Feb. 23 at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, a free, historic event will unfold. “The Send” is a collaborative gathering of major ministries, servant leaders and 60,000 passionate people believing we are at a serious tipping point in America and a new era of evangelism is God’s solution to the crises.
Jesus said, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore, pray to the Lord of the harvest, that He will send out laborers into His harvest” (Matthew 9:37-38). Multitudes across America are sensing a stirring in their spirit that the time has come to respond to the Master’s commission and complete the task as His ambassadors.
Our world is filled with people searching for hope, purpose, peace, plus freedom from addictions, depression, confusion, anxiety, fear and loneliness. “The mass of humanity live lives of quiet desperation,” a poet once observed. Only the transformative message of the Gospel brings rebirth and the “abundant life” Jesus promised to all who genuinely repent and put their trust totally in Him and His finished work on the Cross. Legislation and education are important, but regeneration of human hearts is God’s answer.
So Christians from across our nation will converge in this stadium to encounter God, be equipped and receive an impartation that will mark them to go forth with compassion, boldness and heaven-sent zeal! As a Christian and full-time evangelist of almost 50 years, I wouldn’t miss it for the world.
If alive, would Spurgeon go?
I pose the question because there are many who not only admire probably history’s greatest pastoral leader but identify with his theology emphasizing the sovereignty of God in saving people. Wouldn’t he be disinclined to participate in something emphasizing our human responsibility to take the Gospel to the lost?
Actually, this towering spiritual figure was once asked how He would reconcile the sovereignty of God and the responsibility of man? He smiled and said he never tried to reconcile them because they were “friends.” In other words, both are essential, though the accent is always on the initiative of God.
Scripture reminds us, “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, who bring good news of good things!'” (Romans 10:14-15).
Spurgeon ministered weekly to over 10,000 in his Metropolitan Tabernacle megachurch in London without amplification or benefit of social media. Having ministered for more than four decades, leaders around the world still use his 63 volumes of over 4,000 sermons!
What is significant about his life was the phenomenal balance he displayed regarding pastoral ministry and passionate evangelism. If he were alive today, I personally believe he would endorse and attend “The Send.” He’d also pass along his time-tested wisdom encouraging all to repent of any complacency and excuses; pursue opportunities to be equipped; and then engage consistently in the exciting adventure of lifestyle evangelism and missional living.
So if you’re willing to glean from Spurgeon’s writings and sermons, here’s four insights from the “Prince of Preachers” to motivate you afresh in evangelism and to consider the opportunity of attending what will be a life-changing experience in Orlando.
4 Insights on Evangelism
1. Prioritize Evangelism
Mr. Spurgeon stated unequivocally, “Soul-winning is the chief business of the Christian minister; indeed, it should be the main pursuit of every believer. If you are eager for real joy, such as you may think over and sleep upon, I am persuaded that no joy of growing wealthy, no joy of increasing knowledge, no joy of influence over your fellow creatures, no joy of any other sort, can ever be compared with the rapture of saving a soul from death and helping to restore our lost brethren to our great Father’s house.”
Intentionally living the adventure of lifestyle evangelism topped Spurgeon shortlist. He didn’t delegate evangelism to the “gifted”; rather he engaged in missional living with passion and built it into the culture of his church.
2. Pray For and Engage the Lost
“If sinners be damned, at least let them leap to hell over our bodies,” Spurgeon declared. “And if they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees, imploring them to stay. If hell must be filled, at least let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go there unwarned and unprayed for!”
I encourage Christians to slow down and enjoy the adventure of lifestyle evangelism. Many opportunities to share Christ come disguised as unwelcome interruptions. Some people miss divine appointments because they’re always looking for the shortest lines in stores and avoiding conversations with people in their workplace, school and neighborhood. Time to reset and re-calibrate as “ambassadors for Christ, God making His appeal through us” (2 Corinthians 5:11).
3. Cultivate Fresh Motivation
Spurgeon used his book “The Soul Winner” to equip and inspire people to share their faith. He kept the vision before his people and sprinkled sermons with his gospel-sharing activity.
We all benefit from fresh testimonies that remind us of what Jesus told us, “There will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous men who need no repentance” (Luke 15:7).
Billy Graham, perhaps the greatest evangelist of our generation, said, “My one purpose in life is to help people find relationship with God through Jesus Christ.” Mr. Graham and Mr. Spurgeon would be quick to remind us, “The Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10). They encouraged us to be intentional, proactive in not just saving but seeking.
4. Design and Distribute Tracts
Spurgeon said, “When preaching and private talk are not available, you have a tract ready. This is often an effectual method. The gospel tract may be the seed of eternal life, so don’t go out without your tracts!”
For over four decades I’ve equipped and encouraged people to put together and pass out wisely and winsomely their personal testimony in an attractive tract. I normally give out about three tracts daily, which translates into over 1,000 people yearly, and in my lifetime that’s approximately 46,000 people, enough to fill a stadium!
Martin Luther and the Reformers made great use of tracts. Missionary legends Hudson Taylor and George Whitefield were converted through tracts. Mitsuo Fuchida, air commander of the Pearl Harbor attack, came to Christ through a tract from a prisoner of war. Moishe Rosen, founder of “Jews for Jesus,” was converted through a tract.
If you need further motivation, go to YouTube for the gift of five 24-minute free inspiring videos on “Loving Lifestyle Evangelism” on my playlist to help you, your family and your church.
Here’s the deal: America has a special place in God’s heart and He’s calling us to recapture our evangelistic and missionary zeal for our nation and abroad. Remember Founding Father Robert Hunt’s prayer upon landing at Jamestown in 1607, “We do hereby dedicate this land, and ourselves, to reach the people within the shores with the gospel of Jesus Christ, and to raise up godly generations after us, and with these generations take the kingdom of God to all the earth. …”
When Billy Graham died, abundant prophetic words were resurrected to call believers to the end-time harvest Jesus said was the “end of the age” (Matthew 13:39). Both Billy Graham and Charles Spurgeon are now part of the “cloud of witnesses” (Hebrews 12:1) cheering us on from heaven’s grandstand as we gather for “The Send.”
Will you pray about joining us?