Showing posts from May, 2015

Bo on Baptism

Bo Giertz was a Lutheran Pastor and Bishop in Sweden in the mid 20th century, but more to the point, he ranks in my top 4 theologians to read.  He was pastoral, faithful, bold, caring, and winsome in his writing and preaching and I hope that I can follow his lead.

Below is a short exerpt on baptism that gives you just a taste of why I enjoy Giertz.  It comes from a tract published by The Evangelical Lutheran Church of England.  In this short section Giertz addresses the topic of those who were baptized as babies, children or adults and have walked away from faith in Christ.

That baptism truly can be the foundation for a person’s deepest personal faith—this is rarely seen when one looks out into the world. Rather, the vast majority break their baptismal covenant. It can occur through wilful defiance of God’s commandments or disregard of God himself, which most clearly manifests itself in that one never prays and never seeks His church. More or less intentionally, man has for his part en…

Evangelism in the Rural Setting: Part II, Advantages

Churches in rural areas know that evangelism can be a real challenge.

In my first post on this topic I laid out some of the obstacles we face in rural areas in regards to evangelism.  The purpose of the post was not to express hopelessness or despair, but so that we in rural settings can honestly and openly acknowledge the real obstacles that exist so that we can address them.

In this post I want to bring to the forefront some advantages we have in the rural setting when it comes to evangelism.  The suburbs and cities get the buzz in most circles because it can be far easier to quickly gain members of a congregation in those settings, however the rural setting has some advantages that aren't present in the cities and suburbs.

Advantages 1.  Long Term Relationships In my first post I noted that "Long Term Relationships" can be an obstacle for evangelism and it is so.  However, long term relationships can be a huge advantage as well.

Those living in the suburbs might neve…

Evangelism in the Rural Setting: Part I, Obstacles

As a pastor in a rural setting, I have seen the desire of Christians to reach others with the gospel.  There is a real and genuine desire to do evangelism and many of my members do make it a practice of inviting friends and family to church.  This post should not in any way be seen as a criticism of rural congregations, but as an opportunity to truly examine some of the obstacles we face in evangelizing our communities.

Evangelism isn't easy no matter where you go and evangelism in the rural setting can be particularly challenging.

Dr. Glenn Daman writes, concerning the challenges of evangelism in the rural community;
 Home Bible Studies, which are effective in the larger communities, find only moderate success in the smaller communities. Door to door evangelism, popularized by Evangelism Explosion, not only is unappealing to the congregation, but seems an exercise in futility by those who do attempt to institute the program. Friendship evangelism seems the most promising, yet, in…