What is an evangelist?
I became a full-time Evangelist in June of 1992. I thought it would be a good idea (for my very first blog post, on an Evangelist website) to explain what an Evangelist is, biblically; for those who may be unfamiliar with the Evangelist ministry and the purpose it serves.
The Bible list 5 ministries or some might say offices, for the church in the book of Ephesians chapter 4: apostles, prophets, evangelist, pastors, and teachers. Each of these gifts has unique qualities that help serve God’s purpose for equipping and edifying the body of Christ.
And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,
Ephesians 4:11–12 NKJV
In the scripture above, the word “evangelists” comes from the Greek word euangelistēs, which means “proclaimer of the Gospel or proclaimer of the Good News”. To put it very simply, to make known the Good News of Jesus Christ and the way of salvation through Him. Also, it is most often an itinerant ministry, meaning an evangelist travels form place to place proclaiming this Good News. Such was the case with Philip the evangelist in the book of Acts.
But Philip was found at Azotus. And passing through, he preached in all the cities till he came to Caesarea.
Acts 8:40 (NKJV)
I would submit that the most famous evangelist in the last 100 years was the Reverend Billy Graham. If you have ever heard or seen him, you saw an evangelist! He literally preached and declared the Good News of Jesus Christ to millions of people around the world! And once those millions heard the Good News, many repented of their sins and gave their lives to Christ. That would be, what I would call, the number one purpose of the Evangelistic ministry – to declare who Jesus Christ is, how all have sinned, and man’s need to repent and follow Jesus.
However, different evangelists can have various giftings as well. Word of wisdom, word of knowledge, gift of faith, gift of healings, working of miracles, and prophecy etc., are all gifts that can operate in an evangelist’s ministry. In fact, all of these gifts can operate in ANY Christian believer.
for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.
1 Corinthians 12:8–10 (NKJV)
I also understand some have more than one gifting operating in their lives. I know men who have both a pastoral gift as well as an evangelistic gift in their lives. The same is true about the spiritual gifts listed in the scripture above. This is what makes the Kingdom of God, the Church, so amazing. We all have a vital role in God’s plan and the building of His Church.
For me, it was the call to be an evangelist with prophetic ministry. I received that call from God the moment I gave my life to Christ on January 30th, 1982. I could not have “termed” it that way, that day. I didn’t really know anything about God, the Bible, or what church really was. That’s why the church is so important! If I had tried to figure that out on my own, I fear what would have become of my salvation, let alone my calling. But as I continued to go to church and allowed myself to be discipled, things began to come into focus very quickly. It was in the local church and the ministries that I was involved in, that God began to prepare me, and continues to prepare me, for the ministry He has called me to do. That being said, my family and I are members of a local congregation, The Door Church in Tucson, Arizona. I have a Pastor, Pastor Harold Warner, that I am not only accountable to, but am still being discipled by, today.
On average, I preach 35 revivals a year. A typical scheduled revival will consist of 5-6 services, or meetings. Generally, I am away from home for two weeks for revival meetings. On the third week I am home with my family, to attend my own church, and take care of various responsibilities on the home front. Then it’s, “Back on the road again.” People sometimes say, “That must be hard on the family.” My general reply is, “No. What’s hard is when our men and women, who defend our nation, are gone for months or even years; and at times are shot at. That’s hard!” My intention isn’t to be dismissive of people letting me know that they appreciate what my family and I do, and the sacrifices we make. It just puts things into perspective. And know that whatever God calls us to do, He provides the grace for us to do it. That truth has been proven time and time again.
There are so many more things that could be said and expounded on as far as what an Evangelist is and does. However, my intention here is only to give a quick “snapshot” for the person “passing by” the website that may be asking, “What is an Evangelist?” I do hope this helps.