Ministry Objectives

1) To aggressively pursue every opportunity to reach children with the message of salvation and to lead them to trust Jesus Christ as the only Savior from sin!

2) To help children to grow in their Christian life by learning to love and obey God's Word; also by learning to love God's people in a Bible-teaching local church.

3) To assist families and churches in ministering to children involving evangelism and discipleship.

4) To enhance and expand outreach to children and families around the world in every

Ministry Roots

The Lakeland Child Evangelism Ministries Inc is located in Northeastern Indiana, a place of rich spiritual heritage.  Its mailing address is Winona Lake, home of Billy Sunday, home of Grace Theological Seminary & College, former home of the Free Methodist Church World Headquarters, former home of Winona Lake School of Theology, former home of the Winona Lake Christian Assembly, former home of American Association for Jewish Evangelism, etc.

This ministry is a continuation of a long-standing outreach to children founded by the late J. Irwin Overholtzer in 1937.  His vision of evangelizing and discipling children was based upon a solidly biblical doctrinal foundation as best articulated in numerous teaching/training materials which he compiled.
Although the Lakeland CEM is organizationally unaffiliated today, it is committed to perpetuating the vision, program, and biblical teachings of the Overholtzers.

The Lakeland CEM is governed by a rather large and strong Board of Directors with a keen sense of spiritual accountability to the Lord and to godly pastors and  churches.

In recent decades, the ministry of the Lakeland CEM has become increasingly committed to and involved in worldwide outreach through its film and video productions.

Details of the worldwide outreach are given under the icon "Films/Videos", and  Teacher Training"

Declaration of Faith

Preface:  Any doctrinal statement is at best but a fallible attempt to define infallible, divine truth in a concise, yet always inadequate way.  Therefore, it is essential that such statements be carefully re-evaluated from time to time to insure that they are clearly understood as originally intended from generation to generation.  Divine truth does not change!  However, at times, word usage, and issues do!  We must protect our position from misunderstanding.

We Believe:

A.  In the Holy Scriptures, accepting fully the writings of the Old and New Testaments as the very Word of God, verbally inspired in all of its parts and without error as originally given of God, as our only infallible rule of faith and conduct.  We believe the canon of Scripture was closed with the Book
of Revelation and that we possess today an extremely accurate and reliable text. II Tim. 3:16,17; II Pet. 1:20,2l; John 17:17; Rev. 22:18,19.

B.  The Godhead eternally exists in three persons -- the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  These three are one God, having the same nature, attributes and perfection.  Romans 1:20; Matt. 28:19; Deut. 4:35; John 17:5.

C.  In the Personality and Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, begotten of the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, truly God and truly man.  John 1:1; John 1:14; Matt. 1:20; Luke 1:30,31; Phil. 2:5-7; I Tim. 3:16; Col. 1:19.

D.  (1) In the Personality of the Holy Spirit, the source and power of all acceptable worship and service, the infallible interpreter of the infallible Word, who indwells every true believer, and is ever present to testify of Christ, seeking to occupy us with Him and not with ourselves or our experiences.
John 15:26; Acts 5:3,4; Acts 1:8; Romans 8:26,27; I Cor. 2:12,14; Romans 8:9; I Cor. 3:16; I Cor. 12:13; John 16:13,14.

(2) Lakeland Child Evangelism Ministries, Inc. adheres strictly to a non-Charismatic, non-Signs and Wonders" position believing these manifestations were unique to the Apostolic New Testament era as authenticating supernatural gifts temporarily necessary for that relatively brief period of time.  Mark 16:15-20; Acts 2:42,43; Heb. 2:3,4; Acts 8:14-17.

E. That man was created in the image of God, after His likeness, as stated in the Word of God, but the whole human race fell in the fall of the first Adam. Not only was his moral nature grievously injured by the fall but he totally lost all spiritual life, becoming dead in trespasses and sins, and subject to the power of the devil.  "The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God." (Rom. 8:7,8)  Therefore, he cannot see or enter the kingdom of God until he is born again by the Holy Spirit.  That no degree of reformation however great, no attainment in morality however high, no culture however attractive, no humanitarian and philanthropic schemes and societies however useful, no baptism or other ordinance however administered, can help the sinner to take even one step toward Heaven; but a new nature imparted from above, a new life implanted by the Holy Spirit through the Word is absolutely essential to salvation.  Gen. 1:26,27; Rom. 5:12; Eph. 2:1-3; John 3:3,6,7;
Titus 3:5.

