Taken from www.CallforMercy.com
Asia Bibi, a wife and mother, used these words to defend her faith against mocking co-workers who tried to make here convert to Islam. She was later convicted of blasphemy and sentenced to death.
In Pakistan, more than 150,000 Christians have signed a petition demanding justice for persecution victims, including Asia Bibi. Now you can join with The Voice of the Martyrs and our Pakistani brothers and sisters in a call for mercy. We hope to gather 1 million signatures on behalf of our sister Asia, who now sits in prison awaiting the Lahore High Court’s ruling on her appeal.
Mary Ketterer will have this petition available for you to sign on Sunday morning. Please consider this…
Below is a discussion between three pastors concerning the tension between evangelism vs. discipleship efforts. Notice the encouragement from Matt Chandler for the older to invest into the younger. This is such a critical need for spiritual growth to occur in BOTH parties, both the young and the old. Also, Mark Dever points out that in order for us to consider ourselves a follower of Christ, we really should be helping others to follow Christ. He also reminds me of the importance of praying for and encouraging others.
- Mark Dever is pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist church located in Washington D.C. and founder of 9Marks ministries
- Matt Chandler is pastor of the Village church located just outside of Dallas, TX
- James McDonald is pastor of the Harvest Bible Chapel located in Chicago and host of the Walk in the Word radio program
Check out this fascinating video from National Geographic…
The offering plate… though most profess to tithe the standard 10 percent of their income to the church, the actual average percentage of income given to the church in the last two years was only 2.43 percent. This number has declined over the last 40 years, with the highest amount being only 3.11 percent in 1968 (Christianity Today, February 2011)
Church dropouts… some 20 percent of students who stopped attending church after high school say they had planned to no longer attend weekly services once they were in college. The other 80 percent of those who “dropped out” of church after high school say they made no premeditated decision to do so, but rather, slowly drifted out of the church. (Lifeway Research)
Keeping up with population changes… In 1820 there was one church for every 875 people in the United States. By World War I the ratio had dropped to one church for every 430 people. Today, there is only one church for every 6,194 people. In Canada the ratio is 1 church to every 123,971 people. The population of North America is 345 million, and at least 259 million do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ. (U.S. Census Bureau, Lifeway Christian Resources, Statistics Canada and Canadian National Baptist Convention)
We all know our world is changing, but do you realize how quickly these changes are taking place?
- The world’s population will reach 7 billion before the end of 2011 (United Nations)
- Since 1960 the U.S. population has increased by 72% (National Geographic)
- Racial and ethnic minorities accounted for 83% of U.S. population growth from 2000 to 2008, and these minorities will become the majority by 2042 (Brookings Institute)
- The Muslim population in the U.S. will more than double to reach an anticipated 6.2 million in the coming years. (Pew Research, January 27, 2011)
This Sunday morning we will be looking at the subject of loving loudly through our actions. What are some practical ways you can demonstrate love toward other believers, as well as those who have not yet decided to trust and follow Jesus Christ?
Feel free to post your ideas in the comment section. Or, you can e-mail me your thoughts and I will include them here in this post.
I do hope to hear from you!
Instead of our monthly meetings, I have decided to make this curriculum available to you through our church library. I hope each of our Sunday school teachers will consider viewing this training resource for reaching, teaching and ministering through our Sunday school. We also want to make it available to anyone involved in Christian education.