We started our project by staying in the largest city on the island – Medan. We were met and taken around by a local church planting pastor. He’s a native of the area and a part of the Batak tribe. He wants to see God’s hand at work in his area.
He shared with us that the Batak people are very volatile. They’re known for having bad tempers. His was to the extreme. As a young man he was so aggressive that his village asked him to leave.
Later in his life he was looking for answers. At some point he received a copy of the Bible. He decided that he wanted to understand it so he read it from cover to cover.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
As he was reading through the book of Romans, he became keenly aware of his need for Christ. Without any prompting from anyone other than the Holy Spirit, he prayed and surrendered his life to the Lord.
Because of his study of the Scripture, he knew that he needed to be baptized in water. He went to one church and they told them that they only sprinkled.
As he walked along, he saw a crowd of people by a lake. He saw that they were having a baptism service. He asked if he could join in and be baptized. After the pastor talked with him a while and saw that he was truly saved, they agreed to baptize him.
I recently heard a quote from David Platt. “There’s only one thing worse than being lost and that is being lost and having no one trying to find you.” This pastor is an amazing example of God’s grace.
In spite of the fact that Indonesia is a Moslem nation, there are many Christian churches. The problem we saw was that many of them are mainline denominational churches with no desire to win the lost. They’re content to simply minister to those of their own congregation, or trying to get believers to switch to their church. The kingdom doesn’t grow that way.
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.”
What we saw was that even some of the evangelical pastors of that area are becoming concerned with external issues. They want to be like the churches around them. They are discussing whether they should start preaching in robes, and what color they should be.
We made it our goal on this trip to only work with pastors who understood the mission. There are millions of lost souls that need to be reached. That will not happen if we cling to church as usual, or chase after being acceptable.
Pray for Indonesia. Pray for the churches of that nation to cultivate an outward focus on reaching the lost people around them. Pray for the churches who are reaching people; that they would be even more effective.
Question: How do you keep yourself “mission minded” to reach the lost?
© Nick Zaccardi 2017