Assertive evangelism –

“Going to others with God's good news.”

The advance of God's kingdom in America is not progressing nearly as well as it used to be, nor nearly as well as in many other countries around the world. If that assessment sounds like sour grapes to you, consider the following statistics gleaned from reputable sources over the past 8 years:

• There was a cumulative loss of 75,000 (from 375,000 to 300,000) churches in America from 1995-2002. That many more shut down than started up.

• In 2002, not a single county in the U.S. experienced a positive church growth rate.

• Every year, nearly three times as many churches here close as open (3,750 versus 1,300).

• On any given Sunday, approximately 80% of Americans don’t attend a religious gathering of any kind. The move away from traditional, organized church was recognized by Newsweek as one of the top religious trends of 2006.

• In 2001, it took an average of 85 American Christians an entire year to produce just one convert! About half of all our churches did not add a single one that year.

• In the 13 years between 1991 and 2004, there was a 92% increase in the number of unchurched Americans (from 39 to 75 million). If that number of people were a nation of their own, they would be the eleventh most-populated nation on earth (out of 194 nations).

• The United States is now the third largest “unchurched” nation in the world (behind China and India), and we’re now #2 (only behind Brazil) on the list of countries targeted by foreign missionaries as “most in need of the gospel.”

Across our land, a lot more people are leaving churches than joining them. And the number of unbelievers becoming authentic Christ-followers has been reduced to a trickle. What’s going on here? What’s our problem? No doubt it’s complex, but try these two provocative explanations for starters:

1. People aren’t interested in the kind of Christianity they see on display in most churches. It’s too-often characterized by a culture that comes across as odd, preachy, showy, authoritarian and intolerant, uninvolving and too interested in money. The "simple church" model described on this website feels much more normal and accessible to many of these people.

2. Most churches are frozen in an age-old misunderstanding about the fundamental nature of our mission. Their nearly-universal approach to evangelism and starting new churches is a mirror-opposite of the one modeled by Jesus and His apostles. To read more about it and the Biblical alternative, click on the Downloadable Files link and access the file titled "'Come to Us' or 'Go to Them'."

For a lively, useful model of "Go to Them" evangelism and church planting,
order a copy of the book
Gold, Silver and Precious Stones from the
Products and Resources page
and read the section on "How to Reach the Receptive."