Final Instructions – The Great Commission Part 1

Matthew 28:18


Introduction: I want to spend some time here in March to address some of Jesus’ ‘Final Instructions.’

(I took into consideration our business meeting where again I was reminded that probably our weakest link in in 5 Core Values is Evangelism.

Proselytization – to try to persuade someone to change their religious or political beliefs or way of living to your own:

Evangelism – In Christianity, evangelism or witnessing is the act of preaching the gospel with the intention of sharing the message and teachings of Jesus Christ. It is sometimes associated with Christian missions.

Euangelion – ‘good news.’

Insider trading – Insider trading is the trading of a company’s securities by individuals with access to confidential or material of non-public information about the company.

‘Christians in America’ – %’s

Christians by State – 1) Alabama 77%; Mississippi, Tennessee, Louisiana, Arkansas

Texas #11 – 64%
California #35 – 49% (tied with Minnesota, Nevada, Rhode Island)

Tied for 50th – Massachusetts and New Hampshire at 33%

A. Non-Churched

https://www.barna.com/research/10-facts-about-americas-churchless/

10. The Majority of churchless in America claim Christianity as their faith.

3. The vast majority of America’s churchless have attended a church.1. The number of unchurched people in America would make the 8th most populous country in the world.

2. In the past decade, more people in the U.S. have become churchless than live in Australia or Canada.

8. The younger a person is, the less likely he or she is to attend church.

Matthew 28:18


Introduction: I want to spend some time here in March to address some of Jesus’ ‘Final Instructions.’

(I took into consideration our business meeting where again I was reminded that probably our weakest link in in 5 Core Values is Evangelism.

Proselytization – to try to persuade someone to change their religious or political beliefs or way of living to your own:

Evangelism – In Christianity, evangelism or witnessing is the act of preaching the gospel with the intention of sharing the message and teachings of Jesus Christ. It is sometimes associated with Christian missions.

Euangelion – ‘good news.’

Insider trading – Insider trading is the trading of a company’s securities by individuals with access to confidential or material non-public information about the company.

‘Christians in America’ – %’s

Christians by State – 1) Alabama 77%; Mississippi, Tennessee, Louisiana, Arkansas

Texas #11 – 64%
California #35 – 49% (tied with Minnesota, Nevada, Rhode Island)

Tied for 50th – Massachusetts and New Hampshire at 33%

A. Non-Churched

https://www.barna.com/research/10-facts-about-americas-churchless/

10. Majority of churchless in America claim Christianity as their faith.

3. The vast majority of America’s churchless have attended a church.1. The number of unchurched people in America would make the 8th most populous country in the world.

2. In the past decade, more people in the U.S. have become churchless than live in Australia or Canada.

8. The younger a person is, the less likely he or she is to attend church.

B. The Great De-churching – Jim Davis and Michael Graham

Those who have quit going to church. Once did, now don’t.

Dechurched Evangelicals are Largely Still Orthodox / Primary Doctrines

  • The biggest surprise (that also gives great hope) DCE are still largely orthodox in their faith.
    • 68% still believe in the Trinity
    • 64% – Divinity of Jesus
    • 65% – death on the cross paid the penalty for sin.
    • 67% still believe in Resurrection

Question: SO why are they leaving? Another Day maybe.

C. Religious Switchinghttps://www.pewresearch.org/short-reads/2022/09/29/religious-switching-patterns-will-help-determine-christianitys-course-in-u-s/

The Pew Research Center released a study exploring how the religious composition of the United States might change by 2070.

  • One of the conclusions of the study that drew widespread attention is that Christians – who constituted 64% of the nation’s population in 2020 – may no longer be the majority five decades from now.

  • Religious switching goes in all directions. It might be a switch from one kind of Christianity to another, from Christianity to another religion, or from Christianity to no religion at all.
  • Over the last 15 years, the share of U.S. adults who identify as Christians (of all varieties, combined) has dropped by 15 percentage points, from 78% to 63%. The share who are “nones” has grown commensurately – rising by 1 point per year, on average, from 16% to nearly 30%.

