Our world is broken and divided. Nations make war against nations. Companies compete for markets. Peoples fight for resources, power and prestige. Individuals struggle with each other to find a more comfortable place under the sun. Even within our own hearts we know what it means to lead double lives and be pulled in different directions by the conflicting forces of desires and obligations.
There are many false gods in our world. Gods that inspire hopes and fear. Idols that pull people apart, demand their attention, claim their allegiance, promise to satisfy their needs, ambitions and aspirations. Idols are everywhere around us. Perhaps they have changed their shape and form in the course of history but their deceptive presence has not disappeared. We live in a world full of idolatry which leads humanity onto a pointless journey of darkness and confusion.
To share the Gospel with our world means to call people to abandon their devotion to the idols of our time. Evangelism is an invitation to worship. It is not about selling a religious product. It is not about arousing shallow, fleeting emotions. It is not about engaging in intellectual gymnastics. It is not about building up powerful religious institutions. Evangelism is essentially a call to people to turn away from their false gods and worship God alone.
We worship God because he is our Creator and Saviour. We owe to him our very existence. Our identity, our abilities, who we are and what we can achieve – all this is a gift from Him, the Creator of the universe. He holds our breath in his hand. We owe to him our salvation. Our sins have been washed away by the blood of his Son. Our transgressions have been forgiven through his death on the cross and a new life has been given to us by the power of his resurrection. Evangelism is calling people to understand and recognize the truth about the person of God and his acts in our world.
Evangelism is also calling people to respond appropriately to these truths. It is an invitation to worship our Creator and Saviour. The only appropriate way to do this is to honour God with the whole of our lives. To worship him with our songs and prayers, with our study and work, with our relationships and choices. Evangelism is an invitation to a life of wholeness where every part is brought under the authority of Christ. It is a call to give ourselves wholly to God’s saving grace and allow that grace to begin to heal our brokenness. It is a beginning of a journey guided by the prayer of the Psalmist:
Teach me your way, LORD, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.
It is a journey that will take the whole of our lives to complete. It is neither easy, nor straightforward but it is a journey that we will make together with God our Father and Saviour. And we want to invite others to join us along the way.
Evangelism is a call to our fellow students and friends to turn away from idolatry and start worshipping God with an undivided heart!