5th Aug



Florence and I were saddened to hear of the death of Stuart Briscoe on the evening of Wednesday 3 August at the age of 91 years.  Stuart has been an inspiration, encouragement and counsellor to us for many years.  We first became aware of Stuart and Jill’s ministry around the turn of the millennium.  Since then we have listened to many sermons, lectures and interviews and have always come away from them refreshed and energised for future ministry.  We had the privilege of meeting them both at a church event in Wisconsin in January 2007 and joined a tour to Israel led by Stuart, Jill and Pete in June 2009.  Florence became a featured author in Jill’s magazine “Just Between Us” (all her articles are under the “Managing Your Emotions” tab on this page.)

Stuart was an INSPIRATION to Florence and me as preachers.  We learnt much of the craft of preaching from listening to Stuart’s sermons and leadership interviews on the subject of preaching. For an example of his inspiration I was recently listening to Stuart being interviewed by Mel Lawrenz on the subject of “Effective preaching today”, in which Stuart explained an acronym which he used as a guide to encourage better preaching.  P-R-E-A-C-H is a great summary of what our preaching should be like.  Passionate.  Relevant.  Expository.  Applied.  Comprehensive.  Honest.  What a great model to follow!

Stuart was also an inspiration as a model of egalitarian ministry on the basis of gifting, not gender.  Stuart and Jill, although very different as preachers, were very much a team.  I have a vivid memory of once listening to Jill preaching on a visit to Elmbrook when something red came out of a side door and slipped into the end of the front row.  The object in red was Stuart in his Manchester United sweatshirt and for the next forty minutes or so he sat attentively listening to his wife preaching.  As he was wont to say, “A man of quality isn’t threatened by a woman of equality.”  For one, I have tried to be that man of quality and I wish many others would follow Stuart’s lead.

In addition to being an inspiration, Stuart has been an ENCOURAGEMENT to us.  For a man with a very busy schedule, he always had time for the individual.  Stuart definitely did not suffer from the mega-being complex that so often grips leaders with an international portfolio and he was humble and gracious in his personal dealings with us.  I well remember towards the end of our trip to Israel sitting in the foyer of a hotel in Jerusalem when Stuart came over, sat down and said, “I realise that I haven’t yet had time to speak to you, so let’s put that right.”  We had a wide-ranging conversation about ministry and other things and during this we gave him a business card for Equipped for Living.  “I’ll check it out”, said Stuart, and true to his word we received a short email from him not long after we returned to the UK.  “I love what you’re doing!” it said.  That was such an encouragement to us at the time, and has been countless times since, when we have been tempted to give up.  If Equipped for Living has Stuart Briscoe’s approbation then we must be doing something right!

In addition to being both an inspiration and an encouragement, Stuart has been a wise COUNSELLOR.  Not in the sense of sitting down with us in his office and helping us work through personal or ministry problems, but in the sense of being one of our reliable “go to” preachers if we are puzzled about a theological position or the meaning of a bible passage. Recently Florence and I were discussing some aspects of the Holy Spirit’s work and we felt the need of some clarity on a few points.  So we listened to Stuart’s lectures on the person and work of the Holy Spirit and got the clarity we needed.  His series of DVD sermons on Revelation (“What’s going on?”) is one of very few expositions of that most difficult of all books that makes perfect sense.  Oh, and as an aside, it’s the only series in which we have ever listened to a 49-point sermon! I have regularly dipped into his commentaries on Genesis, Psalms and Romans when preaching from these books.  We have always felt Stuart to be “a safe pair of hands” if you like – a thoughtful and trustworthy expositor of sacred truth.

Others who knew him better will write more detailed appreciations of the life and ministry of Stuart Briscoe.  However Florence and I wanted to post our own acknowledgement of where the flowing streams of Stuart Briscoe’s well-lived life had intersected ours and provided invaluable spiritual refreshment.

STUART BRISCOE 1930 – 2022

“Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord… ‘Yes’ says the Spirit, ‘they will rest from their labour, for their deeds will follow them.’

Revelation 14:13 NIV/UK