Steven Lawson – 4 Ways Pastors Must Practice Evangelism

Pastoral-Evangelism-2-podium_620 In his final letter, Paul charges Timothy, his son in the faith, to “do the work of an evangelist” (2 Tim. 4:5). By these words, the aged Apostle establishes the timeless standard for pastoral ministry, not only for young Timothy but for all pastors in every generation and in every place.

With Apostolic authority, this imperative command comes with binding force. All pastors must do the work of an evangelist. They must earnestly proclaim the gospel message, urging people to trust in Jesus Christ alone for salvation. So, where should this pastoral evangelism begin?

First, every pastor must preach the gospel to himself. Before any pastor can call others to repent, he must believe in Jesus Christ. The Apostle Paul exhorts Timothy, saying, “Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you” (1 Tim. 4:16). That is, every preacher must examine his own soul first. The success of one’s evangelism is, first and foremost, dependent upon his right standing in grace.

In The Reformed Pastor Puritan Richard Baxter addressed the ministers of his day, many of whom were unconverted: “See that the work of saving grace be thoroughly wrought in your own souls. Take heed to yourselves, lest you be void of that saving grace of God which you offer to others.” Simply put, pastors must embrace the very message they preach.

Charles Spurgeon writes:

A graceless pastor is a blind man elected to a professorship of optics, philosophizing upon light and vision, discoursing upon … the nice shades and delicate blendings of the prismatic colours, while he himself is absolutely in the dark! He is a dumb man elevated to the chair of music; a deaf man fluent upon symphonies and harmonies! He is a mole professing to educate eaglets.

Sadly, unconverted pastors do exist. Martin Luther was a doctor of theology and professor of Bible before he was born again. John Wesley was an overseas missionary prior to his conversion. Every pastor must be certain of his own salvation before he can powerfully preach the gospel to others.

Second, every pastor must preach the gospel to his family. Evangelism in the home begins with shepherding one’s own wife in her relationship with Christ. I will never forget an elder’s meeting in which one of our pastors shared that his wife had been converted the previous night. She was one of the nicest people in the church, yet, unknown to us, she was unconverted. How often is this the reality? To this end, every pastor must give attention to the spiritual state of his wife.

Similarly, he must give the same attention to his children. This evangelism should begin early and involve disciplines such as Bible readings, catechizing, and family devotions. I came to faith in Christ as a result of my father reading the Bible to me in the evenings. Moreover, home evangelism should include informal conversations, probing questions, and a consistently godly life modeled before the children.

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Intelmin Week in Review – 15-21April 2013

Here is what made it on Intelmin this past week. It was a busy week with lots of great articles, book reviews, and videos to share. Thanks for stopping by.

Dan Delzell – God Established Marriage Equality 6000 Years Ago

Jonathan Leeman – Love and the Inhumanity of Same-Sex Marriage

Book Review – Bitesize Biographies: John Newton by John Crotts

Owen Strachan – Evangelical Encouragement: What the Gosnell Groundswell Shows

Justin Buzzard – Abortion and the Early Church

Justin Buzzard – The Abortion of Abortion

Erik Raymond – 3 Ways the Gospel Changes Marriage

Colin Adams – The Boston Bombings: What Can We Preach?

Joseph Rhea – Gospel-Centered Manhood: Three Correctives

Dr. R. C. Sproul – R.C. Sproul on Suffering and the Christian Life

Dr. R. C. Sproul – Wisdom and Revelation by the Spirit

Lee Anderson – A Response to Peter Enns’s Attack on Biblical Creationism

Shai Linne Responds To Paula White Ministries’ Open Letter

Charles Spurgeon – Human Inability

Charles Spurgeon on the Importance of Scripture

Jen Wilkin – Why The Sermon is Not Enough

Book Review – Understanding Fundamentalism and Evangelicalism by George Marsden

Randy Alcorn – Heaven Won’t Be Boring

Tim Challies – The History of Christianity in 25 Objects: Codex Amiatinus

Book Review – We’re Just Friends and Other Dating Lies by Chuck Milian

Alfred Edersheim – Old Testament History

F. F. Bruce – The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable?

John Newton – The Doctrines of Election and Final Perseverance – Excerpts from a letter

Justin and Trisha Davis – 3 Lies Porn Tells You

Anthony Carter – Discussing and Dealing with Pornography

Dr. John MacArthur – Principles for Living to God’s Glory: Edification

Dave Jenkins – Effective Evangelism

Book Review – Gods at War by Kyle Idleman

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