Evangelism is defined in most dictionaries as winning a person to Christ or reviving their personal commitment to Him. We all have the capacity to demonstrate God's love to other christians and to unbelievers through deeds, actions, and words, which should always be delivered with humility, gentleness, and respect.
It is important to remember that we are not alone in the area of evangelism. We labor together with the Lord to make Him known to those with whom we come in contact.
"Then Jesus came to them and said, All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of 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." (Matthew 28:18-20)
There are a variety of ways in which a christian can evangelize and these will vary based on that person's temperament. For some, multiple styles will be utilized, while others are uniquely geared to one particular style. They are all good, useful, and equally important.
The list below defines the various styles (adapted from "Becoming a Contagious Christian") by Bill Hybels, a useful and practical guide to personal evangelism.
Serving people shows the love of God by caring for and comforting others. This style of evangelism demonstrates to the receiver how much God loves them and is a physical model of how Jesus instructed us to love others.
"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you invited me in. I needed clothes and you clothed me. I was sick and you looked after me. I was in prison and you came to visit me.....whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me." (Matthew 25:35-40)
This style is what you see from preachers like Billy Graham and other people that are given to declaring truth. It is characterized by a confident and assertive approach and has to be tempered with tact and love.
"Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction." (2 Timothy 4:2)
Do you love to tell others about how God has healed you, provided for your needs, or touched your life in some other way? People with this style usually have a strong testimony of something that the Lord has done in their lives and they live to tell others. They should temper this zeal by not focusing solely on themselves, giving all the glory to God, and leaving plenty of time to listen to the needs of the person.
"We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ." (1 John 1:3)
Inquisitive, analytical, and logical people often function in a more intellectual style of evangelism. If this is your style, be a good listener, share the Gospel, and avoid argumentative conversations.
"But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect." (1 Peter 3:15)
Consider: Martha, Lazurus' sister, was probably a person with the gift of hospitality. People with a desire to be hospitable, relational, and nurturing, reach out to people, inviting them to their homes for meals and fellowship. It's a great way to love hurting people and show them God loves and cares about them enough to stop and pay attention to their needs.
"Then the master told His servant, 'Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full." (Luke 14:23)
This style usually flows from a person that is warm, conversational, and friendship-oriented. A Biblical example of this type of evangelism is Matthew, the tax collector. He invited his friends over to his house to meet Jesus. Many Life Group leaders have an interpersonal and invitational style of evangelism.
"To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some." (1 Corinthians 9:22)
Making disciples and caring for others is truly at the heart of all the ministries of NCC. Take time to visit our MINISTRIES page and read about what drives each one to see how you would like to get involved and touch the lives of others. You'll find community outreach, caring for others in small groups, encouraging and feeding the hungry, missions to other states and countries, supporting local schools, nurturing the oppressed, serving the children that attend NCC, or being a champion to our youth, young adults, women, and men.