Hospitality & Evangelism
Many Christians lament that they desire to see the world evangelized, and pray for such to happen, but have neither the means nor opportunity to do so. You feel powerless. Here is a way for powerless people to get involved in powerful evangelism, hospitality.
Reformed Theological Seminary Professor Steven Childers recently said the key to evangelism in the 21st century will be hospitality. The reason he said hospitality will be relevant in the future is the same reason it was relevant in the days of the first Jerusalem church, God appointed it as a means of evangelism. The old paths of Jeremiah still remain the right paths for us today.
This to evangelism incorporates unbelievers with believers at meals and fellowship events. The evidence for such an approach appears from Acts 2:46-47 which reads,
Act 2:46-47 Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.
The early church simply shared life with others in the church and outside the church. Its result was people were added to the number. This has been the norm over the ages. Wherever Christians go little churches spring up. This is normal and natural for the Christian church.
- It empowers the powerless. You can facilitate evangelism even if you are not gifted in speaking about the Gospel with unbelievers.
- It involves various gifts from within the church
- It builds relationships and trust between the Christians and unbelievers, which gives opportunity to speak and follow-up with the Gospel.
- It takes a long term approach to evangelism, and minimizes spurious conversions.
How it Works:
We will form teams of volunteers. These teams will plan to meet regularly for fellowship events. The team will decide when and where and how often they’ll be held. The teams will be made of people with various complimentary gifts. All will invite friends, neighbors, coworkers, and others for whom they have burdens to see them evangelized.
- Encouraging and fun people
- Gatherers who can get more people to show up.
These roles will be developed naturally for each group based on the individuals who volunteer. An individuals’ gifts may overlap into several categories. Christ sufficiently gifted his body to accomplish this task. Not everyone’s gifts are the same, and for good reason. We need the whole body to take on this task.
The evangelistic word must come out at some point, but does not have to be in the form of a devotion. Christians spending time with other Christians, and speaking about the Gospel with one another can very well foster enough conversation on the subject to speak more candidly. Those specially gifted, trained, and approved in evangelism will also attend. Usually you cannot shut them up anyway, so their gifts will come natural.
If your heart breaks for the lost, and you have people in mind- begin today by praying about those whom you want to invite. This is powerful evangelism for the powerless.
Steve Timnis and Tim Chester, Total Church (Crossway, 2008)
Dietrich Bonhoeffer Life Together, (HarperOne, 1978)
(2) Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.
(9) Be hospitable to one another without complaint.
(13) contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality.
1Ti 3:2 An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,
(10) having a reputation for good works; and if she has brought up children, if she has shown hospitality to strangers, if she has washed the saints’ feet, if she has assisted those in distress, and if she has devoted herself to every good work.