Posted by: Brian Musser | July 23, 2012

Prayer is Essential in Evangelism

Prayer is essential for evangelism.  There is very little you can do to “make” a person develop their personal relationship with God.  You may be able to on some level encourage it but that is all.  Salvation is completely between that person and God.  You can never fix someone else’s relationship.  It has to be restored by God “wooing” them.  Then they need to respond to God’s love.  You do nothing but maybe have the chance to set the stage for this divine romance by making the introductions.

Have you ever had friends that were “breaking up?”  Hopefully, this wasn’t on the level of a marriage ending but I’m thinking more about a high school or even middle school romance.  somehow you ended up being the go between for the relationship.  He sent you to her to explain how sorry he was.  She responded back that it didn’t really matter she would never forgive him.  By the end of the back and forth negotiations you wanted to grab him by the collar and force him to give up and move on.  Or you wanted to make her see that she was be unreasonable and needed to extend some grace.  But you couldn’t do either.  You tried and failed.  You can’t make others change their minds.  You can’t start a relationship with God for your friend.  It must be between them and God.

Evangelism is ultimately our efforts to connect people we know to the God we know through Jesus Christ under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Going back to the dating metaphor, it often feels like setting your friend up on a blind date.

I know this guy named Jesus.  He would be perfect for you.  He is exactly the type of guy you need.  He is everything you have told me you wanted.  I’ve even talked to him about you.  He is very interested in meeting you.  Why don’t you give him a call?

Last time I talked about evangelism it was in the context of serving others (Serving in the name of…).  We serve others at their point of need so that they can hear the love Christ over their immediate real and felt needs.  As we get to know others through the context of our relationships we will begin to see their needs.  We will develop a desire to help them at their point of need.  We will want to make a difference in their lives.  Some of these needs we will be able to immediately pull something out of our pocket and fix.  Other needs will be much more extensive of projects.  As we see their needs we will come to realize that some people’s hurts are greater than what we can fix.  This should push us to our knees in prayer.

As we get to know others we will not only see their physical and emotional needs we will also begin to discover their spiritual needs.  We can’t solve someone else’s spiritual problems.  That is between them and God.  But we can pray that they have the conversations they need to have with God to deal with their spiritual needs.  We may not be able to fix their spiritual problems but we can pray that they connect with God to do so.  Here is a list of 10 things to pray for your friends about.

  1. Pray that God helps them with their physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
  2. Pray that they can see that it is God who is helping them with their needs.
  3. Pray that their heart and mind are distracted by thoughts pondering God.
  4. Pray that they understand the Gospel accurately.
  5. Pray that you or someone else they trust is able to answer their  questions compassionately.
  6. Pray that they are bold enough to actually ask those questions.
  7. Pray that God leads other Christians and Christian communities into their lives that reinforce the Gospel message.
  8. Pray that you are able to be a good example of Christ to them.
  9. Pray that you are able to present the Gospel with clarity.
  10. Pray that you have boldness to share the Gospel with them.

If you want to look into this more Ed Silvoso has a decent book entitled Prayer Evangelism.  I’m sure there are many other things you can pray about for your friends.  Feel free to leave other suggestion below in the comments.



  1. […] via Prayer is Essential in Evangelism « Baptist Campus Ministries at Drexel. […]

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