|Developing Your Vision for an Area-Wide Crusade
“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things that thou knowest not.”
• A Word about the AREA-WIDE CRUSADE:
An area-wide crusade is without doubt the most unselfish thing a church may ever be asked in which to participate. Think of it, of the hundreds that may come to Christ, a particular local church may not see any specific results in terms of “physical numbers” that may benefit them. Participating in an area-wide crusade is clearly Kingdom building with a focus on eternity.
Each church will receive as much out of the crusade as is it willing to invest in it. The participating churches must be given clear specific responsibilities. Remember, “Everybody's business is nobody's business.” No other single event has the potential of reaching more people for Christ that the area-wide crusade. In every church members life there are several lost people that can more easily be reached for Christ by them than anyone else. Working together for the sake of souls is not only productive in terms of numbers of people reached, it is also extremely helpful to each church as they again focus on the main task of the church. We can always accomplish more working together than we could ever do alone.
Through the resources God has given His church, every lost person can be reached with the Gospel of Christ. Potentially, every lost person in your area can be saved during the days of the crusade. To reach for any thing less would be to compromise Heaven's purpose for the crusade.
In every area-wide crusade effort there is an ever-present danger of accommodation that can easily compromise the integrity of the crusade. The temptation is to so compromise the meeting to make everyone happy. Let me explain. Sometimes a particular pastor of a larger church is asked to chair a certain committee to get his church to participate when he may not be the best choice at all in terms of gifts or availability.
Often we see the temptation to compromise in the area of music. Just because someone wants to play or sing for the crusade, they may not be God's choice for the crusade. Remember that the crusade is for God's glory and for Heaven's sake not for any personal agenda. We must not allow the success of the crusade to be jeopardized for the sake of accommodating the fleshly desires of a few. We do not desire to offend anyone. However, we must not be willing to sacrifice the crusade on the altar of personal preference and personal gain.
Don't give away the vision God has given you just so others will be made happy enough to participate. As God leads them they will take their place of responsibility. Once again, remember that you must not try to take the place of the Holy Spirit in their lives. It is to God they will ultimately and eternally be responsible.
2. A Word about LEADERSHIP:
“To whom much is given, much shall be required.” Luke 12:48
Leading others to be obedient to the Lord and His call upon our lives is
never an easy task. As in every spiritual pursuit, success is directly related to our yieldedness to the Holy Spirit in our lives. Our Lord never asks us to do anything that He does not give the strength to accomplish the task. As you call on others to work in the crusade effort, you must earnestly pray for them. Remember, you cannot be the Holy Spirit in their lives. Only with
God's help can we be successful. Only through His strength can we accomplish the task of reaching people for Christ. Evangelism is clearly a partnership between the believer and the Holy Spirit of God. 2 Cor. 6:1-2
In every crusade I have ever seen or with which I have been a part, there is one person that God gives the vision for the Area-wide crusade. It is this person from which the Lord will expect the most. You must remember God has given you the burning desire for the crusade. This vision is not, nor will not necessarily be shared by others. Even those you want to share the vision may never come to understand it fully. God gave it to you. It is through your heart and exercised faith that others may get a glimpse of Heaven's vision for the crusade.
Leadership is expressed through a single person. This is the person upon which God lays the vision of the crusade. Do not be disappointed with other don't seem to share your vision. Others may never see your vision. However, they will work with you because they will come to believe God has given you one. It is not your vision they will come to believe in, it is your walk with the Lord in which they will put their confidence.
The Devil knows that the eternity of thousands of people are at stake. He will do everything possible to discourage you from trusting the Lord. He will do all he can to keep you from exercising your faith in the vision God has given. If he can stop the crusade, he will. Learn to recognize his working. If someone's idea means fewer people will be reached for Christ, that idea did not come from God. If someone's idea means you don't need faith to accomplish the task, that idea did not come from the Lord.
Leadership can be a time of great loneliness. With God's presence you will never be alone. Always remember that, Heaven's resources are at your disposal. God gave you the vision for the crusade. God will help you accomplish every task for His glory. There is never anything He tells us to do that He does not give us the authority and ability to accomplish. There is nothing He will ask of you that He cannot accomplish through you. Trust Him and be unshakable with what God has told you.
