the weblog of Alan Knox

Like a Charging Rhino

Posted by on Jun 23, 2010 in blog links, missional | 4 comments

Like a Charging Rhino

Dave Black’s latest essay “Rhino Evangelism” is an admonishment away from “impersonal approaches to the Gospel” and towards “loving” those we wish to hear the good news of Jesus Christ.

Is Dave against spontaneous or confrontational evangelism? Of course not, as long as the one proclaiming the gospel truly loves and cares for the other person/people. While the gospel will be a stumbling block and divisive, that doesn’t mean that the way we interact with people needs to be a stumbling block or divisive.

As Dave says:

The greatest danger of confrontational evangelism is that along with toughening our hides we harden our hearts. I urge all of us who share Jesus’ love with others to let our Christ-like actions speak as loud as our words. You lose nothing by protecting the dignity of non-believers. In fact, you may even gain a friend — and ultimately a brother or sister in Christ.

So, when you approach someone with the gospel, approach with the love of Christ, not like a charging rhino.


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  1. 6-23-2010

    Amen. Wise words from Dave Black.

    5 Be wise in the way you act with people who are not believers, making the most of every opportunity.6 When you talk, you should always be kind and pleasant so you will be able to answer everyone in the way you should. – Colossians 4:5-6

  2. 6-23-2010

    I did not read any specifics about their approach, only that the tempers of some flam throwers got aroused. What specifically did they do that is assessed by us as rhino? Are we merely piling on with the flame throwers? I don’t know.

  3. 6-24-2010


    Good passage… thanks.


    I don’t know if Dave Black had any specific instances in mind when he wrote his article. I didn’t have any specific instances in mind when I wrote. However, I can think of several times when I acted as a charging rhino evangelist.


  4. 6-24-2010


    Dave’s article was excellent. We need to be careful of the opposite approach,what I call “Soft Soap Evangelism”. Both have an agenda: making a convert.

    One is a bully approach, the other a ‘used car salesman’ approach. Both are equally un-Scriptural and reprehensible.

    There is another approach which is related to the ‘used car salesman’ approach, it has the same agenda: “faux love” or false love.

    None of these is the work of the Great Commission.


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