Chapter 12

CHAPTER TWELVE

THE METHODS: MASS EVANGELISM

OBJECTIVES:

  • Write the Key Verse from memory.
    • Explain the benefits of a mass crusade.
    • Summarize the information discussed in this lesson concerning:

-Spiritual preparation

-The crusade location

-The facility contract

-Dates and times

-Advertising

-Finances

-Advance preparation of the facility

-Training workers

-Conducting the service

-Follow-up

  • Conduct a mass crusade.

KEY VERSE:

Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvelously, for I will work a work in your days, which ye will not believe, though it be told you. (Habakkuk 1:5)

INTRODUCTION

A community, region, or nation can not be saturated with the Gospel without mass evangelism. There are multitudes of people to be reached with the Gospel, and mass evangelism focuses on reaching large groups of people at one time.

In Chapter Nine you learned how to do personal evangelism. This lesson explains how to do mass evangelism. Both were used in New Testament times, and both are still important in evangelism today.

THE MASS EVANGELISTIC CRUSADE

One of the most effective methods of group evangelism is the mass evangelistic crusade which is a united effort of believers to reach every individual in a city with the Gospel of the Kingdom of God.

It is not just a series of meetings conducted within the four walls of a local church. It is not a revival, for revival speaks of reviving something that previously was alive but is near death. Revival is for believers who have grown cold in their spiritual experience. A mass evangelistic crusade is targeted to reach the unsaved population of an entire area.

The mass meeting approach to evangelism is Scriptural. Approximately 150 times in the New Testament we read that Jesus spoke to the multitudes. The Apostle Paul and the other disciples often ministered in the market places where crowds gathered.

A mass crusade reaches people who for years have been searching for God. It touches people who would never go into a church building. It provides opportunity for the demonstration of God’s power to unbelievers. It reaches many people quickly with the Gospel and is an important method for reaching the rapidly growing population of the world.

Mass evangelistic crusades help identify spiritual ground that is ready to harvest and often result in the planting of new churches. If there are already existing churches in the area, growth is experienced as new converts are added to their fellowships.

SPIRITUAL PREPARATION

The suggestions in this lesson are primarily intended as a guide to the mechanical and physical aspects of conducting a crusade. But it must be clearly understood that if you attain material and mechanical perfection without having spiritual power, you will be as a “sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal.”  Spiritual preparation is the most important part of any evangelistic effort.

Never allow yourself to fall into the trap of becoming so busy with the mechanical details of a crusade that you compromise the most important ingredient of all–spiritual preparation. A mass crusade is only effective as the Gospel of the Kingdom of God is presented with the anointing and power of the Holy Spirit present to save, heal, and deliver–and this requires spiritual preparation.

THE CRUSADE LOCATION

The purpose of a mass crusade is to bring the Gospel to those who have never heard it. Where you conduct a crusade may be determined in one of two ways:

First, you may receive an invitation from a pastor, mission agency, or believers in a certain community to come and conduct a crusade. Pray over every invitation and if you believe this to be God’s will for you, accept it.

Second, you may be divinely directed by God to go to a certain area.  In this case, you should contact believers in that area and tell them the burden of your heart and secure their cooperation if possible. If there are no believers or established churches in the area, or if you cannot secure local cooperation, you must still go if you believe God is sending you.

For a crusade with national impact, the capital city of the nation or a leading city should be selected. Once a city has been selected, then the exact location within that city must be decided. This is very important, because even if you do everything else well, if people cannot find or easily get to a location, your other efforts will be of no value. The ideal location in any city is to be as close as possible to the heaviest concentration of the population.

Here are some locations that might be used for a mass crusade:

A LARGE OPEN FIELD:

This has proven to be the best location. A platform can be erected in the best spot on the field  and large numbers of people can be accommodated. It can usually be used at no or minimal cost.

A CENTRAL PARK:

Permission to use a central park or plaza usually must be obtained from local authorities. The advantage of a park or plaza is that it is known to everyone in the community and attracts those that might not otherwise come. It also can often be obtained at no cost or for a small sum of money.

