“exist”: New Evangelism Concept Focuses Solely on the Words of Jesus
G l a s g o w – A new concept for evangelism is finding an ever stronger echo throughout the world. It is called “exist” and invites people to become acquainted with God’s Son. It utilises primarily words of Jesus from the Bible. The initiative’s name stems from the initial question: “If God exists ...” The concept is kept as simple as possible. The Internet presentation under “www.exist.org.uk” is only in black-and-white and abstains intentionally from using photos. Pastor Brian More from South Glasgow’s Newton Means Baptist Church, which created the initiative, explains: “In a culture obsessed with the brash and the flash, ‘exist’ material is kept clear, minimal and unadorned.” The words of Jesus are presented “with a freshness that’s incredibly attractive”. “Exist” pursues a simple goal: “We aim to inspire devotion to Jesus of Nazareth.” The words of Jesus are used because “we believe what Jesus said was incredibly powerful. These are words that bring people new life. We want what he said to be read and heard as widely as possibly – no more, no less.”
The programme consists of leaflets, cards and Powerpoint presentations which can also be found on the Internet. Since May the material has been tested by people both inside and outside Christian circles. Most Christians found the material highly attractive and instantly began thinking of ways in which Jesus’ words could be disseminated for maximum impact. Others with little or no Christian awareness found the material “intriguing, mysterious and puzzling. It made me want to know more.” The congregation is now developing a series of “discovery programmes” which explore major aspects of the Christian worldview.
The programme found an enthusiastic reception at the Scottish Union’s annual conference in Glenrothes in early November. Delegates departed with 80.000 cards to pass out. Emmett Dunn (Falls Church near Washington), Youth Director of The Baptist World Alliance, spoke with great respect of the initiative: “It’s not often someone comes across something to explain the Gospel that is innovative and on the cutting edge. This is brilliant!” “Exist” will be introduced to the 8.000 participants planning to attend the Baptist World Alliance’s youth convention in Leipzig next July.