He Himself gave some to be … some evangelists… for the equipping of the saints for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ. Ephesians 4:11
The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise. Proverbs 11:30
Those who are wise shall shine, like the brightness of the firmament. And those who turn many to righteousness like the stars forever and ever. Daniel 12:3
Last Sunday, following the study, a few discussed the role of evangelism in the life of a believer—particularly the believer who is perhaps reluctant to sense he/she has been given the gift of an evangelist. I trust what follows will add clarity to the blessing and delight we all have in sharing the gospel, regardless of our spiritual gifts.
Some people will think “Since God has gifted people as evangelists, only those with such a gift are expected to evangelize.” In light of Eph. 4:11, it is undeniable that some people are gifted as such. But we must read what follows– “for the equipping of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” The goal is to equip the believers so that the work is accomplished. The responsibility (privilege & delight too) that God has given the church is not fulfilled by one, or even a few people. Instead, all of us are to use our gifts and labor together.
Therefore, a believer does not have to have the gift of evangelism to evangelize. He or she can be equipped by someone with such a gift. Consider the scene of Matthew 4:19, seeing the fishermen Peter & Andrew casting a net, Jesus said to them “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” This was the first teaching Jesus gave to His new disciples. Follow and fish! Concern for lost people should characterize a disciple of Christ.
That concern may be expressed in various ways. Some give financially so that the lost might be reached. Others promote an evangelistic outreach, others distributing tracts and literature. We need those who are devoted to prayer—speaking to God about men, and those who speak to men about God. The point is, followers of Jesus are to be involved in evangelism.
So we clearly see there is an invitation and an expectation from our Lord for us to participate in the delight of the gospel. It is a wise use of our life here and now, yet also extends into eternity. There is an eternal blessing with an expanded capacity or brightness in Heaven for those who choose such a wise investment into these matters of men’s souls.