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The best book I’ve read on evangelism

I discovered J. Mack Stiles when I read the highly recommended ‘Marks of the Messenger‘. This inspired me to read his earlier book – ‘Speaking of Jesus: How to tell your friends the best news they’ll ever hear‘.

This book is the best book I’ve read on evangelism, and one I’d happily give to encourage others to get equipped for sharing the good news of Jesus.

Stiles has been influenced by other writers on evangelism (e.g. Little’s ‘How to give away your faith‘ and Packer’s ‘Evangelism and the sovereignty of God‘).

For example, this quote from Paul Little was a very good reminder for me:

“Evangelism is one of the keys to spiritual health.”

However, he brings his own style, insight and experience that is very readable, practical and energising.

What’s the difference between the two books?

While ‘Marks of the Messenger‘ is also on the topic of evangelism, I think its focus is on addressing churches and pastors, whereas ‘Speaking of Jesus‘ is for any believer who wants to start with evangelism.

Why do I recommend this book?

Here’s 8 reasons:

  1. It doesn’t use guilt to motivate us to evangelise.
  2. It acknowledges and deals with the common obstacles to evangelism.
  3. It makes clear what our role is, and what’s the role of the Holy Spirit.
  4. It includes loads of very practical tips for knowing and sharing the good news.
  5. It is filled with clear explanations of how Bible truth informs our evangelism.
  6. It helps us understand culture, and how the gospel cuts through culture.
  7. It includes some good examples of how to have an evangelistic conversation.
  8. It was another reminder of the need to call people to respond, not just nod along.

I also found it helpful to consider that evangelism requires 3 things:

  1. Being available
  2. Being motivated
  3. Being equipped

For some Christians (I put myself in this category), availability is the biggest obstacle. For others (perhaps new Christians) being equipped if the biggest obstacle.

There’s a helpful chart (apologies for the poor quality) that explains the result when one or more of these factors is missing:

Screen Shot 2013-02-25 at 12.16.14 PM

“When you’re praying, “Lord, use me in evangelism,” be ready. Watch for it to happen.”

Image credit: Jim le Page.

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  1. Pingback: ‘The Best Book I’ve Read on Evangelism’ | all for JESUS: Seek. Live. Grow.

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