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FROM OUR
FATHER IN HEAVEN;
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To the Puritan-Pilgrims He led to America,
And the FOUNDING FATHERS whom He Called and Blessed!

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"Washington" "Adams" "Jefferson" "Madison" "Lincoln"
Founding Fathers: "UNITED STATES of AMERICA!

YOU "MUST READ!"
"Is Patriotism Sinful for Christians?"

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U.S. Motto: "IN GOD WE TRUST!"

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"The KINGDOM of GOD shall be taken from you;
And given to a NATION bringing forth Fruit!

[SOURCE: Jesus Christ; Matthew 21:43, AD-33]

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Statement On Holy Scriptures;

The ‘Lens’ Through Which All Knowledge Is Understood;

THE WORD of GOD, AXIOM-1:

"IF" there exists any such thing as 'The Word of God'; [and much evidence proves such does exist:]

"THEN" by inherent definition - it must be:

    Holy, Inspired, Inerrant, Intrepid, Infallible, Infinitive, Invincible, Indestructible, Inexhaustible, Inalienable, Immutable, Implacable, Impossible-to-Improve: Eternal and Indubitable NEVER FAILING and ALL CONQUERING!
DEDUCTING from the simple fact - that God equates His Word with Himself:
    "In the Beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God, . . ." John 1:1 (and other Scriptures),

Thus 'GOD'S WORD' can have no lesser standard than stated above;

"GOD'S WORD MUST" THEREFORE BE:

    As true in history, archeology, geography, Earth science, medical science, nutrition, gerontology, agriculture, botany, astronomy, physics, chemistry, climatology, government, law, psychology, sociology - and every subject it touches - as in Theology, Divinity and Doctrine:

And "IF IT BE NOT"- true in all subjects mentioned above; and And "IF IT BE NOT"

    Holy, Inspired, Inerrant, Intrepid, Infallible, Infinitive, Invincible, Indestructible, Inexhaustible, Inalienable, Immutable, Implacable, Impossible-to-Improve: Eternal and Indubitable in EVERY FIELD OF KNOWLEDGE:

Whatever else it may be, it cannot be ‘The Incomparable Word’ of the Great Creator God!

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American Bible Christian:

American Baptist Churches:

Let's Make More Converts!

Dr. Jack Hyles, Pastors' Pastor!

CHURCH USA:

A Commentary on his book Baptizing Converts

Jesus plainly said: "I WILL - Build My Church! AND, the Gates of Hell will NOT prevail against the OFFENSIVE ATTACK of My Church! Matt 16:18

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Let's Baptize More Converts
by Dr. Jack Hyles

I. Find New Avenues of Prospects

II. Make Every Service Evangelistic

III. Baptize Converts Immediately, Each Sunday Morning and Evening

IV. Pastor and People Set Personal Goals for Soul Winning

V. Bathe the Church in Soul Winning

VI. Have a Soul-Winning Course Annually

VII. Good Soul Winners Take Others Along to Learn

VIII. Give Invititation Periodically in Each Sunday School Class

IX. An Inside Church Census

X. Include a Mention of Baptism in Most Sermons

Introduction (by John R. Rice)

Dr. Jack Hyles, First Baptist Church of Hammond, Indiana, where he is pastor. Last year there were more than2800 public professions of faith in Christ in that church and Dr. Hyles baptized 1410 ofthese converts.

On the day of Pentecost at Jerusalem we are told, "Then they that gladly receivedhis word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousandsouls" (Acts 2:41). And Acts 5:42, speaking of the same group of Christians atJerusalem, says, "And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not toteach and preach Jesus Christ." And Acts 2:47 tells us after Pentecost, "And theLord added to the church daily such as should be saved."

So it is proper for a local New Testament church to be in the daily business of winningsouls, and such a church should baptize converts at least every week.

Records indicate that up until 1966, only about 20 churches in America baptized as manyas 200 converts a year. The largest non-Catholic denomination in America baptized about 111/2 converts per church averaging about 365 members or about 1 convert to every 30 or 31members. Other groups with smaller churches baptized fewer per church. Some smaller groupsbaptized more. Yet a half dozen fundamental Baptist churches baptized from 350 to morethan 1700 converts per year. How do they win so many souls in a year's time?

Dr. Hyles here tells how any pastor and church not baptizing hundreds of converts in ayear can set out to win and baptize many more converts than ever before by God's blessing.

Not all converts will be baptized. Some with an ingrained prejudice are not at onceready for baptism. Some go to other denominations and some live far and thus prefer someother church. Sometimes little children are saved and it is wise to counsel with theirfathers and mothers and to make sure that they understand the plan of salvation and aredefinitely assured of their faith in Christ. Thus not all converts will be baptized in astrongly evangelistic church that wins them.

Yet all Christians ought to be baptized and the number of converts baptized is the mostfair and reliable measure of the success of a church in following Christ's GreatCommission to, "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name ofthe Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all thingswhatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of theworld" (Matt. 28:19,20).

