|Evangelism Outside the Box: Helping People Experience the Good News|
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"They [pre-Christians] were asking questions I wasn't prepared to answer, and they no longer seemed interested in the questions I was prepared to answer." Does this ring true for your efforts at evangelism with postmoderns (pre-Christians)? It was common for author Rick Richardson until he began to truly understand the postmodern mind. But once he understood, God began to work in truly new and exciting ways in Rick's evangelism efforts. Rick began listening to postmoderns, and learning how they viewed various major life issues. He studied postmodern thought, and asked postmodern, pre-Christians what they were looking for in spirituality. Now he knows where postmoderns are, and what is necessary to help them experience God's love. And you can too, by reading Evangelism Outside the Box.
This book is a vivid reminder that God is looking for people to work with and through to bring the lost into His kingdom. In Richardson's words, God "wants to turn the big, ugly green station wagon (maybe an appropriate analogy for our church or ministry!) around and race to wherever these lost and hurting people can be found. But he's letting us drive." What a privilege and responsibility! But before we can do this, we must remove the boxes we have tried to constrain God in, and the boxes in which our evangelism efforts reside. We must understand the way postmoderns think about life and spirituality, we must understand their questions, and how they come to know and love God. And then we must change our ways (not our message) of reaching out to them to fit their experiences and thoughts.
To that end, Richardson shows us what some of our boxes might be, and offers practical insight into how to effectively reach out and offer a life-changing experience with God. He emphasizes awakening the souls of pre-Christians (making them realize their need for Jesus), drawing them into community, challenging them to convert, and helping them be transformed into disciples. These four practices have been used throughout Christian history to bring the lost into the kingdom, but Richardson has added a distinctly postmodern understanding to each one. The result is a practical, life-changing and ministry-changing book that will stir the embers of your evangelistic fervor into a roaring flame. And that flame will bring heat and light to a lost generation that God longs to reach.
|Praise for Evangelism Outside the Box: Helping People Experience the Good News, by Rick Richardson|
"We are living at a time of cultural shift. The postmodern mindset is gradually replacing the modern worldview. How can we communicate the gospel to a culture in transition? Do we need to rethink evangelism to reach our generation? In Evangelism Outside the Box Rick Richardson tackles these questions and comes up with some challenging answers."
NICKY GUMBEL, Chaplain, Alpha Course
"Affirming that winning people to Jesus Christ is '100 percent God, 100 percent us,' Rick Richardson shakes off the dust of misconceptions and assumptions about today's seekers, revealing God's handprints on our own culture--a culture full of opportunities, if we'll only see them and grasp them."
LUIS PALAU, Evangelist, Luis Palau Evangelistic Association
"If the contemporary church is going to reach this postmodern generation it will have to embrace new methods of evangelism. Rick Richardson's book is an extremely useful guide for this challenging task."
LYLE W. DORSETT, Professor of Evangelism and Spiritual Formation, Wheaton College and Graduate School
"Rick Richardson's book is disturbing on two levels: first, he refuses to let believers off the hook regarding lost persons in a lost culture. He dares to tell us to transform the culture and not condemn it. Second, he tells us 'old' evangelism ways won't work and suggest a new apologetic--just when the old ways were becoming comfortable to me. Disturbing--disturbing--disturbing. Thank God for those who disturb me!"
LON ALLISON, Director, Billy Graham Center, Wheaton College
"Is witnessing for you something like hitting a hardball into a sand dune? Lots of effort, little response? Have you found that the old answers, the 'proven' methods, just don't seem to work? Then read Evangelism Outside the Box. Rick Richardson listens to our culture with sensitive ears, asks probing questions, points to fresh approaches. I believe that his book, like Paul Little's How to Give Away Your Faith and Cliffe Knechtle's Give Me An Answer, will help us to connect with this seeking generation. I plan to recommend it widely."
LEIGHTON FORD, President, Leighton Ford Ministries
|"Evangelism is a central part of the church's mission on earth. Even though each of us is called to witness and share the gospel, it is never easy for most of us. Here is a book that offers thoughtful ways to help many of us get started. Rick Richardson addresses our culture insightfully and helps all of us find natural ways to share our faith. I hope many will read this book. I commend it most highly."|
RT. REV. JOHN H. RODGERS JR., THD., Bishop in the Anglican Mission in America
"Reaching this new generation requires that we learn to evangelize an increasingly secularized culture. In his book Evangelism Outside the Box, Rick Richardson leans into past movements of God for valuable lessons and then combines them with striking insights into today's culture, which flow out of his vast experience of reaching university students through his ministry with InterVarsity. The resulting conclusions could dramatically improve church leaders' efforts to reach spiritually lost people--including the many who currently don't consider the local church a viable option in their search for God."
DANIEL HILL, Pastor of Evangelism, Axis Ministry, Willow Creek Community Church
"There are few truly new books about evangelism, but Rick Richardson has written one. Drawn from his years of work as a campus evangelist as well as his wide and careful reading, Richardson suggests powerful new ways to reach a generation that is spiritual but not religious. Richardson understands postmodern culture and how to make Jesus known in it. He charts a useful course for the church as more and more of the culture becomes postmodern in outlook."
RICHARD PEACE, PH.D., Robert Boyd Munger Professor of Evangelism and Spiritual Formation, Fuller Theological Seminary
"Rick Richardson's new book explores some key biblical and theological principles of evangelism in light of dramatic changes that are occurring in our postmodern world. As a result of this thoughtful reflection, he offers a set of very innovative strategies of evangelism that is deeply faithful to the Scriptures and highly relevant to today's world."
DR. PETER CHA, Instructor of Practical Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
"Those with a passion to reach the unreached often struggle over how to share Christ's timeless gospel in a timely manner. In this book Rick Richardson sails headlong into the postmodern maelstrom without letting go of the anchor of Scripture. Read this, and feed off Rick's passion for postmoderns who desperately need Jesus!"
DR. ALVIN L. REED, Professor of Evangelism, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary