The Philosophy of Evangelism
Not a day passes but that the world is discovering the frustration that results in attempting to understand Christian activity apart from Christian teaching. To my Soviet interrogators, my faith was an incorporeal experience and nothing more. It wasn’t difficult for me, knowing their definition, to understand their amazement over my actions.
The point is that Christianity is more than an experience. Many Christian people in their haste to spread their joy, relate a subjective experience rather than objective truths. While this is a great deal safer (in that people do not seem nearly as threatened by personal experience), it is also infinitely less productive than the presentation of objective, invasive truths.
The essence of Christ’s great commission rests in what He has taught us, not what He has done for us (important and precious as this is). Only Christ’s teaching can work a similar inner miracle in another’s life. If what we share with the world is solely a subjective experience, we run the risk of seeing it routinely tossed into the world’s ever-growing bag of experiences. The only factor that sets the Christian experience apart from Krishna-consciousness, spiritism, existentialism or what-have-you, is the intrinsic truth of Christianity.
However, a philosophy of evangelism must encompass more than what we share; it must include the why. Why do we share? There appear to be two reasons why every Christian needs to share the Gospel message with others: obedience and life purpose. Although the two are linked together in the sense that obedience is the life purpose of every Christian, our immediate design is to examine this philosophy of evangelism from both an objective and a subjective standpoint.