The October-November 2009 PNEUMA INFORMER
In this issue
What's New at www.PneumaFoundation.orgNew Online ArticlesNew Links and Content Worth Noticing
- The Pneuma Foundation is pleased to add content to our website as a resource to our members and friends around the world. We also add links to content that we are not able to republish ourselves, but may be of interest. Here are some examples of links added recently to "Links to Articles & Books" www.pneumafoundation.org/links_articles.jsp and from "Links to Study Resources" www.pneumafoundation.org/links_study.jsp
- The largest list of Pentecostal/charismatic Bible Schools available online anywhere. http://www.pneumafoundation.org/links_schools.jsp
Add your school: http://www.pneumafoundation.org/links.jsp#link
- Tony Richie, "Evangelical Insights on Health Care Reform in America" http://www.faithnews.cc/2009/09/09/evangelical-insights-on-health-care-reform-in-america
- On the In Depth Resources index: H-Pentecostalism an online forum for communication and interaction among scholars regarding all aspects of Pentecostal history. H-Pentecostalism Reviews. Part of H-Net, an online consortium of Humanities & Social Sciences. http://www.h-net.org/~pentcost/
- Margaret Feinberg, Lessons from a Shepherd http://www.charismamag.com/index.php/blogs/frontline/23524-scouting-the-divine-unforgettable-lessons-from-a-shepherd
- On the http://www.pneumafoundation.org/links_study.jsp On-Line Study Resources page: Better Bibles Blog focusing on how to improve translations of the Bible. Suggested by Jonathan D. http://betterbibles.com
- Brad Abare, "Pseudo Social Networking" There is no substitute for authentic community (MinistryTodayOnline). http://www.ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-outreach/community/18187-pseudo-social-networking
- John C. Maxwell, "Seven Principles of Planning" Learn 4 types of planning, find out why people don't plan, pick up some qualities of principle-centered planning, and explore 7 key principles that will help you turn written plans into reality. Suggested by Brigada Today. http://www.teamexpansion.org/brigguy/articles/Seven_Principles_of_Planning.pdf
- Tools to Share the Story of Jesus: Etnopedia the open encyclopedia of the ethnic peoples of the world, from a Christian perspective. Available in numerous languages. http://en.etnopedia.org/wiki
- J. Lee Grady, "Breaking Free From the Spirit of Control" Six ways to identify an unhealthy leadership style in a church or ministry ("Fire in My Bones" column, 11 November 2009). Suggested by TS. http://charismamag.com/index.php/fire-in-my-bones/23911-breaking-free-from-the-spirit-of-control
- Sunday Agang, "Who's Afraid of Witches?: Among African Christians, too many of us are" (ChristianityTodayOnline). http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2009/septemberweb-only/137-21.0.html | See also: Isaac Phiri, "Saving Witches in Kolwezi: Accused of witchcraft by parents and churches, children in the Democratic Republic of Congo are being rescued by Christian activists. (ChristiantiyTodayOnline). http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2009/september/27.62.html
- Tim Keller, "How to Find Your Rival Gods: Idolatry is not just a failure to obey God, it is a setting of the whole heart on something besides God." Excerpt from Tim Keller, Counterfeit Gods: The Empty Promises of Money, Sex, and Power, and the Only Hope that Matters (Dutton Adult, October 2009), 240 pages. http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2009/octoberweb-only/142-21.0.html
Reports from Around the World
Middle East: Victim forgives and shocks authorities
An E3 Partners worker in the Middle East is recovering after being brutally attacked by a radical Muslim.
According to the Middle East Director for E3 Partners, Tom Doyle, the worker whom we'll call Jamal was attacked by a conniving Muslim. "Jamal was sharing with a Muslim who really seemed to be seeking. He seemed to know a little bit about Christianity. He was talking about dreams and visions, and there was some trust there. Jamal was completely surprised that the man attacked him." Jamal was stabbed and beaten after the man asked Jamal for some Christian literature. The skirmish got the attention of neighbors who called police.
Doyle says while the Muslim was being taken away to jail, Jamal showed love to his attacker. He said, "I forgive you. There's nothing between you and me. I want to come visit you in prison. There's nothing between my family and yours, and I hope to see you when you're out of prison. I know God is going to use this in your life, and I'm going to pray for you."
