Site search Web search Search this site or the web powered by FreeFind
Getting organized to reach the world. (Part 2)
by Aramus Crane 2005.02.20Part 1 Organizing the audience
Part 2 Organizing the message
The gospel must speak their language.
Reaching every people group is a prerequisite for the return of Jesus. We know that Jesus Christ will come back. So we must do this job. Having a good sense of the omnipotence and self-sufficiency of God, we know we don't hold Him up if we don't do the job, but He has preordained us to get the job done. So, this is the goal of the missionary movement.
In order to reach the world, we must first listen to the people. Each person will have a different worldview, but there will be things in common between people in the same people group. Worldview is the perspective that one has on life. It is a filter through which all impressions are made. It serves as the underlying motivation for actions. Without knowing the local worldview, missionaries will not understand those whom they are trying to reach the Gospel and their relationships will suffer misinterpreted actions and motives. For an understanding of Romanian worldview, visit Mission to Romania by Tim Prochnau.
Thus, when we want to plant churches, we must bring seeds, not a potted plant. When one brings a seed (the Word of God) it is planted into the hearts of people. The church that grows from that seed will be completely different from that which was brought. The seed dies and brings life. When we bring a potted plant, we want the church to look just like the parent church in our old culture. Plants often die when planted in different environments. Likewise church planting is rather futile when you try to reproduce your kind of assembly.
Because the gospel is not tied to any culture, we can adapt it to the culture to make it relevant to them. This makes the illustration dynamic. A good example of this is the redemptive analogy. God's plan of salvation can make sense to any culture. This is unlike Islam where a big part of it is the jihad or the holy war. We don't have to kill the enemy to enter Heaven but to love him.
There is a mistake often made when one adapts Jesus' message to the culture. It is called syncretism.This is where the local belief system is adopted without questioning whether the Bible affirms it. The pagan systems get communicated into the church's beliefs. Cultural practices are usually not inherently evil if the motives are good. However, when local belief systems get incorporated in Christianity, that is syncretism. An example of syncretism is if one adapts a local practice of wearing head coverings and tell people that you must cover your head to be saved.
We must effectively communicate
But, it takes not only understanding but often three kinds of encounters with God before a person will give his life to Christ. The Power Encounter is when the non-believer must see that God is more powerful than the other beings around him, otherwise God's will risks not being fulfilled. We must be able to trust God to have victory over Satan. The Love Encounter is when a person realizes that God will bless them and that will love them unconditionally. The Allegiance Encounter is the relationship that the non-believer has with God. He must renounce the world to come to Christ and must continually rid his character of the world's influence in order to develop Christian character.
As missionaries, we must overcome the locals' opinion that the gospel is alien or threatening. To achieve this, we can:
By communicating effectively, emulating the character of Jesus Christ, and assist people in encountering God in power, love and allegiance, then God will effectively change the world into His likeness.Part 1 Organizing the audience
Part 2 Organizing the message
Phone: (4) 0722.889.267
Address: Post Restant
115300 Curtea de Arges (AG)
Phone: (49) 162.1911.838
© 2005 Laurent J. LaBrie