Alliance News Feed – Thank You for Loving Us
Adapted from a report by an Alliance international worker serving in West Africa
I serve as a guide to seven men who meet in my home to study the Bible, using the Discovery Bible Study method. Six of these guys follow the majority faith in the West African country where my wife and I serve.
This group’s origins stem back to last fall when our Alliance community center offered an “Experience God Night”—six weeks of exposure to biblical tenets. The seven men were regular attendees, and when I later offered to meet in our home once a week to study the Bible in English, they agreed.
On the Jesus Path, Taking Risks
Each week we seek the truths in God’s Word that include narratives of the Fall and the flood, the concept of the trinity, and the plan of salvation. I also encourage the members to read their Bibles outside of our times together.
The one Jesus follower is the oldest guy in the group. As one of their fellow countrymen, he is respected and contributes his perspectives on biblical truth beautifully—without condescension.
Most of these men now often refer to Jesus as “the Messiah” and “the Son of God.” There is no push back. Open to the truth of the gospel, they are on the Jesus path.
I would add that the Bible is revered here, second only to the predominant religion’s holy book. But accepting biblical teaching is risky in this culture where the majority religion controls every aspect of life.
All of the men share during our studies. Adam* often says amazing things; I call them “Adam Moments.” Here are a few of them.
When we were discussing Jesus’ baptism, he said, “You know, when Jesus went to the cross He took our sins with Him so that we can have our sins forgiven.
“In the same way, Jesus’ baptism represents taking sin under the water. When you come up out of the water, your sins are left behind. You are clean, and God is pleased.”
Last week we were working through the Beatitudes, and Adam chimed in: “If you really believe in something and it’s really important, you will tell others about it—even if it means you will suffer for it. You do it because you love them.”
When we were studying Jesus’ temptation in the desert the other day, a number of the participants agreed that “we are all tempted—every day. We need to be like Jesus and use God’s Word to keep Satan away from us.”
After a recent evening meeting, one of the men called me aside. “Issa (my name in the local language), thank you so much for meeting with us. What we are learning is very important, but I want to thank you for loving us!”
Wow, I was taken aback with joy—that my love for them is evident is so gratifying and poignant. I am zealous to see these men find Jesus, but I always want His love for them to show through my words and actions.
Please pray with me that the end-result of our times together will be that these men will take a step of faith and commit their lives to Christ and experience His love and grace in its fulness.
Source: Alliance News Feed – Thank You for Loving Us