It was heard by authorities. Doyle says this is a unique message in the Middle East. "There's no forgiveness there. You do something to my family, I do it back to your family, and it just never ends."
Doyle says, "Jamal's display of forgiveness is the most powerful message because it's not the message of the other religion. That puts Christianity in a different category, which it really is. This message of forgiveness - that's what's needed there."
Source: Adapted from Mission Network News, 9 October, 2009. http://www.mnnonline.org/article/13363
Ethiopia: Radio ministry reports huge increase in contact with listeners
During the spring, the Ethiopian partner organization of the Swedish IBRA media group started announcing a telephone number in their radio programs where listeners were encouraged to call. There was suddenly a massive increase in the number of persons who contacted them after they had listened to the program in Amharic or Oromo. There are now almost 5000 persons per month who contact the office!
One of the listeners, from Western Ethiopia shared recently:
"I have been sick for a long time due to a tumor. No doctors could help or assist me in any way. When you pray in your evening programs, I often pray along with you. Recently, when you were praying in my own language, I began to cry and just in that instant I was healed from my illness. This is why I think that your work is extremely important, because it has become my spiritual and physical doctor! Now I am healed, Praise the Lord!"
Source: Adapted from News from IBRA (September 2009). www.ibra.se
UN being used to support persecution
The Organization of the Islamic Conference, a 56-nation bloc of Islamic countries, has a long game in view. For 10 years, they've pressed the United Nations to adopt non-binding resolutions condemning the defamation of religion. Carl Moeller with Open Doors says, "The laws that have been used by these nations to prevent Muslims from turning to Jesus Christ in faith, or to prevent the practice of Christianity openly, will be validated by the United Nations." Precedent is laying the foundation for something much worse. "Pray on behalf of the 100 million Christians around the world who would be impacted directly by this UN resolution becoming part of the UN charter and protocols." Moeller is campaigning against yet another passage of the resolution. Why? "The validation of these anti-conversion laws will be just a horrible reality for Christians to have to face. Imagine a government saying, 'We can persecute you, and the UN says everything we're doing is okay.' That's really what we're here to fight against."
Source: Mission Network News, 29 October, 2009. Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/13441
Nigeria: The Spiritual Film Boom
Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra , "Christian Movie Capital of the World: Spirituality fuels Nollywood's booming film industry" (Christianity Today, November 2009).
USA: Hispanic Evangelicals identify 7 Priorities
America's largest Hispanic Christian Organization, The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC), announced the 7 Priorities the Evangelical organization will focus on from now until 2015.
"21st century challenges require an evangelical community to speak on a moral and biblical platform that is culturally and prophetically relevant."
To read the announcement, visit: http://nhclc.org/about/7priorities.html
Pakistan: Repeal of blasphemy law still seems far off
In Pakistan, six anti-Christian extremists were released from prison just two months after they helped kill 11 believers. The Christians who were killed had been suspected of blasphemy against Islam, a federal offense in Pakistan. But Jonathon Racho with International Christian Concern says, "What is blasphemy for a Muslim can be completely alright for a Christian. For instance, if you say that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that is our belief as a Christian. But for a Muslim, they're still offended by it. So it becomes very hard for Christians to evangelize, and Christians can easily be killed for doing so." Some are working to repeal the law, but change seems far off. In the meantime, "The Christians in Pakistan feel that they are not protected by the officials of Pakistan. They definitely feel that they are being treated as second-class citizens." Racho urges you to help defend Pakistani Christians.
Source: Mission Network News, 16 October, 2009. Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/13390
Germany: "A Lost Generation"
Susan Wunderink reports, "Mainline churches in East Germany rediscover a sense of mission."
From the October 2009 issue of Christianity Today.
