News: Year of Evangelism Declared

CCU Proclaims 2010-11 as The Year of Evangelism

Article by: President Bill Armstrong

In October 1914, when Clifton Fowler rented a classroom in downtown Denver and began teaching students about Jesus, he could not have foreseen what was ahead -- wars, prosperity, suffering, scientific advances, depression, and turmoil that changed the world more in the 20th century than in any other period of human history. Nor could he have known that his class of two students would grow to become Colorado Christian University, enrolling 4,000 students in undergraduate and graduate degree courses.

He could not have imagined that automobiles would supplant horses; airplanes would permit us to go to the opposite side of the globe in a few hours; radio, TV, the internet, e-mail, FaceBook and Twitter would soon revolutionize communications. Nor could he have predicted that advances in science and medicine would increase the life expectancy of Americans by fifty percent within a few years. Surely, Mr. Fowler would be dumfounded at the way old technology and ideas have been rendered obsolete, as mega-trends swirl around the globe at a dizzying pace.

But some things never change. What Mr. Fowler taught his students remains compellingly true today, no less so than when Peter proclaimed of Jesus twenty centuries ago -- "There is salvation in no one else." (Acts 4:12) In the 97 years since the beginning of CCU, wars have been fought; novel ideas have gained popularity and lapsed; great men and women have been celebrated and forgotten. But the true hope of the world remains the same. "There is salvation in no one else."

This great truth has been the core conviction of Colorado Christian University from the very beginning and our passion for sharing the Good News at home and abroad. Evangelism has always been the heartbeat of CCU, all the way back to 1914. That is why we send two dozen student mission trips around the world every year; our alumni pastor churches, serve in parachurch organizations in this country and overseas; many represent our Lord in secular occupations; some of our alumni have become famous Christian authors and conference leaders. Others serve Him as strong and faithful church members, as Sunday school teachers, mentors, parking lot attendants, ushers, small group leaders, volunteers and elders and by being generous with their financial support of their church.

God has blessed our alumni, students, faculty and staff in their ministries, but much remains to be done.

- There are approximately 100 million unchurched Americans (Barna), many of whom are unsaved.

- Among church-goers (not all of whom are saved, of course), "just 9% of born again adults and

7% of Protestants possess a biblical worldview." (Barna, Gallup, Baylor, Pew)

- At least 4.2 billion unsaved persons worldwide: 27.9% of the world's population remains completely unevangelized. Although the number of Christians has quadrupled since 1900, population has grown even faster. So the proportion of Christians has actually declined from 34.5% to 33.1%. (Annual Statistical Table on Global Missions

- The harvest is truly great, but the laborers are few... (Luke 10:2). Most Christians are unprepared to share the Gospel with friends, neighbors, even their own family.

In the 2010-2011 academic year, God has put on our hearts to proclaim CCU's Year of Evangelism: Seeking and Saving the Lost. During this time, we intend to train and equip every student, each member of our faculty and staff to share their testimony in one-on-one conversations and public meetings, to draw men and women to Jesus through their friendship and lifestyle, to skillfully use evangelistic tools, work in local prayer breakfasts, introduce Jesus in neighborhood meetings, churches, prisons, soup kitchens, retirement homes and much more. And to foster a lifelong habit of doing so.

We are inviting churches and ministries around Colorado to join us in this venture. Please visit our Year of Evangelism website to learn more and to access the Evangelism Tool Kit that we have prepared for ministries to equip them to train others to share their relationship with Christ.

William L. Armstrong
President, Colorado Christian University