A SPORTS STADIUM:

Sports stadiums are usually well-known to people of a city. Be careful to obtain written permission for use of the actual playing field and for the construction of a platform on the field. The enclosed sports stadium provides for greater regulation of the crowd. Examine entrances and exits to be sure they are well placed and adequate.

(Note: Church buildings should not be used for a mass crusade as it hinders the effectiveness of the outreach. Many unsaved people do not feel comfortable going to a church. Some denominations forbid their members to enter churches of other denominations.)

In each location, here are some additional items to consider:

-Seating.

-Adequate parking.

-Adequate entrances and exits.

-Located near public transportation lines.

-Available electricity for lighting and sound.

-Toilet facilities.

THE FACILITY CONTRACT

You should have a signed contract for a facility before doing any advertising announcing the location of the crusade. Some basic things a contract should contain include:

  1. Your name and the name of the person, company, or association that is leasing the premises to you.
  • The exact dates on which you will use the facilities.
  • The exact times you will use the facilities.
  • The total sum of money to be paid for use of the facility.
  • The method and exact dates payment will be made.
  • The exact time in advance of the first meeting when you can have access to the facility for preparation.
  • Other variables: Does the cost include electricity? Platform? Seating? Toilets? Cleanup?

CRUSADE DATES

The dates of the crusade may be affected by the facility you select. It may be available only on certain days or during certain months. Other factors to consider in selecting dates include:

Weather: If the crusade is to be held outside, you must take into consideration the extremely cold, wet, and hot seasons and try to avoid these. Consult with the local people in the city in which the crusade is planned as to the best season to hold the crusade.

Holidays: It is best to avoid holiday seasons because people are busy with their families and celebrations.

Conflicting Events: Avoid conflicting community events such as fiestas, fairs, school events, political rallies, etc.

CRUSADE TIMES

To reach the greatest number of people, schedule the crusade at times when they can attend. Consider the work schedules in a local community, curfew regulations where applicable, and public transportation schedules.

CRUSADE ADVERTISING

If you fail to let people know that a crusade is going to be held, you will miss the great potential that a mass meeting provides. Even with a limited budget, you can reach a large area with news of the meeting. First, you must determine two things:

  1. What to include in your advertising.
    1. Where you are going to spend the available funds. Let us consider each of these items:

WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO INCLUDE:

The dates, times, and clear directions concerning the location of the crusade must be included in all advertising. You should also communicate that Jesus still performs miracles of salvation, healing, and deliverance today. This creates interest in those who have a need for healing or deliverance themselves or have loved ones with such needs. It also brings people to the crusade with a spirit of expectancy, actually looking for the manifestation of God’s power.

WHERE YOU WILL SPEND YOUR MONEY:

Here are some methods of advertising to consider in spending your advertising budget:

Handbills: Handbills or flyers are the most important piece of advertising you can prepare. This is a crusade announcement printed on inexpensive paper approximately 5 ½ by 8 ½ inches in size.  They can be personally handed to people on the street, in plazas, parks, and stores.

They can be given to local believers and churches to distribute. You can also distribute them by going house-to-house. Make the handbills as attractive as possible, but economical enough that you can have large quantities printed. Be sure to give the printer adequate time to produce the handbills by the date you want to receive them.

Distribute the handbills in all areas that you intend to reach by one week before the crusade begins. (In areas where persecution and opposition could occur, it is wise to wait until three days before the crusade begins to distribute handbills.) Organize teams of people to go out to definite

areas to distribute the handbills. The best way to do this is use a map of the area and assign people to specific sections.

Banners: Banners are usually cloth signs that can be strung on ropes across major intersections in a city. Be sure every main road leading to the city is covered. It may be necessary to obtain permission from the city government to do this in some areas. You can also place banners in plazas and parks–wherever large numbers of people gather. Be sure all the information (dates, time, location) is included on the banner.

Posters: A poster is basically an enlargement of the handbill, with the same design and information. The difference is that it is much larger and printed on heavy paper so it can be displayed in every available area throughout the city. Again, it is best to organize a team of people and tell them the exact locations they are to place the posters. The purpose is to place posters where people will see them, wherever there is the heaviest foot traffic in the city. Do not put just one poster in a location. People’s eyes are attracted much more to a place where three or four of the same posters are located.

