Evangelism is often treated as something optional. But, of course, we all live under grace, meaning that you cannot do it and still go to heaven of course. But our goals as Christians should be to do what God has called us to because the goal is not just to get to heaven. Obedience to him should be of the utmost importance to us. So, knowing this, you have to ask why don’t we share the Gospel of Jesus Christ more often.
Mark 16:15 – He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”
Matthew 28:19-20 – Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.
When you read these calls from the Gospels, there is no way to get around the call to share the Gospel. The great commission takes it a step further by telling us to share the Gospel and disciple those people. To help people take the next step in following Jesus. The only way to do that is to know them and be in their lives. But no matter how you slice it, sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ is Biblical, yet many of us don’t do it.
Let’s dig and answer why we don’t share the Gospel.
You Worry What Other People Will Think
One of the biggest reasons people don’t share the Gospel is from a fear of what others think. When you share the Gospel, it puts you in the unknown. You have to trust that God will change their hearts, and you never know who God will use to do that. There is a good chance that you will get rejected, and you have to be ok with that. Looking dumb is worth it for the sake of the Gospel.
The problem with worrying about what others think is that it comes from a fear of man. It comes from not fearing God rightfully. So instead, you put more into what other people will think or if they will like you.
How to Overcome This:
One of the best things you can do is focus on your purpose in Jesus Christ. When you accepted him, he gave you a new mission in life. Maybe before Jesus, your task was to make as much money as possible, but after Jesus, it’s to disciple as many Christians as possible. Let God be your cornerstone for all you do, and he will give you the courage to speak to whoever you need to and overcome any fears.
You Are Fearful of What Others May Say
Being fearful of what others may say comes from feeling like you don’t have the words to say. If you talk about Jesus, someone will have a rebuttal that you are not ready for, and they may make your faith come crashing down. You are scared to go into a conversation giving someone hope, and maybe you leave doubting.
When you are fearful of what others will say, you are secretly showing that you don’t trust in the Holy Spirit to give you the words to say. We have to come back to the fact that all glory will go to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. If you have the words to say, you will give yourself credit. When the words come from the Spirit that has been shown to you as a gift, you can take no credit.
Luke 12:12 – The Holy Spirit will give you the words to say at the moment when you need them.
How to Overcome This:
Stop relying on yourself so much. Before you share, the Gospel spend time praying and invite the Spirit into the conversation. Know that whatever happens will result from God and not you, whether it turns out how you want it or not. You also never know when the words you say plant a seed for someone else to water and care for.
You Know Being a Christian is Considered Taboo in Some Circles
You don’t share the Gospel because Christians are attached to many things that are misunderstood in our society.
- All Christians do is a judge
- Christians hate gays
- Christians hate abortion
- Christians are not accepting
- They believe in some super old book
- The Bible is violent
The list of criticisms goes on and on, and people don’t take the time to understand any of these things on a deeper level. They are ideas that are often just heard and repeated by people. It can be hard to overcome some of these objections when you know they are half-truths. You may get frustrated and withdraw, making you seem wrong or like you lost. So, you back down and never share the Gospel as a result.
How to Overcome This:
One of the best things you can do is ask people questions more. When people make broad, sweeping statements, ask what you mean by that? Force people to expand on their way of thinking, don’t just take everything they say at face value.
People often can’t explain their arguments very well. So they take what they hear others say, and they run with it. Christians don’t hate gays, but Christians do not like sin. But as Christians, we know that there is new life in Jesus Christ.
You Don’t Want to Be One of Those Christians.
When I was in college, there was a girl on the track team who was one of the most annoying evangelists I can remember in my life. I was a Christian at the time, and even I was annoyed. She often assumed things about my life and where I was in my walk, which agitated me. Everyone has had experiences with people who turned them off by how they approached them. We then associate being an evangelist with being annoying.
Sharing the Gospel is not about bugging people. It’s not about doing everything you can to make people feel bad so that they recognize their need to repent. Everyone is different, and that is why you have to trust the Holy Spirit to give you the words because you don’t know what they need at that moment.
How to Overcome This
Focus on building relationships. When you have a fantastic relationship with someone, you can say much more to them without offending them. Being an evangelist is more about building relationships with people outside of your circle than it is about getting people to give their life to Christ.
When you have people in your life, they can see how you live and what your Christian life is really about. It becomes much less about what you say and more about who you are and the Godly character that you put on display. This approach puts less pressure on one interaction and puts more on you, making sure you live the Gospel out.
You Don’t Think You Know Enough.
Another reason people don’t share the Gospel is because they don’t think they know enough. In the Western world, there is this line of thinking that you have to know all of Jesus to talk about him. But you have to remember that humans are limited and cannot wholly know God independently. That is why the Holy Spirit interceding on our behalf is so huge. You can’t accomplish the knowing of God on your own without Jesus first dying for you.
When you think about discipleship, too many people see it bringing someone from a hater of Jesus to the Apostle Paul. In reality, true discipleship is just helping people take the next step in Jesus. Of course, that can look very different for many different people. But when you see it this way, you focus on what you do know and not what you don’t know.
How to Overcome This:
Ask God to give you the courage to speak on what you know. If all you know is the book of Matthew, then teach people from there. Ask God to give you a hunger to want to know more of his word. Lastly, find your discipleship sweet spot. If you like to bring people far from Jesus just a bit closer to him and then pass them off to another person, that is ok. We only need to play our part. No one is good at all areas of discipleship.