By Ed Stetzer
May 19, 2016
“Preach the gospel at all times; if necessary, use words,” Saint Francis of Assisi is supposed to have said.
The aphorism, often quoted, expresses a well-meaning viewpoint of many Christians today. They are concerned that we’ve been too loud, demanding and angry. Now, they say, we need to show the gospel by our lives.
It’s a good sentiment, and I certainly agree that we need to demonstrate the gospel change in our lives by caring for others. But there are two problems with the Assisi quote.
First, he never said it.
Second, it’s really bad theology.
You see, using that statement is a bit like saying, “Feed the hungry at all times; if necessary, use food.” For Christians, the gospel is good news — it’s what the word literally means. For evangelicals, our name speaks of the commitment to evangelism that defines us. The good news needs to be told. Read the rest at Washington Post.
Ed Stetzer is a graduate of Beeson.