On living for God's glory

Daniel J. Sparks

In Memoriam: The Rev. Dr. Lewis A. Drummond

The Rev. Dr. Lewis A. Drummond

Pastor, Evangelist, Professor, Seminary President, Christian

August 1, 1919 – January 4, 2004

On January 4, 2004, the world was less a great man of the Christian faith. To say that the world lost him would not be accurate, for the world lost him a long time ago. Dr. Lewis Drummond was a man of devotion. He was a man devoted to God and his mission and, in that sense, the world gave up its influence on him a long time ago.Drummond, Lewis Edited.JPG

Dr. Drummond was fervently committed to proclaiming the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. A man so committed doesn’t find pleasure in himself. No, Dr. Drummond seemed most satisfied when talking about the power of God unto salvation.

When I was a seminarian, Dr. Drummond was one of my professors. He was full of encouragement: he told his students to be fervent in spiritual discipline, in sharing the good news. And he was a man who lived what he preached–a man wholly committed to world evangelism. His roles as a professor of evangelism and as a leader in the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association weren’t hard tasks for him. Instead, they were simply the fulfillment of his passionate desire to praise the King.

I could say that we are worse off for not having such a saintly man as this still among us. But God’s kingdom is enriched because of Dr. Drummond’s faithfulness in teaching others the truth he had been given. Sprinkled with stories of his days flying military aircraft or playing his saxophone, Dr. Drummond showed his students the power of spiritual transformation. Growing the kingdom of God was an important component of his life and teaching.

The Rev. Dr. Timothy George, dean of Samford University’s Beeson Divinity School–the place where I came to know Dr. Drummond–summed up the thoughts of many: “…Dr. Drummond was one of the most encouraging and hopeful Christians I have ever known. He embodied the optimism of grace rooted in a vibrant personal relationship with Jesus Christ.” Dr. Drummond was a man skilled in philosophy who sought to use his knowledge in the service of the Lord instead of in seeking to destroy the foundations of truth.

I am deeply saddened by his departure from this life. Yet I am confident in the Savior in whose bosom Dr. Drummond now rests. Just as Dr. Drummond was optimistic about the future hope of glory, I am optimistic about the things yet to be done in me because of the grace God ministered through one of his humble servants.

Lord, help me to grow more passionate about thy grace. May I be faithful to proclaim the truth of thy gospel, as was thy servant Dr. Lewis Drummond.

REMEMBER thy servant, O Lord, according to the favour which thou bearest unto thy people, and grant that, increasing in knowledge and love of thee, he may go from strength to strength, in the life of perfect service, in thy heavenly kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

3 Comments

  1. Reading and studying today with Dr. Drummond’s THE REVIVED LIFE (Broadman Press; 1982), as a resource. Thought I would refresh myself on his personal facts. Met him several times. His role in a SCBC-sponsored “Prayer for Awakening Conference”, FBC, Columbia, SC, May, 1984, touched my life and ministry in an indescribable way! Like thousands of others, I will ever love and appreciate his Holy Spirit-empowered ministry. Thank you for this Memoriam!

    • Thanks, Fritz. Dr. Drummond was a remarkable man and quite well-rounded in various disciplines. While his particular emphasis in ministry was on evangelism and church growth, he had remarkable insight on the entire life of faith and the church, and a firm grasp on church history. Full of energy, even in his late years, he inspired me and many others to focus on the importance of the gospel.

  2. Thank you for sharing this article. I too was one of his students and of Dr. George at Southern. Both have shaped my life and work to this day…and I think of them as my fathers in the faith and the embodiment of the Gospel.

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