Soul-Winning

Recovering the Treasures of Christ’s Joy by Rev. Siegfried Tomazsewski

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Many years ago in 1996 I stood on a field in Africa filled with hundreds of thousands of people crying to God. With tears running down their cheeks they raised their hands to heaven asking forgiveness and receiving new life in Jesus Christ. As I stood on that stage listening to the passionate voice of Evangelist Reinhard Bonnke filled with a compassion for those wonderful people, something inside of me cried, “Lord let this also happen in our nation!” America, Europe, Africa all need the Gospel so desperately. Nations are filled with troubled people, hurting children, broken families and leaders without answers to the problems.

The tragedy of 9/11 was a shocking demonstration of the vulnerability of our great nation. It was further proof that politics will not change a nation if the hearts of individuals remain unchanged. Even though we see millions come to Christ in our mass Gospel campaigns, it is always one soul at a time!

No matter how we wish that we had

hundreds of evangelists like Reinhard Bonnke, Billy Graham and other great men and women of God, this is not actually God’s plan for us. I believe that there are two major points we have to come back to as Christian churches and followers of Christ.

REACHING OUT

We cannot solve the problem and ignore the outcome of a broken relationship with God. Too often we judge those who are living in sin without reaching out to them in an attempt to rescue them. Is it possible that we have forgotten the need for salvation that we no longer are aware of the ultimate fate of the unsaved? Are we untouched by the knowledge that friends and family are destined for hell without new life in Christ?

I wonder when last we shared the Gospel with someone. I am not talking about preaching, street evangelism or any other wonderful outreach. What I am talking about is simply sharing your personal experience one-on-one. What was your old life

like and how has it changed? Do you still have personal experiences with God? Is your daily life with Jesus vital and exciting?

FOLLOWING UP

One of the crucial mistakes we make today is that we have left soul-winning to a handful of so called “professionals.” When they come to our city or church we not only expect the sinners to come listen to someone they have never heard of, but if they should come and commit their lives to Jesus, we expect them to immediately act like everyone else who faithfully attended church for the past 20+ years! This will not happen.

Every church and every evangelist has a responsibility for the new converts. Jesus did NOT call us in Matthew 28 to go into all the world and count raised hands, but to preach and make disciples. Our responsibility is to make sure that new converts are integrated into Bible believing churches. We have to train our people, have the proper material and programs in place and become serious about the souls that have been rescued. Some need spiritual renewal, some healing, some counseling, some restoration. We need fathers and mothers in Christ who are willing to take care of those precious people. What mother would give birth to a child and then leave the new-born on the floor? Sadly we find this irresponsible behavior in many churches and then we call the evangelist ineffective because no fruit remains after six months!

As for us … if we want to experience what the Apostles experienced we must do what they did.

For over fifty years Evangelist Reinhard Bonnke has been traveling around the world. In the ten years between 2000 and 2010 we were privileged to process over 50 million filled out and signed decision cards for Christ. The people were integrated into our follow-up system in conjunction with the participating local churches. Evangelist Bonnke wryly says that when he came to Africa he learned that Africa had NOT been waiting for him. Sometimes he preached to only 5 people and even they did not want to get saved! But some- thing happened and things changed. Based on his experiences and the knowledge gained over the years, we established the “School of Fire”, a curriculum compiled in cooperation with the South Eastern University in Lakeland, FL. Reinhard Bonnke pours out his heart about soul winning. This school (online and also the individual “hard-copy” version) takes about 30 weeks of thorough study and finishes with a certificate.

Of course, not everybody has the time to go through such an intensive course. For that reason we have re- leased a 6-week church course called Jumpstart. We want to help churches equip each Christian to be enabled to witness and prepare them for personal soul-winning and also lay out the importance of follow-up which is the real benefit to the Church.

Coming back to the rescue operation we are all called to, it seems to me that we are all called but only a few know how to swim themselves, never mind know how to rescue someone from drowning!

Our SWIM course (Soul Winning Impartation Meeting) only takes one day, e.g. a Saturday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and there we go through the basic principles of soul winning. Methods are important, but they vary from culture to culture. The New Testament principles that Reinhard Bonnke has proven so successfully are still the same. Individuals and Churches benefit from this course as it not only ignites, equips and excites, but also brings direct fruit and growth to the local church.

As for us … if we want to experience what the Apostles experienced we must do what they did.