5 Things Every Evangelist Needs
1. Every evangelist needs to be called by God
“And he himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers,” (Ephesians 4:11, CSB)
Just as God has not called all men to be pastors, neither has He called all to be evangelists. The Bible says “some evangelists” and “some pastors.” The pastor and evangelist are two different callings and different gifts. Billy Graham said:
“The evangelist’s message is a very narrow message. His message is the good news of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. That the way is a narrow way (Matthew 7:13-14) and that Christ is the only way to Heaven (John 14:6). The pastor shoots with a shotgun in his sermons whereas the evangelist shoots a rifle with a scope because his message is so narrow and focused on primarily one thing, the salvation of the lost.”
The evangelist is primarily a harvester and that will be the focus of his messages and ministry.
2. Every evangelist needs revival opportunities.
Most evangelists are used in preaching revival meetings, crusades, harvest days, and other evangelistic events. In the ten years that I have been in evangelism, I have averaged about 40 revival meetings a year. Some do more, some do less. I want to encourage every pastor to have revival meetings and utilize a God-called evangelist to preach them. In the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), we have over 47,000 churches and less than 100 full-time vocational evangelists. God has not quit calling men into evangelism, but many churches have quit utilizing evangelists. God gave the evangelist as a gift to the church and every Bible-believing church should utilize evangelists.
3. Every evangelist needs recommendations from pastors.One of the greatest things a pastor can do to help an evangelist is to recommend him and his ministry to other pastors and churches. If God used him in your church and he did a good job, recommend him to your friends! Personal recommendations are the most effective way for an evangelist to get meetings.
4. Every evangelist needs repeat meetings.
I was told by some seasoned evangelists when I first went into evangelism that I will need repeat meetings every year to be able to stay in full-time evangelism and they were right. It took a few years, but at least 50% of my meetings each year are repeat meetings (returning to the same churches). I have at least two churches that I have been to 10 times and others that I have been to 5-6 times. If your people loved them the first time, they will certainly want you to invite them back. Several churches I go to schedule me for the next year before I ever leave, that way I am scheduled a year in advance.
5. Every evangelist needs financial support.
An evangelist receives a love offering from the church when he is preaching a revival, but what about when he isn’t preaching? I was told before I went into evangelism that I would not be able to live on revival love offerings alone, and that is so true! Every evangelist needs some ongoing financial support in addition to love offerings. I believe churches should consider putting an evangelist in their budget and help support him and his ministry. Individuals can send monthly support to an evangelist in addition to their tithes and offerings to their church. All gifts to an evangelist’s ministries are tax deductible and you are investing in the kingdom of God. Why not support a ministry that is seeing people saved on a regular basis?