The fivefold evangelist (Ephesians 4:11-12) has an anointing that allows him to win souls and train others to do the same. They have a passion for souls, and the fire that is in them to see souls saved is contagious.
The fivefold evangelist is another aspect of who Jesus is. He is the evangelist of evangelists. There was no greater evangelist than Jesus. Jesus preached of Himself to a dying world: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to he Father except through Me” (John 14:6).
Evangelism means to announce the Good News. Why is the Good News? Jesus has come. That is what He was proclaiming during His time here on earth. Jesus Christ has come and paid the price for your sin. Jesus Christ is the evangelist and His ministry on earth was to spend the Good News that He had come to save all of mankind (Luke 19:10).
When Jesus ascended into Heaven He gave each of His five ministries to different individuals (apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, teacher) and continues to do so today. The fivefold evangelist is a vital part of the leadership of the Church worldwide today. His ministry is much needed and not always well recognized. The gift of the fivefold evangelist and thus the ministry of evangelism within the local church is deeply needed in the Church today. Statistics tell us that we are not growing in most nations.
In North America church growth is really “transfer growth” rather than “conversion growth.” In other words, people are just moving from one church to another – most often from smaller churches to larger churches.
In other areas of the world people simply are not evangelizing and so the Church is not growing proportionately to the population. There is a great need for the ministry of the fivefold evangelist in every nation today. And, a need to understand what his ministry really is.
So, we should be crying out to God asking, “Where are the fivefold evangelists?” Jesus said that He gave “…some to be evangelists.” It is their responsibility to train and equip the rest of the Body of Christ, releasing them to do the work of the ministry, specifically to evangelize and win the lost. So, the problem in most nations today is a lack of training and equipping to evangelize. A lack of fivefold evangelists.
So often we think that the person with the ‘gift of evangelism’ should be the one to lead people to Jesus and the rest of us are simply not called to this ministry. There is no such gift as “the gift of evangelism” in the Bible. All believers are called by Jesus to ‘seek and save the lost’ and to ‘go into all the world and make disciples’ (Luke 19:10 and Matthew 28:19). And the fivefold evangelist is called to train and equip the believers to do this specific aspect of ministry in the world today.
From the Scriptures it is clear that fivefold evangelists are called to be training and equipping while they are also doing the ministry of evangelism themselves on a personal level. They must train others in order to “…prepare God’s people for the works of service, so that the Body of Christ may be built up until all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:11-15).
Part of the “fullness of Christ” is that every believer would have a heart for the lost – for those who do not know Christ. Hence the fivefold evangelist comes on the scene to stir our hearts to share our faith in Christ. Acts 1:8 says, “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you and you shall be My witnesses…” Evangelists stir our hearts to seek the Holy Spirit so that we can flow in the gifts of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:4-11) and thus be supernatural in our witness to the unsaved.
More next time…