Lausanne 1974 T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L C O N G R E S S O N W O R L D E VA N G E L I Z AT I O N Copyright © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Essential facts about the 1974 Lausanne Congress The [First] International Congress on World Evangelization (Lausanne I) took place in Lausanne, Switzerland, 16-25 July 1974. Over 2,700 invited delegates from over 150 nations worldwide attended the Congress. Almost 50 percent of the delegates were from majority world settings. Counting observers, media, and guests, more than 4,000 people were present. Because of the diversity of the participants, the proceedings were translated into various languages. As a result, Billy Graham said, "I believe this could be one of the most significant gatherings not only in this century, but in the history of the Christian church.“ Theme and Purpose of the 1974 Lausanne Congress The Theme The Congress theme was Let the earth hear His voice. Billy Graham lamented that we have heard all the other voices, now it is time to "let the earth hear His voice". The Purpose The immediate purpose of Lausanne was to gather (by invitation only) the international leaders of evangelical Protestant Christians together for strategic planning, inspiration, and fellowship. The ultimate objectives were to (a) birth fresh determination to complete the task of world evangelism, (b) forge a spirit of cooperation amongst evangelicals committed to the task, and (c) seek strategies to facilitate world evangelism. What took place in Lausanne? Along with the major plenary addresses (including the opening and closing addresses by Billy Graham), there were Bible studies, demonstrations of evangelistic methods, small group discussions, reports on aspects of the theology and strategy of evangelism, reports on the situation of the church in various geographical locations, debates by citizens and workers on the strategies necessary for particular nations, an evangelistic meeting for the general public held in the city's stadium (Laustade '74), and the agreement by a large number of the participants to the Lausanne Covenant, a statement intended to define the necessity, responsibilities and goals of spreading the gospel. The Motto of the 1974 Lausanne Congress In his plenary address, "Why Lausanne?" Billy Graham urged that "the whole church must be mobilized to take the whole gospel to the whole world." This became the rallying cry of Lausanne, and one of the most famous Christian slogans: The whole church taking the whole gospel to the whole world. This emphasis on the holistic gospel ably sums up what the Lausanne Movement is all about. A large focus of Lausanne II, in Manila 1989, was devoted to fleshing out each of three elements in greater detail, namely, the whole church, the whole gospel, and the whole world. The spirit of Lausanne The spirit of Lausanne: a mood or attitude with 5 ingredients: the resolve to work together for world evangelization; the humble penitence to confess our past shortcomings; the courage to meet one another face to face to discuss the differences that divide us; the mutual respect to listen open-mindedly to one another’s viewpoints; the determination to submit to Scripture as we conscientiously understand it, while not breaking fellowship with those who interpret it differently. The Lausanne Covenant The most significant achievement of Lausanne I 15-point Covenant, signed by over 85 percent of the delegates broadly acceptable to evangelical Christians widely adopted as a statement of faith serves as a basis of cooperation Unreached People Groups In his plenary address, Ralph Winter introduced the term “unreached people groups”. This focus on unreached people groups became a landmark event in 20th century missions’ strategy, introducing a different way of approaching the task of world evangelization—by focusing on strategies geared towards specific people groups. Dr. Ralph Winter The Holistic Gospel The whole church taking the whole gospel to the whole world has become the battle cry of the Lausanne Movement. The 1974 Lausanne Congress explored in detail the wholeness of the gospel or, as some called, the holistic gospel. Fresh impetus for evangelization The Congress resulted in fresh passion and impetus for the task of world evangelism. Many new evangelistic initiatives and co-operative ventures were launched as an outgrowth of Lausanne. New perspective on the task Lausanne helped evangelicals to develop a broader and more balanced biblical view on issues such as: evangelism social responsibility culture other religions the Holy Spirit Review Quiz J U S T F O R R E V I E W, H E R E I S A S H O R T Q U I Z . Review Quiz – Questions 1 and 2 of 5 1. What was the stated theme of Lausanne 1974? _ The whole church taking the whole gospel to the whole world _ Reaching the whole world in this generation _ Let the earth hear His voice 2. Which of these are true statements about the Lausanne Congress? (There is more than one correct answer.) _ There were no delegates from Africa. _ There were 2,700 invited delegates. _ Approximately 70 percent of the delegates agreed to the Lausanne Covenant. _ The proceedings were translated into various languages. _The Congress took place in Sweden. _ The delegates cane from over 270 nations. Review Quiz – Questions 3 and 4 of 5 3. Dr. Ralph Winter introduced the term “unreached people groups” in his plenary address. This became a landmark event in 20th century missions, resulting in a significant change in missionary strategy. _ True _ False 4. The most significant achievement of the Lausanne Congress was that it gave fresh impetus to joint evangelistic initiatives. _ True _ False Review Quiz – Question 5 of 5 5. Which of these is NOT one of the five “ingredients” of “the spirit of Lausanne”? _ The mutual respect to listen open-mindedly to one another’s viewpoints _ Resolve to work together for world evangelization _ The determination to work only with those who share our understanding of the Scripture _ The humble penitence to confess our past shortcomings Review Quiz – Answers 1. Let the earth hear His voice 2. There were 2,700 invited delegates; the proceedings were translated into various languages 3. True 4. False 5. The determination to work only with those who share our understanding of the Scripture Lausanne 1974 Congratulations! You have completed this lesson. Copyright © 2009 All Rights Reserved.