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Evangelism in a Skeptical World: How to Make the Unbelievable News about Jesus More Believable Kindle Edition
Most Christians already know that they should be telling their friends about Jesus. But they have been poorly equipped with methods that are no longer effective in today's post-Christian world. As a result, many people become frustrated, blame themselves, and simply give up. Evangelism in a Skeptical World is a textbook on evangelism that is ideal for the church or the classroom to equip Christians with the principles and skills they need to tell the unbelievable news about Jesus to friends in a skeptical world.
Many of the older principles and methods of evangelism in the twentieth century no longer work effectively today. In a post-Christian, post-churched, post-reached world we need new methods to communicate the timeless message of the gospel in culturally relevant ways. Dr. Chan combines the theological and biblical insights of classic evangelistic training with the latest insights from missiology on contextualization, cultural hermeneutics, and storytelling. Every chapter is illustrated with real-world examples drawn from over fifteen years of evangelistic ministry. These are methods that really work - with university students, urban workers, and high school students - getting past the defensive posture that people have toward Christianity so they can seriously consider the claims of Jesus Christ.
Field-tested and filled with unique, fresh, and creative insights, this book will equip you to share the gospel in today's world and help as many people as possible hear the good news about Jesus.
From the Publisher
From The Foreword By D.A. CARSON
"Sam has thought deeply about what the gospel is, but also about what makes contemporary culture tick. He has a distinctive take on postmodernism and can talk knowledgeably about skepticism and plausibility structures, but he is driven by the gospel. No less important, he loves people and is himself engaged in both personal evangelism and public evangelism.
His book, Evangelism in a Skeptical World, is a helpful guide and stimulus to get on with the evangelism we know we should be doing but have sometimes abandoned because we feel intimidated. No more intimidation: the gospel is still the power of God that brings salvation, and Sam helps us recover that confidence.”
Praise for Evangelism in a Skeptical World
“This practical guide not only provides a biblical description of evangelism but also includes helpful strategies for gospel sharing in everyday situations. This book will be helpful for all who desire to see those who are hostile to God become followers of Jesus.”
Kevin G. Harney
“If you are looking for an evangelism textbook with biblical foundations, strong theology, real-life illustrations, passion for the heart of God, and tools to move people out into a skeptical world with the good news of Jesus, look no further. Sam has done a masterful job of taking evangelism from concept and theory to practice and action.”
Samuel E. Chiang
“How do we express a transcultural gospel to an enculturated audience in postmodernity? Chan provides a biblical foundation with more than forty different means to engage communities, contexts, and common grounds. This is a superb work, undergirded by Scripture, rich in relevant methods, and impressive in contextual scope of audiences. Finally, we have a go-to resource in the twenty-first century.”
Kevin J. Vanhoozer
“Every Christian has an implicit theology: a set of beliefs about God and about what God was doing in Jesus Christ. To communicate this good news—the gospel—to others is every believer’s privilege and responsibility. Sam Chan’s book helpfully shows how to do this in a way that fits our twenty-first-century multicultural contexts.”
Bruce Riley Ashford
“This is an important book. In it, one of Christianity’s smartest voices, Sam Chan, shows us how to bring our secular neighbors into a lifegiving encounter with the gospel. Highly recommended for use in universities, seminaries, and churches.”
Joshua D. Chatraw
"Sam Chan has written the evangelism manual we’ve needed. Evangelism in a Skeptical World combines cultural understanding, theological acumen, and practical apologetics to equip the church to bear witness to the gospel in a secular age. It is lucidly written and full of real-world wisdom. I expect it to be a featured text for ministry students for many years to come."
1. A Theology of Evangelism.
2. Everyday Evangelism.
3. How to Craft a Gospel Presentation.
4. Evangelism to Postmoderns.
5. Contextualization for Evangelism.
6. Gospel-Cultural Hermeneutics.
7. Storytelling the Gospel.
8. How to Give Evangelistic Topical Talks.
9. How to Give Evangelistic Expository Talks.
10. Religious Epistemology, Apologetics, and Defeater Beliefs.
--Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Research Professor of Systematic Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
"This practical guide not only provides a biblical description of evangelism but also includes helpful strategies for gospel sharing in everyday situations. This book will be helpful for all who desire to see those who are hostile to God become followers of Jesus."
--Ed Stetzer, Billy Graham Distinguished Chair, Wheaton College
"This is an important book. In it, one of Christianity's smartest voices, Sam Chan, shows us how to bring our secular neighbors into a lifegiving encounter with the gospel. Highly recommended for use in universities, seminaries, and churches."
--Bruce Riley Ashford, Provost and Professor of Theology and Culture, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
"If you are looking for an evangelism textbook with biblical foundations, strong theology, real-life illustrations, passion for the heart of God, and tools to move people out into a skeptical world with the good news of Jesus, look no further. Sam has done a masterful job of taking evangelism from concept and theory to practice and action."
