“Pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you.” 2 Thess. 3:1
“Our hope is that, as your faith continues to grow, our sphere of activity among you will greatly expand, so that we can preach the gospel in regions beyond you.” 2 Cor. 10:15-16
In 2 Thessalonians 3:1 and 2 Corinthians 10:15-16, Paul gives us three key motives that deﬁne the eﬀorts of collegiate missionaries and church planters in collegiate ministry.
Motive One: Rapid Spread of the Message of the Lord
The college campus is a unique environment where students attend class together, study together, work together, eat together and live together. It is a place of 24/7 interaction at a time when life decisions are being made, making the campus a rich environment for the spread of the Gospel.
Strategically, we focus on the campus because of the opportunity for rapid spread of the Gospel. Recently, we presented the Gospel to a student who then told the story to a classmate who came and asked questions of a collegiate missionary after class. When we present the Gospel to a student, we often see the news spreading beyond that student.
Motive Two: That the Message of the Lord May Be Honored
Disciples are made as the Gospel is honored. The nature of the collegiate environment allows for life-on-life exposure. Through one-on-one Bible reading and disciple-making, small groups, larger gatherings on campus and church membership, students are learning the faith and growing in their obedience to Jesus.
As students develop disciple-making relationships with more experienced Christians, they are becoming obedient to Jesus and the message of the Lord is being honored.
Motive Three: For the Spread of the Gospel to Regions Beyond
Collegiate work multiplies as students graduate and go out, making disciples. Alumni are serving in church plants and churches across the region and throughout the world.
Because of the international attraction of New England colleges and universities, Gospel work on the campus is impacting students from many nations, some of which lack strong evangelistic witness. As students’ faith grows, the sphere of activity increases, and we see the expansion into regions beyond our six states.
A Strategic Ministry
I believe the college campus is the most strategic place to make disciples and work toward Gospel increase. Where else on earth do people gather for an intense time of study, development, social growth and discovery of purpose? People arrive and leave every semester, taking with them the life and faith they have learned to new geographic regions. That is why we do what we do, where we do it. Let’s pray together for the rapid spread of the message of the Lord and for students to respond by honoring the Gospel.
If you would like to learn more about how to engage in this exciting and strategic work of ministering to college students, contact Andy Haynes at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Andy Haynes serves as the Next Generation Co-Director of Collegiate Ministries at the Baptist Convention of New England.