Sunday, July 24, 2011
This is WHY Missionaries need sound theological training and a Calling before they head out to evangelize
Before you become an evangelist to go out to do missionary work, and evangelize the lost, you must know what evangelism is and isn't. In a recent CNN article a missionary reports that Christians should stop trying to convert Muslims to Christianity. He goes on to state how harsh some Christians are in their tactics. He mentions that they cause trouble in the nations they become apart of because they come into foreign countries and cultures, trying to evangelize Muslims and to make them Christians.
The problem that this man has and many other Christians, is that they have a distorted understanding and confused view of evangelism. In this CNN Article this "missionary" to Beirut, Lebanon says instead of converting Muslims- we should tell them about the teachings of Jesus and not try to convert them.
First and foremost Christians don't convert people to anything. We are never called to "convert" people to Christianity. We don't make converts or make people believe. We are to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and God the Holy Spirit saves and regenerates dead men by giving them life to believe. Christians are then called to make these individuals that have been Born Again, disciples or learners of the person and work of Christ. God himself converts and saves by the gospel and not the evangelist or some missionary. The evangelist is not responsible for the results he is merely the messenger delivering the good news of Jesus Christ. If people get converted or if they don't get converted, it is up to God not humans. Much of American evangelism is pragmatism, which is trying to find practical methods that work to get people "saved". We use pragmatism so we can see results of people coming to a church or making a "decision" for Christ. However when people are converted this is a supernatural work by the sovereign God and the results, conflicts, and trials are a result of His work. We are not to worry about the cost of conflict, loss of friends, desertion of family members, etc. because we are messengers not the converters. If conflict arises in the nation,city, culture, religion, family, etc. as a result of one becoming a Christian, that's normal because all false doctrines are opposed to the truth- just read about the Apostle Paul as he gets stoned by an angry crowd at Lystra (Acts 14:19). Instead,we are to fight the good fight, run the race, wrestle against powers. The road for any believer is never said to be easy- only narrow.
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 5:47 PM