Personal Evangelistic Dialogue
Since the beginning of this year we’ve been running a series of articles designed to encourage you to have personal evangelistic dialogue with your Jewish friends. We’ve told you what real dialogue is. We’ve given you tips on how to initiate conversations, how to deal with questions, how to respond to arguments − how to have dialogue. We know that the people who read our newsletter are the kind of people who are interested in the salvation of the Jewish people, but we wondered if some of you might still be waiting for us to tell you why you should have personal evangelistic dialogue.
Listed below are some of these reasons, entitled "Promptings Toward Personal Evangelistic Dialogue."
You should be involved in personal evangelistic dialogue:
BECAUSE what the average Jewish person is primarily seeking from his religion is a discovery of his own identity and help in working out some of the mysterious feelings within him which can only be accounted for by the fact that he is Jewish.
BECAUSE outside of personal evangelistic dialogue it’s difficult for most Christians to understand that, even though the Jewish person may not be able to define what it means to be a Jew, he feels an obligation of loyalty to his people and declines to consider Christ out of that loyalty.
BECAUSE if you want to witness to Jewish people, or learn about your Jewish heritage in Christ, it’s helpful to know something about Jewish holidays and traditions.
BECAUSE it will help you and your friend to think through why you believe what you do. You are more firm in your belief than he is in his unbelief.
BECAUSE the real, and usually unspoken objection to believing in Christ is that most Jewish people are not willing to face the personal and social consequences. If he can face this, you can remind your Jewish friend that to follow God was never the easy thing to do. Just look at Abraham, Moses, David and Elijah.
BECAUSE much of the Jewish culture from the time of Jesus, particularly attitudes, continues to exist in contemporary Judaism. One of the many blessings of personal evangelistic dialogue is learning about these customs and attitudes as seen today.
BECAUSE for too long "dialogue" has been a polite, back-patting, handshaking affair after which each party retreats to his own side of the ideological fence.
BECAUSE you, as an evangelical Christian, should be encouraged to see the interest that individual Jews are beginning to show in the claims of Christ, and because you should be preparing to speak to this growing remnant which God is calling to Himself.