4 Things to Do if Your Church Says “No” to Evangelism

Discouraged pastor

The pastor on the phone sounded defeated. “I talked to the church board about Evangelism and they said they didn’t want any evangelism this year, and maybe not next year either.”

In situations like this it is possible to forget that evangelism is not based on the fleeting emotions of people but rather on the direct commands of Jesus! Jesus said “Go!” “Disciple!” “Baptize!” “Teach!” and if we are going to be faithful to the One who died for us we must evangelize!

But what should you do if church leaders show little or no enthusiasm, or even try to roadblock your efforts? Here are four things to do.

1. Listen and agree whenever possible. When there is resistance say “Tell me more” or “Help me understand your thinking” then listen well to what they say. You might hear responses like “Last time we did evangelism we spent a fortune and didn’t baptize anyone” or “There were ten people baptized last time we did evangelism and you can’t find any of them now” or “People are so busy that I don’t think anyone would come” or “We need to get our church stronger spiritually before we do evangelism.” Listen without being defensive. Agree as often as you can. You might respond with statements such as “It does sound like a lot of money was spent with few visible results” or “That’s really disappointing to see people baptized and then we lose them so quickly” or “People do seem to be very busy these days” or “We really do need to grow stronger spiritually as a church.”

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Barbara Bush and Ingathering

Barbara Bush

Many years ago (in the early 1960s) the Houston Central Seventh-day Adventist Church was involved with Business Ingathering. The pastor and lay leaders would make appointments with business leaders in Houston to share with them the humanitarian work of Seventh-day Adventists throughout Texas and the world and invite them to donate to help others.

One of the many business contacts was a couple in their late 30s named George & Barbara Bush. The Bushes expressed interest in the work of Seventh-day Adventists and became regular annual contributors to the Ingathering program.

After a few years some in the church became troubled that the Business Ingathering program was bothering some business people and decided to discontinue it. But they were surprised when Barbara Bush called the church office and asked why no one had come by to pick up their annual donation. She was more willing to give than some were to receive!

(This story was told many years ago by Emmit Padon, a longtime Seventh-day Adventist lay leader in the Houston area when he served on the Texas Conference Executive Committee in the 1990s.)

What lessons do you think we can learn from this experience?

 

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Deliverance from Demonic Intimidation

Jesus protects1The closer we get to the Second Coming of Jesus the more desperate the devil will become because he knows his time is almost up. “Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.” Revelation 12:12.

The devil specializes in deception, intimidation and persecution. But Jesus is far more powerful. If you or someone you love has been experiencing demonic intimidation you need the information below. May it help you put your trust fully in Jesus and the power of His indwelling Holy Spirit to find deliverance from demonic intimidation for you and/or those you love.

Praying for Deliverance Questionnaire

See Ephesians 4:27, 6:10-18; 1 Peter 5:8-9.

As you read through the following lists, ask the Holy Spirit to recall to your mind every involvement you have had. Keep in mind that many of these activities are clearly of the occult; others may not be as apparent. Please mark any and all activities, even if there is a question in your mind as to their occult nature, so that you are confident that you renounce all possible occult or demonic influence in your life.

It is not the purpose to teach about each and every activities and why they are considered as possible sources of occult activity; rather, the questions offer a solid framework for occult renouncement.

Circle each area in which you have participated, whether or not it was “just for fun,” out of curiosity or in earnest. Continue reading

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Alcohol – Enemy of Homes & Communities

 

Alcohol Enemy of Homes and Communities

This tract/article has been adapted from Chapter 27 (Liquor Traffic and Prohibition, pp.337-346) of the book The Ministry of Healing by Ellen G. White

The Alcohol Seller

God has been very generous in giving His blessings to mankind.[1] If used wisely they would relieve so much poverty and distress! But because of the greed of gain and the lust of appetite the grains and fruits given to sustain us are converted into poisons that bring misery and ruin.

Every year over $220 billion is spent on alcohol in the United States in an effort to relax, socialize, celebrate or feed an addiction.[2] But what else is society getting? According to the documented research in Uncorked! The hidden hazards of alcohol the answer is a huge increase in sexual assault, date rape, domestic abuse, child abuse, poverty, disease, divorce, car accidents, crime, suicide and death.[3] The seller of alcohol sells his victims a product that corrupts and destroys mind and body.[4] When his victim is dead, the family is often left to pay for the poor decisions made by the victim while he was still alive. The seller grows rich on those whom he is leading to destruction.

Houses of prostitution, criminal courts, prisons, homeless shelters, mental institutions, Continue reading

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Working with an Associate/Assistant Pastor

pastoral teamRecently a pastor friend moved to a new district as Senior pastor and gained an Associate pastor. He asked for counsel on responsibilities and roles for an associate since this is new for him. Here are some notes I shared with him.

As pastors we must always be building a team. Up until now your team has been your church board members and/or your elders. Now it will include an Associate pastor.

I try to make general assignments rather than getting too specific, and I adjust the assignments based on the associate’s passions/interests.

Here are some general areas that need to have one or the other lead (though both are often involved) … Continue reading

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Mobilizing Members in Ministry – Ministry Models

Mobilizing MembersJoin us Wednesday August 2, 2017 at 1pm Central Time as we discuss Mobilizing Members in Ministry on our Ministry Models Teleconference. Call 515-604-9000; Access Code 540330. This article was originally published in the January 27, 2005 Adventist Review.

I think every Seventh-day Adventist wants to be part of an active, vibrant church. And one to which we would feel comfortable bringing our friends. Unfortunately, few churches seem to have found a way to muster more than 20 percent of their members to engage in ministries they enjoy.

I’d like to share with you the top three things that I believe can add life to your church. I wish I had learned these things 20 years ago when I was starting my pastoral ministry! I believe I would have had a much greater impact in God’s work in the local church. Continue reading

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New Member Orientation – Ministry Models

NewMemberOrientation-NoDateJoin us Wednesday July 5, 2017 at 1pm Central Time as we discuss New Member Orientation on our Ministry Models Teleconference. Call 515-604-9000; Access Code 540330.

When people join a church in your district – through baptism, profession of faith or transfer – you can give them a great start by having a simple but powerful New Member Orientation. This orientation can help them get started immediately in  the ministry and mission Jesus has called them to do. This is the primary purpose of the orientation.

Here are 3 Ministry Models for New Member Orientation that I have found helpful. Feel free to use, adapt or discard them in your ministry. Remember, a MODEL can Make Our Difficulties Easy & Light! Continue reading

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