Scores of churches are setting out to win and baptize 200 converts or more in a year'stime. We thank Dr. Hyles for suggesting methods to help us in this holy business offulfilling Christ's command.

John R. Rice

February, 1967


Let's Baptize More Converts (by Dr. Jack Hyles)

"Who baptized Jesus?" asked a beginner Sunday school teacher.

After a few moments of deliberation little Johnny raised his hand and answered,"John the Baptist did."

"That's right," replied the teacher. "Now another question: Who baptizedJohn the Baptist?" This was a real stumper. Finally, after much deliberation, littleJohnny's hand went up again. "All right, Johnny, who did baptize John theBaptist?"

"Brother Hyles did," replied the boy.

This took place in a little Country church in East Texas in 1949. I was the pastor ofthe little country church. The teacher was one of our fine teachers, and Johnny was one ofour beginner boys. Johnny said a great deal about his pastor in that little statement. Hewas saying, "My pastor must have baptized almost everybody because he baptizes somuch." He was also saying, "My pastor puts a great stress on baptism and evenJohn the Baptist would have been pleased to have Brother Hyles baptize him."

Johnny was right in one respect. Brother Hyles does place a big emphasis on baptism. Tobe sure, baptism is not necessary to salvation, but it is necessary to obedience. Thereare several reasons why it is important. The first is, baptism pictures the death, burial,and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We should tell the world immediately upon salvation thatwe believe in these basic truths.

Then, baptism also pictures what has happened to us at salvation. It is somewhat likean X-ray. An X-ray reveals internal conditions to the human eye; baptism reveals salvationto the human eye. One says to the world, "Look, let me show you outwardly whathappened to me inwardly. As I go down into the water, I am showing you that I have buriedthe old life; and as I rise from the water. I am showing you that I have risen to walk inthe newness of life. I am a new creature and I want you to see it."

Then, baptism also identifies us with Jesus Christ in His death, burial, andresurrection.

Baptism is one of the few things that we can do exactly like Jesus did. Oh, yes, we areto strive to be like Him. We are to follow His example. The first and best way for aChristian to do this is by obeying His command of baptism.

Jesus places a great deal of emphasis on baptism. This is shown so vividly in theinclusion of this ordinance in the Great Commission. Had it not been important to Him, Hewould not have included it in what we commonly call "The Great Commission."

In March of 1965, I went on a tour of Bible Lands. It was my privilege to baptize fourpeople in the Jordan River. We walked out into the Jordan River just where the Sea ofGalilee flows into the Jordan. With the Sea of Galilee in the background and the PromiseLand framing the scene, I, like John the Baptist, baptized in the Jordan. As the five ofus walked into the river, a group of nineteen believers sang: On Jordan's stormy banksI stand, And cast a wistful eye To Canaan's fair and happy land, Where my possessions lie.
I am bound for the promised land ... I am bound for the promised land 0h who will come andgo with me? I am bound for the promised land.

What a thrill it was to baptize in the Jordan River!

It is, however, my privilege to enjoy that same thrill Sunday after Sunday, as newbornbabes in Christ follow the command of the Saviour in believers' baptism. It is my desirein the next few pages to help pastors and churches around the world increase their numberof converts and the number of baptisms. May God use these remarks to fulfill that purpose.


I. FIND NEW AVENUES OF PROSPECTS

When most of us think of prospects, we limit our thoughts to new families moving in ourarea, or those found in a church census, etc. There are, however, thousands of people whogo practically unnoticed, uncared for, and, sad to say, unloved by the average church. Nowto notice a few of these:


1. The Retarded and Educable Slow

Recently, at First Baptist Church, we became aware of the many children who areretarded, and, therefore, unable to sit in the average Sunday school class and be helped.This led us to start a class for children twelve and under who are mentally behind theirage. It wasn't long until twelve to fifteen were attending every Sunday.

How did this help increase our converts? In two ways: First, the fact that we had sucha class made it possible for the entire families to come to Sunday school who werepreviously unable to do so. We have had mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters savedbecause there was a class for the educable slow in our church.

In the second place, it is surprising how many children who are twelve years of age andare somewhat retarded still can comprehend the plan of salvation. We have a little fellowwho is about eleven and has the mind of a child about six or seven who understood clearlywhat it means to be a sinner and that Jesus died on the cross for sinners, and gladlyreceived Him as his Saviour. It was my joy recently to baptize him and share with hisfamily this happy occasion.

This class grew so rapidly that God burdened us for a class for older retarded people.Now we have about fifteen older ones attending this class. Think of this! Approximatelythirty retarded people are attending our Sunday school. The average family has fourmembers. That means there are three others in each family who now can attend Sunday schoolalso. This could be an increase of one hundred twenty in Sunday school attendance and manymore conversions and baptisms.


2. A Class Taught in a Foreign Language

We found that in our area there are many people who speak only Spanish. Hundreds ofthem attend no Sunday school whatsoever. God gave us a fine soul-winning lady who speaksSpanish fluently. She now teaches the Sunday school lesson in Spanish each Sunday. Scoresof Spanish-speaking people have been saved from this new class.

