One-third of American pastors are bivocational.
One of the most vital yet understudied streams of church ministers is the bivocational pastor. This is that pastor who, either out of necessity or intentionality, works as both the pastor of a local church and in the secular marketplace.
Already, more than one-third of all American pastors are bivocational, and this number will probably grow.
Bivocational ministry offers a great opportunity for evangelism. Bivocational pastors are uniquely positioned to live out their pastoral calling as the lead missionary to their local community. As a well-equipped and gifted emissary of the gospel, these ministers can lead their congregations by demonstrating the power of evangelism to build the local church.
In a mission field that has rapidly become the most unchurched culture in its history, bivocational pastors are on the frontlines of gospel witness.
In focusing on how bivocational pastoring can facilitate effective evangelism, I will first argue that full-time ministry can potentially hamper cultural engagement. In light of these challenges, I will outline the role of bivocational pastors in leading the church into a season of fruitful evangelism.
The Challenge of Pastoral Evangelism
Evangelism is the work of testifying to the world of the redemptive work of Jesus Christ with the aim of converting those who aren’t trusting in Christ to repentance. This, of course, demands that we actually engage those individuals and communities we are trying to reach with the good news.
For most people, the proximity that we find in a work environment is an important outlet for evangelism.
Ironically, despite their call to lead in evangelism, church pastors are limited in this respect. Even as full-time pastors may desire to reach those who don’t …