Sound Car: There are some people who cannot read posters, handbills, or banners, but they will be able to understand announcements they hear over a loud speaker. A sound car is a car with a public address system that circulates throughout the city announcing the crusade. Carefully prepare a written announcement to be read and mark a specific route for the car to travel so the same areas will not be covered repeatedly while others are neglected.

Newspapers: Newspaper display advertising should contain the basic information that is on the handbills and posters. Do not be afraid to ask for reduced advertising rates, as you are doing the city a public service. People will be saved from drug addiction, alcoholism, and healed of spiritual, mental, and physical conditions because of the crusade. The city will be a better place because of God at work in the community. Many newspapers will do at least one free news article about the crusade. This article should include basic information on the dates, times, and location of the meeting, but may be more detailed than the display advertisement. Suggest that a reporter interview you as a visiting evangelist or cover the first crusade service.

Internet and social media: If you have Internet access, use the Internet and social media to advertise.

Radio And Television: If radios and televisions are plentiful in an area, you should consider this type of advertising also. Again, you are doing the community a service, so do not be afraid to ask for reduced advertising rates. Be sure to have a written contract that states exactly what time of day the ads will run and the time length of the ad.

Here are some suggestions for using radio and television without cost:

-Contact individuals and organizations that air Christian radio or television programs locally. Ask them to announce the crusade during their programs.

-Suggest that a station provides brief public service announcements, as you are doing the community a service.

-Suggest that the station come to the first crusade meeting and tape a portion of it or actually air it live.

-Suggest that you, as a visiting evangelist, be interviewed on one of the local secular programs.

Special Mailings: Special letters of invitation can be sent to government and business leaders and others in the community.

Telephone: If there is telephone service in a city, obtain a copy of the printed telephone directory. Tear the book up into sections and divide its pages among different churches. Have local believers make personal calls inviting people to the meeting.

Verbal Announcements: Verbal announcements can be made in local club meetings, schools, community events, and churches.

CRUSADE FINANCES

It is acceptable to receive offerings in mass crusades, but in most cases, offerings should never be received until the latter part of the crusade; never on the first night. First, the power of God needs to invade the community to get hold of the hearts of the people. When the people have tasted the reality of Jesus, the powers of the enemy through rumor, slander, and false charges regarding finances cannot destroy the work.

Finances should be handled very openly. To assure this, it is wise to establish a local committee of Christians to handle the finances. The counting, recording, and keeping of money should never be left to only one person. A minimum of three people should be present at all times when an offering is counted and processed. If there is a local bank, it is wise to open a separate  crusade account.

A complete record of all funds received and spent for the crusade should be kept. Items should be receipted, and the information made available to local participating pastors and churches.

Offerings collected should be used to pay facility rental fees, advertising for the crusade, sound equipment rental, and related transportation, housing, and miscellaneous costs.

ADVANCE PREPARATION OF THE FACILITY

There are several things you must do to prepare the crusade facility prior to the first meeting. These include the following:

THE LOCATION:

The location of the crusade should be clearly marked with banners, posters, or signs on the grounds and in the immediate area.

THE PLATFORM:

If the facility does not have a platform, you will need to build one. The first thing to do is determine its location. Here are some things to consider:

  1. Will the people naturally gather in front of the platform no matter how large the crowd becomes? If you do not have barriers on the side and behind the platform, you will have people in a complete circle all the way around you and it will be difficult to control the crowd and keep their attention.
  • If the crusade is held in an enclosure with a fence or wall, it is important to place the platform at the opposite end of the main entrance so people are not coming in around the platform and causing distraction during the service.
  • If the ground is not level you must consider the place where the people can see the platform best. If the facility does not have seating, the people will stand during the service and it is difficult if they have to stand on a slope or other irregularity.
  • If you are in a city plaza or park, you will want to locate the platform where there is the least amount of noise from traffic. In many instances, lumber companies will donate the lumber for the construction of the crusade platform. In some cases, they might rent or loan the lumber. This is better than purchasing it because you return it when the crusade is over. You can consider placing the platform on top of large barrels, such as oil and bulk liquid barrels, if they are available. The size of the platform is determined by how many people you intend to have on it. Be sure to include a ramp leading to the pulpit  area from both sides of the platform. This will be used for testimonies of salvation, healing, and deliverance which you will bring up from the audience. A strong railing along the outer edge of this ramp is helpful for people to support themselves as they come up and down the ramp. Treads of narrow strips of wood nailed across the ramp provide good footing.

