Dan Kimball on Heaven, Hell and Evangelism.

In this month’s Outreach Magazine, missional leader and pastor, Dan Kimball, brings up an interesting conversation about Heaven, Hell and Evangelism.

This isn’t another “down with Bell” article.  Instead, Kimball offers his thoughts on how the three subjects compliment each other, and how, if taken apart, they don’t give a complete picture of the Truth.  He breaks the article up by “Joys” and “Concerns.”

To Kimball, entering into a full (and honest) conversation about heaven, hell and evangelism, is joyous for two reasons: it allows theology conversations to develop, and many present thorough arguments from average people.  Finally, theological discussions aren’t just happening between seminary profs and church leaders; the average church attender is speaking forth their minds and defending a truth they passionately believe in.

However, these arguments also produce some concerns, which Kimball continues the article with.  To him, these theological conversations are often shallow, they try to offer “fresh” perspectives (often leading people away from Truth), and it seems that evangelism is de-emphasized further because of them.  In the end, while having conversations about Heaven, Hell and Evangelism is good, and needed, we need to make sure that our conversations flow in line with what God has already spoken into existence concerning the matter.  Half-truth is really no truth at all.  If our evangelism centers on Heaven only, what are people really being saved from?  Likewise, if our evangelism centers on Hell only, what hope doe people have, in this life and the life to come?  There needs to be a balance.

I like how Kimball puts it:

The value of evangelism, especially among emerging generations, has already significantly decreased due to so much emphasis on social justice to the point that Ron Sider – founder of Evangelicals for Social Action and known as the father of social justice for the contemporary evangelical church – recently raised this concern.  Now add in a universal reconciliation conversation to an already softened focus on evangelism, and I have to wonder: Will this discussion end up convincing people that everyone is eventually saved in the end, and as a result, lessen the urgency of telling others about Jesus even further?

Kimball is totally correct.  I wonder the same thing.  What are your thoughts?

Advertisements

4 responses to “Dan Kimball on Heaven, Hell and Evangelism.

  1. I just read that article a few days ago. It was spot on! There is so little actual talk of evangelism in most churches today that something like this will probably push them over the edge. I’m really concerned about it. The American church as a whole is so distracted that we can hardly handle another distraction, and yet here it is. Still, theology is important, so if we could just balance it, I think we could move forward on the right foot.

    • I totally agree, Dan.

      Most churches are afraid of “stepping on toes” or “offending” people, so evangelism is overlooked. Yet, isn’t that a big part of the Great Commission Christ gave to us before He left? And just as evangelism is overlooked, theology is going from “the study of God” to the “thoughts and experiences of man.” Anymore, it seems that church is about us and our comfort, rather than about God and His Kingdom.

      There needs to be a balance, and there needs to be an awakening. My prayer is that both come – quickly.

      • It wasn’t just a part of the Great Commission…it WAS the Great Commission! I hope we get back to the right idea as well.

  2. Pingback: Are Heaven and Hell Real? « Earthpages.org·

Share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s