Sunrise to an Era
Thank you for the special issue "Now That We're Global" [Nov. 16]. It demonstrates what Charles Van Engen, professor of biblical theology of mission at Fuller Theological Seminary, wrote in the foreword to the Billy Graham Center monograph Supporting Indigenous Ministries: "Although more than four billion people still do not know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, around one-and-a-half billion people now consider themselves Christian, circling the globe. In spite of the obvious needs facing the church, Christians around the world today speak more languages, possess greater resources, have the Bible available in more languages, have greater facility of travel and communication, have more qualified leaders, have a deeper awareness of the cultural imprisonment of the Gospel, and possess a deeper sensitivity to the cultural issues in mission than at any time in the church's history. We are not at the sunset of Christian mission, but rather at the sunrise of the most exciting and extensive era ever in its history."
The reality now facing the church calls for all of us to awaken to the power of brotherhood in Christ.
Reading the article on Mexico by Juan M. Isais, I was saddened to learn how virulently Roman Catholic mobs, stirred on by a priest, harassed and injured evangelicals in Chiapas. The tragedy hits me hard because it was in the Catholic church where I became a born-again Christian. I am well aware few Protestants know that a dying pope, John XXIII, prayed specifically for the coming of the Holy Spirit to the world—a prayer stunningly answered in his denomination, as well as in many others.
In succeeding years, the charismatic renewal faded in an onslaught of traditionalism within Roman Catholicism; ...1