Paul said, “For freedom Christ has set us free” (Gal. 5:1). We have a lot of freedom in Christ:
- We are free to choose where we would like to worship and serve the Lord. There is no “Jerusalem” or “Mecca” for the Christian. As long as you are worshiping with a faithful congregation, the Lord is pleased.
- We are free to choose whether or not to marry, whom we would like to marry, and whether we would like to have a family. Many have served the Lord without a family, like Paul. But many others have served with families.
- We may choose our occupation in life. You don’t have to be a preacher to be a good Christian. There is a way to let your light shine in every occupation.
- We may choose how we would like to serve the Lord—some preach, some lead singing, some give, some show mercy, some encourage, and some work with their hands. As Paul has said, we are all different members in one body. We do not all have the same function, although we are all working toward the same purpose (Rom. 12:4-5; 1 Cor. 12:12ff.).
As Christians, we have options.
But when it comes to evangelism, we do not have an option. Every Christian is expected to share his or her faith with as many people as possible.
The Great Commission states, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:19-20). “Go therefore and make disciples” is part of what Jesus taught the disciples, right? If that’s true, then “make disciples” is included in what the apostles were instructed to teach their disciples to observe, for Jesus told them to pass down “all” that he had commanded them. Every generation receives this commission, without exceptions.
The early Christians are a good example. After the persecution that led to the death of Stephen in Jerusalem, we read that many of the Christians had to leave Jerusalem. Luke says, “Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word” (Acts 8:4). He wasn’t talking about the apostles. They stayed in Jerusalem. These were average Christians sharing their faith in a dangerous environment.
If evangelism is not getting done, it’s not because of a lack of prospects. Jesus said, “Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest?’ Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest” (John 4:35).
If every Christian looked at evangelism as a personal responsibility, the church would grow.