Cultural Engagement Tip: Be Slow to Talk and Quick to Listen

Have you ever felt agitated listening to a religious view that’s different from your own? Stay uncomfortable! Allowing someone to share their religious experiences or ideas is a key part of navigating spiritual conversations.

During a Skype conversation with a woman who ministers to Muslims, Dr. Darrell Bock notes a key tip that applies to engaging with people from all backgrounds.

“I often say in doing evangelism, that sometimes Christians tend to want to talk too quickly and too much. And that, basically, when you build that relationship, allowing someone to talk about their religious experience and how they feel about God, etcetera, is very important, because it's like you're being given a window into their heart. And when you get a window into someone's heart, that can help you know what needs they may be expressing, and where they place themselves, and what they value. And that may actually help you think about how to engage.

And so sometimes, I think, particularly initially, we need to be slow to talk and quick to listen, so that we give people a time to tell their story. And by getting to know them, then we put ourselves in a better place to know how to minister to them.”

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About the Contributors

Mikel Del Rosario

Mikel Del Rosario (ThM, 2016; PhD, 2022) is a Professor of Bible and Theology at Moody Bible Institute. While at DTS, he served as project manager for cultural engagement at the Hendricks Center, producing and hosting The Table podcast. You can find him online at, the Apologetics Guy YouTube channel, and The Apologetics Guy Show podcast.