Responsibility for Evangelism in the EPC Book of Order


By Daniel L. Sonnenberg

It is clear from early on in the EPC, that the primary task of the church, after worshipping God regularly, is evangelism. 


According to the Book of Government:

·       43. The Local Church:

It is the primary mission of the local church to evangelize, making disciples by extending the gospel both at home and abroad, leading others to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, providing for the nurture of that faith that all might worship the true God and grow in grace and in sanctification. It is to be remembered that good deeds in ministry and service to others, offering relief to those in need, is the fruit of the gospel. Without the clear evidence of such fruit, all else is brought into question. However, the Church must never confuse its primary mission of evangelism (the gospel) with the fruit of faith (good works).

·       18‐3.C. Authority and Responsibilities of the Session:

To initiate the ministry of evangelism as the first business of the Church, and to seek to lead persons to an acceptance of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.


·       19-4.F Authority and Responsibilities of the Presbytery, with respect to local          churches:

To encourage evangelism, church planting, and renewal within its bounds as a first priority.


·       20‐4.B.1. Authority and Responsibilities of the General Assembly, with regard to  Presbyteries and local churches:

To support the Presbyteries and churches in making evangelism and discipleship their priorities. This may include establishing committees, boards, agencies, training events, networks and/or staff positions.


According to the Book of Discipline:

·       21. The Duty to Evangelize:

In terms of its work, the first duty of the church is to evangelize by extending the Gospel both at home and abroad, leading others to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ as Lord andSavior, and to provide for the nurture of that faith that all might grow in grace and in sanctification. 


According to the Book of Worship:

·       72. The Service of Evangelism: 

The first task of the Church is to share the Gospel of salvation with all the nations of the world. This is the task of every Christian, every particular church, and the whole church. Each court of the Church should encourage, train, and lead those underits jurisdiction in the service of evangelism.


All quotes are from the EPC Book of Order 2014-2015.

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