A prolegomena to Ethical Evangelism

I have to say sorry to people who were expecting me to explain why I think Christian evangelism is ethically necessary from a secular point of view, but first I’m faced with explaining why its necessary to tell people about Jesus from a Christian point of view.

So why do I think that that’s necessary? I was up at Chapters again today… I ike bookstores, okay? leave me alone. Anyway, I’m up at Chapters and I go to the Christianity section (which at Chapters is a depressing thing in and of itself), and there’s this woman there on the floor reading a Joel Osteen book. Now, I’m not a big Osteen fan, and if you have a few hours and wanna buy me a coffee, you can find out why not. But the guy at least talks about Jesus from time to time, and in a lot of cases, he says stuff that’s actually true. So I’m interested in knowing what she thinks of Jesus. So I strike up a conversation.

Seems this lady is into whatever spiritual experience is edifying to her, and while she’s there she explains to me how buddhist transcendental meditation is a great way to know God. She also seems to know really little about Jesus. The sad part is that she reads both Rick Warren and Joel Osteen , while maintaining that ignorance. We have ostensibly Christian writers who cannot seem to give us the worldview on which their ideas are based, and as a result their ideas are brought into whatever thinking people find beneficial for the moment.

It’s just this hodge-podge theology that, to me, leads to a world in which we have no absolutes in worldview. We simply add to our understanding of reality whatever is pleasing to us without much reference to being consistent, or even determining if what we believe is “true” in a sense that would make it needful for all people to accept a morality based on that worldview.

Now I think I’ve said enough to begin the next phase, why it is ethically necessary for there to be Christian evangelism.

I hope to get to that in the next few hours

Author: Stephen Dawe

Steve is a part-time vocational elder Calvary Baptist Church, St. John's as well as a full-time student at Memorial University of Newfoundland, in the Religious Studies Department.

2 thoughts on “A prolegomena to Ethical Evangelism”

  1. Interesting post. It always amazes me how little people in our society know about Jesus and Christianity. Most people think they know enough about Christianity to reject it, but their ideas are so flawed – they are rejecting a religion or an idea of God that most Christians would also reject.

    Interesting example – Alister McGrath’s book on Richard Dawkins. Sure, it’s easy to knock down a straw man…

  2. Hey Steve, I think this would be great as an audio podcast.

    Well said though. And I have to say you’re right about Rick Warren, even though his book is touted so often as a tool for evangelism, it seems to be written for the choir.

    He starts with “God has a purpose for your life” instead of “Who is God?”

    I’d love to know how you feel about Strobel.

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