in Jesus Christ! It also takes the burden of persuasion off my shoulders and places back (correctly) on the Word of God and the Spirit of God.
Finally, what do I do with the spirit of fear that I battle in the flesh when I desire to evangelize? Here is a great question to consider: What is the worst case scenario you’ll face in evangelism? Rejection? Persecution? Death? What is the worst case scenario for those that reject your message? Damnation. My God would that this truth grip our hearts! If we were promised $1000 for every attempt at evangelism, would we evangelize? You bet we would. Why then would we deal with our “fear” of man for money, when we should deal with our “fear” of man because of our love for them and God?
My friend, please do not give into this fear. We are in a battle for men souls and our enemy wants us to be cowering in the trenches and safety of our pews. Beg God for compassion for the lost, that you & I might see them for their eternal destinies. May our love for God and desire for obedience to Him propel us into the streets to evangelize a lost world. May we not have any reason for shame as we stand before our Creator.