"If you really loved people you'd share the Gospel more!". "We just don't evangelize because we don't love the lost!". These are both real statements I've heard time and time again in hopes to fire people up for evangelism. Christians everywhere dread the annual sermon of guilt dedicated to "hyping" us up to go and reach the lost.
But seriously...why is it we struggle with this? It's supposed to be good news right? Is it really because I don't love the lost? If I am honest, I have found that motivation is insufficient to get me up and bold with sharing the Gospel. So what are we missing? What is our true motivation for evangelism supposed to be?
This past year I was rereading a book with an appendix at the back, yanno the sort of thing I would usually skip. Yet in the Lord's providence, this chapter was exactly what I needed. This chapter helped me realize the ultimate motivation for evangelism is not love for the lost, but the Glory of God. Now stay with me here, this may sound like a "churchy" answer but it really changes things. The reality is, I do struggle to love the lost. I struggle to love in general. If that is my only motivation then whenever I don't inherently love someone I will likely fail to want to reach them with the Gospel.
Think of this verse in 1 Peter 2:9, "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light."
Our biggest goal and motivation in reaching the lost is to proclaim how excellent our King Jesus really is. Our actual goal is not simply some quest for conquering the world, but to see all nations and people come to WORSHIP our King because he is worth it. Now my motivation has nothing to do with my feelings, and everything to do with the never-failing truth of who Jesus is and what he has done for sinners. So to grow in evangelism is to grow in love and adoration of Christ himself!
I'll leave you with this quote from John Piper...
"Evangelism is not the ultimate goal of the church. Worship is. Evangelism exists because worship doesn't. Worship is ultimate, not evangelism, because God is ultimate, not man. When this age is over, and the countless millions of the redeemed fall on their faces before the throne of God, evangelism will be no more. It is a temporary necessity. But worship abides forever."