Read the article: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2009/october/12.11.html
Vietnam continues war on religion
The Vietnam government is strengthening its efforts to press minority ethnic Hmong Christians to renounce their faith. Patrick Klein with Vision Beyond Borders: "We met with about 28 pastors and leaders. We asked them how many of them are harassed by the police. Every one of them raised their hand. They're routinely harassed by the police, summoned to the police station. Police come and question them, and try to intimidate them and bully them. It's because of their faith in Jesus Christ." The government recently changed tactics on their clampdown. Why? "The tribal peoples, especially, are very, very open to the Gospel. The church is growing very, very fast. So the government seems to be threatened by them." Klein says they are working with an overwhelmed pastor in the region. "They're saying, 'Pastor, we need more Bibles. Can you get more Bibles?' Then we showed up that night with a thousand more Bibles. The pastor was so excited that he said, 'Can you bring me 10,000 more Bibles immediately?'"
Source: Mission Network News, 25 September, 2009. Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/13298
Ministry Uses Shoes to Spread Hope, Gospel
News and Headlines
A Nigeria-born Pentecostal minister who received his first pair of shoes at age 9 is on a mission to distribute 10 million pairs of shoes to impoverished children worldwide. Through his Charlotte, N.C.-based Samaritan's Feet, Manny Ohonme has distributed nearly 1 million pairs of shoes in more than 40 nations.
Read the full story: http://www.ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-news/65-news-main/18690-minister-gives-shoes-to-change-the-world
for Current News and Links
See other news to pray and praise God about in the Prayer Requests department below.
Report the News
We are looking for stories about what God is doing in the world, reports about the persecution of Christians, and information about significant trends and ministry opportunities. If you have a news item to report, please send an email to the PNEUMA INFORMER. http://www.pneumafoundation.org/contactus.jsp
Conversations with Readers
Thanks for the great work and including our website in your list of Ministry Friends.
— Rev. Steve A.
We are very glad for seeing your website. It is awesome. I appreciate your good ministry.
— Brother Johny P
Thanks so much for providing a site with all ministry schools.
— Jane C.
Our links to Pentecostal/Charismatic Bible Schools: http://www.pneumafoundation.org/links_schools.jsp
Thank you so much for the gift of your prayers... the best gift in the
— Trula, Reference Number: 90038951
Dearest faithful in Christ Jesus, my friends at the Pneuma Foundation,
May peace , grace and love of the Lord be with you as you remain faithful serving His Body.
It is a great joy every day to know that the Faithful Lord Jesus Christ has place some where a group of men and women who are praying for you , this is a great encouragement in our hearts. Thank you so much for deciding to stand with us in prayers and that you will be able to spread even to other of our faithful brethren in Christ. Praise His holy name. ...
I believe as we join together in prayers the Lord will provide. Please, receive our greeting from here in DR Congo, we love you and you are in our hearts too.
Truly your fellow brother in Him, Pastor Fred W.
Reference Number: 90038393
The Lord bless you in your rich and important ministry.
With love and thanks,
— Jim, in Scotland
Thank you for the service you render in the kingdom of God and all your effort for the Lord. We do appreciate the emails we get monthly, we learn more from it and also from the website.
— Pastor David
Greetings of Peace to you all from Pakistan.
I am very happy to see the beautiful site where I found so much biblical material. May God Bless this ministry abundantly and shower his blessings upon you.
— Pastor S.C.
Resources You Can Use
Church Website Research Dissertation
Ceri Longville, a student at Redcliffe Bible College in Gloucester UK, has just published her college dissertation on church websites.
Having been a church webmaster for five years, Ceri saw the clear need for research. She says, "While working as web developer of a church website, I could see the potential for it to be used as a tool to make the church more accessible and relevant to the non-Christian/unchurched folk in the local community."
Her 'Reaching the Community with Church Websites' is a valuable insight into the potential for making church sites truly 'outsider friendly'. Very little research has been published recently on church sites, as far as we know. Download this free 95-page PDF e-book, and also add your comments when you have read it: http://www.internetevangelismday.com/blog/archives/945
Source: Web Evangelism Bulletin October 09
Should Multisite Campuses Be Church Plants Instead?