‘Traditional Methods’ of Evangelism:


Question: So how is evangelism ‘done?’

6 Styles of Evangelism

The six styles are:

  • Direct – Acts 2
  • Intellectual – Acts 17
  • Testimonial – Story telling – John 9
  • Relational – Luke 5:27-29

  • Invitational – Bill Hybels, the author of Becoming a Contagious Christian says, “There are many people who would take great strides in their spiritual journey if someone would go to the effort of strategically inviting them to a seeker-oriented church service or outreach event.” It is all about extending the invitation.
  • Service – If you are a person who naturally notices the needs of others, this might be the perfect way to share your faith. A person who prefers this approach enjoys sharing the love of Christ through deed over word.

Every single person has God-given gifts and abilities that fall into one or more of these six approaches. A church community will have all of the styles present. The members, using their gifts and working together, can become very effective at sharing the message of Christ in their community.

Friendship Evangelism

  1. Authentic
  2. Non-Superior
  3. Non-Judgmental

Question: What can/should the ‘church’ do to be more attractive/appealing?

Next Week – https://ftc.co/resource-library/blog-entries/the-difference-between-attractional-and-attractive-ministry/

The Difference Between Attractional and Attractive Ministry

Week 3 – How will they hear?

B. The Great De-churching – Jim Davis and Michael Graham

Those who have quit going to church. Once did, now don’t.

Dechurched Evangelicals are Largely Still Orthodox / Primary Doctrines

  • The biggest surprise (that also gives great hope) DCE are still largely orthodox in their faith.
    • 68% still believe in the Trinity
    • 64% – Divinity of Jesus
    • 65% – death on the cross paid the penalty for sin.
    • 67% still believe in Resurrection

Question: SO why are they leaving? Another Day maybe.

C. Religious Switchinghttps://www.pewresearch.org/short-reads/2022/09/29/religious-switching-patterns-will-help-determine-christianitys-course-in-u-s/

The Pew Research Center released a study exploring how the religious composition of the United States might change by 2070.

  • One of the conclusions of the study that drew widespread attention is that Christians – who constituted 64% of the nation’s population in 2020 – may no longer be the majority five decades from now.

  • Religious switching goes in all directions. It might be a switch from one kind of Christianity to another, from Christianity to another religion, or from Christianity to no religion at all.
  • Over the last 15 years, the share of U.S. adults who identify as Christians (of all varieties, combined) has dropped by 15 percentage points, from 78% to 63%. The share who are “nones” has grown commensurately – rising by 1 point per year, on average, from 16% to nearly 30%.

‘Traditional Methods’ of Evangelism:


Question: So how is evangelism ‘done?’

6 Styles of Evangelism

The six styles are:

  • Direct – Acts 2
  • Intellectual – Acts 17

  • Testimonial – Story-telling – John 9
  • Relational – Luke 5:27-29

  • Invitational – Bill Hybels, the author of Becoming a Contagious Christian says, “There are many people who would take great strides in their spiritual journey if someone would go to the effort of strategically inviting them to a seeker-oriented church service or outreach event.” It is all about extending the invitation.
  • Service – If you are a person who naturally notices the needs of others, this might be the perfect way to share your faith. A person who prefers this approach enjoys sharing the love of Christ through deed over word.

Every single person has God-given gifts and abilities that fall into one or more of these six approaches. A church community will have all of the styles present. The members, using their gifts and working together, can become very effective at sharing the message of Christ in their community.

Friendship Evangelism

  1. Authentic
  2. Non-Superior
  3. Non-Judgmental

Question: What can/should the ‘church’ do to be more attractive/appealing?

Next Week – https://ftc.co/resource-library/blog-entries/the-difference-between-attractional-and-attractive-ministry/

The Difference Between Attractional and Attractive Ministry

Week 3 – How will they hear?

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