Called to Evangelize?

I feel the call the evangelize.
I’ve always felt the call to truth- since I was young. And so I strive to understand things as fully as possible, although I know that there is still quite a journey ahead of me. I hold Christ true to my heart and that will never change.

My observation is this though. I’ve come to the realization that there are certain people in this world who are deadset in their way of thinking, and that no matter how much explaining or historical proof you put in front of them, they will most likely never change their mind with the way that they think. Unfortunately this is a large result of myths and rumors created since the reformation.

Some of these people are this way merely for the fact that they want God/Christ to be something/someone different than what He is.

I’m having a hard time overcoming this.

I have a good friend who is a Christian fence sitter (Raised Pentacostal, but now has many doubts including but not limited to the authenticity of the Bible) who holds to himself that Martin Luther (although he acknowledges that he wasn’t really a holy man) played a divine roll in the sense that a lot of people today feel close to God through the faiths that stemmed from his movement.

He makes this claim for all of the Protestant religions-and Evangelical Christians. That if their faith allows them to feel close to Jesus/God, then by the fruits of that, we can determine it’s not a bad way to be. Why should they be encouraged to think any differently?

And furthermore-that since God allowed the reformation to occur, than that says something in and of itself.

It’s a tough one to object to without getting into so many theological issues (how God works, how Scripture affirms the oneness that God called us to and that the requirement for a Physical Church, etc.)

To add something a little more to the playing field-how do we even evangelize those who reject the Bible as being inerrant?

Just what Jesus told us, isn’t it? “Make disciples of all nations”! :thumbsup:

My observation is this though. I’ve come to the realization that there are certain people in this world who are deadset in their way of thinking, and that no matter how much explaining or historical proof you put in front of them, they will most likely never change their mind with the way that they think.

“Certain people”? Maybe I’m older and more cynical than you, but I’d say “most people”… :shrug: :wink:

I have a good friend who is a Christian fence sitter (Raised Pentacostal, but now has many doubts including but not limited to the authenticity of the Bible) who holds to himself that Martin Luther (although he acknowledges that he wasn’t really a holy man) played a divine roll in the sense that a lot of people today feel close to God through the faiths that stemmed from his movement.

A lot of people feel close to God through the faith that stemmed from Mohammad’s movement. Does that mean that he played a divine role?

He makes this claim for all of the Protestant religions-and Evangelical Christians. That if their faith allows them to feel close to Jesus/God, then by the fruits of that, we can determine it’s not a bad way to be.

OK… can he provide Scripture that demonstrates that it’s all about “feeling close to God”? John 14 would be a good place to start:

“If you love me, keep… feeling close to me”…? Or rather, “If you love me, keep my commandments.”

“Whoever has feelings of closeness to me is the one who loves me”…? Or rather, “whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me.”

“Whoever loves me will keep… feeling close to me”…? Or rather, “whoever loves me will keep my word.”

Why should they be encouraged to think any differently?

Because that’s not what Jesus said…? :shrug:

To be a follower of Jesus, we need to hear and respond to His word: “eat my flesh and drink my blood”… “do this in remembrance of me”… “whose sins you forgive are forgiven them”.

And furthermore-that since God allowed the reformation to occur, than that says something in and of itself.

It says that God allows all things to occur, without forcing Himself upon us. God allowed World War II and the Holocaust to occur; does that say something in and of itself? God allowed 9/11 to occur; does that say something in and of itself? God allowed the Air Asia flight to crash into the sea; does that say something in and of itself?

To add something a little more to the playing field-how do we even evangelize those who reject the Bible as being inerrant?

Maybe by finding out what value they do see in the Bible? Maybe by asking them whether they think God is capable of getting His word to us without distortion through the agency of humans?

You can’t force someone to believe. God could convert them in a second, but if God chooses not to touch them at this time then who are we to try to force them?

*And if any one will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town. (Matthew 10:14)

**`Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off against you; nevertheless know this, that the kingdom of God has come near.’ *(Luke 10:11)

Scripture says that we are to talk to people, that our faith is an invitation, but if they are not ready to receive the invitation then we should be prepared to “shake the dust off” and walk away.

My experience is that people don’t want doctrine and apologetics. People want to know why their life stinks and where they can find the peace and joy Christians always talk about but never seem to be able to demonstrate. If you can demonstrate peace and joy in the midst of hardship then they will want to be like you and ask you how you do it. Then it is time to talk about Jesus and the sacraments.

-Tim-

Pray very much first, Love your neighbor deeply with Christ’s Love. Then evangelize knowing that God gives the growth.

Speak the truth in love, and let the Holy Spirit accomplish the rest.

Peace

Evangelize by example. Praying for your intentions.

We’re all called to evangelize, in our own way. The most important things are to (1) pray, (2) go to confession and partake in the Eucharist, and (3) make sure your actions match your words. Not all are called to be great preachers, but all are called to be evangelizers. The best place to start? With your own family.

Gorgias,
Thank you for taking each point into consideration. It helps quite a bit.

Quote from you:

It says that God allows all things to occur, without forcing Himself upon us. God allowed World War II and the Holocaust to occur; does that say something in and of itself? God allowed 9/11 to occur; does that say something in and of itself? God allowed the Air Asia flight to crash into the sea; does that say something in and of itself?

Some would argue that although the events were not good per se, God allowed them to occur for the overall bigger picture a purpose.

Gorgias did a good job for sure. I may add a bit after this…

God allows free will because it is right and just. This includes the biggest evil in the world, sin.

It is true that out of Martin Luther’s work, people have come to God. It is true that out of Marx’s work, people have come to God. Darwin, Freud, Nietzsche, Kant, Stalin, Hitler, and Mao all have a roll to play in God’s master plan of drawing people to Him, but does that mean they are right? Because God allows someone to live, does that put God’s “stamp of approval” on their life and choices? Does that mean their philosophy or theology are credible? That is a big jump in logic

The only two things I would add are this:

  1. We live in a pagan world. Act 17 is how Paul evangelized the pagan Athenians. Pagan means, everyone defines their own god. In the light of this, Jesus still stands unique. The Gospel should always be the center focus. When it comes to the Gospel, preach the Gospel first, then how the Catholic faith lives the Gospel through the Eucharist. Paul, who had the Eucharist, didn’t preach the church, he lead with the Gospel. As a church we need to get back to preaching the Gospel, then making disciples as our Lord commanded.

  2. Do not get stuck on the Bible being credible. Jesus is credible. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the power of God unto salvation. The reason that protestant churches (if they are successful) are successful in bringing people to Jesus is that they preach the Gospel. They may not make disciples correctly, but they at least preach the Gospel. Always lead with the strongest argument first. Jesus is the way, the truth, the life, the answer…

PS That does not mean the Bible is not credible, it is very credible as ancient literature and God’s word. But the Bible points the way to the gospel.

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