“For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings” (1 Corinthians 9:19-23 ESV).
During Paul’s missionary journey he uses a very well-developed strategy in order to reach others. Paul develops and ingrains himself into the culture of those he is trying to reach.
In Acts 13:16-41 we see Paul developed his message based around the Jewish leaders he was speaking to. Later on Paul changes his message to make it more applicable and understandable for the Greek mythological worshipers.
Paul becomes a servant to all people so that he may share the gospel with all people. Paul humbles himself and realizes that there is no difference between any types of peoples, because we have all missed the mark in God’s eye. “For there is no distinction (whether Jew or Gentile). For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:22b-23).
This is what evangelism should be.
Christians need to realize that we don’t have our stuff together. Becoming a Christian doesn’t make you saved. Going to church doesn’t make you saved. Not even being a good person can bring you to heaven and give you eternal life. The truth of salvation lies in a God who loved us so much that He sent His son to die for all the worthless junk that our human nature creates.
Condemning sinners to hell on Facebook isn’t the way to gain God’s favor.
Evangelism should lean on the love of God rather than straying towards the convictions of man’s own guilt in their hearts.
It’s the bully mentality that drives some Christians to lash out on others. We have stuff that we aren’t proud of, but if we tear others down it’ll make us feel better. How does that show God’s love for humanity?
The insensitivity and nerve of believers who think that their own works makes them a favor in God’s eye is appalling. It’s like in Luke 22:24-30 when the disciples bicker about whom is to be regarded as the greatest. No good deed will ever make you become the greatest.
Christian’s should never focus on their status and how much power and honor they can achieve. Christ didn’t die to create prideful religious people. He died for those who are sick. He died for those who don’t have their stuff together, and realize that they need a savior to lean against through every hard time that they encounter. “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners” (Mark 2:17b).
Paul’s message is very clear. In order to reach others, we have to find what we have in common, and one factor that is alike in all humans is that we are all sinners.
In Romans 1:18-32 Paul explains the characteristics of God’s wrath upon the unrighteous. He calls the unrighteous evil, gossips, slanders, insolent, boastful, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless, posers, and haters of God. At first I began to cheer for Paul as he rips into the sinners, but the very first verse of chapter 2 reads, “Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things”.
This is the foundation we must build our new age evangelism around. Everyone is a sinner. The righteous and the unrighteous have all stumbled at one point in their lives. That is why we need a perfect person to perfect imperfect people. There is no difference between a Jew and a Gentile.
Evangelism should be showing a broken world that even the righteous are broken, and we all need Christ’s love to repair our brokenness.