“This particular gathering has probably more potential to affect eternity than any gathering I have ever done,” said Dr. William Wilson, President of Oral Roberts University.
He’s talking about Amsterdam2023, an event kicking off a 10-year effort to reach every single person with the Gospel and Holy Spirit before 2033’s 2,000th anniversary of the Great Commission.
“I’ve done great crusades. I’ve done the Azusa Centennial, a number of other meetings. But what’s going to be talked about and thought about at this meeting will be very singularly focused. It will be very focused on reaching the lost in our generation. And so, if a person has a heart for that, they really don’t want to miss this particular meeting. It’s going to be life changing.”
The meeting will be held next month in the Netherlands at Amsterdam RAI and Olympic Stadium.
How it All Began
The Empowered21 network is the “largest relational network in the history of Spirit-filled, Spirit-empowered Christianity, which is the fastest growing part of Christianity in the world,” said Wilson. Over time, Empowered21 grew to include a number of leadership groups, including the Empowered21 Global Council.
In 2013, those in the Global Council asked the question, “What would keep all of us continuing to relate to one another with the understanding that the John 17 prayer is both relational and missional: ‘That they may be one that the world may believe’?” When networks are only relational, they don’t hold up very long until they become missional. “So, we adopted a big vision in 2013, and the vision was that every person on earth would have an authentic encounter with Jesus Christ through the power and presence of the Holy Spirit by Pentecost 2033.” 2033 marks the 2000-year anniversary of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection, ascension, the giving of the Great Commission and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
Reaching People for Christ with the EveryONE Initiative
The Empowered21 Global Council members discussed what they could do at the 10-year mark before the anniversary of the giving of the Great Commission to “really push toward reaching people in the world and fulfilling this vision that we had in 2013.”
Wilson, and others, sought the Lord. “I asked the Lord and told Him, ‘This is impossible. How do we reach every person on earth? How do they have an opportunity to know Jesus?’ Everyone deserves an opportunity to meet Jesus. So how do we do that? And I really felt like God spoke to me, very clearly. ‘One person at a time.’” Out of that and out of fasting, praying, seeking God, consulting, studying [and] reflecting, they launched the EveryONE Initiative. “The EveryONE Initiative is an outgrowth of the Empowered21 Network and is an effort to call Spirit-empowered Christianity to significant action over the next decade to get the Gospel, to bring the good news of Jesus to every single person on earth.”
Wilson believes that, at the least, the next decade could be the greatest decade of Great Commission effort in the history of Christianity. “And at the most, we might be able to get the Gospel, the good news, to every single person on earth so they have an opportunity to respond. So that’s what Amsterdam2023 is all about.”
Participants in Amsterdam2023 can expect workshops, collaboration sessions, general sessions, Christian artists leading worship and more. It will also be inspirational and informative. “I think those … three things: Information, Inspiration and Collaboration — will be sort of the sense of the meetings in Amsterdam.”
A ‘New Era of Evangelism’
Amsterdam2023 will be June 21, 2023 to June 24, 2023. “It’s exactly 40 years since Billy Graham called evangelists to Amsterdam in 1983, almost to the day.” The Global Evangelist Alliance members are calling this a new era of evangelism. On the last day of the event at the Olympic Stadium, Wilson explained, “We’ll be bringing together the church across Europe and across the Netherlands in a day of prayer and seeking God for the continents of the earth and for peoples of the world launching into this decade of Great Commission effort.
Added Wilson, “The evenings will be very inspirational and really, we think spiritually impactful. And then the mornings and through the day will be very educational and collaborative as we work together. Our hope is simply that every person that comes to Amsterdam will leave there with some kind of personal or corporate strategy toward what they’re going to do over the next 10 years to further reach individuals for Jesus Christ.”
For more information, go to Amsterdam2023.com.
Nancy Flory, Ph.D., is a senior editor at The Stream. You can follow her @NancyFlory3, and follow The Stream @Streamdotorg.
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