F.  That Jesus Christ became the sinner's substitute before God, and died as a propitiatory sacrifice for the sins of the whole world.  That He was made a curse for the sinner, dying for his sins according to the Scriptures That no repentance, no feeling, no faith, no good resolutions, no sincere efforts, no submission to the rules and regulations of any church can add in the very least to the value of the precious blood or to the merit of that finished work wrought for us by Him who tasted death for every man.  Rom. 5:8; I John 2:2, Heb. 2:9; Gal 3:13; Rom. 4:4,5; Rom. 3:25, Col. 1:13,14,20,21.

G.  In the resurrection of the crucified body of Jesus Christ; that His body was raised from the dead according to the Scriptures, and that He ascended into Heaven and sitteth on the right hand of God as the believer's high priest and advocate.  Luke 24:39; Acts 1:10,11; Eph. 4:10; Heb. 1:3; I John 2:1.

H.  (1)  That Christ in the fullness of the blessings He has secured by His death and resurrection is received by faith alone, and that the moment we trust in Him as our Saviour we pass out of death into everlasting life, justified from all things, accepted before the Father according to the measure
of His acceptance, loved as He is loved and made one with Him.  At the time of acceptance of Christ as Saviour, He comes to dwell within the believer and to live out His life of holiness and power through Him.  Heb. 9:15; John 5:24; Rom. 3:28; Rom. 4:3,23-25; Eph. 1:3; John 17:23; Gal. 2:20; Gal. 4:6,7; Gal. 5:16, Acts 1:8.

(2)  When a person truly believes in and receives the Lord Jesus as personal Saviour (and God is the One who knows this) that person is born into the family of God, and will (without any exceptions) be with Christ forever. John 3:16; John 6:37,44; John 10:27-29; Rom. 8:35-39; Phil. 1:6, Heb. 13:5; I John 2:19.

I.  That the Church is composed of all those who truly believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour.  It is the body and bride of Christ.  That every  believer, whether Jew or Gentile, is baptized into the body of Christ by the Holy Spirit, and having thus become members of one another we are responsible to find our place in the local assembly of believers for worship, instruction, edification, and fellowship, and to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, rising above all sectarian prejudices and denominational bigotry and loving one another with a pure heart fervently.  Heb. 10:24,25; Eph. 2:19-22; Eph. 1:22,23; Eph. 5:25-27,31,32; I Cor. 12:13; Rom. 12:4,5; Eph. 4:1-3; I Cor. 1:10.

J.  That all believers in our Lord Jesus Christ are called into a life of separation from wordly and sinful practices, and should abstain from such amusements and habits as will cause others to stumble, or bring reproach upon the cross of Christ.  Believers are created in Christ Jesus unto good works.
"As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith."  Gal. 6:10; I John 2:15,16; Rom. 14:13; Rom. 13:14; I Cor. 10:31: Eph. 2:10.

K.  In the evangelization of the world, that the supreme mission of the people of God in this age is to preach the Gospel to every creature.  That special emphasis should be placed upon the evangelization of children.  Mark 16:15: II Cor. 5:18,19; Matt. 18:14.

L.  We believe in the personal, bodily, pre-tribulational, pre-millennial return of the Lord Jesus Christ for His Church, His bride; that this return, the rapture, is the "blessed hope" for which every believer is to be constantly watching as an any moment possibility.  Phil. 3:20; John 14:1-3; I Thess. 1:10; I Thess. 4:16,17; I Thess. 5:9, Daniel 9:24-27; II Thess. 2:6-8; Titus 2:13; Rev. 3:10.

M.  That the souls of those who have trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation do at death immediatly pass into His presence, and there remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body at His coming, when soul and body re-united shall be with Him forever in glory.  Luke 23:43; Ii Cor. 5:8; Luke 16:22,25; Phil. 1:23; I Thess. 4:15-18.

N.  That the souls of the lost remain after death in misery until the final judgment of the great white throne, when soul and body re-united at the resurrection shall be cast "into the lake of fire" which is the "second death," to be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and
from the glory of His power.  II Thess. 1:8,9; Luke 16:22,23,27,28; Heb. 9:27; Rev. 20:5,11-15; II Thess. 1:7-9.

O.  In the reality and personality of Satan, "that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world."  Rev. 12:9; Eph. 6:11,12; I Pet. 5:8; Rev. 20:10.