…I was especially encouraged by these comments in Mark Dever’s new book, The Gospel and Personal Evangelism (Crossway: 2007):
“… practicing apologetics is a good thing, but it’s not evangelism. Answering questions and defending parts of the good news may often be a part of conversations Christians have with non-Christians, and while that may have been part of our own reading or thinking or talking as we came to Christ, such activity is not evangelism … By far the greatest danger in apologetics is being distracted from the main message. Evangelism is not defending the virgin birth or defending the historicity of the resurrection” (pp. 77-78).
And with this shift from evangelism to apologetics comes a subversive shift in agenda. Dever writes,
“Apologetics is defending the faith, answering the questions others have about Christianity. It is responding to the agenda that others set. Evangelism, however, is following Christ’s agenda, the news about him. Evangelism is the positive act of telling the good news about Jesus Christ and the way of salvation through him” (p. 78).