Friday, October 22, 2010
Different Fish, Different Bait
When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some. I do everything to spread the Good News and share in its blessings. —1 Corinthians 9:22-23
There is not a one-size-fits-all-approach to evangelism. We must learn to adapt to the situation. When you are sharing your faith, people will try to get you off point. They will say thing like, "Well, I have a question for you. What about all these denominations? What denomination are you?" Or, "What about politics? Who did you vote for? What is your view on this issue?"
These are secondary issues—rabbit trails. When I am speaking with someone about Christ, I will try to address those things, but then I will get back to main issue. That is what Jesus did with the woman in Samaria when she tried to change the subject. He focused on what really mattered. And that is what we need to do as well.
When you go fishing, you use different kinds of bait for different kinds of fish. And when it comes to evangelism, you might emphasize one thing more than another with certain people. In initially approaching a person and establishing contact with him or her, you may vary in your approach. But ultimately you will get to the main message. Peter, for example, was very different in his presentation of the gospel to the Jews (see Acts 2) than Paul was with non-Jews (see Acts 17). There were two audiences and two entirely different approaches, but Peter and Paul delivered the same essential message.
This is called becoming all things to all men. Paul said, "When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some" (1 Corinthians 9:22).
The point is not to embarrass people, but to engage them. That is why we must adapt.
Copyright © 2010 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.
Watch Greg Laurie's weekly television broadcast on LightSource.com.
Presented with fresh and encouraging illustrations each month, our hope is that you will not only learn the names of God contained in the Bible… but that each name's meaning would give you the comfort, the security, and the peace to know that God is with us and is involved in our world.