I have just read a very interesting book by Elmer Thiessen called The Ethics of Evangelism (Paternoster, forthcoming). It is
(a) a philosophical critique of the claim that proselytism is unethical in principle.
(b) an attempt to set out criteria for discerning ethical from unethical proselytism.
It is the first book to attempt to do this ... amazingly! The issue is a very contentious one - a hot topic globally and also in Europe and North America.
It is very surprising how little attention the ethics of evangelism receives in evangelical circles given the importance of such practise to evangelicals. Thiessen's book is at once a defence of the propriety of evangelism but also a call to self-examination on the part of proselytisers (including Christians). And for me I think the book will make a very useful contribution both the the general public debate (its target audience is not just Christian) but also to the discussion of praxis within churches.
Rather than spoil the surprise by revealing Thiessen's 15 criteria for ethical evangelism I thought I'd allow you to reflect on examples of unethical practise in evangelism that you have seen or participated in. Perhaps we can, between us, come up with our own criteria.