THE ALTAR AREA:

Rope off an area directly in front of the platform. This will prevent people from crowding too close to the front and provide an area to work with those who respond to altar calls. Design the ropes so they can be dropped if you want all the people to come forward during an altar call.

ELECTRICAL POWER:

Be sure to have a separate line for the lights and the power system. Never run both on the same line. Always have the power source and switch box in a location where no one can tamper with it.

SOUND SYSTEM:

Test the sound equipment thoroughly at least one hour before each service. It is helpful if you can have backup equipment or replacement parts readily available for emergencies.

RESERVED SECTIONS:

Mark any reserved sections clearly with signs. For example, you may have a reserved section for translation for those who do not speak the dominant language. You may need a section for musicians, soloists, or a crusade choir. You might also need reserved seats for workers.

MISCELLANEOUS PREPARATIONS:

Have offering containers ready for the offering and any counselor’s supplies you may be using, such as badges, decision cards, tracts, etc.

TRAINING CRUSADE WORKERS

By training local believers to assist in the crusade, they become more than just spectators. They become part of the outreach for souls and will pray and get under the burden of the meeting with you rather than just waiting to see what will happen.

RECRUITING WORKERS:

Crusade workers should be mature believers from participating churches in the area where the crusade is conducted. Pastors can be used to recruit workers from their churches and to serve as advisors. If you are conducting a crusade where there are no churches, recruit a team of believers from another nearby area to come and assist in the crusade as workers.

SCHEDULING THE TRAINING SESSIONS

It is best to conduct worker training for the two nights just prior to the start of the crusade so training will be fresh in the minds of the people. The first session can be conducted in a local church or assembly hall, but the final session should be conducted right on the crusade grounds so there can be an actual placement of workers.

Just because someone has been a Christian for a long time does not mean he will not need training. Do not let anyone say, “I know what you want done, so I do not have to come to the training sessions.” Local participating pastors and all others desiring to be crusade workers must be trained.

EQUIPPING THE WORKERS:

It is helpful if crusade workers are identified by wearing a badge or colored ribbon. Instruct them to dress as neatly as possible, and to work with members of their own sex when possible. They should be on the crusade grounds at least one half hour before the service begins.

Workers should also be equipped with a Bible, pencils or pens, and decision cards, if you are using them to record the names and addresses of new converts. If it is economically possible, it is good to have printed material to give to new converts such as Gospels of John or a tract giving them further instruction regarding the Christian life.

TRAINING THE COUNSELORS:

Workers should be given basic instruction in counseling. They should know how to lead a person to Jesus Christ and how to pray for those who need deliverance and healing. Use selected sections of this course to train them in these areas. There are also additional guidelines in the “For Further Study” section of this lesson.

Workers will minister to the unsaved responding to the call for salvation. They may also be called upon to minister to the demon possessed (see the following section on crowd control). They also assist in ministering deliverance and healing by working with people in their assigned sections as you are ministering the special prayers.

CROWD CONTROL:

Remember that you are in spiritual warfare for the souls of men and women, rescuing them from the eternal destiny of Hell. When you are doing this on a large scale, demon powers will not sit idly by and watch.

First of all, you must have the power and authority of the Holy Spirit and use it in the name of Jesus to bind the spirits of disruption. Secondly, you must commit this burden to your workers.

They must be constantly alert to distractions and interruptions and know what to do when they occur.

Train the workers to move quickly and not to hesitate when a problem arises. Do not wait for the thing to work itself out, because it won’t. Do not wait for someone else to respond. Recognize it immediately as a work of the Devil and deal with it as such.

The important thing here is to deal with the problem in such a way as not to cause a larger distraction than has already occurred. Do not do anything that will amplify the situation. Act in a way that will bring the attention back to the platform in the quickest way.

