Choosing a Tract: 9 Questions to Ask

There are hundreds of different tracts available from many different sources. Here are some important questions to ask yourself about the tract before you complete a purchase.

In terms of structure:

  1. Is it clear and concise in its message? If you can read the tract before purchasing, does it communicate clearly and concisely to the reader? It does not need to be perfect, but from human nature it is more likely to be read and considered when it is easy to understand and to the point in its message.
  2. Does it engage the mind? Is the tract engaging in a way that makes the reader think or ponder things more deeply? Questions are very effective both in conversation and in written form to draw the reader in. Questions or new information help keep the interest of the reader as they explore a new topic or new way of seeing things.
  3. Does it transition from the natural to the spiritual? People learn through comparison or transition from something known to something new; our knowledge grows and builds on existing knowledge. The bible uses this approach as it shows things in the physical world that represent a heavenly or spiritual reality. Jesus said, “if I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things?” (John 3:12)
  4. Does it elicit a response? Does the tract do more than provide information, does it create a sense of urgency for a response from the reader? (2 Corinthians 6:2) We are not simply sharing information in hope that they will finally understand, we are calling them to Christ, to repent and believe that they may be saved. (Acts 2:37-39)

In terms of content:

  1. Does it reflect sound doctrine and correct theology? Evaluate the message and presentation of the gospel message to see that it conforms to the biblical view of salvation. (1 Corinthians 15:3-4, Titus 2:1) Great tracts use the word of God or draw the reader to scripture. Are there direct quotes or references to scripture that they can lookup? (Isaiah 55:11, 2 Timothy 3:16-17)
  2. Does it appeal to their conscience? We are not simply looking for intellectual ascent, but a faith that recognizes the need for repentance and puts their trust fully in God rather than themselves. We appeal to their conscience by holding up the mirror of the law so they can see their own guilt. If hell is mentioned, is it merely a fear tactic, or is it presented as a reality that drives us to be reconciled to God? (1 Corinthians 5:18-20) We only have two alternatives, heaven or hell. (Matthew 25:31-46, II Peter 2:4-9)
  3. Does it glorify God, pointing to His work and His attributes? When we read God’s word, we honor Him. When we tell what He has done, we glorify Him. Telling about His creation or arguments from design in nature, we glorify Him. It gives a us and them a sense of awe and wonder at who He is. A tract should not be focused solely on man but on God. (Psalm 51:13) We tell others about God’s holiness, perfection, sovereignty, and His faithfulness. (1 Timothy 2:12-13) Regardless of the topics we may cover, the message must glorify God, we have no higher purpose. (1 Corinthians 10:31)
  4. Does it point to Christ and His substitutionary death on the cross? God’s ultimate work is an act of love. The core of the gospel message is that Christ died for us. We are alienated from God because of our own sin. We cannot be good enough or work our way to heaven. It is only through Christ’s death on the cross that justice is fulfilled. In that act, the righteousness that we could not attain was imputed to us, the sinner.
  5. Does it extend the grace and forgiveness of God? The gospel message is full of grace and forgiveness. We undermine this message when we tell people they will have a better life, or they should live a better life and appeal to moralism rather than grace.

As you review and select the right tract, consider how the format and message fits the situation where you will share it. There are many sizes and formats, from a small and simple business card to a more in-depth booklet. Holidays and festivals are great opportunities to distribute tracts and point others toward Christ. Where possible, people will be more interested if you match the message of the tract to the occasion, such as the story of Saint Patrick’s, or Christmas, or Easter.

I hope this helps you as you navigate through selecting tracts for your personal use. Feel free to check out our store for some tracts. There are many others who sell excellent tracts.

Author: Jon Neifert
Posted on February 16 2022