The following thoughts regarding “present day evangelism” originated with A.W. Pink well over 50 years ago. Seems to me that the state of present day preaching and preachers hasn’t changed much.
The nature of Christ’s salvation, is woefully misrepresented by the present-day “evangelist.” He announces a Savior from hell—rather than a Savior from sin! And that is why so many are fatally deceived, for there are multitudes who wish to escape the Lake of fire—who have no desire to be delivered from their carnality and worldliness!
The very first thing said of Him in the New Testament is—”You shall call His name Jesus—for He shall save His people…not “from the wrath to come,” but “from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). Christ is a Savior for those realizing something of the exceeding sinfulness of sin, who feel the awful burden of it on their conscience, who loathe themselves for it, and who long to be freed from its terrible dominion. He is a Savior for no others. Were He to “save from hell” those still in love with sin, He would be a minister of sin, condoning their wickedness and siding with them against God. What an unspeakably horrible and blasphemous thing, with which to charge the Holy One!
True, as the Christian grows in grace, he has a clearer realization of what sin is—rebellion against God; and a deeper hatred of and sorrow for it. But to think that one may be saved by Christ, whose conscience has never been smitten by the Spirit, and whose heart has not been made contrite before God—is to imagine something which has no existence in the realm of fact. “It is not the healthy who need a doctor—but the sick” (Matthew 9:12). The only ones who really seek relief from the great Physician, are those who are sick of sin—who long to be delivered from its God-dishonoring works, and its soul-defiling pollutions.
As Christ’s salvation is a salvation from sin—from the love of it, from its dominion, from its guilt and penalty—then it necessarily follows, that the first great task and the chief work of the evangelist, is to preach upon SIN: to define what sin (as distinct from crime) really is, to show wherein its infinite enormity consists, to trace out its manifold workings in the heart, to indicate that nothing less than eternal punishment is its desert!
Ah, preaching upon sin will not make him popular nor draw the crowds, will it? No, it will not; and knowing this, those who love the praise of men more than the approbation of God, and who value their salary above immortal souls, trim their sales accordingly!
A. W. Pink (1886 – 1952)