“Fulfilling the Great Commission is a call to all Christians worldwide – to take the Gospel to places where Christ is unknown, as every person on earth needs to hear the Good News,” explains Harvesters’ Regional Director of Southeast Asia.
Southeast Asia consists of 11 countries with a population of 667 million people. There are 694 unreached people groups in Southeast Asia alone. These people do not have access to the Gospel. Thousands of villages are still waiting to hear about Jesus. “They will continue to wait, unless we do something,” said the Regional Director.
He further explains, “The tiny Christian minority in this region is overshadowed by other major religions such as Buddhism and Islam. The strong ties between culture and religion combined with restrictions on direct evangelism makes it very difficult to share the Gospel of Christ. And yet God is working in new ways to spread His Word here – even to the unreached villages.”
Some countries in Southeast Asia have seen a growing number of believers, this growth is however still not enough. There are still millions of people in Southeast Asia who will die before they had the opportunity to hear the Gospel.
Furthermore, persecution is a very real struggle for believers in Southeast Asia. The Regional Director explains how persecution affects believers’ lives, “Many of these brothers and sisters who remain faithful; they continue to face strong opposition from government and locals. They face harassment and different levels of persecution. But despite this, many indigenous Christian leaders who are moved by the Holy Spirit are longing to follow Jesus’ command to go and take the Gospel to remote unreached villages in their countries to make disciples and start new churches.”
There is an enormous need for trained church leaders in Southeast Asia. There are thousands of rural congregations who are languishing without adequate leadership. These churches fall into unbiblical teaching and moral failure.
“Harvesters Ministries’ mission is to see local leaders empowered and equipped with study material in their local language. And to see them mobilised to help transform lives and communities through God’s Word,” said the Regional Director.
These church leaders will evangelise and unite new believers in their new church. They will disciple these new believers and over a period of time a student pastor will be identified and trained. This student pastor will eventually lead the church and plant a new church.
“These new self-sustaining churches fellowship with local leaders to ensure ongoing support for new believers to continue spiritual growth. Planting churches is the most effective way to advance the Gospel and engage the unreached. There is therefore an urgency to plant as many viable churches which will grow in numbers and in spiritual maturity through transformational discipleship for all those reached for the Gospel,” said the Regional Director.
We are all called to get involved – pray, give, go. How would you like to be involved in God’s mission to take the Gospel to places where Christ is unknown and to see villages reached with the Gospel? Large parts of these communities have never had a chance to hear and to see lives transformed.
You can answer Jesus’ Great Commission by giving your best gift today.