This is another book that all missionaries and evangelists should read carefully; pastors who minister in culturally diverse areas will also benefit from it. The book is by Roland Allen and it is called Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours? It was first published around 50 years ago. I liked Allen’s summary of Paul’s evangelistic preaching. I’ve separated one longer paragraph into a few smaller ones to make it easier to read.
“We can easily understand how such a gospel would appeal to the minds of St Paul’s hearers. To those who, among the conflicting claims and confused teachings of polytheism, were seeking for some unity in the world of nature and of thought, St Paul brought doctrine, at once simple and profound, of one personal God living and true, the Creator of all.
“To men who sought for some intelligent account of the world, its nature and its end, St Paul revealed a moral purpose in the light of which all the perplexities, uncertainties, and apparent contradictions, resolved themselves into a divine harmony.”
“To men of high moral instincts, appalled and dismayed at the impurity of society around them, St Paul offered the assurance of a moral judgment.”
“To men oppressed by the sense of sin he brought the assurance of pardon and release.”
“To the downtrodden, the sad, the hopeless, he opened the door into a kingdom of light and liberty.”
“To those who were terrified by the fear of malignant spirits he revealed a Spirit benignant [gracious], watchful and ever present, all-powerful and able at a word to banish the power of darkness.”
“To men dissatisfied with the worship of idols he taught the pure service of one true God.”
“To people whose imaginations were overwhelmed by the terrors and darkness of the grave he gave the assurance of a future beyond the grave in the bliss and peace of the Risen Lord.”
“To the weak who needed support, to sinners bound with the chain of vice, to people unable to cope with the depressed morality of their heathen surroundings, he brought the promise of an indwelling Spirit of power.”
“To the lonely he offered the friendly warmth of society of a company all eagerly looking forward to a bright day when Grace would come and this world with all its perplexities and troubles pass away.”
“It is no wonder then that this gospel of St Paul appealed to men, fired their imaginations, filled them with hope, and strengthened them with power to face persecution.”
This excerpt can be found on page 70 of Missionary Methods. Again, even though the book and language are a bit dated, it is one of those “must reads” for those interested in missions, church planting, and evangelism.