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Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Minimalist Guide to Evangelism

The pastor is riding on a bus in a far away city in a militantly Muslim country.  He has a Bible in his language open on his lap.  A man sits next to him.  The pastor turns to the man and says, “Good morning, do you know anything about this book?  Someone gave it to me, I am not sure what to make of it.   Would you look at this part of it an tell me what you think?”  The man reads the passage either then or later in the relationship he trusts Christ.  This has happened over 500 times.
Evangelism is no more complicated than getting someone to read the Bible...
A man in his 20s in a North African country, again Muslim, hears a broadcast from Monte Carlo.  He is intrigued by what he hears and contacts the station.  They send him a copy of the Gospel of John and a set of questions to work through.  For two years he reads John and works through the questions.  At the end of the two years he trusts Christ.  He seeks help from a itinerate undercover missionary, I do not know how they found each other, and in a while travels to South Korea and takes a MDiv at a seminary.  He is now leading several churches.

At Michigan State a group of guys are sitting on the floor in a dorm room passing out longnecks and talking about the gospel of John.  They are considering questions that I ask them about what they are reading.  A couple come to Christ.

At Duke two students with minimal to no exposure to the Bible are reading 2 Peter with a friend of mine.  Both are blown away by the fact that there is a problem that they have sin and they will be judged by it.  They commit to meet together each week to look at this more.

In an Asian country a man is walking around a track for exercise.  A native of the country begins to walk with him.  The first man mentions that he believes in Christ and the second man is interested.  The first man suggests he read a passage of the Bible.  The next week they talk about what the second man read.  Six months later the second man has entered the kingdom.

What is the common thread here?  We go to seminars, read books, and watch DVDs on how to do evangelism.  We may over complicate it a bit.  Like my friend at Duke said the other day, all we need to do is get people’s nose in the book.