Evangelizing Christians

On June 18, 2013 by Bobby Blakey

Evangelizing ChristiansEveryone needs to be evangelized.

This includes many people who claim to be Christians.

There is a big difference between believing in Christianity and being a new creation in Christ.

My prayer is this will help us think through how to talk to people who associate themselves with the religion of Christianity.  They believe the story of Jesus in the Bible.  They know the information Jesus is God, died on the cross for our sins and rose again.  Unfortunately though, as it says in 1 Corinthians 15:2 they have “believed in vain.”

We can’t just believe the gospel happened 2,000 years ago.  It has to happen to us!

According to Romans 6:3-4 salvation is being placed into Jesus.  It is like we have died with him to our old lives and now we are raised with him in newness of life.  Jesus has become my life to the extent that I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.

Many Christians need to clarify if Christianity is a religious box they have checked or their identity being redefined in relationship with Jesus.

According to Jesus, there are “many” Christians like this who profess faith but do not know him.

They are in our youth groups right now. They have been born to Christian parents but are not born again.  They have grown up with the lifestyle of being a “good kid” but not with a lifestyle Jesus has delivered from sin.

THE PRIMARY MISTAKE OF YOUTH MINISTRY IS ASSUMING YOUNG PEOPLE ARE ALREADY SAVED.   They come from good families in our congregation.  They bring their Bibles and know the answers to the classic Sunday School questions.  When we talk to them, they come across as completely “pro-Jesus” and so we come to the conclusion of “Christianity.”

The problem is the majority of these young people stop going to church during their high school or college years.  Their version of Christianity becomes a casual association or they deny living for Jesus outright.  They begin to live for the things of this world like partying and drinking.  They get involved in idolatrous relationships and pre-marital sex. They isolate themselves from the truth of Scripture and the accountability of others and become complacent towards Christ and critical of church. Our hearts break as we see them wander away.

But what do we say?

How do we evangelize those who already call themselves Christians?

Sadly, we have not done a good job answering this question in the church today, especially us youth pastors.  We need to rethink what we have been saying to our wandering youth and what we should be saying instead.  We need to say something to those who are not of us, before they go out from us.

Let’s start with this:

You cannot be saved unless you are not. 

How can you call on the name of the Lord to be saved if you are already claiming his name?

No one is born a Christian and so there must come a moment where we admit that, a moment of repentance of sin and faith in Jesus.  At this point of salvation our life radically changes from living for ourselves to living for Christ.

We must preach today like Jesus did in the New Testament, open to the reality that there are unsaved souls among us all of the time.  As he said at the end of his famous Sermon on the Mount:

 Matthew 7

21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?

23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness. 


As the apostle Paul told the Corinthians sometimes we need to test ourselves to see if we are in the faith!

When I have the opportunity to talk with someone about this, I go to the book of 1 John.  In chapter 5 verse 13 he says he wrote the book so those who believe in the Son of God would know they have eternal life.  This is exactly what I am talking about!  Christians need to know they are really in Christ!

It is so fascinating to go through 1 John with different people.  Sometimes a Christian is doubting their faith in Christ and yet they come away so encouraged from our study.  They can clearly see the work God has done in their life!  They don’t need to get saved because they already have been to the praise of his glorious grace!  They walk away with a smile on their face and assurance in their soul!

Others are deeply convicted of their lifestyle of sin.  Although they thought of themselves as saved, maybe for years of their life, they now realize they are not.

This is sad, but blessed are those who mourn.  This breaks hearts, but it is the kind of broken heart God is looking for. It is the beginning of the new life to see we are still living the old.

It is when I see the reality of my sin before God, I see my need for the cross of Jesus Christ.  The bad news leads me to the good.

Are we afraid to face the reality Christian people we love may still be in their sins?

My friends, let us reconsider this reality.  It is much better to face it now than later…

4 Responses to “Evangelizing Christians”

  • Sam Graham

    Thank you for this informative blog! I am praying many “Christians” will be convicted this summer of their sin and genuinely turn to Christ for salvation.

  • alex krongold

    Great post Bobby, very helpful !

  • Megan Okada

    This was very helpful in clarifying my thought process about evangelizing “Christians”. Thank you for your wisdom and clarity, Pastor Bobby! I am fervently praying with you that many who claim the name of Christ will actually come to know him as Lord and Savior.

  • Stacy Petersen

    I. Love. This.
    And this is MY heart and prayer, TOO. May we never assume anyone’s eternal destination, but strive toward helping others see from SCRIPTURE where they themselves stand before the Lord. I want to spend my life doing this. And I am grateful to serve under pastors who take each soul so seriously, that it is worth the risk of offending someone, to take one more step toward Christ.
    When I say goodbye to my graduating seniors each year, I honestly have no idea if I will ever see them again. But it isn’t THIS life I’m concerned with; it’s ETERNITY. May every interaction I have with another person-“Christian” or not-COUNT for this life AND the next.

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