Tenth has a deep relationship with Interserve. Former pastor, Mariano DiGangi, worked with Interserve after he left Tenth; Carroll Wynne's father was Interserve's first fulltime director, and many ruling elders, including Dr. Jay MacMoran and Dr. C. Everett Koop, served on its first board.
For fifty years, Interserve has been sending workers into the Muslim, Buddhist, and Hindu worlds carrying the sweet news of Jesus. That's a legacy to be proud of, but rather than exalt, Interserve is sounding a call for even more workers.
Fully one-quarter of the world's population has no access to the gospel. Given Jesus' firm command to "Go into all the world," you'd think that the church would be, as they say, "on it," but by Interserve's count the church devotes only 3% of Christian workers to the task. That's like trying to put out a bonfire with squirt guns.
This "Unseen 1/4," as Interserve calls them, live in some of the most impoverished regions of Asia and the Middle East. Taking the gospel there is as arduous as Frodo's journey into Mordor. Church planters don't get visas. What's needed are followers of Jesus who are willing to use their professional skills in medicine, engineering, or international development to address the very real physical needs. Working alongside nationals to treat AIDS or provide access to clean water, these Christ- bearers can visibly demonstrate God's love and gain the credibility needed to voice the gospel.
To awaken us to the need, Interserve has just released a devotional book, Discovering the Unseen. The book combines Bible studies with startling stories about people in unreached parts of the world coming to faith and following Jesus at immense cost. I can't get out of mind the story of a Muslim man and his wife who, because they confess Christ, are forced to move 16 times. When they finally find themselves in a community with a church and begin to attend, the pastor asks them to stay away; he's too afraid his church will be targeted. How can we in the West come alongside?
Interserve's answer? We need to double-down and renew our efforts.
Their birthday, being celebrated in five major cities, kicks off The Unseen 1/4 Campaign – "a new full-scale effort to recruit, equip and mobilize more workers for the important work of bringing the whole Gospel to those often overlooked by traditional mission efforts." You don't want to miss the party. They'll whet our appetite with reports about what God is doing and make us hungry for more. Oh for the day when everyone hears!
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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By Terri Taylor. © 2023 Tenth Presbyterian Church. Website: tenth.org