Focused Evangelism

Man does such an amazing job of biblical interpretation that we have an estimated 33,000 different denominations representing Christianity in one form or another.

For many, evangelism takes on the form of not just presenting the Gospel, but also presenting why their particular brand of Christianity is the only true way. How conceited we are! We take the Good News of Jesus Christ and turn it in to little more than a sales pitch. If we truly cared for an individual’s soul, we should not focus on where they will ultimately attend church, but more on presenting the message of Christ in its most pure form that points the way to salvation.

To evangelize on the benefits of one church over another borders on idolatry in that we have placed man’s congregational choice over God’s Word. How much wasted time do we spend convincing—or shaming—an individual that the church or denomination they prescribe to is the only truth and the purest of faiths? As wise as we would like to think we are, we do not hold the keys as to who gets in Heaven and who does not. If my pastor ever preached that the church we are in represents the only true believers deserving of God’s eternal rest, I would run away as fast as I could. This is the definition of a cult. Do not presume what you cannot conceive.

Yes, we must believe in the exclusivity of Christianity and that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life and that no one comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6). But we dare not take on the responsibility of Judge to determine who is right and wrong among other Christian denominations. Our relationship with Christ is a personal one, and we should have no doubt there are members who belong to Baptists, Catholics, Methodists, Episcopalians, Presbyterians and many others who have such a pure relationship with Him that supersedes the dogma behind the churches they attend.

Certainly, there are lost among the churched just as there are lost among the unchurched, Protestant or Catholic. It seems when we encounter other Christians, we want to know what church they belong to so we can internally assess whether they possess the truth or not (in relation to our own, of course). This relativism is just as dangerous as the postmodern relativism in the secular world. We must be careful not to condemn another denomination because their worship service differs from our own. We tend to make judgments on a particular place of worship out of such trivialities of type of music played, or the dress code enforced. In doing so, we lose focus of what really should be concerning.

We must never ignore false teaching, sin, or other moral wrongs. We should and must rebuke such teachings in a spirit of humility (Titus 1:10-13; Ephesians 4:25) - but only with the clarity of God’s Word on the matter, not man’s commandments added to it. We shouldn’t espouse that only our church or denomination is the sole way to glory. We attend a particular church often because it aligns with our worldview and the people are kind and loving, but we should never presume other denominations are 100% Hell-bound.

The Truth will always reside in God’s Word. He is Alive today and seeks a relationship with every person on this planet. Let this be our sole criteria for evangelizing.

“You hear people sometimes saying: “If I become a Christian I don’t know what Church I will join. I find the Roman Catholic Church saying they are the only true Church—the only apostolic Church; and unless I join it they say I can not enter Heaven. Then the Baptists tell me I can not get into Heaven unless I become immersed; the Episcopalian Church claims to be the only true Church. So with the Presbyterians, Methodists; and I don’t know really what way to take.” Thank God, we need not be in darkness as to that. He tells us, “I am the way.” The greatest mistake of the present day is the following of this creed and that one, and this and that Church, and a great many listen to the voice of the Church instead of the voice of God. The Catholic Church or any other never saved a soul. The Son of God is the Saviour of the world. The very name of Jesus can save His people from their sins. He is a real personal Saviour, and if a man wants to become a Christian, let him put his eyes on that Saviour and he will be saved.”

                                                                                                                          ~ D.L. Moody