• A Word about FINANCING THE CRUSADE:
“But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in Glory by Christ Jesus.” Phil. 4:19
As God has given the vision for the area-wide crusade, He will also provide all that is needed to see completion of the vision to its successful end. He is our provider. And it is to Him we turn to meet each need.
Everything that is done in the crusade will cost money. To reach your area with the Gospel of Christ will cost money. Remember that our Lord will never ask us to do anything that He will not provide the way to accomplish His task. Because the area-wide crusade is Heaven's vision, you will have Heaven's resources at the point of every need. My evangelist grandfather used to say, “God's got lots of pockets and there all full!” God will supply every need of the crusade if you work by these principles.
• Be honest in all you do.
Tell the people the need. Trust the Lord, and tell the people!
• Do all you do by faith.
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him.” Heb. 11:6
Never allow yourself to fall to the temptation to manipulate the people. Lead them to seek the Lord for His leadership in their giving. He will lead them to give as they seek His will for their lives.
• Be Accountable in all you do.
Make sure there is in place a system of accountability to protect the gift and the one who gives.
• Develop a clear defined budget for the crusade expenses.
The crusade expense budget should reflect each financial need from the preparation time to the follow-up of the crusade. Some suggestions are:
• Travel expenses
Radio, TV, Posters, Newspapers, Billboards, etc.
• Printing and Postage
Love Offering Envelopes, Letters, Posters, Flyers, Stationary and envelopes, Banners, POW Bracelets, decision cards, Gospel tracts, follow-up materials, counseling materials, etc.
• Motel and meals for the Crusade Team
• Special Emphasis Nights expense
Pizza for youth night, hot dogs for children's night, drinks, etc. Gifts for high attendance giveaways.
• Tent expense
Saw Dust, Insurance, Electricity, Electrician, Chairs, etc.
• Music expense
Song Sheets, Instruments, Instrumentalists, etc.
Expenses that may not be included in the above categories:
All of the above expenses need to be raised before the crusade begins. One of the best ways to take care of all the crusade expenses is to take a PRE-CRUSADE EXPENSE OFFERING. Print an envelope entitled:
“ CHRIST ABOVE ALL “_________ County Crusade for Christ
Pre-Crusade Expense Offering
This offering should be taken on the Sundays prior to the beginning of the Crusade. Each church will want to mail an envelope with a letter of explanation and a copy of the crusade budget to each family within the church. Each family will be asked to give $2.00 a week for the three weeks for each family member over and above the regular church tithes and offerings to meet the crusades expenses. A clear explanation should be given that this offering is given only to meet the expenses of the crusade. A Love Offering will be taken during the crusade for the crusade team.
The Finance Chairman should select a Finance Committee from several cooperating churches. Each member should be above reproach in his walk with the Lord. A separate account of the crusade should be set up at your local bank. Two signatures should be set up for the account. From the Finance Committee at least three people should be selected to count the offering each night of the crusade. As soon as the offering is received, it should be locked up until counted later that evening. As soon as possible after counting the offering it should be deposited in the crusade account.
• A Word about REACHING PEOPLE FOR CHRIST
“But you shall receive power after that the Holy Spirit is come upon you; and you shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. Acts. 1:8
No where is the need for the working of the Holy Spirit more evident
than in the work of evangelism. No where does the absence of our Lord's power in our lives show up quicker than when we attempt to reach people for Christ. There is no success in evangelism without the power of God. All the training and strategizing in and of itself, however important, will not win one soul to the Savior.
The evangelist is not the only one who wins the lost to Christ. The evangelist is only one person in a continual process of bringing people to Christ. The Apostle Paul wrote, “I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.” I Cor. 3:6 We see the truth more clearly developed in the Scripture that tells why the evangelist has been given. “And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” You see the evangelist has been given to the church. The church is the arm of redemption to a lost and dying world. It is through the church God's program of redemption is accomplished. Only those who know Christ as Savior can share with others how to be saved. All of us are “workers together with Him.” 2 Cor. 6:1-2 To win people to Christ takes all of us who know the Savior.
It is my conviction that evangelism only takes place in our lives when we are walking in the righteousness of our Lord. That is to say that the Holy Spirit of God chooses to use clean lives. Unconfessed sin in the life of the believer disables the power of God to accomplish His redeeming love and grace as we share with others. That is the reason why it is so difficult to get people to come to visitation and out-reach night during the week. That's why we can be fairly successful in everything we do in the church without the power of God except reaching people for Christ.
