How A. W. Tozer Was Converted by a Street Preacher | Salvation Testimony

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I found a book at a bookstore the other day by A. W. Tozer.

When I was flipping through the book the word “street preacher” caught my eye.

I’ve known for years that A. W. Tozer was converted as a young man after hearing a street preacher, though I don’t remember how I knew this.

A W Tozer

I haven’t been able to find a written account of his conversion and the role a street preacher played until now.

This is especially good for all the critics who say, “You won’t reach anyone through this method.”

While I do see sinners come to repentance and put their faith in the Lord all the time through our street preaching, it is good also to see that great men of God like A. W. Tozer were also converted through street preaching.

There was more to the story than I had known – the personal witnessing of Tozer’s neighbor. This goes to show how one plants, one waters, but God gives the increase.

The Account of A. W. Tozer’s Salvation Testimony

& The Role of a Street Preacher and Personal Witnessing

“I have thanked God many times for the sweet, winsome ways of the Holy Spirit in dealing with the heart of this untaught lad when I was only 17. We had a neighbor by the name of Holman. I do not know his first name or initials. He was just Mr. Holman. He lived next door to us. I had heard that he was a Christian. But he had never talked to me about Christ.

Then one day I was walking up the street with this friendly neighbor. Suddenly, he put his hand on my shoulder.

‘You know,’ he said, ‘I have been wondering about you. I have been wondering if you are a Christian, if you are converted. I just wanted the chance to talk it over with you.’

‘No, Mr. Holman,’ I answered, ‘I am not converted, but I thank you for saying this to me. I am going to give it some serious thought.’

A little while later, I stopped on a street corner to hear a man preaching. He quoted Jesus’ invitation, ‘Come unto me,’ and the sinner’s prayer, ‘Have mercy on me.’

Those were the two things – the concerned remarks of our neighbor and the exhortation of the street preacher – that bumped me into the kingdom of God. I have always thanked God for our neighbor’s witness that helped stir in me the desire for God’s forgiveness and eternal life.”

~ Men Who Met God, page 127-128

You just never know who is listening and who might be converted when you go out street preaching!

~ Jesse Morrell





Cleansing the Temple: A Call to Radical Christianity” is a book about:

Prayer, Purity, Preaching, and Persecution.

We also send out emails with encouraging salvation testimonies, apologetic articles, evangelism videos, etc.

We pray this book is a blessing to your life!



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4 Responses to How A. W. Tozer Was Converted by a Street Preacher | Salvation Testimony

  1. A. W. Tozer also mentored a great preacher named Leonard Ravenhill.

    Leonard Ravenhill was also a street preacher and as a young man he traveled all over England, sleeping in fields and on the floors of churches, so that he could do street meetings in the streets of England. 

    I wonder if one of the reasons Tozer had affection for Ravenhill was because of his street preaching….. 

  2. Another account:

    “Late one afternoon in 1915 – three years after arriving in Akron-as he walked home from work, Aiden noticed a small crowd of people gathered on the opposite side of the street. They were clustered around an older man who seemed to be talking to them. Not being able to hear what the man was saying, Aiden crossed the street to satisfy his curiosity.
    At first, the man’s speech did not make any sense to Aiden. He spoke with a strong German accent, and Aiden had to listen carefully to catch what the man was saying. Finally, it dawned on Aiden. The man was preaching! Preaching, right out on the street corner! ‘Doesn’t this man have a church to preach in?’ Aiden thought to himself. ‘And it isn’t even Sunday! Why is he so excited?’ But as Aiden listened, the words of the elderly street preacher began to find their mark in his young heart.
    The preacher startled Aiden. “If you don’t know how to be saved, just call on God, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner,’ and God will hear you.”
    Those words burned in Aiden’s heart. He could not get the voice of the preacher out of his mind. As he slowly walked home, he thought over what the man had said. Never before had he heard words like those. They troubled him. They awakened within him a gnawing hunger for God.
    Saved. If you don’t know how to be saved…just call on God…’God, be merciful to me, a sinner.’
    When Aiden arrived home, he went straight to the attic, where he could be alone to think this out for himself and to wrestle with God. No one knows all that transpired in the Tozer attic that afternoon in 1915. But Aiden Wilson Tozer emerged a new creation in Christ Jesus. His pursuit of God had begun.”

  3. successigh says:

    One cannot come across A.w.Tozer and Leonard Ravenhill writings and not be challenged.
    I believe this men wrote as if the hear dictations from the Holy Ghost. They did not write because there was a need but because they were moved of the Holy Ghost

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