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304 North Cardinal St.
Dorchester Center, MA 02124
Monday to Friday: 7AM - 7PM
Weekend: 10AM - 5PM
The roots of the word “gospel” can be found in the Greek language “euangelion” which literally means “good message” or the modern world would define it as “good news”. On the other hand the word “evangelize” comes from the Greek word “euangelizo” and it means “to announce the good message” or “to announce the good news”. Why is that? Because in ancient Greece there was such a job with the title “evangelist” (Greek w. euangelos) and his direct duty was to announce, to bring the news of victory in any cases – whether it was in political battles, or local compromise debates, or individual successes, but the common denominator was one – this message brought joy to the one who received it!
Reading the Holy Scriptures specifically the New Testament this word acquired a very specific meaning. The evangelist was the one who brought the good news about Jesus Christ and His victory on the cross! Jesus defeated death and sin and through His victorious act gave salvation to every person!
The New Testament includes four canonical gospels from the evangelists Matthew, Mark, John and Luke. They all wrote down testimonies about the life and ministry, death on the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Matthew was a publican and later became one of Jesus’ disciples. Because of his profession he must have been educated and could read and write in several languages. Therefore, his Gospel is filled with specific details and you can also notice that he had previously written down the expressions of Jesus and later when he wrote the Gospel he had his own notes to look at and remember detailed things.
Mark was the youngest author of the Gospel but he is known as a follower of Jesus’ disciple Peter and the recorder of his testimony. His mother was not only a follower of Jesus but after Jesus’ resurrection she allowed disciples of Jesus to gather in her home, so Mark encountered the good news in his early teens.
Luke did not know Jesus personally. He became a follower of Jesus after Jesus’ death because the apostle Paul testified and told him about Jesus. He was a doctor by profession but he left his professional field when he decided to travel with Paul. And thus he had the opportunity to meet with several disciples of Jesus and aldo followers of Jesus and hear their testimonies and talk to real eyewitnesses. And already in the first chapters Luke writes that he will share the testimonies of eyewitnesses and other teachers of Jesus’ teachings who had personally experienced the ministry of Jesus during His life. One of the greatest testimonies is about the birth of Jesus and there is no doubt that he interviewed Mary herself.
John was a fisherman before he became a disciple of Jesus and his gospel is the last to be written. When reading his gospel it seems that he has already read the other gospel writers and is trying to include in his own what is omitted in the others. John wrote his gospel to those church members who already knew something about Jesus. He emphasizes the Divine nature of Jesus as the Son of God.
The unique thing is that although each gospel talks about the same thing – about the life, ministry, miracles, death on the cross and resurrection of Jesus and in general about the teaching of Jesus, yet each gospel has its own character, style, feeling and mood. It not only serves as proof that this information is not fantasy but also as a reminder to us that our testimony as an evangelist – a carrier of good news – must also be dressed not as a recounting of some other experience but directly from your innermost being in which you are yourself.
Why is it important to evangelize? Because it brings salvation, the salvation of the soul. If you would have found a cure for cancer would you hide it or would you want the whole world to know about it? Jesus is the key to the salvation of the human soul, eternal life, freedom from sin and the wages of sin. And if you experience Jesus personally you can’t keep quiet about it. If you are daily in a deep and personal relationship with the Living God and experience the blessings of your worldly life and are aware of the spiritual life, then from an overflowing heart, your mouth speaks (Luke 6:45).
Jesus said to his disciples, “Go and make disciples!” Why? Because it saves as many souls as possible. Not only the question of eternity is changing, but people’s lives are changing already here on the earth. Life changes in the deepest, strongest and most significant way because a person has found the truest meaning for his life by being in a relationship with his Creator.
Evangelism is divided into two types:
Proclaiming the good news about Jesus Christ either through public preaching or sharing a personal testimony.
In one way or another the goal is to share the teachings of Jesus Christ.
And the main reason why Jesus came can be found in the Holy Scriptures – He said: “I AM the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father except through me” John 14:6. Through the life and teachings of Jesus God’s love for us, our Creator, is revealed to us and through the sacrifice of Jesus, it is proved to us that God absolutely does care how we live this earthly life and where we end up after death. Jesus said: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him” John 3:16-17. And when we personally experience this love of God and our spirit receives the revelation of God’s existence, power and purpose then our souls have enjoyed the very deepest meaning that every human being truly seeks. This world offers many things and many side paths to search for human meaning. But that always calms our inner spiritual man temporarily and then we get up, run and continue to searche more. However, when we have encountered our Creator and experienced His love and revelations, we no longer look for anything else because we know that nothing else will quench our spirit and soul. Like with medicine – if you find a medicine that works do you run and look for something else? No, you stick to the real thing, which actually operates and works.
Therefore, evangelization is both the main goal of the whole church and also the main calling individualy to Christians. Jesus said to his disciples: “Go and make disciples!”
In your hands you have the Good News which is life-changing, powerful good news. We are either on Jesus’ team or we are not. We are, if we have received from God, we go and carry His good news further. We are not on His team if we perceive faith in Him as a traditional, “spiritual” gathering together in church buildings at certain times that we want and are only takers, but do not testify of His good and saving work in us.
We Latvia just won bronze at the world hockey championship. We saw and heard interviews with teammates. And everyone said as one – that they are celebrating this victory because everyone worked as a unified team. A goalkeeper wouldn’t be as strong if the defenders and wingers weren’t in place. The defenders would not be so great if they did not follow the instructions of the coaches, the wingers would not be so successful if there was no perfect interplay which has been polished over the long term by hard and diligent work. Yes, hard work, but it was and is worth it!!!
Evangelism can be hard work both individually and as a church! However, it is the most important and meaningful work and IT IS WORTH IT! WORTH ETERNALY!!!
However, in order to do this there must be teamwork – coach and players, fans (prayer team), each in their own position. Responsible and with a goal that you carry in your heart and minister with joy… true joy and love!
How do YOU personally evangelize?
KNOW FROM YOUR HEART your testimony / good news, your adventure and meeting with the Savior Jesus Christ, your best Friend! Many marriages break up because the couple forgets the moment of first love, the first adventure together, the first victory together and the experiences that were overcome! Couples break up and start looking for new partners because they want those “first moments” full of excitement again. But any couple who have lived together for 40, 50, 60 and more years in marriage will know to say that as long as you stay faithful and devote yourself to your relationship and nurture and improve it then these “first moments” not only multiply but also remain forever stronger and more significant. It is similar in your relationship with Jesus – that you know your first love for Jesus Christ, you have to continue to build a deep and real relationship and you will realize that what you experienced in your relationship with Jesus at the very beginning “was only beginning”. But you will never forget your first meeting, your first “YES” to Jesus, the Living God. And when you share with your testimony how you met and experienced Jesus then it will be a real love story. And those others will know you by your love! God’s love does not leave anyone indifferent because it is the truest love that exists in this universe! Your testimony does not have to be dressed in some scientific framework. It must be simply true – the evangelists Matthew, Mark, Luke and John did the same. They did not copy others, they shared what they had personally experienced, heard, discovered, understood. That is why these gospels are so powerful. Because the secret that wraps them gently and at the same time powerfuly – is THEIR TRUTHFULNESS about what they experienced in connection with Jesus.
Again… How do YOU evangelize personally, and therefore also as a church together?
BE TRUE IN YOUR TESTIMONY OF HOW YOU HAVE EXPERIENCED JESUS!!!