Why the Campus
Throughout history, movements have published manifestos to encapsulate and communicate their mission. Most movements’ have failed and been forgotten. Others, like the Communist Manifesto, and the Humanist Manifesto, have literally changed the world. Several decades ago, Rice Broocks penned the Campus Manifesto, stating the reasons we must reach the campus. Here’s an updated version of Every Nation’s Campus Manifesto, which has the potential to change the world.
The future leaders of society are on our campuses.
Virtually all of the world’s presidents, prime ministers, senators, members of parliaments, bankers, lawyers, judges, teachers, doctors, and business leaders have passed through the college and university system. In every critical aspect of a nation’s culture, the campus is where we find the future influencers.
Major movements, bad or good, start on the campus.
From spiritual revival to political revolution, the campus gives birth to change. Marxism, atheism, feminism, and practically every other “ism” that spread around the world at one time started as a tiny seed on the university campus.
The majority of those who become Christians do so as students.
Countless studies continue to confirm that most people surrender to Christ before their twenty-fifth birthday. This hits close to home. Many of our current leaders responded to the gospel before their twenty-fifth birthday.
International students impact their nations.
International students represent the top one percent of the students in their home nations. Many of these students come from nations that restrict or ban the gospel. By reaching them while they’re on our campuses and sending them home with the gospel, we can broaden the gospel’s reach in the world.
The values on campus become the values in society.
The philosophy, morality, and ethics taught by professors on university campuses slowly but surely work their way into public policy, media, and education. Those ideas and values become preserved for decades through legislation, education, music, movies, literature, and media.
The most available and trainable groups of people are on our campuses.
Since they have few obligations, students have few limitations to following Christ and serving him boldly. The campus is not only the source of the next generation of business, government, and educational leaders, but it’s also where we find the next generation of church leaders and cross-cultural missionaries.
When we reach a student, we reach a family.
Moms, dads, brothers, and sisters are often impacted by the stories from students who return home with a changed life. The New Testament pattern of church growth showed entire families turning to Christ. That hasn’t changed. One weekend home visit from a student transformed by the gospel can start a spiritual chain reaction that impacts every member of their family.
God promised to pour out his Spirit on sons and daughters. (Acts 2:17)
In other words, we should anticipate and hope for an enormous awakening in the younger generations of the world. We have to be prepared to handle this abundance by sending missionaries who are equipped and empowered to make disciples to colleges and high schools.