How adults become Christians

Dave Bennett, our National Director, researched this topic for a 20,000 word dissertation submitted as part of his MA in Evangelism Studies from Sheffield University at Cliff College. He completed this course with Distinction in 2003. Dave would be pleased to share part of his research as appropriate for your church, to encourage your people.

The topics which come from his research are things we can do or may even be doing already - such as praying for those who don't yet know Jesus or inviting people to services and events. His presentations include fascinating stories, humour and they're multi media and inter-active.

Click here to download a summary of the dissertation
Click here to download the full dissertation

The following is an outline of Dave’s research. Dave considered extensively the effectiveness of various aspects of personal evangelism and what we can learn from it. Get in touch should you wish to find out more about just one aspect or just to chat about the whole study! If you email us, we promise to forward it to Dave as soon as we possibly can.

Click here to email Dave.

“A study of how adults become Christians with special reference to the personal involvement of individual Christians”

The research method
A six-page questionnaire was answered by 383 people who became Christians as adults, some time between 1995 and 2002. Of these, 216 were females and 167 males of all age groups from 18 to 70+.

Part 1: How do adults become Christians?
Part 2: In the process of adults becoming Christians, what part is played by individual Christians?

[Details below]

Conclusion
The most effective way of reaching people is through relationships, particularly through friendship. Training the individual in evangelism must start much further back than how to use gospel outlines or answer common asked questions. We need to start with matters such as relational skills, the art of conversation and the ability to listen.


Part 1: How do adults become Christians?

The various aspects looked at:

  1. The significance of church involvement during childhood
  2. The nature of conversion experience
  3. The role of crisis in conversion
  4. The involvement of the Church
  5. The use of the Bible
  6. The need for change of attitude, not just increase in knowledge

Part 2: In the process of adults becoming Christians, what part is played by individual Christians?

  1. The role of the individual Christian
  2. The significance of relationships
  3. Assessment of the involvement of strangers
  4. The relevance of activities used by individual Christians
    - Praying
    - Inviting
    - Lifestyle
    - Sharing your story
    - Using the Bible
    - Giving literature
    - Explaining the gospel
    - Caring and getting alongside
    - Answering question
    - Making suggestions
    - Having a common interest
    - Giving videos
    - Use of Internet
    - Use of variety and imagination
  5. Unhelpful aspects of certain activities
  6. The importance of being sensitive to people

 

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