Western Society demands that communication be entertaining. Style and delivery has eclipsed the importance of message content.
Even in the Christian community, it has become expected that if one is to communicate a message from the Word of God, the way in which that message be delivered must be polished, entertaining, and professional. One must undergo years of training and practice in order to learn how to deliver truth in the acceptable manner. It must be smooth, it must be captivating, and above all, it must entertain the audience.
What is so tragic about this is that the average Christian is more concerned about how a message is given, than how accurate the message itself is.
Recently we received two testimonies. One was from a ladies’ small group from a church in Alberta, Canada and the other was from a church in Singapore. These two churches were an ocean apart but they had the same vision: to ensure every member understood a clear gospel.
These two churches found it useful to use By This Name as the book for small group study. Longtime churchgoers as well as and people still seeking to understand what the Bible is all about benefited from going through the creation-to-the-cross approach used in the book. They saw how the Old and New Testament tied together as one story, and for many, it made them want to read the Bible more! Here are their stories.
The Easter season is a time when the “Christian community” commemorates the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Friends and family show natural interest in the gospel. Churches take the opportunity to reach out to the community. But why limit it to just one weekend? Don’t lose the momentum. This Good News should be shared throughout the year.
A couple of weeks before this Easter season, a group of four women took a flight to another country and spent time teaching teachers how to reach their students with the Good News. What they did will help to spread the Gospel year-round to students who have not heard the message before. Here is their story.
Recently, a GoodSeed team travelled to a country that is hostile to the Bible. There, they conducted a TERM Seminar. The participants were pastors and believers who had a desire to share the Good News with others. As they were taught step-by-step, the participants caught on very quickly on how they could teach as they were taught. Here are some quick testimonies from the participants.
Teams in churches and Christian organizations all around the world are in the midst of mapping out their schedules for upcoming short-term mission trips. The first part of the training schedule usually focuses on preparing the “mission trippers” so that everyone is clear on the biblical mandate for missions. One aspect that is often overlooked is ensuring that the entire team is “on the same page” with regards to the Gospel. It’s risky to assume that every member of the team understands the Bible’s central message or in the same way. It makes sense for leaders to get all the team members to go through a “Gospel refresher” course so that everyone is clear on what they will be proclaiming on the field.
One of the biggest questions when planning a short-term missions trip is “How do we share a clear gospel that our audience can understand?” When you think of the village or people group you are going to meet, can you picture what you would need to teach them so that they understand the gospel clearly? What if the people do not have any Bible knowledge or know nothing about the God of the Bible? How do you explain the good news?
In the tiny city-state of Singapore, there are many foreign nationals who go there to find work. They are employed as domestic helpers, construction workers, service staff and more. For churches in Singapore, they see that the “foreign mission field” has arrived at their doorsteps. These churches organize activities and programs to cater to the needs of these foreign nationals. They also conduct Bible studies and help to explain the gospel. Here is a story from Jessica,* a Bible study leader, who learned that there was more that God could do with these migrant workers.
“Teacher, you swore!” Mrs. Barclay had just begun to read the Christmas Nativity to her third-grade class when Lisa, a bright little girl in the front row interrupted. It took a moment before she realized Lisa had never heard ‘Jesus Christ’ as anything but profanity.
(Fast-forward ten years…)
Now a college sophomore driving home for Christmas, Lisa squints through the windshield at a billboard protruding from a field. Silently the sign’s letters form on her lips as it whips by… “Jesus.”