How Luis Palau Shaped the Faith of Lee Strobel, Luis Bush, and Many More

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Evangelical leaders on what they’ll remember most about the mass evangelist.

CT asked Christian leaders who knew Luis Palau, who died today at 86, about his theological impact on the evangelical world, what set him apart from his peers, and meaningful conversations they shared with the beloved evangelist:

Lee Strobel, apologetics author and speaker:

Luis Palau was my friend and hero. I marveled at his authenticity, his passion for the gospel, his fidelity to Scripture, and his warm and encouraging personality.

I recently interviewed him for a book I’m writing. We talked about heaven. Frankly, he was ready—even anxious—to get there. He actually gave me his handwritten preaching notes for a sermon he had written about heaven—a treasure I will always cherish.

But his main concern was to make sure the gospel was clearly articulated in my book. He wanted the focus to be on Jesus, not on himself. That was very much like the Luis I have known for decades.

Seize every opportunity, he would urge me, to tell others about the hope they can find in Christ. I loved that about Luis! In fact, I loved everything about Luis—and I long to reunite with him someday in heaven.

Luis Bush, missions strategist, originator of 10/40 Window movement:

Luis Palau reminded the evangelical world that at the core of what we believe is the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life eternal. Luis elucidated the biblical truth that a committed Christian is called to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. He shared the conviction that “the heart of the king is in the hand of the Lord. Like rivers of water, he moves it whichever way he wishes” (Prov. 21:1).

One meaningful conversation I had with Palau took place in 1977 while completing my Master of Theology at Dallas Theological Seminary. …

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