Why I Don’t Evangelize
Sunday morning I sat in a class at my evangelical church, and the subject of sharing our faith with non-believers came up.
We brain-stormed why our church and the churches in our community aren't growing, and we decided it’s because we aren't telling non-believers about the salvation Jesus offers.
And that conclusion begs this question: why aren't we sharing the Gospel with non-believers?
A few reasons:
- We don’t know many non-believers. In Memphis, TN, the vast majority call themselves Christians. We church-goers go to our churches, build relationships with people inside our churches, put our kids in schools inside our churches, put our kids on sports teams that only play other churches, etc. In other words, we inadvertently isolate ourselves from those who don’t believe like we do.
- We aren't confident in our abilities to effectively share the Gospel. We think we don’t know enough Bible verses or have enough evangelism training to convince anyone that Jesus is who He says He is in the scriptures. We are scared we’ll be unable to match wits with a non-believer when intellectual questions arise. We’re scared of not representing God well. We’re scared of failing.
- We don’t want to appear judgmental or holier-than-thou. Too many Christians give Jesus a bad name by being hateful toward non-believers, and we don’t want to join that camp. We don’t want to ruffle anyone’s feathers by bringing up religion. We’re scared we might offend family and friends if we breech the topics of Heaven and Hell. We’re scared of being rejected.
To be sure, these are valid reasons why Christians aren't sharing their faith.
But when you really look at them, they aren't reasons as much as they are excuses.
Each one of these reasons has a simple solution.
- Stop isolating ourselves.
- Take a class on how to share your faith.
- Share out of love, not hate.
These reasons/excuses why we don’t share the Gospel with non-believers are just a facade for a much uglier underlying reason we don’t evangelize: we don’t care.
We don’t care that people we know, people we love, people at our offices, people in our families, people in our communities don’t know who Jesus really is or that He is the only remedy for sin.
If we did care, we’d be talking to everyone about Christ all the time. We wouldn't be able to help ourselves. But the reality is most of us hardly ever talk to non-believers about the Gospel.
Because we ourselves don’t understand the power of a relationship with Jesus. We believers experience Jesus from time to time, but our lives have yet to be transformed by Him. He is someone we think about every now and then rather than all the time. He is peripheral to most of us instead of pervasive.
If we experienced the life change we were meant to experience by knowing Christ, we’d be motivated to share Him with others. We’d want everyone to experience that same life change as soon as possible because we’d know from experience it’s too good to pass up.
So, if you’re like me, and you rarely talk to non-believers about your faith, it’s time to peel back the excuses and ask ourselves, “Do I really understand the depth of Christ’s love for me, and have I really experienced radical life change only He can provide?”
If our answer is no, we need to invite Christ to grow us.
If our answer is yes, we need to invite Christ to use our experiences with Him to motivate us to share the Gospel with others.
The Good News, when you really start to experience it, is too good not to share.