While in Ottawa, Canada, one pastor said, "This would apply to us. We have manyFrench-speaking people in Ottawa. A Sunday school class taught in French would, no doubt,enable us to reach many people that we have not been reaching."


3. A Work With the Deaf

It is unbelievable how many deaf people there are in the average city. The Sundaybefore this writing we had forty-three deaf people in our Sunday school. The lesson istaught in sign language and then the deaf come to the regular preaching service and havethe message interpreted to them, during the service, by the deaf interpreter. We have manysaved and baptized from this ministry.

Think for a minute what we have already done in reaching just the retarded, theSpanish-speaking and the deaf. If we could reach one hundred twenty people in the familiesof the retarded children, forty-three in deaf class and fifteen or twenty in theSpanish-speaking class, we have increased our Sunday school by nearly two hundred and havefound avenues of reaching many more for Christ.


4. Work With the Shut-ins

One lady of our church goes into the homes of each shut-in once a month. She takes atape recorder and plays one of the pastor's messages and a personal greeting from thepastor. She will take some little gift from the church, and spend a few minutes meetingthe spiritual needs of the shut-in. When the shut-in is won to Christ, we provide anambulance, if needed, or a wheel chair, a hospital bed and any other need that will enablethem to come to the services. We carry them bodily to the dressing room and baptize them.Shouldn't the shut-ins have the privilege or being baptized after they are saved?Certainly they should.

It is often necessary to have a private service for them. It is not too unusual for usto have a shut-in baptized in the presence of the family and few friends on a week day ora Sunday afternoon.


5. New Buses

Probably nothing would help to increase one's Sunday attendance and the number ofconversions and baptisms more than starting bus routes. At the First Baptist Church ofHammond, we now operate thirty-seven routes bringing between one thousand and thirteenhundred people to Sunday school and church every Sunday. Though we will not go into theorganizational part of the bus ministry, and it takes organization and hard work, let mestress the importance of adding new buses and new routes. People who come on a new busroute are net gain. Many churches could baptize hundreds more a year by adding buses andbus routes.


6. Poor Children

We have found in our area scores of little children from poor homes who actually nevereat a real good hot meal. We have started a Sunday school class for them, and at noon onSunday feed them a hot meal. Of course, this is limited just to the poor. We are nowhaving between fifty and a hundred in this class. Many of these boys and girls only getone good meal a week. And while they do, they get the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

There are many avenues of reaching prospects. Such things as rescue mission work, workin the rest homes, canvassing trailer courts, work with the blind, etc., will bringeternal rewards and increase the churches' number of conversions and baptisms.


II. MAKE EVERY SERVICE EVANGELISTIC AND ADVERTIZE YOUR CHURCH AS AN EVANGELISTICCHURCH

It is extremely important that the entire area be conscious that your church is aftersinners and aware of the fact that at any given service you are trying to reach people forChrist. This will encourage them to bring their loved ones and friends to your services ifthey want to get them saved. Your church should be known as an evangelistic headquartersin the city.

Let me illustrate. A lady in our city who attends another church recently called me onthe telephone telling me that her husband was coming to our services that evening. Thenshe continued to say that her church was having a musical program, and her husband finallyconsented to go to a service one time. She knew that the First Baptist Church would try toget him saved. She knew that no musical program ever takes the place of preaching in ourSunday services. She could count on it. She brought him: he was saved. He joined herchurch after he was saved and is now attending faithfully. Scores of people do this eachyear.

One lady called me on the phone and said, "I attend another church, but my brotheris dying in the hospital and I want you to try to win him." I asked her why shedidn't call her own pastor. She replied, "He does not specialize in thosecases." But she knew I did. So we reached him for Christ before he died.

This will enable you to be a blessing to other churches as well as your own. It isvitally important for an evangelistic church to be known as such. And even if a sermon isdirected to Christians, there should be a strong evangelistic appeal at the end of themessage inviting people to come to Jesus Christ.

Now, we do have musical programs, but they are on week nights and announced as such. Wedo have Christmas programs and Christian movies, but they are at times other than theannounced public preaching service. We always have the preaching of the Word of God and agospel invitation in our Sunday services.

Suppose that a person prays for a lost loved one. Finally, his prayer is answered andthe loved one agrees to attend the services. Suppose that this particular service is onewhere no invitation is given and no evangelistic appeal is offered. What a tragedy thiswould be! Now I am not saying that everything in the church should be evangelism, but I amsaying that everything in the church should ultimately end in the salvation of souls, andthat people should know they can bring their lost loved ones to the services at any timeto have them hear the message of salvation and have an opportunity to be converted.


III. BAPTIZE BOTH SUNDAY MORNING AND SUNDAY EVENING AND BAPTIZE THE CONVERTSIMMEDIATELY UPON SALVATION

We should make it easy for people to be baptized. It is a step of obedience. It is thefirst step of obedience after salvation. Many churches could double their baptisms simplyby baptizing on Sunday morning as well as Sunday evening and by having the baptistryfilled at all times and by having necessary preparation for such services.

