Recently, I received a well meaning, but sad e-mail from a missionary couple with a particular organization which dismissed proclaimation evangelism and advocated a long term approach to preparing people before presenting the gospel. Their concerns stemmed from the difficulty of following up on people who made decisions during the harvest event. Furthermore, they claimed that mass evangelists were the exception in the New Testament.
Well, here we go again! I can't tell you how many times I have heard the argument that proclaimation evangelism doesn't work these days, or never worked at all. I often wonder if they have actually read the New Testament.
The Apostle Paul said, "For since, in God's wisdom, the world did not know God through wisdom, God was pleased to save those who believe through the foolishness of the message PREACHED." [Emphasis added] 1Co 1:21
They have somehow missed the fact that the church, on the day of Pentecost, was birthed out of mass evangelism through the preaching of Peter. They have missed the preaching of Paul, Steven and Phillip the Evangelist in Acts.
I try to imagine Paul, as he approached Athens and was provoked by the spiritual condition of the city, thinking,"I really need to build a relationship with these people, share some Old Testament stories with them, and maybe, just maybe I'll get to tell them about Jesus!"
One of the greatest needs in the church today is a revival of the confidence in the Gospel to save whosever, wherever whenever it is proclaimed. The Gospel is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes. Salvation is God's business. Our business is to proclaim the message of salvation and believe that God will honor that by saving the person who responds to the invitation.
let us renew our confidence in God's message to save.