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True Evangelism: Winning Souls Through Prayer [Paperback]

By Lewis Sperry Chafer (Author)
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Item Number 137005  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   112
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.74" Width: 6.16" Height: 0.27"
Weight:   0.28 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 2, 2002
Publisher   Kregel Classics
ISBN  0825423848  
EAN  9780825423840  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Dr. Chafer's work has long been recognized as a classic. In six concise chapters he offers a clear biblical treatment of man's sin, God's salvation, and the believer's responsibility. He expounds on the meaning of genuine evangelism by explaining its false forces, its objective, the role of the Holy Spirit, the importance of intercession, suffering with Christ, and the cleansing of the priests. Thorough indexes by subject and Scripture reference are included.

Publishers Description
Dr. Chafer's work has long been recognized as a classic. In six concise chapters he offers a clear biblical treatment of man's sin, God's salvation, and the believer's responsibility. He expounds on the meaning of genuine evangelism by explaining its false forces, its objective, the role of the Holy Spirit, the importance of intercession, suffering with Christ, and the cleansing of the priests. Thorough indexes by subject and Scripture reference are included.

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More About Lewis Sperry Chafer

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Lewis Sperry Chafer (1871-1952), American Presbyterian clergyman and educator, was born in Rock Creek, Ohio; studied at New Lyme Academy and Oberlin Conservatory and College, both in Ohio; studied under C. I. Scoffield; and was ordained in 1900. In 1924, he founded the Evangelical Theological College (now Dallas Theological Seminary) and was its president and professor of systematic theology until his death. His many other works include Satan, True Evangelism, Grace, Major Bible Themes, and the eight-volume Systematic Theology.

Lewis Sperry Chafer was born in 1871 and died in 1952.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Great Book  Oct 20, 2007
Another great book by Lewis Sperry Chafer. It teaches some of the "false forces" used in evangelism today and how to avoid them.

Salvation is by faith alone and Chafer does a great job showing that.

This is a must read for any evangelist. The Gospel is simple so let's keep it simple so that souls can get saved!
True Evangelism  Oct 19, 2007
A Critique of True Evangellism: Winning Souls through Prayer
Lewis Sperry Chafer, Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1993, 106pp.

Chafer (1871-1952), founder of Dallas Theological Seminary in 1924, previously a traveling evangelist 14 years, wrote this classic book to and for believers in the Lord Jesus Christ as an incentive and encouragement in, what he considers the truth that all Christians have the privilege to cooperate with the Holy Spirit and become involved with personal evangelism. His emphasis is not on skillful evangelists, methodology, or eloquent messages, but stresses the working of the Holy Spirit and intercessional prayer as the major factors of soul winning. He eloquently puts in plain words the objective of evangelism and explains that every Christian is a priest who is able to offer intercessory prayer and salvation to lost souls. To avoid defilement the "priest" must not maintain sinless perfection but an "attitude of willingness to meet every demand of God for the putting away of sin (p. 90).
In his chapter on False Forces in Evangelism, one has to be amazed at the insight of one who never had the opportunity to witness a flashy evangelist on television utilizing hard-core methods, messages laced with heresy, and music that borders on frenzy to prod an audience to accept Christ as their savior, usually with the promise of great material gain. This writer concurs with the author that, "many who have resisted the personal appeal have been hardened or driven away (p. 23). Evangelism can be embraced by masses however, one heart at time, by personal choice and action of the will through the conviction of the Holy Spirit.
Shafer contends that man tends to disregard the work of the Holy Spirit and place undue emphasis on the human aspect of evangelism Chapter 2 delineates the objective of evangelism - salvation - succinctly and skillfully. This writer concurs with the author that the Spirit takes up permit abode in the believer at the moment he is saved, not as a "second blessing," at the moment he has passed from life to death (37).
The crux of his argument is that the offer of salvation is conditioned only upon a person seeing his utter helplessness apart from God and the sacrifice of the cross, and this, in spite of the blinding and opposition of Satan who energizes him (p. 42). This writer is in complete agreement, and that God alone is sufficient to provide the necessary preparation of mind and heart.
The author laments in chapter 5 that it is no longer common experience among Christians to carry a burden of heart for lost souls, and deems it the highest form of human suffering (73). That this suffering should be a natural part of the Christian's life, as well as a path to the reward of being glorified with Him, not as a qualification for salvation, but of identity with Christ, seems basic to this writer. Another basic truth in which she coincides is the contention that defilement in a believer adversely affects prevailing power in prayer, destroys his priestly ministry, and impinges upon his own fellowship with Christ, as the author contends in Chapter 6.
This book presents a convincing case that true evangelism begins with a cleansed priest but depends on the power of the Holy Spirit.

