Lifestyle Evangelism

All Heaven and no hell.

Do not expect people to become like us. But rather for us to step into their lives – eat what they eat, sleep where they sleep, play as they play, speak as they speak, study as they study – just as Jesus became like us. But just as Jesus did not participate in any sin, we likewise are to remain free from any sin the people we are sharing with.

Good Person Test

Being set apart for God is not determined by external factors. God looks at people’s hearts. We need to separate ourselves from all types of sin including sexual sin, hate, bitterness, envy, lust, discord, fits of rage, selfish ambition, drunkenness, … and many more. This means that we are to aim at an impeccable lifestyle. But this does not mean that we do not mix with others who may live very differently. Jesus mixed with prostitutes, tax collectors (that is collecting for the Romans, the occupying enemy), zealots (who would happily kill the Romans), Samaritans, fishermen, lepers and other outcasts, … a wide range of people from different backgrounds. But He did not get caught up with their sin or their lifestyle. Jesus cut quite quickly to the issue on people’s hearts. But He passed by many people. He did not try to persuade everyone. Just the ones His Father guided him to.

Our role is not to judge. Nor to decide whether a person deserves something. Our role is to lift the fallen, to restore the broken and to heal the hurting.

Low Pressure or no pressure?

Jesus always acted on the law of attraction rather than force or compulsion. He never cajoled anyone to follow Him. He clearly showed His love for people. He drew people by His healings and teachings. When Jesus had completed His sermon on the mount, it is recorded:

“When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.” Matthew 7:29 NIV

Perhaps it is worth having a look at this sermon. There are lots of tips about relating to people that can be relevant to this topic of evangelism. Possibly we can take some ideas from this relevant to teaching people. Then we can teach with authority – most definitely the overbearing type of authority “you must do what I say or else …

”But rather teaching with parables / stories relevant o the culture and people we are talking with. One plus to stories is that we are not talking at people but rather looking away, in the same direction together; giving them something to remember and to ponder. Jesus came to serve people. (See Matthew 20:25-28).

Let us consider how we can serve people; and let’s ask God for opportunities to serve as He would serve them.

Not all I have but all I am. Let’s see the beauty in people God created us in His image. What a magnificent template that is. Please ponder the characteristics of God. Dwell upon His beauty; all His wonderful characteristics. Keep a note of them and keep adding to that list over time. Everyone you and I come across was made in this image. Yes we are all marred, but the foundation is magnificent.

When we look at people like this, it is a very different perspective than thinking and/or saying: “You are a sinner …” Let’s draw people to the wonderful people they can become. Let’s not dwell on the negative. But, let’s speak about their future, their growth, their possibilities … Let’s ask who they would like to become – in their wildest dreams, who is the best person they think they can become? Then take a look at phesians 3:14-20 and pray that for them. (More about that under the section on prayer).

Psalm 84 says it well: “God of Heaven’s Armies, you find so much beauty in your people! They’re like lovely sanctuaries of your presence.” Psalm 84:1 TPT

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