Very often, Satan will use a demon possessed person to begin a demonstration. In most cases, workers should not deal right there in the middle of the crowd with the person, but instead take them quickly outside the grounds and cast the devil out. The important thing is, whatever is done, it should be done as quickly and quietly as possible. Recognize distractions for what they are: Satan at work to hinder what God is doing.

As part of crowd control, you should train special workers for the platform and its access ramps. Ramp workers should keep unauthorized people off the platform, and assist authorized people coming to and from the platform. They will also receive the people with testimonies that workers bring from the crowd, verify the miracles, and then escort them to the platform.

Platform workers should include ushers posted at both sides of the platform who are trained to allow no one on the platform who has not been sent up by one of the ramp workers. At least two other platform workers should be available to help keep the testimony line in order.

As part of crowd control, you will want to train ushers to help people to and from seating (if seating is provided) and for collecting the offering. You may need to train workers to assist with parking if a lot of the crowd will arrive in automobiles. Make a study of the parking area and the approaches and prepare a diagram of how the traffic flow should proceed. You may want to reserve some parking areas for the workers and crusade team. Prepare necessary signs for the parking area, proper lighting if possible, and guard against vandalism (remember. . . you are in spiritual warfare).

SALVATION:

When you give the call for salvation, have workers trained to immediately stand up and move into the aisle to their assigned areas. The call for salvation indicates it is time for the ministry portion of the service. Train them to give full attention to what you are saying at this time. God may direct you to minister differently at various times, and they need to be ready to flow with you as the Holy Spirit moves.

Usually, because of the size of the response at a mass crusade, it is best to pray a mass prayer and have them repeat the sinner’s prayer for forgiveness after you. It is important that those who

respond to the salvation call receive follow up care, so be sure that one of three things happens:

-Counselors fill out a decision card with the name and address of the new convert so they can be contacted by local pastors for follow up.

or

-Announcement is made of a meeting the following morning for all those who accepted Jesus. During the morning meetings, follow-up care can be given to new believers.

or

-Those who respond for salvation are directed to a special counseling room or area on the grounds. Workers will accompany them to this location, provide additional counseling, and obtain their names and addresses on a decision card.

If you use decision cards, these should include a place for:

-Name

-Address

-Telephone

-Response: A place to check whether they came for salvation, to renew their commitment to Christ, deliverance, healing, etc.

-Comments: A place for additional comments by the counselor who can record any information that might be helpful for follow up.

-Signature: A place for the signature of the counselor.

If decision cards are used, make them a two part form, if possible, so a carbon copy is created as the form is filled out. The original can be turned in to be followed up by local pastors. The copy can be retained by the worker so they can also follow up the new convert. Train your workers to print clearly as they complete these cards. Designate someone to be responsible for collecting and processing all the cards.

HEALING AND DELIVERANCE:

The demonstration of God’s power verifies the preaching of the Gospel. As you will learn in  Part Two of this course, healing and deliverance are a vital part of evangelism. To encourage the faith of believers, verify the Word of God, and attract unbelievers, it is helpful to share testimonies of what God is doing in the crusade. Remember that most unsaved people do not come believing. They are skeptical. Unless they see a demonstration of God’s power, they will go away skeptical.

When you are praying for healing and deliverance, train the workers to pray with their eyes open.

When you pray, tell the people in the audience to place their hand on their affliction. After prayer, ask them to begin doing something that they previously could not do. Train workers to watch as people place their hands on their affliction and after prayer as they begin to act in faith. Workers can then approach these people to obtain their testimonies.

(When you are training the workers, actually pray the prayers of healing and deliverance. Many times you will have healings right in the training sessions.) In the training sessions, show workers how to check a blind person by holding up fingers and having them count. For the deaf, sounds made behind the person can be duplicated, such as clapping the hands a certain number of times. Visible healings, such as the deaf, blind, growths, cripples, encourage faith more than internal healings which cannot be immediately verified.

When a worker has found someone who has experienced healing or deliverance, train them to bring (not send) that person to one of the ramp workers. The ramp worker can then escort them to the platform and you can interview them and share the testimonies of what God is doing. The worker then returns to his assigned area to continue to minister and receive testimonies.

