“Loving Your Neighbors” teaches evangelism

David Talley leads a discussion on the basics of evangelism in SMU’s event.


Becky Mitchell/THE CHIMES

Becky Mitchell, Writer

Students gathered in Calvary Chapel on Nov. 10 to attend SMU’s event, “Loving Your Neighbors,” with David Talley, professor of biblical and theological studies. The conversation began with how students can be involved with evangelism in our communities.

Jesus’ Priority

In Talley’s sermon he discussed Acts 1:6-14, in which Jesus ascends into heaven before the disciples and calls them to be his disciples “in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” With this in mind, the main focus is that Christians must have in evangelizing is Jesus’ priority of making disciples.

“We are to maintain a focus on our priority of making disciples, eagerly serving as we wait his coming again, as we faithfully gather with other believers in a local church,” Tally said. “Committing ourselves to prayer so that we can minister in his power.”

After Dr. Talley spoke, three more speakers came up and joined for a panel discussion on how to live out this call for evangelism. The panel consisted of Jackson Randall, pastor at Grace Evangelical Free Church in La Mirada, Jeff Arnold, English teacher at Warren High School and assistant professor of biblical and theological studies Thaddeus Williams.

Panel Discussion

During this time one of the questions asked was, “What would be the first thing you would communicate to someone who wants to carry out this commission?”

Arnold answered that we need to take the local church seriously by going and actively participating and inviting others there because, “how can we disciple others if we don’t invite them into the place where discipleship happens?”

After the event, sophomore human biology major Brittany Bayly shared what she hoped to gain by attending the event.

I expected to be encouraged to be bold about sharing the Gospel,” Bayly said. “I also expected to receive knowledge about effective tools that can be used to share the Gospel.”

Willing to Learn

While some students knew what they wanted to gain, others simply attended the event based off the subject matter and a willingness to learn.

“I didn’t know much about the event going into it, other than it being about evangelizing,” said Katie Steiner sophomore business major.

The event gave Steiner a wake up call to be intentional about discipling others. Bayly also discussed how she has a new mindset for evangelism.

“This event reminded me to redirect my purpose in life away from myself and towards serving the Lord,” Bayly said. “I was reminded of the joy that comes from sharing the good news of Jesus.”

Samaria Projects

The event concluded with the announcement of a new short term local mission project titled “Samaria Projects” that will begin in the spring. An information night will be held on Nov. 12 at 9 p.m. in the Caf Banquet room.

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