WORLD MISSIONS, STREET PREACHERS AND AMERICAN EVANGELISM: WHY TRADITIONAL METHODS OFTEN USED ARE NO LONGER WORKING

Posted: June 10, 2015 in HOT TOPICS
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Street-preachers

“If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” (Luke 9:5)

 

 

I work with sinners, all hardcore. From bikers to hustlers, God has put me into a place where I’m surrounded by darkness. Yet never once have I ever felt to preach to them in such a way that would be considered as “in your face” evangelism. Yet they know where I stand because they know I’m both an evangelist and missionary. But lately, in unique ways God brings certain ones to me and they ask me privately about my faith, “You speak in tongues?” or “What do you think about the end of the world?”, but lately some have been seeking real answers to real problems – gut wrenching real problems.

I’ve often wondered how could I make a difference in the job I do in the secular world until I move to China to be with my wife and our work God has for us, then a week ago one of the men was talking with me and began to relay family problems – and it was gut wrenching. I realized just how Satan is destroying people today and people have no where to turn. Yet as I explained to this man the only real answer – Jesus Christ, it revealed to me just how much the world has changed in just 3 decades.

I’m convinced more and more that our methods must change to reflect a more direct way to reach the world, especially in the U.S. than how we’ve done it 25 years ago. Some might take issue with what I’m about to say, and that’s fine, but I believe that due to the darkness of the hour in which we live certain methods simply cannot work today, and it’s because not only has the church changed, but so too has the world. When I see certain methods such as street preaching (which was one of my first real ministry methods when I was 18-19) times were different then, people were different then, the hostility level was not even remote as it is today.

When I see a preacher with a bull horn standing on the street corner my first reaction is, “Is that really working?” Sure, there will always be a few who will stop – listen – and ask questions, some might even reach out and allow one to pray for them, but is it a genuine form of Christian methodology that really works today? My opinion? I don’t see it. The days of Billy Sunday are over with and for good reason, people’s attitudes toward what they perceive as “organized religion” have changed, and most simply do not want to listen. Again, the motive can be right but the method outdated. Again, simply my opinion. But yet I can go into China and witness and even preach at times on the street and people will stop – listen- and seek more. Why? Because where one place the gospel is no longer tolerated, another place is opening for the gospel.

Jesus had the same issue when he went into Nazareth, they didn’t want him, he even cursed Chorazin as well as Bethsaida (Matthew 11:21-24). This why the Lord told his disciples that if a city would not receive the gospel they were to shake the very shoes from off their feet and move on to another place. There is no question that today America is turning a deaf ear to the gospel. The fact is, the nation simply does not want the genuine sincere word of the Lord, they want something other, another gospel. This is why I believe certain evangelistic methods in this nation no longer work, because people’s hearts have been hardened, and the recent statistics from both Barna as well as Pew Research prove it. The truth is, America has become saturated with Christianity to such a degree that we’ve taken having our faith around us for granted. There is a church on every street corner in America. We have Christian television, Christian radio, Christian books, Christian merchandise and still our nation is turning away from the roots of our faith in great numbers. So why do we continue to use methods which are simply not working today compared to 25-50 years ago? I believe it’s because on some level we’ve lost our desire to go further and farther with the gospel and have not changed the way we reach the world.

It’s comfortable to stay at home. It’s comfortable to drive less than 10 miles to an inner street area and witness to a few people, but are we really making an effort to reach the world? I don’t believe so. This is why world missions are facing a significant drought in global missionaries today, because the church as a whole has lost its missionary heart. The only solution is to begin pushing outward and start thinking globally. We did it 100 years ago with great success. Men such as Lester Sumrall, Hudson Taylor, Livingston, John G Lake, and Evan Roberts all paved the way for missions and saw multitudes come to Christ. So why are we not seeing the same affect today in our own backyard? The reason is simple – outdated methodology. Even Jesus told his own disciples “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

Of course there will always be a need for local and regional inner city mission work, but if we are truly going to reach the world for Christ, then we must take stock of where we are at today, what is working and what has not worked and seek the direction of the Lord. Again, some will take issue with this, but I truly believe that due to the lateness of the hour and the rise of anti-christian beliefs in America, what worked then will not and is not working today, and we need to recognize it and correct it. The 10/40 window hasn’t closed, and is still very much open, but will we go through it? The world is waiting.

Christopher

christopher152@gmail.com

Comments
  1. clinton says:

    Brother did u hear Toni campolo say about gays same sex is he the one that God showed u a minister would come out in favor of same sex marriage

  2. Dan O. says:

    We always want to hear the voice of God, but if he speaks to us directly would we want to obey?
    Throughout the bible we can read that almost always we find it a struggle to submit or try to reason with God for the task which is given. And even though it seems great to us reading about such men of faith, im sure it wasn’t the case for many in the beginning. But it did happened and it happened all because of obedience, now if we could only transmit that to the thousands and millions that inherit this planet. -Oh we have. His gospel has now been well transmitted throughout many nations including the ones that weren’t even accessible before the cold war. Its not that we are lacking of his word but of our obedience and commitment to the covenant. We are failing on our part. We have fled from our duties, our responsibility, just as a law enforcer maintains the peace, we have failed to do so by not maintaining that which he has given us to govern. The immorality sweeping the nation is a result of our lack of Godliness in our lives. At the end of day i can truly say it starts within accepting our faults and seeking him, turning away from what we’ve known and entrusting him for what is to come in the future. “For many are called but few are chosen”. I hope and pray that you are blessed that God will shine his light in you that you may share that and bless many others. Apart from him i know not.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s