PLACEMENT ON THE GROUNDS:

Use a diagram in the first training sessions to show workers where they will be placed in the crusade facility. On the second night of training which is conducted at the crusade facility, actually place each worker in the location where they will be during each service.

Have enough workers in the altar area to stretch arm-to-arm along this area. They are important for crowd control and in ministering to those who come forward.

Put the specially trained ramp and platform workers in their places and then evenly distribute the remaining workers throughout the facility. Be sure to station workers at entrances and exits and to secure power sources.

CONDUCTING THE CRUSADE SERVICE

Here are some suggestions for conducting the crusade service:

STARTING THE SERVICE:

Schedule special music to play 30 minutes before the service begins. The music will attract people to the location and prepare the hearts of those who have already gathered to receive the Word of God. Instruct the musicians and soloists which songs to use. Select songs that are lively, inspiring, and evangelistic. Do not choose sentimental songs or ones difficult to understand. Use songs that display life and enthusiasm that will attract the unsaved.

After the first night, you will have people who have been saved, healed, and delivered. Have some of them testify during this 30 minute period prior to service. Interview them and ask specific questions so you can prevent anyone from taking over the service (another disruptive strategy of Satan).

MINISTRY OF THE WORD:

At the announced time, start the crusade service. Keep preliminaries to a minimum. The purpose of an evangelistic crusade is to reach souls for Jesus. To do that, the Word of God must be preached and the power of God demonstrated. People have come with great spiritual, physical, and emotional needs. They are not there to hear a long line of announcements, jokes, introductions, and unimportant chatter.

Before you start to preach, announce to the people that you will pray for healing and deliverance after the sermon. Many of the people have come to be healed, and if you start to preach without mentioning this they may think they have misunderstood about the service. If you make it clear you will pray for the sick after the sermon, you will have better attention to your message.

THE PRAYER FOR SALVATION:

At the conclusion of the sermon, the first thing to deal with is salvation. Emphasize that the healing of the soul is far more important than the healing of the body. You will pray for their body, but first you want to pray for their souls, that God will heal them spiritually and forgive their sins through the blood of Jesus Christ.

Usually, because of the size of the response at a mass crusade, it is best to pray a mass prayer and have them repeat the sinner’s prayer for forgiveness after you. It is important that these people receive follow-up care. So be sure, as was mentioned in the worker’s training section, that one of three things happens:

-Counselors fill out a decision card with the name and address of the new convert so they can be contacted by local pastors for follow up.

or

-Announcement is made of a meeting the following morning for all those who accepted Jesus. During the morning meetings, follow-up care can be given to new believers.

or

-Those who respond for salvation are directed to a special counseling room or area on the grounds. Workers will accompany them to this location, provide additional counseling, and obtain their names and addresses on a decision card.

THE PRAYERS FOR HEALING AND DELIVERANCE:

Following the salvation prayer, it is time to begin the prayers for healing and deliverance. Every ministry situation is different, and at times God will lead you in specific ways as to how to minister. But here are some general suggestions for ministering healing in the mass crusade environment.

In a big crowd, it is not possible to pray for each one individually. First, pray several prayers and focus each one on a specific illness. Have the workers bring testimonies to the platform from those who receive healing. The faith of the audience will be encouraged by these testimonies,   and then you can pray a final mass prayer of deliverance for all types of afflictions. Remember,  it is important that you are open to the leading of God in this area. There is no set pattern.

CLOSING THE SERVICE:

In closing the service, be sure to announce the next crusade meeting and the morning class for new converts. Give specific information on times and places.

CRUSADE FOLLOW UP

Each convert from the crusade should be receive follow up care. This fulfills the “teaching all things” that is to follow conversion as directed by the Great Commission.

During the salvation altar call one of two things happened:

  1. The new convert filled out a decision card: This was done either in the altar area or in a special counseling room. These cards should be given to local pastors who will assume the follow-up care.
  • A morning class for new converts was announced: During the morning classes new converts should receive immediate follow-up care and their names and addresses secured for extended follow-up care by local pastors.

The motto for follow-up care should be “Never Let Go.” Do not let go of the new convert until he is integrated into the fellowship of a local church.

Chapter Thirteen of this course provides information on follow up teaching of new believers