Ask the person you’re meeting with to read the following article in advance: Epic Values, Desires, and Expectations in Evangelism. If that doesn’t work, simply give them 10-15 minutes to read it while you’re with them.
By Tom Virtue
- To Know: The desires of Epic for each person who is involved to become a leader in the practice of evangelism for life.
- To Feel: The magnitude of God’s heart for every person who they lay eyes on to come to know Him.
- To Do: To identify their starting point in the learning process of evangelism and to see the next 2 or 3 steps for them in learning.
- Could you identify some of the phrases or sentences that God used to speak to you while reading the article?
- How do you picture each of these things being expressed in your life as you understand your unique identity in Christ and who He has designed you to be?
*Optional: Discuss some points from the article. Suggested points are listed at the end of this guide.
1. God's Heart in Evangelism
Tell a story about the first time you intentionally shared Christ with someone (or a memorable time when you shared Christ), focusing on:
- What feelings of inadequacy, nervousness, hesitancy you experienced
- What steps of faith it required from you
- What you took away from that experience (you sensed God’s care for that person, you were amazed you could just have a conversation together, the points of connection in the conversation, their heart was more open than you expected, etc.)
- What changed in you during that experience
Every evangelism opportunity is about someone who Jesus cares for and has a heart for, He sees them and whatever their needs are.
Read Matthew 9:35-38 and observe together what is on Jesus’ heart as He’s out meeting people and “doing ministry.”
- What does He see? What does He feel / what moves Him? What does He do about it?
2. The Work of the Spirit in Evangelism
When someone hears the good news about Jesus providing new life that comes into a person and salvation beyond this life, there is a lot more to the story than you might picture. Notice what Peter writes in 1 Peter 1:10-12 as just one example:
10 Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, 11 trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of the Messiah and the glories that would follow. 12 It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things
Ask: Who do you see involved?
- Prophets from old (throughout the whole Old Testament) tried their hardest to understand, but they couldn’t get it. In fact, they knew they were serving people who would eventually understand.
- The Spirit of Christ / Holy Spirit was working back in the prophets and was working in you when the good news came to you.
The Holy Spirit is always at work when it comes to evangelism. God is always the first initiator! We join in with God’s work through the Spirit. We never are on our own when it comes to communicating the good news of Jesus.
3. The Learning Process in Evangelism
There are different methods of evangelism. Review a few examples (sharing your story, asking someone to read an article so you can discuss it, writing someone what you are praying for them, asking your family if you can watch a movie together and discuss a gospel question after the movie, etc.)
Ask: What other methods / ways to communicate your faith come to your mind?
Help the disciple consider next steps through the following conversation guide:
- Let’s take a friend of yours who doesn’t know Christ. Tell me a little bit about them.
- When you think about this person, which of the methods we’ve mentioned would communicate well to them? Or would it be a method we haven’t mentioned yet? What would engage this person’s heart?
- Now, let’s talk about you. When you think about some of these methods, what is a good starting point for you?
- What steps in the next 2 weeks will express faith that God wants to work through you in the power of the Holy Spirit?
Summary thought: How do you learn what fits unless you try several options (and maybe are disappointed by a couple of the tries)?
Ask: What do you walk away with today that draws you into what this expresses as Epic’s desire?
“That’s why we want everyone who is involved with Epic to learn to become a leader in evangelism for life, not just during their time in Epic!”
*Possible points of discussion from the article
- “…we in Epic Movement believe that evangelism is about Christians sharing the greatest gift we possess. It’s about sharing the story and Good News of Jesus Christ, in a way that flows out of who we are, and in a way that honors God and other people.”
- “We believe that true evangelism shouldn’t compromise our core identity or values, but should flow out of them. When that happens, our evangelism will be fruitful and sustaining for a lifetime!”
- “That’s why we want everyone who is involved with Epic to learn to become a leader in evangelism for life, not just during their time in Epic!”
- “We want to develop leaders and values in evangelism that reflect God’s heart, and see those be reproduced from generation to generation.” (1)
- “We want people to be self-aware as they share out of the fullness of who they are, and their gifts and values.”
- “There is something unique and sacred about the intersection of two lives in the moment of a spiritual conversation, where God is shaping both peoples’ lives and character, for His greater purposes.” (2)
- “In doing evangelism, we face many pressures as we engage with others (and even as we realize our limitations and make mistakes), to conform and compromise. We value having a connection with Jesus that is intimate and secure enough, such that mistakes and adversity don’t stop us from learning and trying again.” (3)