Elmer Towns on What Ronald Reagan Said About Jerry Falwell Sr. Can Inspire the Church Today

I remember Ronald Reagan said, “Jerry Falwell did more to put me in office than any other person.” I saw firsthand what happened behind the scenes. It can happen again.

Jerry Falwell used television to influence the political direction of America in 1982. Falwell’s Thomas Road Baptist Church telecast covered every metropolitan area in America. He organized his church audience into the Moral Majority to push Ronald Reagan for president. Today, we have the right message in our pulpits to reach America; what we need is the right method to reach the multitudes.

How did Jerry Falwell find the right method? It began with his commitment to win every person in America to Jesus Christ.

It continued with his commitment to preach the gospel to every available person, at every available time, using every available means.

It led to his commitment to influence every person outside the church.

“See that television camera?” Jerry would often say back in the 1970s. “With that camera, I can preach in every television set to every person in America.” What method could your church use today?

By the mid-’70s Jerry had his weekly Old Time Gospel Hour program in all 230 television hubs cities in the United States. Jerry would often say, “I might not be able to reach every American, but I can reach 98% of them.”

But is television too expensive for churches in the 2020s? Is there a better method?

Let’s go back to the late ’50s to see how Falwell did it. An electrical engineer came to work for General Electric in Lynchburg, Virginia, who held a number of patents in the television industry. Dusty Rhodes, a church member, told Jerry, “If you give me $1,000, I can buy enough equipment from catalogs of used television equipment to put you on the air right here in Lynchburg, Virginia. … You can reach the world.”

Dusty Rhodes set up a television board right next to the audio sound board in the balcony of the old Pate Chapel. Then a steel ladder took him in the attic where he built a television studio. Jerry preached powerful sermons in his home pulpit that were captured on videotape and aired the following week on Channel 13. Using a two-inch videotape, Jerry’s sermons were then televised in Roanoke, Virginia, some 60 miles away. Within another month, he was preaching in Richmond, Virginia, 100 miles away. Month by month, Jerry added new stations until he had covered all 230 major television hubs in America.

But your church cannot do that—and should not do that. Television is too expensive today, and the church audience is not as big on television nor as influenced by it as in previous eras.

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SOURCE: Charisma News