It is estimated that only 3% of US churches are growing through evangelism. The majority of churches that are growing are doing so through the migration of Believers from one congregation to another.
One of the most glaring reasons for the lack of evangelistic growth is that there are precious few evangelists that are properly recognized and functioning in the leadership of most churches.
The evangelist is gifted by God to do several things:
- To preach the Gospel to Unbelievers,
- To equip Believers to do the same, and at the same time,
- To lead the community of faith to which they are connected beyond the Church walls into the harvest field.
The Church will fall short of its call to be missional if it fails to recognize and utilize the very catalyst God gave to make it missional: the evangelist. In other words, no evangelists, little evangelism.
Church planting literature has asserted that 10% of Christians have “the gift of evangelism.” While no Biblical references point to a “gift of evangelism” it does reference the evangelist (Eph 4:11). Research has shown that to be about 1% of the Church’s population. When those with this gift are trained and properly connected to the local church, an amazing impact takes place. The people of God are equipped and empowered to share their faith and advance the Kingdom.
Like Gideon, who found 300 out of his 30,000 (1%) that were called to lead the charge, let us do all in our power to see the return of the gift of the evangelist to the life of the local church.