This is not foreign to New Testament practice. In fact, in the New Testament, baptismimmediately followed salvation. Acts 2:41 says, "Then they that gladly received hisword were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousandsouls." Notice the words "the same day." Hence, on Pentecost the convertswere baptized immediately.

Now turn to Acts 2:47. " Praising God, and having favour with all the people. Andthe Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved." Notice that the convertswere being added to the church daily. Since the converts were being baptized before beingadded to the church, this would lead us to believe that they continued baptizing convertsimmediately upon salvation.

In Acts 8:37,38 we read, " And Philip said, If thou believest with all thineheart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son ofGod. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water,both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him." Now here was a man whom Philip hadnever seen before. He was of another race and another country. He was just travelingthrough, yet he was baptized immediately.

Now turn to Acts 9:17,18, "And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house;and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared untothee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and befilled with the Holy Ghost. And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had beenscales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized." The ApostlePaul likewise was baptized soon after his salvation.

We also find the same thing in Acts 10:47,48. "Can any man forbid water, thatthese should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? And hecommanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarrycertain days." In the house of Cornelius Peter had preached. Many had been saved. Nowthey are ready for a baptismal service.

In Acts 16:14.15 we read. "And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, ofthe city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, thatshe attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul. And when she was baptized, and herhousehold, she besought us, saying, If ye have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, comeinto my house, and abide there. And she constrained us." Here again we have aconvert. Here is a lady that perhaps Paul had never seen before, yet she was saved andimmediately baptized. In this same chapter we have a similar story. Look at Acts 16:33,"And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and wasbaptized, he and all his, straightway." Note the words "the same hour."

Believing that our church should follow the New Testament pattern, the First BaptistChurch of Hammond has practiced this for a number of years. To do so, however, there arecertain provisions that must be made.

1. Clothing. The ladies in the church keep us supplied with baptismal robes orsmocks for the new converts to wear. We have all sizes and also keep a generous supply ofunderclothing for the converts. This enables them to be baptized in the same service whenthey make their public profession of faith.

2. Towels. Scores of towels are kept available for the converts to use. Thismeans that the convert has to bring nothing with him for baptism. He may be baptized, aswas the case in the Book of Acts, on the "same day."

3. Hairdryers. We keep a generous supply of hairdryers available (especially forthe ladies) to avoid catching colds, etc.

4. Caps. We provide plastic caps for the ladies with which to cover their hairif they prefer not to get their hair wet.

5. Helpers. There are many people involved in making an immediate baptismalservice possible. First, there are folks who work at the altar, talking to the newconverts and, after they have trusted Jesus and are assured of salvation, explaining tothem that they can be baptized immediately. These workers also point them to the doorleading to the stairs and the baptismal room. Just inside the door there is a young manwho is waiting for the converts pointing to the stairs leading to the baptistry. Then atthe top of the stairs there is a young man to show them which is the ladies' room andwhich is the men's room. Inside the dressing room there are little stalls, about the sizeof a telephone booth, where the people dress for baptism. Three to five ladies work in theladies' room, and three to five men work in the men's room passing out the towels, smocks,etc., and helping the converts in preparation for baptism. Then there is a person at thetop of the steps leading down into the baptistry who explains to them how to be baptizedbefore they enter the water. Then there are three of us down in the water. While I ambaptizing a man, one of the men In the water is getting a lady down in the water. Whilethe man leaves the baptistry, the lady is coming in. While she is being baptized, thethird man is preparing a man and helping him down into the water. After the lady leaves, aman comes. This enables us to baptize about four to five converts a minute without anyappearance of rushing and taking no less time with each person in the actual experience ofbaptism. We will baptize an average of twenty-five to thirty each Sunday morning, and theentire service takes only about ten minutes.

It is sad that many churches make it difficult to get baptized. Take this same logicand use it about other things that a new Christian should do. Should we let a newChristian wait awhile before he tithes? Should we make it hard for him to tithe? Should wemake it hard for a new Christian to quit drinking and smoking? Should we advise him to goback to the bar for awhile to be sure he is saved? Or should we make it easy for him toquit his sins and start tithing? The sad thing is that many of us do not look upon baptismas being an act of obedience on the part of the believer. So in many cases we actuallyhinder him from being obedient in baptism.

We should not overlook the fact that the baptistry should be filled and warm at allservices, and that the baptismal service should be an impressive one. It should be donesmoothly and gracefully. People should get the idea that it is not a hard thing to getbaptized. Many people do not want to get baptized because they are afraid of the water.Often times this fear is created, at least enhanced, by a pastor not taking the propercare in the actual administrating of the ordinance. If it is done in a crude, jerky way,it may strike fear into the hearts of people, especially little ones, who will not want toget baptized because they are afraid of the ordeal.


