Popular youth organization Dare 2 Share has a new drive to get teens on every U.S. high school and middle school campus talking about Jesus.
And appropriate to its mission and the young generation, the organization has renamed Jesus' age-old commandment from The Great Commission to THE Cause.
"We're renaming it because it was developed by missionaries 300 years ago," said Dare 2 Share president Greg Stier. "It was a great term then. It's old now. Teenagers are into causes. ... So we're calling it THE Cause – the cause of causes to make disciples who make disciples."
Beginning Friday, Stier and his team will be traveling to six cities across the U.S. to energize and equip teenagers to effectively and unashamedly share the Gospel with their friends. It's a mission the Dare 2 Share team has been pursuing for nearly two decades. But now, they're pressing ahead with a new name, reframing the call of Jesus as a cause rather than a commission.
"There's something about it (THE Cause) that sets it apart, not as some new initiative or program, but as a 'campaign' that's 2,000 years old," said Stier. "It is the campaign of Christ to make disciples who make disciples."
According to the Wheat Ridge, Colo.-based organization, there are 67,342 high school and middle school campuses in the U.S. Stier wants to embolden Christian students on each of those campuses to proclaim Jesus.
He assures students that they have the right to share the Gospel, whether it's in school, at a job or in their neighborhood, though teachers or friends might tell them otherwise.
Amid increasing persecution against Christians in the public square, Stier is convinced that sharing one's faith, with the intention to convert that person to Christianity, will be outlawed in the U.S. over the next decade.
"Is there anything less tolerant than telling someone that they are on the highway to hell unless they change their way of thinking (i.e. 'repent') and put their faith in Christ alone for the salvation of their souls?" he pointed out.
Despite the predicted increase in persecution, Stier sees God raising up "an army of youth evangelists who will embrace the gospel as THE Cause and spread it to the ends of the earth both online and face-to-face."
Students not only have the right to share Christ but also the responsibility to live THE Cause, he stressed. That means, not only sharing the good news and leading people to accept Christ but also guiding them through so that they are baptized, trained and equipped to live out their new life in Christ, and mobilized to do the same.
"If we're going to obey everything Jesus told us to do ... that means one of the things we're going to obey is making disciples," Stier explained.
"Jesus before he ascended into heaven told his disciples to go and make disciples of all nations. When Jesus comes back what are we going to say to him?" the long-time youth leader posed. "We say 'we were in a lot of meetings; we sang a lot of songs; we listened to a lot of sermons.'
"But did you make disciples?"
Dare 2 Share's 2010 Blaze Evangelism Training Conferences kicks off in Columbus, Ohio, Friday.