--Kevin G. Harney, author, Organic Outreach trilogy; founder and visionary leader, Organic Outreach International
"Sam Chan has written the evangelism manual we've needed. Evangelism in a Skeptical World combines cultural understanding, theological acumen, and practical apologetics to equip the church to bear witness to the gospel in a secular age. It is lucidly written and full of real-world wisdom. I expect it to be a featured text for ministry students for many years to come."
--Joshua D. Chatraw, executive director, Center for Apologetics and Cultural Engagement, School of Divinity, Liberty University
About the Author
Sam Chan (PhD, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; MD, University of Sydney) is a public evangelist with City Bible Forum in Sydney, Australia where he regularly shares the gospel with high school students, city workers, doctors, and lawyers. He speaks at conferences around the world on the topics of ethics, story-telling, apologetics, and the practice of evangelism in a post-Christian culture. Sam blogs at espressotheology.com.--This text refers to the paperback edition.
- ASIN : B072TLLWYG
- Publisher : Zondervan Academic (March 13, 2018)
- Publication date : March 13, 2018
- Language : English
- File size : 2337 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Sticky notes : On Kindle Scribe
- Print length : 280 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #207,541 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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Sam Chan’s Evangelism in a Skeptical World is a Swiss Army knife. Christians often get stuck in an evangelistic rut, perhaps supposing they should only use the evangelistic methods that were instrumental in bringing them to faith. But Chan spreads before us an array of tools for moving people towards faith in Jesus in this skeptical age. The book is comprised of ten chapters, a conclusion, and an appendix. After a helpful introductory chapter laying out a theology of evangelism, Chan gives us two chapters (2-3) filled with practical strategies for building evangelistic relationships and crafting gospel presentations. The latter covers various gospel metaphors, concepts of sin, and ends with an evaluation of popular pre-packaged presentations.
The following three chapters (4-6) have a particular focus on how Christians can be faithful witnesses in the face of the special challenges of our age. Attention is given to the topics of postmodernism and contextualization before suggesting and demonstrating a “Gospel-Cultural hermeneutic.” This tool can be employed to analyze cultural scripts and then use them to share the gospel. Next, chapters 7-9 shift our attention toward group contexts. How can we make the best use of speaking opportunities? Chan provides an introduction to storytelling (which can be done in a group or with individuals), and then to delivering topical and expository talks. The final chapter (10) deals with how people come to believe things (touching on epistemology and apologetics). He proposes what he calls “Modified Presuppositional Apologetics,” in which the evangelist handles objections with a useful three-part grid (Resonate, Dismantle, Gospel) that leads to the message of Jesus.
Nearly every chapter of this practical book contains useful ideas that leave the reader wanting more (and Chan helpfully points us to other resources that offer fuller treatments). Chapter 5, “Contextualization for Evangelism” provides a crash course on adapting the gospel for differing cultures. Chan, following Hiebert, argues for “critical contextualization.” The goal is to find the “sweet spot” between under- and over-adapting to the target culture. Under-adaption challenges but doesn’t appreciate God’s common grace at work within the target culture. Over-adaption does a good job of entering and adjusting to the new culture but doesn’t sufficiently challenge unbiblical beliefs and practices, leading to syncretism. Chan then lays out a few models for how to analyze a new culture. Understanding a culture’s themes or implicit storyline are important steps toward offering a properly enculturated presentation of the unchanging message.
The chapter on gospel-cultural hermeneutics (6) puts flesh on these bones, demonstrating how to communicate the gospel as the answer to each culture’s existential longings (as expressed in popular culture). The chapter on storytelling (7) was also thought-provoking. According to Chan, 80% of Westerners, and 90% of non-Westerners are “concrete-relational” learners (174). Gospel storytelling is becoming an increasingly valuable skill for evangelism. Evangelism in a Skeptical World covers a lot of ground. And much like a real Swiss Army knife, it might not be the only tool you will ever need, but it is a great place to start.
Stay blessed Beautiful People of Christ🙂
An absolute must-read.
Initially so much of the book resonated with me like few books have. The author made some claims that challenged long held presuppositions that I've had and convincingly dismissed them. To this end, the first half was FANTASTIC. However, the second half was not as robust. I doubt I will ever be asked to give an evangelistic speech at a wedding. The three basic principles exposed earlier were repeated frequently with little variation. Having said that the conclusion and wrap up was very good. A lot to think about.
NOTE: I took the online course for this book while reading it. The course includes video me lectures from the author which helped make sense of some chapters that I was otherwise unclear about.
Top reviews from other countries
It's not a simple book and there is clearly a good mind at work. He seeks to make things accessible, but there is a lot of research both academic and practical that have gone into this.
He uses a lot of Tim Keller's stuff, but also provides concrete examples of how to put it into action.
It is one i will need to re-read many sections of to work through suggestions carefully.