A timeless gem  Feb 27, 2007
True Evangelism by Lewis Sperry Chafer is a timeless gem in Christianity. Reading it almost a hundred years after Chafer wrote it in 1919, it still feels fresh, present, thought provoking, practical and life changing. His writing fills with scholastic and practical authority. They are shown in his profound doctrinal clearness as a scholar and Spirit depending agent as an evangelist by engaging in traveling evangelistic endeavors from 1901-1914. This book is practical, doctrinal and spiritual. He started his book by saying that this is the result of his evangelistic experience and study covering many years. His conviction has been changed from emotional and superficial methods to entirely dependent on the Holy Spirit in every phase of the work in soul-winning. His purpose, though seemingly critical, is to offer constructive advice to avoid spiritual death and formalism by the misguided and yet faithfully strived evangelism. Reading this book one can always sense his profound love for God, the believers and the lost. He says in his last chapter, his purpose is to allow his reader to gain new vision for God's soul-winning ministry through yielding to Him, so that every new understanding of divine Truth may become the abiding fruit to the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.

Six chapters along with the final appeal give insightful wisdom and doctrinal definition to many crucial areas in Christian life, especially in carrying out God's work. They are the knowledge of the ever-bounding grace of God and sacrificial love of Jesus Christ, the response of the genuine faith, partnership with the Holy Spirit through prayers, willingness to suffer with Christ and determination in living a pure life.

Even though he mentions the acceptance of Christ as Savior by personal choice and action of the will, it is easy to see his overarching theological viewpoint throughout his book as a Calvinist, to whom salvation or regeneration is utterly the work of God. He quotes Roman 8:30 "Moreover, whom he did predestinate, them, he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified."

As a result, he focuses on the regeneration in the heart, not the outward confession as an exhibition in public. His first chapter, False Forces in Evangelism, regardless of its controversial position, it is indeed the most thought provoking and life changing to me. In the beginning, I tended to disagree with him due to my own experience, the prominent evangelical tradition and a widespread modernity mindset. As I chewed on his words as time went by, I started to re-evaluate my own experience, to give the proper definition to evangelism according to the Scripture and to re-build my belief system as a disciple called by God to accomplish His Great Commission.

I had two confession experiences. The first one happened when I was 18 years old in a big evangelistic meeting. I rose up and went before the podium answering the call of the evangelist. A few weeks later, I forgot that experience until many years after my second confession. I cannot recall the message, my feeling and thoughts of the night. I can barely remember there was an urge and willingness to receive something that is new to me. It was indeed emotional, yet without much root in my heart. There is no witness, fruit, commitment, obedience and any change1 associated with it. My second confession happened by myself under the tree, at which I cried for two hours, recognized my sins, acknowledged Jesus' sacrifice for my sins and received Him as my personal Savior. That experience is vivid, clear, everlasting and life-changing. I come to understand the true evangelism is an event at which a change of heart takes place in secrecy. Public confession is a part of witnessing, not a step toward salvation. Without understanding it, going forward and confessing in the public can be misunderstood as the personal work in earning the salvation.
Very good; balanced and honest...  Sep 18, 2005
I'm reading this as part of my evangelism class at DTS, and I really enjoy it. It's systematic and rational. I especially appreciate the way Chafer cites the 'evangelism career path' that has infected the thinking of so many in this century.

