Archive for July 13th, 2012

For those who are interested, here is a three part short series on practical open air preaching by Jason Storm who runs Faithful Soldier School of Evangelism:

Part I

Part II

Part III

Here’s a taste of some of his pointers.

Avoid deliberately offensive rhetoric

Too many Open Air preachers use rhetoric designed at getting a crowd, not realizing that they often times greatly compromise their credibility. As we said earlier, be sincere, be genuine. There is nothing wrong with humor, or with well timed one-liners to make a point. But be careful that your motive is right and that what you say to get people to listen won’t damage your credibility or cause reproach to those who happen to be passing by and only hear a short snippet of what you’re saying.

Don’t shy away from rebuking sin

Most people know right from wrong. They know when they do wrong. The issue for most people is motivation to do right not just knowledge of what is right. That being said it is vital that we deal with the issue of sin. Many evangelists shy away from talking about their audiences personal sin. We don’t want to anger or upset anyone out of fear of hurting our witness. I want to stress that the average sinner will respect you more, though they may initially be bothered, when you shoot straight with them about their sin that they themselves know is wrong. The Holy Spirit is working to convict men of their sin, the pressure on their conscience makes people uncomfortable. When we try to comfort them and make them like us we alleviate that conviction and actually work against the Holy Spirit. The conversion of the soul is an uncomfortable process. We cannot short cut that or make it any less painful without doing more harm than good.

Don’t major in the minors

“You are going to hell young man!” shouts a preacher, “How do you know?” responds a young student. “Look at that cigarette hanging out your mouth!” retorts the preacher. This is majoring in the minors. Cigarette smoking is probably one of the least offenses to God in this young mans life. The central issue is the sinners understanding of God and His character, their sinfulness in relationship to such, and the gospel message of Christ and His Kingdom. We must get to the heart of these issues and not let conversations get bogged down in peripheral and secondary issues.

This does not mean that there isn’t an appropriate time to have certain discussions. Sometimes we need to talk about what seems to be peripheral subject that actually turns out be central stumbling block to a persons understanding of the gospel. for example many young people are taught that Christianity is responsible for so much great evil in the world that it cannot be the Truth. A historical discussion on this subject can remove major boulders from the soil of a young persons heart. This requires wisdom, discernment, and listening to your audience.

You should check them out.

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