Revival in the life of the believer is essential to the salvation of the lost. That why I believe that the ministry of the evangelist is truly the ministry of a revivalist. A time of cleansing comes through a time of confession of our sin. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse (herein lies revival) us from all unrighteousness.” I John 1:10 It is my continual experience as an evangelist that if the church will have a time of confession of sin, the harvest of souls will be soon to follow.
Let me encourage you to study Psalm 51:1-13. Notice where the 13 th verse is in the progression of David's confession of his sin. Also study the life of Peter. When he was living in the flesh he could not even witness to a small teen-age girl, (a damsel). When he repented of his sin and went out and wept for denying the Lord, he experience a great revival in his heart and life. Think of it, just a few weeks later he preached the message at Pentecost and over 3,000 were saved. The difference was not what Peter did. The difference was what God did in Peter.
The key to success in evangelism is the cleansing of our lives before the Lord. There is no substitute. There is no plan B. If we ever hope to see our loved ones come to the Lord we must learn to walk in the righteousness that comes from only Heaven's cleansing.
KEY PRINCIPLES IN SUCCESSFUL EVANGELISM
“…that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.” Col. 1:28
• Evangelism is every believer's responsibility. 2 Cor. 5:18-20
• Everyone can be saved, therefore everyone must be reached with the Gospel. Rom. 1:16, John 3:16, 2 Pet. 3:9, I Tim. 2:3-4, Rev. 22:17
• The Lord is at work in everyone's heart today. Titus 2:11
• Successful evangelism is a partnership with the Holy Spirit. 2 Cor. 6:1-2
• Each believer must have a personal strategy on how to share his faith.
I Peter 3:15
These above stated eternal principles will help guide you in developing
the crusade strategy. To help develop the personal evangelism strategies of those involved in the crusade, it will be necessary to have a Soul-Winning School prior to the crusade. The people who will be trained to share their faith during this school will also be those who will be enlisted to be counselors during the crusade.
The S.O.N. (Share with others now) Committee will be called on to develop the evangelism strategies for the crusade. Please consult the Revival Preparation Guide for specific help in developing your evangelism strategy for the crusade. The Operation Andrew Plan has been found to be the most effective plan to discover those who need Christ as well as a clear plan on how to share Christ with them. It may be adjusted to fit the need of the crusade. However, this plan must be implemented if the lost are to be reached with the Gospel of Christ. The successful evangelism strategy will include specific people who will be enlisted to pray for the Lord's help in reaching specific people who need to know Christ.
PREPARING FOR A TENT MEETING
Preparing for a tent meeting can be one of the most exciting times in the life of your church. You will find many in your community who will participate in the tent meeting effort that might not for other events. Use this time of preparation to reach as many people for Christ as possible.
WHAT IS NEEDED:
• A visible lot that drains well. (65ft.x65ft. minimum)
• Saw Dust (Shavings) Keeps the ground dry under the tent when it rains. Saw dust can be acquired at a Saw mill or cabinet shop.
• 12 men with sledge hammers, 2 to 4 hours.
• Electrician, Two 110 circuits, one for the PA System and one for the lights.
• 6 sheets of ¾ inch plywood. Four for the platform. Two for the instruments.
• Chairs, enough to meet the need of the expected crowd plus 75.
Other materials that may be needed:
Dry wall screws for platform
Extra light bulbs, 60 watt
Wireless Speed drill
Setting up the Tent
Step by Step Instructions
It is necessary that these steps be followed carefully and in order. The sequence is as important as is each step. Don't get in a hurry and don't get ahead and the tent will only have to be put up once.
• Unload Trailer:
Take everything out of the trailer. Lay it all on the sides of the trailer.
• Assemble center pole and quarter poles:Each one is color coded. Inside the brown barrel you will find metal and rubber flashings. Put the metal flashing on the quarter and center poles first followed by two rubber flashings.
• The red bag contains the walls:
Lay aside the walls. They will go on last after the tent is up.
• Position the Tent:
Roll the two tent sections two the center of where the tent will be pitched.
