Rader was one of the most powerful
evangelistic preachers of the early 20th Century.
He described himself as an ex-bellboy,
ex-cowboy, ex-prospector, ex-football player,
and ex-pugilist. He pastored Moody
Church in Chicago, Illinois
(1915-1921), and followed founder
Albert Simpson as president of the
Christian and Missionary Alliance
(1920-1923). Rader founded the Chicago
Gospel Tabernacle in 1922
and pastored it for 11 years. He wrote
many Gospel song lyrics and
a few tunes, and was instrumental
in the founding of the Tabernacle Publishing
His radio broadcasts were heard on various
Chicago stations as well as the CBS Network.
He was instrumental in sending scores of missionaries
to countries all over the world in addition
to influencing hundreds of young men to enter
Rader was also a pioneer
of Christian broadcasting.
In the early 1920s, the beginning
days of radio, station WBBM in Chicago,
Illinois, closed every Sunday.
Rader received permission
to use the studios, and for several
years, he ran a 14-hour Christian program
every Sunday. Rader called his station-within-a-station
WJBT (Where Jesus Blesses Thousands).
While walking near Times Square in
New York City, God spoke to him through an illuminated
sign. He rented a room nearby and fell on his face
before the Lord where his life was changed. He left
his business and entered the ministry.
His pastorates included Congregational
Church in Boston; Christian and Missionary Alliance
Tabernacle in Pittsburg (1912-15); Moody Memorial
Church in Chicago (1915-21); Chicago Gospel Tabernacle
(1922-33); and, Gospel Temple in Fort Wayne, Indiana
(1936-37). He served as President of the Christian
and Missionary Alliance from 1921-23.