The essence of evangelism is the gospel message—true for all peoples, all places, and all times.
Sam Chan, a practicing medical doctor and a public evangelist with City Bible Forum in Sydney, Australia, recently wrote Evangelism in a Skeptical World: How to Make the Unbelievable News about Jesus More Believable. Below, I talk with him about his new resource.
Ed: Why a book on evangelism?
Sam: Deep down, every Christian wants to tell his or her friends about Jesus. But we also know just how unbelievable the gospel—about a man called Jesus, who is both God and human, who died and rose again 2000 years ago—can often appear.
And we know that our world has changed so much in the last 10-20 years. Our world is so post-Christian, post-churched, and post-reached, that widely accepted methods of evangelism, though once effective, don’t seem to work so well anymore.
As a result, Christians are caught in a hard place. We feel guilty for not telling our friends about Jesus. But at the same time, we feel helpless to do anything about it.
Well-meaning Christian leaders might say to us, “Simply tell your friends about Jesus. Just do it!” But we know that it’s not as simple as that.
Ed: How does this book tackle the task of evangelism?
Sam: I figured that we are now so post-Christian, post-churched, and post-reached that we may as well treat our world as unreached. We’ve turned the full circle!
I wondered how missionaries would bring the gospel to our 21st-century Western world. So I borrowed from what I learnt in my missiology classes—contextualization, cultural analysis, storytelling—and applied it to evangelism in our contemporary world. And voila, out popped this book called Evangelism to a Skeptical World!
Ed: So what are some of the secrets to evangelism in today’s 21st-century …
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