A couple of decades ago, our church brought in a teaching by D. James Kennedy called “Evangelism Explosion.” I signed up to learn this style of evangelism and then became a trainer.
We went out in teams, only visiting those who had come to our church; and filled out a card expressing the desire for a visit. We called ahead of time, to find out when they wanted us to come over.
Once we arrived at the home, we attempted to make the time an enjoyable one. We asked questions about them, like had they lived in the area long – that sort of thing.
After getting to know the people and hopefully letting them know about us, there came a time when we asked a question, and the answer we received would usually allow us to see the spiritual condition of the person/people.
The question was this:
If you were to die tonight (God forbid it) and you stood in front of God, and He was to ask you why He should let you into His heaven – what would you say?
We heard this answer quite a bit: “Well, I have done more good things than bad. I try to go to church as much as possible. I give what I can to poor people…… Every sentence began with “I” and these people were obviously not familiar with true Salvation.
One of the team would tell the person that we had the best news that they would ever hear! We told them that Salvation was a free gift to whomever would repent (agree with God that they were a sinner) and believe in what Jesus did for them on the Cross, and that He rose again from the dead.
We explained to them that no matter how much “good” they thought they had done, how much was enough? We read them Scriptures from the Roman Road to Salvation to help them to see that what we were telling them was right from the Word of God:
Here is a short video with the Roman Road Scriptures:
Of course, if the person we were visiting immediately said “It’s because of what Jesus did for me. I have repented of my sinful life and I trust in Christ and what He did on the Cross for me” then we would all rejoice in the knowledge that this person was truly saved.
Here is a list of those Scriptures in case you would like to write them down:
Romans 3:23. “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”
Romans 5:8. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us”
Romans 6:23. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
Romans 10:9-10. “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation”
Romans 10:3. “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved”
There are many discussions about the need for a person to understand that saying the prayer of Salvation does not mean that one can return to a sinful life, and be able to say “I said the prayer – so I’m fine.”
This becomes very controversial and often a debate ensues about legalism and Works based faith.
I believe that this is why our Lord Jesus told us the parable of the Sower and the Seeds:
“Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and devoured it. Some fell on stony ground, where it did not have much earth; and immediately it sprang up because it had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up it was scorched, and because it had no root it withered away. And some seed fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no crop. But other seed fell on good ground and yielded a crop that sprang up, increased and produced: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.”
“And He said to them, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” (Mark 4:3-9).
Prayer and discipleship
This is the reason why we must pray for and, if possible, disciple those whom we’ve led to Christ. We pray that the seed fell on fertile soil. We help the baby Christian to learn to crawl and then to walk and even run in the ways of Christ!
Don’t be discouraged
When I was in college, two separate groups of Christians shared Christ with me. Both times I said “I am a Jew and I don’t think that this is for me.”
But in 1983, there was a tragedy in our family and another Christian couple who had showed us such kindness and compassion, shared Christ with me. My eyes were opened and my heart was pounding! God had opened my eyes to His truth and I believed it and WANTED it!
I think about those other people who must have been so disappointed that I said no. They won’t know until we are in heaven that they planted seeds in me…..
This Scripture tells the story so clearly:
“I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase” (1 Corinthians 3:6).
I do hope that this article has helped someone – maybe to understand that they have not been trusting in the Lord for their Salvation. And perhaps someone needed some encouragement in evangelizing the lost.
Time truly is very short. I look around and this world does not even resemble the world in which I grew up.
COME LORD JESUS!