Don’t forget to read part 1, part 2, part 3, and part 4 first!
The preacher laughed in teenage Victor Cross’s face when he said he wanted to be a preacher. It was over 25 years later before Victor finally overcame his sadness and bitterness towards the church. But when he came back to Jesus, Victor started working and never looked back.
We saw in yesterday’s post how Victor used the power of a simple question: “Do you read your Bible every day?” to open doorways of opportunity. We saw the power of using tracts to spread the gospel throughout the world. In this, the final installment of The Life of Victor Cross, we look at the power of the postal service in evangelism.
There are millions of people around the world who would love to receive letters from the United States. Victor Cross learned this as a result of his tract-spreading activities. He was contacted by someone in Nigeria who had received a tract he left on board a ship, and that led to over 100 correspondence courses completed within a year, with many of them obeying the gospel.
Once, a ship was actually beginning to pull away from the harbor when Victor quickly rushed up the gangplank to ask if anyone read their Bible every day. A British man on board said “Sir, I read my Bible every day.” So, Victor handed him a tract—“The Old Paths” by Batsell Barrett Baxter. The man said, “If this is of any value, I’d like to hear from you further.” So Victor quickly wrote his name and address on the back before running back to the dock, just barely making it. Another fifteen seconds, and he would have had to swim back to the dock.
It was nine days later that Victor received a letter in the mail, stating: “your ‘book’ impresses me very much. I can’t bear to part with it, but I’d like my wife to have one.” He gave her address to Victor, and that same day, copies of the tract, and four Bible courses were mailed to the British West Indies. Within a few short years, 16% of the entire island had completed the correspondence courses!
Victor Cross has since gone on to his reward. But his life should be an encouragement to each of us to do what we can to spread the gospel. We don’t have to be pulpit preachers. We don’t have to be eloquent. What we have to do is make the opportunities, and use what God has given us.
So, next time you go to church, pick up some tracts and hand them out. Ask people “Do you read your Bible every day?” Help get people interested in taking a Bible study course through the mail. You can even help to spread the word about Bible study courses through email, Facebook, text message, and many other forms of communication.
You, too, can be an international missionary without leaving your hometown!
(Note: Victor Cross and his evangelistic efforts were discussed in Firm Foundation, March 12, 1968. Much of the information in this series came from that article).