“Houston, we have a problem!“
– Jim Lovell
Training Leaders International reports, “Around the world, there are 2.2 million evangelical churches. 85% of them are led by pastors with no formal theological training. There are 5 million pastors in the 10/40 window with no access to any kind of formal biblical training.”
So, What’s the Problem?
As Training Leaders go on to state, “The growing gap in theological education leaves the global church susceptible to false teaching, decay, and collapse.”
Through our work leading Petros Network’s efforts to recruit, equip, and send indigenous church planters into unreached villages throughout the under resourced world, this is a huge and growing issue. We have witnessed that the harvest is as ripe as it has ever been, yet there are too few trained workers to reap and conserve this unprecedented end-time harvest of souls.
Lack of Non-Formal Ministry Training
The problem isn’t willing, committed, and passionate church planters. The men and women we work with are ready and willing to suffer and die in taking the gospel into hostile areas. But what they lack is training. The cry of their collective hearts is, “We will go and we will die, but please equip us with the knowledge and skills to be effective disciple-makers of those who come to Jesus.”
You can’t read very far into the Bible without discovering God’s consuming passion: entering into a broken world to bridge the gap that divides sinful humanity from its loving Creator. God is always giving (or restoring) free, easy, and equal access into his presence. God is always tearing down the walls that religion erects that makes deeper knowledge of God and theological training of spiritual leaders something that is only attainable by the elite.
Tearing Down the Walls that Religion Erects
At Petros Network, we believe that where a person happens to live shouldn’t limit their access to ministry training. That is why we are thrilled with the current world-wide move of the Holy Spirit that is leading Christian institutions of higher education to tear down the walls of their ivory towers to give easy and equal access to impoverished and uneducated yet God-called workers in the under resourced world.
Think about it: God crashed through the barriers to become one of us in the incarnation, to inhabit “all whom the Lord our God will call” by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, and in leading writers to record the New Testament documents in the street language of the day, Koine Greek.
“Not only was Koine Greek common in the sense it enjoyed widespread usage throughout the Roman Empire, but it was also common in the sense that it was not the language of the intellectual and academic elites. Classical Greek was used by the educated class. Koine Greek was the language of the working man, the peasant, the vendor, and the housewife—there was nothing pretentious about it. It was the vernacular, or vulgar language, of the day. The great works of Greek literature were written in Classical Greek. No scholar today would care to study anything written in Koine Greek, except for the fact that it is the language of the New Testament. God wanted His Word to be accessible to everyone, and He chose the common language of the day, Koine.” (Source)
Did you catch that: “God wanted His Word to be accessible to everyone, and He chose the common language of the day, Koine.” God has always gone to extreme lengths to make the knowledge of who he is and what he wills for humankind accessible to ordinary people. And so again in our day he is removing the barriers that makes theological training accessible only to those who can afford it.
Equipping Unprecedented Numbers
God is at work in these last days to equip unprecedented numbers of workers in the under resourced and unreached world to get into the greatest harvest of souls the Kingdom of God has ever experienced. At Petros Network, we are gladly joining God in this effort.
That is why we are pulling out all the stops to create an affordable online ministry training platform that will enable called and committed workers to join us in reaching the unreached.
Yes, God is all about equal access into the blessings and benefits of his kingdom, and we are committed to making that happen through Petros Network’s mission. And you can be a part of that, too.