SSBG

A worldview is a set of claims that purport to be based on ultimate reality.

From Thanksgiving to Famine

Posted by ssbg on November 25, 2005

From the  Missionary Observer  

The Silent Famine

     

In my travels throughout Africa I have seen corn stalks parched in the dry ground while starving people wait for rain. I was overcome with grief. The famine was ugly.

Yet another kind of famine may be even more dangerous; a silent famine. Most people are too distracted to care about this kind of famine. A few struggling people see the great need and are willing to give their lives to prevent this famine. But little money is available and few volunteers are willing to help. Relief organizations ignore this famine. The famine I fear most is described in Amos 8:11.

The days are coming
declared the Sovereign LORD,
when I will send a famine through the land –
not a famine of food
or a thirst for water
but a famine of hearing the words of the LORD.

The Church in many parts of the world is large and growing, yet ominous clouds are on the horizon. Bible-believing Christianity is facing a time of crisis. Liberal Christianity challenges the authoritative foundations of Scripture and promotes a universalism which undercuts the urgency of evangelism. Fanatical Islam threatens to disrupt political stability encouraging politicians to see religion as a social evil which could upset national stability. Militant Hinduism seeks to legislate against orthodox Bible teaching. Secular postmodern values are sneaking into Bible-believing churches.

Meanwhile the evangelical church is searching for theological leadership: pastors who are able to struggle with local needs in light of well thought out evangelical theology. Local believers are wrestling with anti-biblical beliefs and practices while much local leadership is not able to give thoughtful biblical help.

The greatest need in the world-wide church is to prevent spiritual famine. The development of spiritually minded, theologically grounded pastors, professors and missionaries is a most urgent task. Evangelism, church planting, church growth, discipleship, and nurture are all dependent on this critical task.

The greatest need in the world-wide Church today is for theologically sound Bible teachers who are skilled at applying the solutions of the word of God to the critical needs of the world. Why is it that so many evangelical Bible Colleges, Christian Liberal-Arts Colleges and Seminaries are facing urgent financial needs while hundreds of billions of dollars are being spent on important but temporal physical needs? Imagine what might happen if Bible-believing Christians would catch the vision for supporting theological education the with the same passion with which they support tsunami, hurricane and famine relief? Picture student enrollment trends in theological schools if Christians would be as motivated as passionately by spiritual needs as we are about physical needs. Yes, it is good to be deeply concerned about meeting physical needs, but may the Lord stir up a fresh fervency for the eternal needs of the silent spiritual famine.

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