IV. PASTOR AND PEOPLE SHOULD SET PERSONAL GOALS FOR SOUL WINNING

Just as it is wise for the church to have many saved and baptized, it is also wise forthe pastor to set a personal goal for himself and lead his people in the same thing. Forexample, why couldn't a pastor be responsible for baptizing fifty-two converts a year thathe wins to Christ? This certainly should be a minimum. I have numbers of people in mychurch who are responsible for more than this, and I have several people in my church whobring over one hundred converts a year down the aisle professing faith in Jesus Christ. Itmight be well for the pastor to preach on soul winning and for his invitation ask thepeople to set a goal and ask God to give them that goal for souls for the coming year.

Immediately someone will suggest that numbers are not important and that we should notmajor on numbers. That is true if you are majoring on numbers for numbers' sake. But ifyou are majoring on numbers for souls' sake, certainly it is justifiable. Any churchshould be more pleased at baptizing one hundred than fifty, or two hundred than onehundred. Numbers are simply expressions of the intensity of soul-winning effort.

Let us look in the Word of God. In Acts 2:41 we find these words, "Then they thatgladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them aboutthree thousand souls." You will notice that the Holy Spirit was very careful to saythere were about "3,000" saved at Pentecost.

Then in Acts 4:4, "Howbeit many of them which heard the word believed; and thenumber of the men was about five thousand." Notice in this verse about

"5,000" more were saved. The Holy Spirit was very careful to deal in numbers.

Now turn back to Acts 1:15, "And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of thedisciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred andtwenty)." Somebody counted the prayer meeting crowd, didn't they?

Now to John 6:10, "And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grassin the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand." This great miracleof the feeding of five thousand men plus women and children is called by most of us the"feeding of the 5,000." The very fact that we have given it this title meansthat we are stressing numbers.

Now look at John 6:9: "There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and twosmall fishes: but what are they among so many?" The Holy Spirit is very careful totell us about how many fishes and how many loaves.

In John 6:13, "Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve basketswith the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them thathad eaten." Here we find that the Holy Spirit tells us how many baskets of fragmentsremain.

These are only a few examples of scores of others in the Bible where the Holy Spiritdeals in numbers. Numbers are important with God. He had rather see two people saved thanone. He had rather see one hundred saved than fifty. He had rather see two hundred savedthan one hundred because every statistic represents a soul who will spend eternity withChrist and escape the fires of Hell.


V. WE SHOULD BATHE THE CHURCH IN SOUL WINNING

Everything we do in the church should have behind it the underlying passion that menare lost and must be saved if they go to Heaven. Soul-winning churches must be made up ofsoul-winning ingredients. One cannot use pink and white brick in a building and have a redbrick building. A housewife cannot use sand, red clay and mud and make an angel food cake.Neither can our churches leave off soul-winning ingredients and have in the endsoul-winning churches.

Let us notice the necessary ingredients if one is to have a soul-winning church.


1. A Soul-Winning Pastor

It is utter folly to think that a soul-winning church could exist without asoul-winning pastor. Someone has said that everything rises and falls on leadership. If achurch is to be a warm, evangelistic, soul-winning institution, it must be led by a soulwinning pastor. Would God that every pulpit committee in America when seeking a pastorwould settle for nothing less than a man who is an active soul winner.

"Is he married?"

"Does he have curly hair?"

"What seminary did he attend?"

"How old is he?"

"How many children does he have?"

"Is he handsome?"

These and many other questions are asked concerning the choosing of a new pastor when apulpit is vacant. Oh, may God help us to ask, "Is he a soul winner?"


2. Soul-Winning Deacons

If a church is going to be a soul-winning institution, it must of necessity havesoul-winning ingredients. The second of these ingredients must be soul-winning deacons.Far too many churches consider the financial standing of a man when choosing him to be adeacon. Being a businessman does nor make a man qualified to be a deacon. Being asuccessful politician, an influential banker, or a wealthy financier should give a man noadvantage at all over any other man when it comes to choosing a deacon.

Literally hundreds of churches do not have one active soul winner on the board, andyet, hope somehow that this kind of an ingredient, added to others of similar weaknesses,will in the end bring a soul-winning church. This, of course, is foolishness.

At the First Baptist Church in Hammond, we have sixty fine, consecrated deacons. Thesemen are not chosen because of their financial standing, their social position, oreducational background, but rather because of their love for the Word of God and thecompassion for lost souls. Let us choose soul-winning deacons.


3. A Soul-Winning Staff

The idea of hiring specialists for a staff is a dangerous one. To be sure, a musicdirector should know music. A secretary should be able to type. The youth director shouldhave a heart for young people. And the custodian should use a broom. But this should notend their responsibilities.

At First Baptist Church, we require every staff member to be a soul winner and spend atleast four hours a week in personal soul winning. We would not want someone leading ourchoir in "Send the Light," "Rescue the Perishing," "Where BeLeads Me I Will Follow," and other great songs who is not a soul winner. I would notwant anyone typing my letters who was not a soul winner. How foolish it is to think thatwe can hire a pastor who is not a soul winner, ordain deacons because of their communitystanding, employ a staff of specialists and end up with a soul-winning church. If this istrue, then two plus two equals eighteen.


