Upcoming sermon on priorities

For my upcoming sermon I am gonna advocate personal evangelism and tract evangelism, but not so sure about street preaching. I have seen so many abuses of this form of evangelism, and it has a very negative reputation. It also may not be as effective in a relational generation. So personal & tract evangelism are better. Thoughts?

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Susan R's picture

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At the equipment rental company where my husband works, he occasionally sees someone pass one of the employees a tract. Just recently, a local pastor's wife gave one of the men a tract, and told him (rather condescendingly) he needed to be in church on Sunday. He said "No, you won't find me in church on Sunday" and she said "Shame on you".

He told my husband later that people like her were the reason he would never step foot in a church.

This is an example of how NOT to witness. Don't walk into the place where someone works and attempt to 'humiliate' them into coming to church or getting saved. I enjoy passing out tracts when the opportunity presents itself, but it's rude, IMO, to interrupt people at work or invade their privacy just to try to get a tract in their hand so one can claim they've "witnessed".

My vote is for more personal evangelism. People respond when they know you care about them. They are repulsed when they feel like a notch on someone's Bible belt.

jwolf6589's picture

This does not address my question. I was speaking of open air street preaching.

Susan R wrote:
At the equipment rental company where my husband works, he occasionally sees someone pass one of the employees a tract. Just recently, a local pastor's wife gave one of the men a tract, and told him (rather condescendingly) he needed to be in church on Sunday. He said "No, you won't find me in church on Sunday" and she said "Shame on you".

He told my husband later that people like her were the reason he would never step foot in a church.

This is an example of how NOT to witness. Don't walk into the place where someone works and attempt to 'humiliate' them into coming to church or getting saved. I enjoy passing out tracts when the opportunity presents itself, but it's rude, IMO, to interrupt people at work or invade their privacy just to try to get a tract in their hand so one can claim they've "witnessed".

My vote is for more personal evangelism. People respond when they know you care about them. They are repulsed when they feel like a notch on someone's Bible belt.

PastorMarkKelly's picture

I don't think street preaching is effective - at least in every instance I've witnessed. Just by it's nature one has to raise their voice to be heard, which often comes across as yelling - not to mention the looney tunes that just scream about condemnation and hell and faggots, etc.

Since I re-read your post twice and saw that your only question was "Thoughts?", I would also comment that I think that tracts are a very ineffective mode of evangelism - as they typically are utilized. (Just handed, brief comment and move on) I think they can be a good tool in evangelism, but generally people just pass out pieces of paper and then come back boasting how much they have "evangelized" the community. What they would see if they turned around is a sidewalk littered with gospel tracts.

I'm glad you're discussing evangelism - its something that we all need to be passionate about

It's all about grace

jwolf6589's picture

What amazes me is that there are other pastors with as much or more experience than you that will strongly disagree. Some of these have been arguing with me on other boards and on FaceBook that "street preaching is the best and most effective method." I argue for tracts and personal evangelism (Way of the Master style) but they disagree and will give me all kinds of examples, experiences, etc.. One of these pastors is mailing me a DVD called "Stand and Speak" which is all about street preaching. While Mark Cahill is all about one on one evangelism and tracts, this video is all about street preaching.

I think in my sermon next month I will probably recommend that people use whatever form of evangelism God has called them too. Whether that be street, personal evangelism, tracts, friendship, servant, children, senior adults, etc..

John

PastorMarkKelly wrote:
I don't think street preaching is effective - at least in every instance I've witnessed. Just by it's nature one has to raise their voice to be heard, which often comes across as yelling - not to mention the looney tunes that just scream about condemnation and hell and faggots, etc.

Since I re-read your post twice and saw that your only question was "Thoughts?", I would also comment that I think that tracts are a very ineffective mode of evangelism - as they typically are utilized. (Just handed, brief comment and move on) I think they can be a good tool in evangelism, but generally people just pass out pieces of paper and then come back boasting how much they have "evangelized" the community. What they would see if they turned around is a sidewalk littered with gospel tracts.

I'm glad you're discussing evangelism - its something that we all need to be passionate about