Inside the Nov/Dec 2014 Issue
Evangelism and Grace
“One of the common criticisms Jesus faced was that he spent too much time with sinners.” Columnist Ed Stetzer asks: “How many of us could be accused of that?” And surely that is one of our most basic problems with evangelism. Want to fish? Go where the fish are.
But there’s more to it than that. Somehow, we have allowed an us-against-them posture to overtake the church and rob us of our Christ-given reputation of “Good News” people? In this issue, both Lance Ford and Philip Yancey point to the vanishing graciousness, and with it, the disappearance of grace. “In many ways,” says Ford, “the gospel has been reduced. What do we need to do to get the good news back into the gospel people? It starts,” he says, “with rehydrating our shrunken gospel.”
And Larry Osborne reminds us that fighting culture wars can actually become a distraction and subsume the eternal remedy, our very mission: Make disciples. Build the church.
But this issue goes far beyond critique and evangelistic aspiration, it also points to models we can emulate—nonconfrontational, organic outreach. So dig in and keep leading your church on, toward our high call: Evangelism, Naturally.
At Monterey’s Shoreline Community Church, evangelism became natural. Pastor Kevin Harney, author of Organic Outreach for Ordinary People, tells why. And how.
In the face of a culture where “evangelical” has lost its positive meaning, Lance Ford urges us to reclaim what it means to be “Good News” people.
Philip Yancey, the best-selling author of Vanishing Grace: What Ever Happened to the Good News? explores human longing, and urges us toward a compassionate response.
Wilfredo De Jesús: The Interview
We are shaped by our community, perhaps more than we know. But if we are courageous people of faith, we will find that we may in turn be used by God to reshape our community. Here’s how that happened in the life of Humboldt Park’s Wilfredo “Choco” De Jesús.
ALSO: Larry Osborne on the distraction of the cultural wars; learning from the Australian church; creating church planting church plants; leveraging social media and much more.
Plus, in Each Issue of Outreach
PULSE: We take the pulse of outreach today as we report on what churches are doing to connect with their communities.
IDEAS: Church-tested ideas for seasonal and targeted ministries for any church, any size … plus insight from Warren Bird, Mel McGowan, Charles Lee, Brad Lomenick and Brad Powell.
COLUMNS: Perspective on outreach from Ed Stetzer, Dan Kimball, Bobby Gruenewald.
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