4. Soul-Winning Members

According to the Great Commission, we are to teach new converts to go and get othersconverted. How sad it is that in many churches it is years before a Christian knows how tobe a soul winner. And many a Christian, it is sad to say, never learns to be a soulwinner. He simply is not taught. He is taught church doctrine, the Articles of Faith, andeven church history, but not soul winning. Yet, many churches guilty of this error wouldconsider themselves soul-winning churches, or at least desirous of becoming so.

At our new members' reception, when we welcome new members into our church family, wegive them a copy of my book, Let's Go Soul Winning. This gives them a step-by-step set ofinstructions as to how to win a soul to Christ. The following Sunday night they are taughthow to win souls. This is the first thing that our new members learn.

It is not unusual for a person to be winning souls to Christ within the first week ortwo after he is saved and many of our converts will win a dozen or more in the firstmonth. This is the New Testament pattern.

The woman at the well of Sychar in John chapter 4 did not wait until she had a Bibleinstitute diploma before going to Sychar and bringing people to Jesus. Andrew did not waitfor a seminary degree before bringing Peter to Jesus, in John 1. Let us teach our newChristians how to become soul winners, and have a soul-winning membership.


5. Soul-Winning Worship

A pastor chosen because of his good looks, a deacon board chosen because of financialposition, a staff chosen to be a group of experts and specialists, an untrainedmembership, and a ritualistic, formal Sunday morning worship service, do not equal asoul-winning church. If we are to have the pie, we must have the ingredients. If we reachthe result, we must use the means.

Perhaps nothing hinders soul winning any more in our churches than our misconception ofwhat worship really is. The Old Testament idea that God lives in the church house and thatwe come by to see Him every Sunday, making us enter the church as we would a morgue, andbehave ourselves as at a funeral, is certainly discouraging to New Testament evangelismand personal soul winning. If we plan to have Billy Sunday results, we had better haveBilly Sunday services. If we plan to have an evangelistic end, we had better useevangelistic means.

Now it may be that you do not want an evangelistic church. If this be true, then, youcertainly have a right to use non-evangelistic methods. But for one to say he wants anevangelistic church and use methods foreign to such results is inconsistency. Let us havedignity in our services. Let them be planned decently and in order. Let there be trueBible reverence, but not the ritualistic order of service we have borrowed fromCatholicism which tends to deaden our services, drive away the common man, and lessen soulwinning and evangelistic fervor.


6. A Soul-Winning Mission Program

If we are to build soul-winning churches, we must build them abroad as well as at home.It is not enough to give great sums of money to foreign missions and not see to it thatthe foreign missionaries are winning souls. Often times a church will boast concerning thethousands of dollars it gives to foreign missions, and will actually get fewer souls savedfor its money than a church that gives much less to real warm-hearted evangelisticmissionaries. We should see to it the kind of work our missionaries do overseas is typicalof the kind of work we are trying to do at home.

For a number of years now we have required each missionary supported by the FirstBaptist Church to fill out a questionnaire annually. He must sign a statement as to hisdoctrinal soundness, personal separation from the world, and loyalty to the First BaptistChurch. He must give a report of his soul-winning and evangelistic efforts. A missionarywho is not majoring on soul winning is dropped from our budget. Of course, we do not leavehim stranded on the field. If he is completely dependent upon our support, we wait untilhis next furlough. I am simply saying that every ingredient of a soul-winning churchshould be a soul-winning ingredient if we are to have the desired end.


7. Soul-Winning Music

Few things in our churches have done as much to steal the spirit of evangelism as hasour music. If one would have Billy Sunday results, perhaps he should try Homer Rodeheavermusic. If one would want the results of Moody, perhaps he should sing the songs of Sankey.The kind of music that tends to build soul-winning churches is that kind which has beentested and tried in revivals - the kind which the people know and love; the kind whichmoves the heart and not the head, the kind whose words bring out the deep truths of theWord of God.

We use no anthems in the First Baptist Church. It is not because we do not like thembut because we feel they are not conducive to soul winning and evangelism. We sing thesongs such as "Rescue the Perishing," "Blessed Assurance," "HowFirm a Foundation," "The Old Rugged Cross," "There Is Power in theBlood," "At Calvary," "At the Cross," "Send the Light,"

etc. Yes, these songs are sung on Sunday morning as well as Sunday evening. We do notdelegate the Sunday morning service to God the Father and the Sunday evening service toJesus Christ. We use the same type music in all of our services, believing that the Gospelshould be preached on Sunday morning as well as Sunday night, and that Gospel music shouldbe used if Gospel results are desired.

One danger here is for the pastor to leave the music entirely up to the music director.I do not mean that the music director should have no freedom. However, I do mean that thepastor should realize it is his right to have veto power. The general type music should beapproved by the pastor. It would do many pastors and churches good to reconsider theirmusical program and see that it is the type music that will bring soul-winning results.


