“The beginning of the gospel about Jesus Christ, the son of God.” That’s the way the Gospel of Mark begins. As I read that the other day, I stopped right there and thought — where does it say, The middle of the gospel? Or The end of the gospel?
“It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service…” says Ephesians 4:11-12. Hmmm.
Now, apostles seem natural gifts for God’s people, don’t they. Those are the people sent out to establish the church, after all. And prophets — they are God’s spokespersons on earth, so the church is a natural recipient for that gift. And of course every church needs pastors and teachers.
But evangelists? Evangelists tell the gospel. Gospel means good news. Haven’t churches already gotten that good news? Why do they need evangelists? Shouldn’t they be sending OUT evangelists?
Ah, but good news is still being created by God, that’s why. Good news hasn’t been limited to one event (Christmas) or another (Easter), there’s still lots of other good news that churches need to hear.
Grace is massive. So is mercy. Healing. Deliverance. Guidance. Inspiration. Empowerment. Lots of God’s good news hasn’t completely sunk in yet for many believers, so there’s still a need for evangelists in the churches. Until we all grow up completely, we’ll still need all of those gifts, evangelists included.
The more I learn about Father God and his ideas, his gifts, the more I realize how much I still need to learn.