Many Evangelicals do not share their faith. That’s because they’ve been taught a man-made evangelistic message.
The best phone connection used to be 4G.
Now the best phone connection is 5G.
Regarding evangelism, the best connection–indeed, the only authentic connection–is 2G. It’s called 2G because of John 4:10, where the Lord Jesus speaks of the GIFT and the GIVER.
You can’t be born again unless you believe in both the GIVER (John 4:25-26) and the GIFT He promises (John 4:14).
There were three elements to Jesus’ evangelistic message: 1) whoever believes 2) in Him [the Giver] 3) has everlasting life that cannot be lost [the Gift]. Another way to say this is that He calls upon us to believe in the Gift of God (everlasting life) that He, the Messiah, Gives. See, for example, John 3:16; 4:10; 5:24, 39-40; 6:35, 37, 39, 47; 11:25-27.
Nowhere in John’s Gospel do we read of the Lord’s mentioning repentance, commitment, or obedience as conditions of everlasting life. He said that whoever believes in Him has everlasting life—no strings attached.
Zane Hodges’s first book, The Hungry Inherit, was about John 4, a chapter that clearly demonstrates Jesus’ 2G evangelism. John 4:10 includes all three elements of Jesus’ evangelistic ministry: the Gift of God (everlasting life), the Giver of the gift (Jesus Christ), and the condition to receive the Gift–believing in Him (drinking the living water).
I recommend that you use 2G evangelism to share the Gift of God and the Giver of the Gift with people. 2G evangelism is simple and easy to remember: Believe in the Giver for the Gift.
Jesus pointed to Himself as the source of everlasting life. We should, too.
The Lord Jesus had two messages, one for unbelievers and one primarily for believers (though He did invite unbelievers to follow Him).
He told unbelievers that they needed to believe in Him for everlasting life.
He told believers that they needed to follow Him in order to have an abundant life now and forever.
We share a false gospel if we confuse discipleship with evangelism (Gal 1:6-9). We must realize that most of what Jesus said was about discipleship, not evangelism.
The Synoptic Gospels are about discipleship, not evangelism. There are no evangelistic verses anywhere in the first three Gospels.
Here is the popular 4G evangelistic presentation: Jesus (the Giver) promises the Gift of God (everlasting life) to all who give the Lord the gift of their lives. Notice that there are two givers and two gifts. We must give the Lord Jesus a gift in order for Him to give us the gift of God.
We don’t give the Lord anything in order to be born again. We simply believe in Him for the Gift He gives us. Evangelism is about Jesus, not about us. 2G is right. 4G is wrong.
When you evangelize, do what Jesus did when He evangelized.
When you disciple someone, do what Jesus did when He trained people.
Make sure to distinguish the two messages. Not doing so leads to false gospels.
Jesus’ method of evangelism was simple. Most methods today are complex.
If He is our Lord and gives us our marching orders, then we must not create our own saving message. Use the KISS method: Keep it simple, saint.
John 3:16 is simple, and it reflects Jesus’ 2G approach.