8. A Soul-Winning Invitation

There is an old spiritual that says, " Ev'rybody talkin' about Heaven ain't goingthere." We could paraphrase it and say, "A lot of folks talking about soulwinning ain't doing it."

If a church is to be a soul-winning church, there should be a fifty-two-week-a-yearconsistency in its program of soul winning. Invitations should be given both morning andevening and a burden and compassion should be evident at every invitation. I fear thetrend toward simply asking interested people to see the pastor after the service, where noinvitation hymn is sung and no sincere heart appeal is made for people to come to JesusChrist.

Let us train soul winners to work with converts. Let us study carefully the invitationsof the great revival meetings of the past. If we would have revival results perennially,let us have evangelistic invitations regularly.


9. An Evangelistic Budget

Check the budget of the average church and you will be surprised how little money isspent for soul-winning purposes. Oh, yes, we say we believe in soul winning, and at Thesame time spend our money for other purposes. As we draw up our budgets, let us supportschools that train soul winners, missionaries who are soul winners, local mission projectsthat are after souls, and pay the salaries of staff members who win souls. Include in thebudget such soul-winning ministries as bus routes, rescue mission, tracts, etc.


l0. A Soul-Winning Schedule

I have reviewed and read many church calendars. After reading them it is not hard tounderstand why our churches are not soul-winning institutions. Check the average scheduleof activities for a typical church. It will include a mixed bowling league, the men's softball team, the ladies aid, the children's party, the youth skating party. See how manytimes you see anything mentioned concerning a soul-winning activity.

The poorest attended meetings of the average church are the visitation meetings. Tentimes as many people will work in the church kitchen as will work on the church field. Wepastors certainly find ourselves guilty as we plan our church programs. We preach on soulwinning and schedule it right out of the church. We have plenty of time for all of ourmeetings and plenty of people attend, but so little time for soul winning. Yet we preachon soul winning and say we want a soul-winning church.

We want to choose a pastor because of the vocabulary, deacons because they are rich,have members that have not been taught, budgets that bypass evangelism, ritualisticworship, long-haired music, brief invitations, and using those as ingredients, pull out ofthe oven a soul-winning church. Brethren, it simply will not work.


11. Soul-Winning Organization

Here is a sore spot and a hindrance to building a great soul-winning church. Laymen whowork hard all day and have a limited number of hours to serve the Lord or the church findthemselves using these hours in unnecessary committee activity and finding themselves withno hours left to go soul winning.

It does not take a committee of five to put the flowers on the Lord's Supper tableevery Sunday morning. It does not take a committee of ten to tell the music director whatthe special should be on Sunday. It does not take a committee of three to put an ad in thenewspaper every Saturday. Why couldn't these same people organize soul-winning committees,rescue mission committees, tract committees, house-to-house committees, visitationcommittees, etc., thereby utilizing what spare time the laymen do have in the fulfillingof the Great Commission.

We have trained churches full of specialists who attend every meeting except thesoul-winning meeting; do church work, and yet, not the work that Jesus called us to do;and have a form of godliness but know nothing of the power thereof. The average church isso bogged down with too much organization that the people simply do not have time to carryout the Great Commission in their individual lives. Yet, we wonder why we do not havestalwart people; we wonder why the prayer meeting attendance is down; we wonder why thenumber of baptisms are down. We weep, and oftentimes even pray, over our lack ofsoul-winning fervor and at the same time organize soul winning out the back door of thechurch. Brethren, our people simply do not have time to win souls when they are committedto committees that have little or no purpose for existence.

At the First Baptist Church in Hammond we have helped to solve this problem by havingmany deacons and choosing each of our church officers from the board of deacons. Our boardof deacons meet regularly and when our deacons are in session, every committee and officerin our church is present. There is no such thing, then, as a week-night committee meetingin our church. We operate on the democratic principle. The deacons are advisors, thechurch votes the decisions for the business matters on the floor of the church, and themembership is trained to do the thing that Jesus left us here to do.


12. Soul-Winning Liabilities

To be sure there are many liabilities that come with a soul-winning church. Asoul-winning church may be a little noisier than the average church because it will have alot of poor people there who are unaccustomed to coming to church. It will take them awhile to learn how to behave as they should. Then a soul-winning church will also havemore dropouts than a church that is not evangelistic. The more babies you have, the morelikely you are to lose one.

The same is true in a home. If a couple wants to have clean walls, no dirty diapers, nobaby clothes hanging on the line, no burping on a clean dress, no broken vases, nofingerprints on the mirrors, and no hand prints on the towels, then it is best they haveno children. With children comes these liabilities. But blessed be God, they are worthevery one of them! So are the souls of men worth the price we pay.


VI. HAVE A SOUL-WINNING COURSE AND USE SOUL-WINNING SKITS

Once a year at our church we have a course on personal soul winning. This course issometimes taught on several consecutive evenings. Sometimes it is over a period of severalweeks on Wednesday nights, but every year we teach our people how to win souls to Christ.We use the simple little plan in my book, Let's Go Soul Winning, published by theSword of the Lord Publishers at $1.00 per copy. We do not go into the details as to whatScriptures to use for what particular kind of sinner. We simply teach the simple way tolead a soul to Christ. We call it the "Roman Road."

