Mark Mittelberg and Lee Strobel

What is Evangelism?

Mark Mittelberg, best-selling author of the "Becoming a Contagious Christian" training course and executive director of the Lee Strobel Center for Evangelism and Applied Apologetics at Colorado Christian University

So, what is evangelism?

One thing is for sure: it's a word that scares lots of Christians! Why is that? Probably because some people fear evangelism is about trying to push our ideas on people who aren't interested and don't want to hear them. We don't want to manipulate people or try to force them to believe what we believe, right?

Or we're concerned that we'll be asked questions we're not ready to answer, and then we'll feel foolish when we're not able to come up with a good response.

Our fear might stem from the sense that we'll have to try to act like someone we're not — whether that be a really sharp person who is exceedingly effective at explaining spiritual matters or somebody who just tries to do so anyway, but who ends up putting people off and possibly doing more harm than good.

Wouldn't it be easier to just be an ordinary Christian and keep my beliefs to myself?

Easier, yes — but better, no. Here's the truth: If you forgo the opportunity to share your faith with others, you'll be missing out on the thrill of a lifetime. Or, as Lee Strobel and I put it in our book on the subject, you won't get to experience The Unexpected Adventure.

You see, we were made to share Jesus with others (2 Corinthians 5:18-20). More than that, we were sent by Jesus to share his Good News with those around us (see Acts 1:8). And when we stretch ourselves to talk to others about him, get this: he'll be with us! He promised that as we go, "surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age" (Matthew 28:18-20).

Also, you don't have to act like someone you're not, because you'll have much more impact if you just speak authentically as the person God made you to be. When we look in the Bible, we discover that Jesus' followers shared their faith in a variety of ways, using approaches that were natural to them.

So when you learn to talk about Jesus in ways that fit you, and you do so with people who are interested in finding out more about him, and when you sense that God's Spirit is guiding your words and giving you the wisdom you didn't know you had, then you're going to find what many of us have already discovered.

There's nothing as important, nothing as exciting, and nothing as rewarding as being used by the God of the universe to lovingly influence the life of a cherished friend or family member for all of eternity.

That's what evangelism is!

Want to learn more? We started The Lee Strobel Center for Evangelism and Applied Apologetics at CCU to help you do just that. Whether you take a class or two or decide to major in evangelism or apologetics, we're here to help inspire, equip, and launch you into the adventure of reaching people for Christ and, ultimately, expanding the population of heaven. The Lee Strobel Center for Evangelism and Applied Apologetics programs will be launching in 2020.

Learn more about the Lee Strobel Center for Evangelism at CCU and the apologetics and evangelism courses offered for future evangelists!

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