Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Lausanne Tuesday : State of the World

This the big advance paper from Lausanne - World Evangelization in the 21st Century: Prioritizing the Essential Elements of the Great Commission. For big picture-quick-look-at-the-world, this has tons of info in it that we should all be aware of. Heress a few things you should know:

: Translations of the Bible
Out of 6909 spoken languages in the world:
451 have a complete written Bible.
1185 have a written New Testament.
843 languages have a written portion of the Bible.
Nearly 2000 languages have some work begun.
2252 languages have no one working on Bible translation.
Oral story Bible teams - need about 50-60 Bible stories translated orally.
70% of the world are oral learners - they don't read.

: Unreached People Groups
[Personal note - I've done lots of thinking about the emphasis on unreached people groups and how that fits in with catalyzing people, engaging a local church and living on mission. I believe the concept is important but not all encompassing.]
As of 2005, 639 people groups with populations of over 100K still unengaged/unreached.
419 of these groups have been engaged since then. [That's some amazing news!]
2365 people groups with populations of over 5,000 that are still unengaged/unreached.
Need to have one worker for 50,000 people in each of these groups.

[Side note on the last statement. For comparison sake, check out JD Payne's post about evangelical statistics in the US.
Compare this ratio of 1 missionary to 50,000 people to what JD says about a good strategic ratio for churches being 1 church to 1000 people in an urban context and 1 church to 500 people for rural contexts. This comparison highlights : 1 - that missionary has their work cut out for them and, 2 - that is a tremendous need.]

: Evangelization
increase the numbers of workers in the least reached.
use best platforms for message delivery - cell phone technology and the internet.

: Church Planting
- To encourage each country to conduct a survey to determine every village and city segment where there is no known church. [big need for demographic research teams.]
- To plant 5 million new churches by 2020.
- To establish church planting movements in all unengaged people groups by 2020.

Well, those are 4 of the big ones in the paper - if this gets you excited, you should definitely go read the whole thing. If you are a high school student and this gets you excited, let me give you some more suggestions:
- Merely knowing about these global issues is a big deal. Awareness is the first step that leads to action.
- These 4 areas [and probably all of the areas listed in the paper] can use a whole realm of expertise and experience. Interested in political science, engineering, medicine, economics, leadership, education? Get a viable degree in one of those areas [or a bunch of others] and I'm sure you could find a place to assist.
- Some of this is going to require people that are highly creative, innovative and entrepreneurial. Get some experience now in creating something from nothing, gathering teams around you and knowing your gifts and talents.
- Oh and if you fit in with the "I'm excited about this and I'm a high school student" and I don't know you already, contact me please.

This post is part of a series of posts about Cape Town 2010 highlighting what I think are some important concepts that students interested in missions should be aware of. See the previous introduction post. Tomorrow’s post will be about global leadership development.

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