Then, from time to time, we have soul-winning skits. Someone that we have won to Christis brought to the platform. The experience is relived before the people. Such a skit ispresented on my long-play record recorded by Diadem Studios and sold at $3.79 per copy.This record deals for forty minutes with the soul-winning course that we teach and fortwenty minutes in an actual experience of winning a soul to Christ.

A number of years ago we had such a skit. The person who had been won to Christ wasasked if he were a Christian. He replied, "Yes." We paused for a minute andexplained to him that we were reliving his experience and wanted him to act as he did theday he was saved.

Again we knocked on the door and asked. "Sir, are you a Christian?"

He replied, " ... Yes ... I am ... ." Again we interrupted the skit andreminded him that he was supposed to say, "No, I am not a Christian," because wewere showing the people what happened the day he was saved. It seemed that he understood.Again, we knocked on the door and asked, "Are you a Christian?"

"Yes," he replied. Then he began to weep a little and said with puckeredlips, "I am not going to get lost again for nobody."


VII. THE PASTOR AND GOOD SOUL WINNERS SHOULD TAKE PROSPECTIVE SOUL WINNERS WITH THEM

It is not a good idea for two good soul winners to go soul winning together. It is bestfor them to divide and each take another who can learn by watching. When Jesus was onearth, He took twelve men with Him. They watched Him, followed Him, and learned His work.Upon His going back to Heaven, He left His work in their hands, they had learned bywatching His example. I take people soul winning with me very often. Some of the finestsoul winners we have in our church are people who have been soul winning with the pastorsand have learned by watching.

One of the finest things about personal soul winning is that people won in the home bypersonal soul winners become personal soul winners faster than those who are saved in thepublic services. He sees a demonstration of soul winning at his own conversion. Actually,then, we train a soul winner before we get him converted. He sees how we work with him.Then, after he is converted, he remembers how we worked with him and he, in turn, can usethe same method on another.


VIII. GIVE AN INVITATION IN EACH SUNDAY SCHOOL CLASS AND HAVE A BAPTISMAL SERVICEAFTER SUNDAY SCHOOL

There are many lost people in our Sunday schools who never attend the preachingservices. Many of these are children who are old enough to be saved but are not allowed bytheir parents to stay for the preaching service. Many of these never get saved, andthousands of people who are saved and attend our Sunday schools never are present at abaptismal service. It is startling to me that we have our baptismal service at the poorestattended service of the day. During the Sunday school when the crowd is the biggest, we donot give the folks a chance to get saved. The morning service is a formal worship service(at least this is the case in many churches), and we delegate the evangelistic service tothe Sunday night service when the people who need it most are not there. Periodically inthe First Baptist Church we have an invitation given in each Sunday school class. It isamazing how many unsaved people we could find who are saved through this means.

The Sunday school could dismiss ten or fifteen minutes early some Sunday and come inthe auditorium for a baptismal service. Those who are saved in the Sunday school hour andwho will be baptized could be baptized then. This is simply another way to increase thenumber of converts baptized in our churches.


IX. AN INSIDE CHURCH CENSUS

When I was pastor of a little country church, we took a census of our neighborhood andonly found seven prospects. Then we decided to take an inside church census and foundabout forty-five prospects. Many of these were won to Christ later. An inside churchcensus simply is what its name implies. Take a census of the house in which each member ofthe church lives. Ask each member to take his own census bringing to you the name, age,spiritual condition and address of every person who lives in his house. It is shocking howmany people live in the houses of our members and do not attend our churches. This is anespecially good idea for churches in rural areas and small towns where prospects are notabundant.


X. INCLUDE THE SUBJECT OF BAPTISM IN A SERMON ALMOST EVERY SUNDAY

Just one sentence could be said about baptism each Lord's day. In other words, thegeneral atmosphere of the church should be that for a Christian not being baptized is asin and that to be obedient a new convert must be baptized. The people should get the ideathat baptism has nothing to do with salvation. However, they should be made to feel thatit is a very important step, and that when they get saved, God wants them to be baptized.This certainly does not deviate from the scriptural practice and the example as set forthin the Book of Acts.

Now look at Matthew 28: 19 and 20. "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations,baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teachingthem to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am, with you alway,even unto the end of the world." Notice, if you would please, the imperatives inthese verses: Go, teach, baptize and teach. You will notice the simple command of Christis that we go and tell people how to be saved, baptize them after they are saved, andteach than to do what God commanded us to do. Since God's command to us was go and getpeople saved and get them baptized, then we are to teach others to go and get people savedand get them baptized. Notice the divine order: Go, teach all nations, baptize, and thentrain them to be soul winners. This is God's plan.

Let us carry out the Great Commission to its fullest, remembering that people are lostwithout Christ and need to be saved, and they too need to be baptized and trained to goback and bring others to the Saviour.

Let's increase our converts and our baptisms.



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