About the Book
Finish Strong. Perhaps you wonder why I would write a book with this title. The answer is simple: this is my goal. Sometimes when I look at churches across the country, I see the pastors and congregations struggling. They don’t know what to do to get back on track and see new growth. Many churches have tried to solve this problem by adopting the worldly system to get people. This solution will never work. As the Body of Christ, we have to press toward the mark of the high calling of Christ Jesus. Finish Strong is full of practical ways to do this which will enrich your ministry, your personal life, and spiritual life.
Over 41 years ago, the Lord asked my wife and me to the Chicago area to start a church. Countless times through the years which followed, I wanted to give up and quit. But the one thing that motivated me was what Christ did for me on the cross. He never gave up on me, so how could I give up on the work He gave me to do?
People ask, “Are there real miracles today?” The answer is yes. In these pages, you will see some of the greatest miracles in the world. I share my heart the best way I know how as we went from a struggling church in a small storefront to a church that has the largest Christian preschool in America with an average of 1,400 students per year. We have a worldwide TV ministry, a Bible college with a new campus, and 43 acres at our main church which will seat over 3,000 people. These are miracles, no question about it.
I want to thank all the people in our church and my family, especially my daughter Julie, for all they’ve done to make Finish Strong a reality. For all the pastors, laypeople, and believers who read this book, it is my deepest desire that you discover there are way more blessings than testings, and there is no greater life than to be in a local church. I hope pastors will be encouraged not to give up, and all believers will realize how great it is to serve in a biblically oriented church.
From someone who wanted to quit on every Monday, I know what it is like to need an extra dose of encouragement. The key was when I understood that it wasn’t necessarily wrong to want to quit, but it was wrong to actually quit. My prayer is that this book will help you finish strong.
Dr. Carl E. Baugh
Dr. James Scudder has founded and built one of the great churches and ministries in the history of American Christianity. Its influence is felt on radio and television, in the schools held on premise, in the deliberations of local and national government, and in the lives of multitudes within its reach. As I eagerly read the original text of Finish Strong, I instinctively reflected on my personal observations of this man and his noble work.
Dr. Art Rorheim
I am honored to recommend and endorse this excellent book because it is a book of real-life, modern-day miracles! It tells how God used one man who had a godly vision to press on, persevere, and finish strong, fulfilling the ministry that God had called him to. My good friend, James Scudder, has not stopped in over 40 years proclaiming a clear message of the amazing gospel of God’s grace — the passion of his heart. Finish Strong will bless you mightily.
Dr. Phil Stringer
The famed atheist and economist Ayn Rand was often asked about producing an autobiography, or at least an authorized biography of her life. She routinely replied that someone should publish all of her writings in one volume and put a page at the end that said, “And she meant it.” When reading Finish Strong by Dr. James Scudder, one is immediately struck by how the doctrine of grace has influenced all of his life. He truly “means it.”