One of the things that Scripture never quite said, but we can see it take place throughout the New Testament, is a technique that we like to call pre-evangelism. Going out and knocking on doors, telling neighbors and strangers about God is something we ought to do; but the more subtle approach of pre-evangelism is what takes place during Jesus’ ministry and what the first church did throughout the Book of Acts. For example:
Building relationships is one of the biggest components of pre-evangelism. God created us to have relationships. Discipleship starts and ends with relationships. The relationships we build are what give us the opportunity to evangelize. At the end of Acts 2, where the first church was going from house-to-house to break bread, it happened because of relationships. It is encouraged to continue to build relationships with people as a precursor to telling them about Christ.
Removing Obstacles to Man’s Faith
Jesus always showed that He cared by removing as many obstacles for people. From the miracles He performed to the mouths He fed, Jesus made time to fellowship with the people who were denied by their own. Jesus connecting with them made it easy for Him to share the gospel message. We have all tried to sit in a lecture on an empty stomach…It doesn’t go very well! We must remove the obstacles of human needs (i.e. hunger, thirst), so we can have the opportunity to share our faith with others.
Finding Common Ground With a Person
Hobbies, interests, history, sports, and more are just a few of the many ways we can find common ground with people. Paul talks about finding common ground in 1 Corinthians 9:20 because the common ground is what builds camaraderie and relationships. These are great topics for evangelism.
Answering Questions That Hinder Man’s Belief in God
Lastly, pre-evangelism is also about pre-planning. The knowledge, wisdom, and relationship that we gain in God doesn’t happen only for our benefit, but for the future benefit of others. God wants us to tell our testimony so more can believe, but that means we have to plan what we would say in advance. Too many have been taught the wrong things about Christianity and they want to know the truth, but we need to confidently know it in order to share it.
Pre-evangelism is mostly about empathizing and relating to others. Considering what may be said or questioned prepares you to freely share about Christ. Whether it is a friend, being a shoulder to lean on to a coworker,, or just knowing the answer to a stranger’s question, these things can lead to one receiving Jesus as their Savior.