A Brief Book Summary from Books At a Glance
by Steve West
About the Author
Sam Chan is an evangelist who shares the gospel in numerous contexts and speaks at conferences all around the world. He blogs at espressotheology.com and works with the City Bible Forum in Sydney, Australia.
Table of Contents
Foreword – D.A. Carson
1 A Theology of Evangelism
2 Everyday Evangelism
3 How to Craft a Gospel Presentation
4 Evangelism to Postmoderns
5 Contextualization for Evangelism
6 Gospel-Cultural Hermeneutics
7 Storytelling the Gospel
8 How to Give Evangelistic Topical Talks
9 How to Give Evangelistic Expository Talks
10 Religious Epistemology, Apologetics, and Defeater Beliefs
Chapter 1: A Theology of Evangelism
Evangelism is not a word which has a direct equivalent in the Greek New Testament. It is best understood in English as signifying what happens when someone tells the euangelion (i.e., the gospel). The Greek translators of the Old Testament used euangelion and cognates to translate the bringing of significant news, but this became focused on God’s acts of the salvation of his people, especially as promised eschatologically. Euangelion is used 76 times in the NT—more than 60 times by Paul—and it refers to the story of Jesus Christ. Evangelism is sharing the message, and is not to be confused with one particular way that the message is shared. For example, the NT uses terms like preaching, exhorting, testifying, proclaiming, etc., to describe ways of sharing the gospel. The gospel can be understood through reading NT passages, through examining theological formulations, and by explaining it in narrative.
In evangelism, God chooses, the Son saves, the evangelists share, the Spirit empowers, and people respond to the message of Jesus. We cannot plumb the depths of the relationship between divine sovereignty and human responsibility, but we are to work hard in evangelism and trust in God for the results he determines to bring about. We are responsible to give the external call, but the Spirit provides the inner effectual call. In evangelism, God works through human means.
“The essence of evangelism is the message that Jesus Christ is Lord.” We proclaim the message, praying and hoping that people will respond in trust and obedience. The good news of Jesus is the locution of evangelism, but the illocution can take many different forms (a sermon, song, puppet show, etc.). When someone responds to the gospel, from God’s perspective they are regenerated, and from the human side they are converted in repentance and faith. Faith requires knowledge and assent to certain propositions, but it also requires personal trust in Christ. Some people require rational-logical cases, while others are persuaded by their emotions or by pragmatic examples. This means that there is no one-size-fits-all model. . . .[To continue reading this summary, please see below....]
Buy the books
EVANGELISM IN A SKEPTICAL WORLD: HOW TO MAKE THE UNBELIEVABLE NEWS ABOUT JESUS MORE BELIEVABLE, by Sam Chan