THE DOWNSIDE OF FRIENDSHIP EVANGELISM

There is a view that people will not listen to the gospel until you have a relationship. It is true that many don’t want to listen to a stranger talk to them about something as personal as spiritual things. There are cultures where it takes a long time build a friendship. Thus, a lot of time and effort goes into being friendly before ever getting to the gospel. While a believer does want to build friendships and it is important to maintain the relationship, there are some potential pitfalls to this approach:

1. The danger in “friendship evangelism” is thinking a relationship may be more powerful than the gospel. We might think that the relationship rather than the message is the key. We may not actually verbalize that because we know it isn’t true, but we may act like that.

2. The believer never gets around to giving the gospel. There can be a tendency to keep waiting for that perfect time to give the gospel. If the friendship is the goal there may be a nervousness about stressing the relationship by giving the gospel.

3. Building a friendship may eventually prove to appear manipulative. There is a fine line. We want to be friendly as believers but we need to do so simply because we love people… not for what we can get out of them or cause them to do.

It obviously takes wisdom to know how and when to present the plan of salvation. to someone There are definitely times to tread carefully. But it is also clear that the gospel is the power of God.to salvation.. not our people skills (Romans 1:16).

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