From the earliest days of humanity on this earth, God has set forth HIS commitment to redeem those who have become estranged from Him through rebellion and disobedience. To that end, when Adam and Eve sinned, it was God who became the first Evangelist by approaching our first ancestors and confronting them about their sin. He then provided a blood sacrifice for their immediate reconciliation and gave them a promise that He would send one who would bruise Satan’s head though Satan would bruise His heel.
At a time chosen before the foundation of the world, God sent forth His only begotten Son, born of the virgin Mary to meet the qualifications needed to become “sin for us who knew no sin that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21).
As Jesus lived His life here on earth, He was the role-model of His plan to reach out to all who are separated by sin from God. Jesus entered into personal soul-winning encounters, beginning with John and Andrew. Systematically, Jesus touched individual lives as He put together the group that would become known as the Apostles. After a time of discipling the men, Jesus sent them out in pairs to evangelize particular towns.
Jesus’ instruction just prior to His ascension was for His disciples to go and make disciples, baptize them, and then mentor them until they were mature enough to go and make disciples themselves. Thus, the cycle of evangelistic activity is to continue through the life of every born-again believer.
There is only one way for anyone to be reconciled to God. Jesus said He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Only through Him can anyone come to God. There are many Scripture verses one can use that will lead to the truth that only by repentance and faith in Jesus Christ can one be born again and receive eternal life.
In today’s society, many churches rely on Bible studies, worship services, and small groups for reaching people with the Gospel. Each of the above has its place. As a result, however, it is sad to say that many church members have never taken responsibility to learn how to interact one-on-one with those who need to be born again. Personal interaction with individuals is required to build relationships that will lead to lives being redeemed.
Literacy Missions is a valuable tool that will provide any church member with the opportunity to interact with anyone who has the need to learn and become proficient in reading, writing, and speaking the English language. There are three categories of instruction available:
1. English as a Second Language: (ESL) This track is designed to be used to teach individuals who have come to the United State from countries that do not have languages that are English based. Through this instruction, adults will be able to read, speak, and write English with a degree of proficiency that will enable them to move ahead in society.
2. Adult Reading and Writing: (ARW) This track is designed to enable adults who lack ability to read, comprehend, speak, and write English to gain those skills so they can get jobs, be promoted, and have a better future.
3. Tutoring Children and Youth: (TCY) This track is designed to help children and youth, K-12, who are behind grade level capability. The focus is on reading, reading comprehension, and mathematics.
The training is provided free of charge by the Montana Southern Baptist Convention. Training events will be conducted this year at two churches. The first will be August 24-25 at Big Sky Baptist Church, 2925 9th Avenue South in Great Falls. The second will be on September 7-8 at Fellowship Baptist Church, 39098 Lakeview Drive in Polson. We will begin at 4:30 p.m. with a light meal. Classes will be held from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. on Friday. On Saturday, there will be refreshments at 7:30 a.m., with classes being held from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. There will be a catered lunch at noon.
Materials for both trainings will be provided free of charge. Each person will be responsible for their own travel and lodging. This training is an excellent way for those who have never shared the Gospel with others to do so in a non-threatening atmosphere.
Go to www.mtsbc.org/literacy to register online.