“Hell is the highest reward that the devil can offer you for being a servant of his.”
Born November 19, 1862, on a farm in Ames, Iowa, Billy Sunday would become one of the most popular American evangelists in history. His father was a Civil War soldier who died when Billy was one year old. At the time, Billy was cared for by his mother and grandfather. When he was twelve, he was sent to an orphanage to live.
From an early age, Billy Sunday was a great athlete. He was a fast runner and a good baseball player. He played sports, no doubt, to help keep his mind off of the hard circumstances in his life. The owner of the Chicago White Sox saw him play one afternoon and – even though Billy did not have shoes – invited him to play in the big leagues. Billy Sunday was able to run the bases in less than 14 seconds! In the eight years that Billy Sunday played professional baseball, he played incredibly – stealing 92 bases, setting national records, and making quite a name for himself.
During this time, Billy met a group of Christians from the Chicago Garden Mission who told him about Jesus Christ. He was downtown partying with his baseball buddies when the witnessing wagon pulled up and started preaching the gospel. God got a hold of Billy Sunday’s life that day and he accepted Christ as his Savior. From that day forward, Billy Sunday was a changed man. Everything about him was different.
Billy Sunday became “the baseball evangelist” and gained huge popularity when he preached. Huge crowds gathered to hear his sermons, and he won many souls to Christ. By 1914, he was holding huge revivals around the country. He preached on many important topics, including the sin of drunkenness, and told nearly one million people about God.
Has your life changed since God saved you? In what ways?
2 Corinthians 5:17 – Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.