Take out of bags. Untie the ropes around tent. Where the rope is tied to tent is the
Center ring. You must begin to roll out the tent with this ring in the middle of where
The tent will be erected.
• Laying out the tent in position:Roll out from center (center ring). Fold tent out only one fold. With a man on each corner grab the last large ring inside the fold. Do not try to grab the tent without the large rings. The tent will tear. Together unfold the tent. Repeat same steps for the other section. The two center rings are your center beginning points. Keep them together.
• Lace tent together:
Beginning in the middle lace tent together. Don't miss a ring. Tie off at the ends. The end loop is bigger than the others, just tie it off.
• Snap the tent together:
At the ends and half way to the middle you will find snaps and large rings. While on the ground, snap tent together.
• Lace rain flaps:
From the center you will find small ropes. Lace the rain flaps all the way to the end. Begin with the ring that is across over to the tent (Ring may be gone. Lace through anyway.) You may need to untie knots to get through first lace in tent. Lace back and forth from Tent to flap all the way to the end. Tie off at end pole later on.
• Make sure the tent is where you want to put it. There can be some slack in the middle because of the design of the tent.
• Measure for the stakes:
Straight out from each corner measure 6 ft and drive a stake. See diagram. Stakes must be at an angle. Do corners first.Tie a string from one stake to the other end stake and drive a stake straight out fromeach ring at the position of the string. Auger stakes are for the corners between the larger metal stakes on each corner
• Position wooden poles:
At each ring (skip next to corner ends) put a wooden pole. The black metal poles are for the corners. Position the poles underneath tent with rebar end through both rings.• Chains:
Place buckets of chains on each side of tent. Hook underneath each big ring
(except next to each corner) a chain. Each corner will need three chains.
Loosely wrap chain hooked on big ring underneath tent around stake once. The
Chains will have to be adjusted several times.
• Setting tent up:
Do corners first. Try to keep the tent from shifting so stakes will remain directly
in front of rings on tent. Once the corners are secure, bring up the rest of the outer
poles around perimeter of tent. Remember each pole must stay at an angle.
• Quarter poles:With at least three on each quarter pole (make sure that the person with the rebar
end is careful not to poke any holes into tent) Position each quarter pole in place with the rebar end in each quarter hole with the end of each quarter pole toward
the center of the tent. On the count of three each team must lift their quarter pole
together. Make sure your chains are not too tight to allow you to go on up. The quarter poles must also stay on an angle.
• Center Pole:
Once the quarter poles are in place, get several guys to bring the assembled center pole. The rebar end must go through both rings in the center of the tent. (Be careful with rebar end. Don't tear tent.) Tie two chains around center pole. With some lifting and some pulling position center pole straight up.
• Tighten tent:While holding the tent down by the top of the wooden pole, kick out (toward center) wooden poles. At this same time your partner must tighten chain a tight as
possible with one wrap around stake. With your back, push wooden poles to their angled position. If done right tent will tighten. Remember all stakes and poles (except center pole must remain at an angle.
In red bags you will find four walls. Unroll walls. Hook smooth side of wall on the inside of the tent, inside the wooden poles on ropes underneath curtain. Overlap walls at least 4 ft. at each end.
Inside brown barrel you will find a large C Clamp. With a large extension ladder position spot lights on center pole where they have been before. You can tell by the marks on the pole. Tighten with C Clamp. Large roll of lights:
Begin to unroll lights (third pole from corner) positioning them
around quarter poles. You can tell where to position them by the
tape marks on the role of lights. The place where you will find the
tape marks will be ducked tape to quarter poles. Tie loose ends
around the third pole from the end. Between wall and top of tent.
(Check light bulbs while on ground)
Small roll of lights:
Begin to unroll at same position as larger roll of lights. (third pole
from corner) While on ground, position lights with wired ends toward backside quarter poles. You will see that the plug for the spot lights is in the middle of the stran. See diagram.
Lay out platform frames (barn hinges) with the smaller board facing upward. Place back frame about a foot and a half inside wooden poles. Put braces in place. It only fits right one way. After braces are put in place, the eight foot frames should be put in place extending across braces. Place plywood over frames and screw down. Place the stairs to one end, screw down. Tack down gray carpet to plywood. Put blue skirt around platform. Start in middle. Bottom of blue skirt should be just beyond flush at the bottom.
See diagram for chair set up.