Kevin DeYoung linked to this article by Thom Rainer of Lifeway Christian Resources. Rainer believes that the best evangelistic method for churches is to have people who share the gospel. Here are the characteristics of effective evangelists, according to Rainer (DeYoung quotes this list in his post too):
1. They are people of prayer. They realize that only God can convict and convert, and they are totally dependent upon Him in prayer. Most of the highly evangelistic Christians spend at least an hour in prayer each day.
2. They have a theology that compels them to evangelize. They believe in the urgency of the gospel message. They believe that Christ is the only way of salvation. They believe that anyone without Christ is doomed for a literal hell.
3. They are people who spend time in the Word. The more time they spend in the Bible, the more likely they are to see the lostness of humanity and the love of God in Christ to save those who are lost.
4. They are compassionate people. Their hearts break for those who don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. They have learned to love the world by becoming more like Christ who has the greatest love for the world.
5. They love the communities where God has placed them. They are immersed in the culture because they desire for the light of Christ to shine through them in their communities.
6. They are intentional about evangelism. They pray for opportunities to share the gospel. They look for those opportunities. And they see many so-called casual encounters as appointments set by God.
7. They are accountable to someone for their evangelistic activities. They know that many good activities can replace Great Commission activities if they are not careful. Good can replace the best. So they make certain that someone holds them accountable each week, either formally or informally, for their evangelistic efforts.
This is an area of great weakness for me. Rainer’s list is a good way to see where I need to be stronger.