Evangelism Taking Jesus to the Streets (of Denton)! — Part 1 

Evangelism Taking Jesus to the Streets (of Denton)! — Part 1 

Evangelism Taking Jesus to the Streets (of Denton)! — Part 1 

Evangelism

Taking Jesus to the Streets (of Denton)! Part 1

My name is Jeff Patton, and for the last four years, I have been involved in public/open-air evangelism. I have the tremendous privilege of being a part of a group of believers, who faithfully go into the public square of Denton, Texas to share the gospel of Jesus Christ every week. We have made a habit of being on the same corner, on the same day, at the same time, every week, for years now. Though the seasons change and the audience varies greatly, we strive to maintain a steady evangelistic voice on the Denton Square. We believe that Jesus gives us the mandate to go and make disciples. In doing so, preaching the gospel is the means by which people hear, believe, repent, and are brought into the kingdom of God.

This outreach that began with only a couple of men, has grown into quite a team. Men, women, and young people from my home church, The Church At Pecan Creek, and other like-minded churches, who come together every Saturday evening to do what we can to share the message of salvation through Jesus Christ.

A Typical Evening of Evangelism:

A typical evening will consist of evangelism, usually consisting of: open-air preaching, open mic dialogue, scripture reading, an occasional song, passing out gospel tracts, and striking up spiritual conversations. Opportunities often arise to pray for people and to offer comfort and encouragement to hurting souls. We have seen many people affected by our efforts. Some have come to know Christ as their Savior and some other Christian passersby’s have been greatly encouraged toward personal evangelism as well. 

However, evangelism is not all roses. As we know from the Apostle Paul, the same gospel that saves some is the same gospel that caused others to want to imprison, stone, beat, and whip him. Though it usually does not get quite that hostile, we do bear the brunt of many people who hate God and those who represent Him.

“Keep your message in your church walls!”

A misguided, yet widely held belief, is that preaching is only for church and that people should keep their beliefs to themselves. Believe it or not, many of those who hold such a view profess to be Christians. It seems that many Christians and non-Christians have believed the old saying that, “Two things never to be talked about in polite company are politics and religion”. However that is not a verse in the Bible. 

Questions and objections that often arise to our evangelistic efforts:

      • Is street evangelism effective?
      • Have your efforts brought forth any success?
      • Are there not better ways to engage the lost?
      • People are offended. Instead of winning people to Christ, are you not turning them away from Him?

These all can be legitimate concerns. However, our conclusions to such questions must not rely on human reasoning, pragmatism, the opinions of others, or our own personal feelings and preferences.

Instead, we should be asking:

      • What does the Bible say about gospel proclamation?
      • Are there any examples of public evangelism taking place in Scripture?
      • Did Jesus and the Apostles only evangelize in private?
      • If open-air evangelism was practiced in Biblical times, then why would Christians believe that it should not be done today?

The purpose in future articles is to provide sound answers to these questions based on God’s word.

Earlier in my Christian life, I, like many, disagreed with public evangelism. But the more I studied the Word, the more my position was challenged. We must remember that the church is the body of Christ and made up of believers. Those who attend church on Sunday, supposedly, are already saved and are there to worship Jesus together with other believers. But what about those who are lost?

How will those outside the walls of church buildings get to hear the gospel if it is only proclaimed within the walls of a church building?

As God’s people, we are ambassadors for Christ. God makes His appeal to the lost world through us as we implore people on behalf of Christ to “be reconciled to God”(2 Cor. 5:20). 

Even though God has grown our evangelistic outreach by sending other believers to help, we, like Jesus, clearly see that “the harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few” (Luke 10:2). Please join us in prayer for our evangelistic efforts, and pray that you would see the harvest and the need to proclaim the gospel to those who are around you as well.

If you would like to more information about our outreach or starting your own, please email us at: FindOutMore@TheChurchAtPecanCreek.com
~ Jeff Patton