Understanding the 4 Types of Listeners
© RevivalSermon.org 2014
It's extremely helpful when sharing the gospel to understand your listener. As you become more proficient, you soon discover similarities and certain defense mechanisms used by many. The problem with many "script" approaches to evangelism is a failure to adapt to the situation.
This session delves into four types of people commonly encountered (Positive, Passive, Contrary, and Aggressive). We describe each, talk about how to identify them, and how to approach each with the gospel.
1. Positive and Affirming (will generally be agreeable outwardly)
Encountering the religious false convert. What to do.
Encountering the agreeable / easily persuaded. You aren't the first person to lead them to Christ.
Encountering the rabbit chaser. He's got a few stories for you - if you have the time.
Encountering the acceptance seeker. When you're around, they become very religious.
2. Passive (will typically listen and be polite)
Encountering the passive/aggressive person. Underneath all that "niceness" is a clenched fist.
Encountering the apathetic, uninterested person. Ignorance by design.
Encountering the wounded soul. They desire sympathy, not Christ.
Encountering the person willing to listen, but not say much. They've been taught never to interrupt.
3. Contrary (they disagree, but posture themselves as open-minded)
4. Aggressive (quick to disagree, they have rejected Christianity and will try to persuade you of their position)
Encountering the cult member.
Encountering the neo-atheist. He sees his mission as a liberator of the "opium addicted masses."
Encountering the contentious debater. Never met a belief he didn't like.
Encountering the "one time Christian," now an embittered inoculated apostate "burned
by the church."
Encountering the non-committal, agnostic. When it comes to most controversial topics, he never likes to takes sides. We examine the "myth of neutrality."
Encountering the ultra-inquisitive information gatherer. Congratulations, you have become their new "project."
Encountering the unrepentant person. Projecting an intellectual façade, but in reality, its moral.
Encountering the "seeker." Never satisfied until you provide "proof." However, even a "sign from heaven" may not be enough.