The review below cites only revenue loss as evidence for this book's impotence; but when has God ever needed the bottom line as evidence of His blessing on a work?
True Evangelism--Not Human Manipulation  Jun 13, 2005
Lewis Sperry Chafer was a theologian, author, andthe founder of Dallas Theological Seminary. Several other books I am reading now are rather overweight considering their contents but this volume is slim, only 100 small pages, and filled with ideas to savor.

The previous reviewer is correct in that when this book was originally published it received many scathing reviews from Christians. Why? Because Chafer take aim at manipulative forms of evangelism in the first chapter of his book called "False Forces in Evangelism. Chafer believes that only God changes peoples hearts and that it is harmful for Christian ministers to try to manipulate people into "coverting." He defend his views from the Scripture and does so skillfully yet briefly. Chafer particularly criticizes meetings which try to manipulate people into coming forward and preaching which make it seem as if salvation is dependent upon raising your hand in a meeting or kneeling at the altar. He also criticizes the view that evangelism is only for certain people, i.e. so-called "evangelists", and that it is best done only a specific season, the "revival"

Chapter Two, "Salvation: The Objective in Evangelism," is theologically rich. Recognizing that the objective of evangelism is salvation, Chafer explores the elements of salvation. He speaks of salvation in "three tenses" on p. 29, "The believer was saved from condemnation . . . he is being saved from the habit and power of sin . . . and he will be saved from the presence of sin" and focuses mainly on the "first tense." I appreciated his seven-part summary of the changes that occur immediately a person comes to Christ, especially his reminder that one who believes is now clothed with the righteousness of God. Without such a reminder, it is easy to forget the real object of evangelism is not a simple conversation but salvation.

Chapter Three, "Conviction by the Spirit," explores the central importance of the Holy Spirit in evangelism. All Christians whom I know acknowledge the necessity of the conviction of the Holy Spirit, but few of us take time to meditate on that truth. This chapter emphasizes how foolish the gospel is to an unbeliever and how impossible it is for him to belief through his own power. Chafer does not write to discourage people from attempting evangelism but to encourage them not to neglect their own spriritual lives and to rely on the Holy Spirit's conviction rather than their own persuasive skills.

Chafer only gets better in Chapter Four, "The Prayer of Intercession." He is refreshingly scriptural and God-centered in its approach to prayer. His brief descriptions of the privileges given to the people of God to approach him in prayer for the sake of other people were inspiring to me.

The idea of "intercession" is carried on in Chapter Five, "Suffering With Christ." Chafer develops the idea that we can share in the ministry of Christ by sharing in his sufferings. I thought it was helpful to be reminded that suffering is not an pointless part of true evangelism. Sharing the gospel is not making a sale or winning an argument but doing my utmost to bring the benefits of the suffering of Christ to a lost world, regardless of whether that brings suffering to myself or not.

This book wouldn't be complete without its final chapter "Cleansing of the Priests." Those who go out as representatives of Christ cannot be effective in intercessory prayer, in sensitivity to the Holy Spirit, in explaining the gospel without first being in a right relationship with Christ. I believe this is why the New Testament epistles say little about going out and "doing evangelism" but much about developing a pure and holy community and being conformed to the image of Christ. People who are living in sin are not able to be effective evangelists and should not be pushed to do so.

In short, this book is a short but Scripturally rich exploration of evangelism. I was afraid it might be a tract trying to harangue people into going out and "doing" evangelism. Instead, I found a deeply Scriptural, theologically deep, yet beautifully brief description of the nature of true evangelism. True evangelism is God-centered and God-directed. True evangelism is not a burden but a joyful product of service to Christ.

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