(The following article was taken from The Pentecostal Testimony, now known as the testimony, Volume 27, Number 2, originally published January 15, 1946. These writings are quoted directly of the author, W. G. McPherson, and reflect the writer’s views in the context of that time.)
“Behold I set before you an open door.” – Rev. 3:8
This was the message to Philadelphia, the true church in the professing church. What a challenge an open door presents to us! Souls all around are not saved but are waiting to hear the glad news of salvation. These souls need to know by experience the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
What power is there in the Gospel? Think for a moment! It was this power that transformed your life and made you a new creature in Christ Jesus. We need to see to it that this power reaches others. How can we reach souls? “By going after them”, was D.L. Moody’s advice to a preacher who asked him this question. True, we need to “go after them”. It would be a glad day for the Church of Jesus Christ, if every member became a house to house evangelist. How often we sit and wait in our Assemblies for souls to come to Christ and wonder why the crowd that came wasn’t much larger. The reason might well have been that we have neglected the true means of winning them by not going to them rather than waiting for them to come to us.
Our Movement was born in the atmosphere of prayer, and from those Spirit-filled prayer meetings men and women went forth with a burning desire to reach souls for Christ. Homes were open for meetings, neighbours were invited to come through personal contact. They in turn were saved, filled with the Spirit, and brought others. Halls were rented and meetings started in cities, towns, and country points. Those were the pioneer days of our Movement. But what days they were - days of prayer in going down before God; days of burden for the lost; days of vision: vision for our loved ones, for our friends and associates, for our town, our city - yes for the world.
Home Missions is the foundation for Foreign Missions. The word of the Lord comes to us through the Prophet Isaiah, Chapter 54:2, “Enlarge the place of thy tent, stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations, spare not, lengthen thy cords and strength in the thy stakes.” This is truly the clarion call to advance. God would have us reach out and touch the outlying districts with the blessed message of life. Think of those towns and country points where the Gospel message is never preached or heard. Surely the word of God comes to us with no uncertain sound. “Enlarge the place of thy tent, stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations” to foreign fields, and to all the peoples of the world. But before we can do this it is first necessary to drive down our stakes a little deeper.
Anyone that has had experience with a tent knows the folly of neglecting to drive down the stakes. The larger the tent the farther down the stakes must be driven. The time has come for us to drive our stakes a little farther in Home Mission work in order to stretch our tent to foreign lands.
Willing workers are needed to sacrifice the comforts of life in order to build up the work in the homeland - willing workers who are not afraid to carry bricks and mortar up steep ladders in order to renovate old buildings so that they may be turned into meeting places, those who are not afraid to live in cold halls or rooms over their church auditorium so that the work might go on, men who are undaunted when the Sunday offering only amounts to three or four dollars. Such workers will depend on your prayers and support. Can they count on you?
Spirit filled believers are to shine in the midst of a wicked and perverse generation. “And ye shall be my witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria unto the uttermost part of the earth.” “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you, and lo; I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” “Say ye not, there are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? Behold I say unto you lift up your eyes, and look on the fields, for they are white already to harvest. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into His harvest.”