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  • Jeff Patton

Evangelism: Taking Jesus to the Streets (of Denton), Part 2: A Biblical Premise

Updated: Mar 25

Should Christians evangelize in public places?


In today’s relativistic society, why would anyone dare to speak to a stranger about Jesus Christ being the only way to heaven? Why would anyone in their right mind stand up before a group of strangers and call on them to repent of their sin and believe in Jesus Christ, knowing that there is a high likelihood that some people will become hostile?

Because, Jesus is the only Savior, Lord, and King! Apart from the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ, people have no hope at all. Whether the people are your friends, family, co-workers, classmates, or strangers, they need to hear the gospel. If we as Christians know it, then why would we NOT want to proclaim it, even to strangers?


Is it Biblical?


Street preaching and evangelism are not only important; they are necessary! These are God’s chosen means by which He has designated to build His kingdom.

Many Christians seem to be embarrassed or even ashamed to share the message of salvation with others, but this should not be the case.

Jesus says in Mark 8:38 that “whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”

The point is that those who have been saved by Christ should not be ashamed of the One who has saved them. Nor should they be ashamed to tell others how they can be saved from the wrath of God.

Believers alone have been given the Word of Truth and the Holy Spirit. If we don’t get the message out, then who will?

Paul tells us in Romans 1:16 that he “is not ashamed of the gospel.” Think about it, Paul had every excuse to be ashamed of the gospel. He had lost everything: his heritage, his high standing among his people, his family and close friends. He suffered through persecution and imprisonment. He received beatings and was nearly stoned to death for preaching this message. And yet, after more than two decades of such rejection and abuse, he reassured the church at Rome that he still was not ashamed of the gospel, and desired to proclaim it even in Rome.[1]


The power of God.


Why was Paul not ashamed of the gospel? He tells us “for [the gospel] is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes...” [2]

Jesus Christ had sent Paul to preach a message that He was going to use to bring about salvation among those who heard it. This information was not based on opinion, but the truth of God. It was not mere meaningless babble but a message that was given to Paul by God. This was a message empowered by God, as well.[3]


Faith comes by hearing, which means somebody has to do the speaking!


Paul tells us in Romans 10:17 that “faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.” The hearing of the gospel is the means by which God calls His people to Himself; however, these words, the gospel, must be spoken by someone who knows the gospel. This is Paul’s point when he writes,

How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? [4]

The Greek word here for “preaching” is κηρύσσω (kērussō) and it means to preach, to proclaim as a herald, to announce openly and publicly, to noise abroad.

The Apostle Paul is clearly exhorting his readers to engage in public evangelism and open-air preaching.


Jesus also commands us to go and to shine.


Jesus says, “GO therefore and make disciples of all nations ...”[5]

Making disciples is a command of God. It is what we are called to do. However, in order to make a disciple or student of Christ, words have to be communicated.

Who should proclaim such a message?

You! People are not saved by simply being around Christians who are gospel mutes. And the unsaved do not become disciples without learning about who Christ is and what He has done to provide salvation.

Jesus also tells all believers that, “you are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others...” [6] Don’t hide your Christianity by avoiding talking about it. That is the same thing as putting the light under the basket. Let the light of Christ shine forth. Open your mouth and let the gospel of Jesus Christ be proclaimed.


Final thoughts:

Let us not be ashamed of Jesus Christ! For we have been given a message from God Himself, which is the power of God for salvation to all who believe! Remember, in order to believe, they must first hear. How are they going to hear without someone preaching? They won’t.

Therefore, let us obey our Lord and go forth proclaiming the gospel, even to those that we do not know.

~ Jeff Patton, Elder

[1] Romans 1:15

[2] Romans 1:16b

[3] 1 Corinthians 1:17-18

[4] Romans 10:14

[5] Matthew 28:19

[6] Matthew 5:14-16

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