Baptists > History > John R. Rice
Evangelist - Writer - Author - Editor - 1895 to 1980
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   Whether it was conducting a citywide evangelistic campaign or one of his many Sword of the Lord conferences, John R. Rice stands out as one of the great Baptists of his day.
   Known as "America's Dean of Evangelists," Rice directly influenced an entire generation of Bible believing Christians.  Every young preacher found their first sermons in his books and every experienced pastor found truth to include in their sermons.  Furhermore, his Sword of the Lord
publishing company continues to print a monthly periodical by the same name (click graphic to the left), which, has become the largest independent religious weekly in the world, with subscribers in every state of the Union and more than 100 foreign countries. as well as numerous books by Rice and many other fundamental Baptist authors.  He served as the editor of this great writing ministry for forty-six years.
   Dr. Rice was born in Texas (Cooke    County) on December 11, 1895.  After graduating from the Decatur Baptist College and Baylor University, he did graduate work at the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and the University of Chicago.  He pastored churches in Dallas and Shamrock, Texas, and started about a dozen others as a result of his evangelism ministry.  Large citywide crusades in Chicago, Cleveland, Buffalo, Seattle and many other Metropolitan centers marked his success as a preacher of the Word.
   Dr. Rice's love for writing gave birth to The Sword of the Lord.  The periodical was launched on September 28, 1934 with a first printing of some 5,000 copies.  Furthermore, he personally wrote over 200 books resulting in over 61 million copies placed into circulation.  How many writers can claim anywhere near that many titles?  His life's work was nothing less than monumental.
   In 1959, Dr. Rice began broadcasting "The Voice of Revival" via radio on 69 stations.  The program reached 29 states incluing Puerto Rico and the Philippine Islands.
   In December of 1980, John R. Rice passed away in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where his ministry is still located and continues to be effective to this day.
   Following his death, it was determined that a total of 24,058 individuals reported trusting Christ as a result of his writing ministry, with many more having been saved through his evangelistic crusades.

 

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