Read a Christianity Today discussion with church leaders and observers weighing in on a current debate
Christian History Institute
Christian History Institute provides Christian history resources, regular email newsletter, and the popular Torchlighters DVDs, retelling the stories of Christian heroes for children: www.chitorch.org
Source: Web Evangelism Bulletin September 09
Excerpts from THE PNEUMA REVIEW
THE PNEUMA REVIEW is a quarterly printed journal of ministry resources and theology for Pentecostal and charismatic ministries and leaders. For more information about THE PNEUMA REVIEW, and to learn how to subscribe, please visit: Introducing THE PNEUMA REVIEW. www.pneumafoundation.org/intro_pr.jsp
For a full index of the contents of all Pneuma Review issues, visit: http://www.pneumafoundation.org/pr_archive.jsp.
Daniel D. Isgrigg, "Pilgrimage Into Pentecost: The Pneumatological Legacy of Howard M. Ervin"
From the Fall 2009 issue
Pilgrimage Into Pentecost: The Pneumatological Legacy of Howard M. Ervin
By Daniel D. Isgrigg
Read the full article at PneumaReview.com: Pilgrimage Into Pentecost: The Pneumatological Legacy of Howard M. Ervin
Editor's Note: Howard M. Ervin, Pentecostal/charismatic scholar, died on August 12, 2009.
Daniel Isgrigg, B.A. and M.A. in Theological and Historical Studies (Oral Roberts University), is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Bangor University in Wales working on the origins of Assemblies of God eschatology. He is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God, a member of the Society for Pentecostal Studies, and serves as Associate Pastor of Christian Chapel in Tulsa, OK. Daniel is also the author of Why I Want To Be Left Behind (Word & Spirit Press, 2008).
Footnotes appear in the printed version of this article excerpt.
Read the rest of this article and many other articles in the Fall 2009 issue of THE PNEUMA REVIEW www.pneumafoundation.org/intro_pr.jspPaul King's ONLY BELIEVE, Reviewed by Henry I. Lederle
From the Fall 2009 issue
Paul King, Only Believe: Examining the Origin and Development of Classic and Contemporary Word of Faith Theologies (Word & Spirit Press, 2009), 408 pages, ISBN 9780981952604.
Read the entire review at PneumaReview.com: Paul King: Only Believe
Reviewed by Henry I. Lederle
Henry I. Lederle, D.Th. (University of South Africa) and M.A. (University of Orange Free State), is Professor of Theology and Ministry at Sterling College in Sterling, Kansas. He is the author of Treasures Old and New: Interpretations of Spirit-Baptism in the Charismatic Renewal Movement (Hendrickson, 1988) and several collections of essays, articles and reviews.
Read more reviews and other articles in the Fall 2009 issue of THE PNEUMA REVIEW www.pneumafoundation.org/intro_pr.jspPower Evangelism and the New Testament Evidence
From the Fall 2009 issue
Part 2 of 2. By Gary S. Greig and Kevin N. Springer
. . .
Signs and Wonders Confusing One's Focus on the Gospel?
The claim is made by some that power evangelism is something other than the proclamation of the gospel and will confuse one's understanding of the gospel:
If "power evangelism" is something other than the proclamation of the truth of the gospel of God's grace, then is it not something more, by definition? ... When the focus is on the unusual phenomena of signs and wonders rather than on the rational content of the gospel itself, confusion as to the main features of that message is bound to arise.
As shown above, in the Gospels, Acts, and the epistles, signs and wonders are a part of the proclamation of the gospel and are not separate from it. Romans 15:19 explicitly describes the full proclamation of the gospel as including signs and wonders:
Rom. 15:18-19 - "I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done - by the power of signs and wonders, through the power of the Spirit. So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed  the gospel of Christ."
One might also ask if Jesus' focus was confused by the fact that healing had a central role in His ministry of proclaiming the gospel of the Kingdom according to Matthew 11:1-5, 21; 12:15-18; 21:14 (and Luke 21:37); Luke 4:18-19; 7:22; 10:13-15; 13:32? Or was Peter's focus on the gospel confused when he described Jesus' ministry largely in terms of healing in Acts 10:38 (cf. 2:22)?
Was the apostles' focus on the gospel confused when they did "many wonders and signs" in Jerusalem (Acts 2:43; 5:12)? Was Stephen's focus on the gospel confused when he "did great wonders and miraculous signs among the people" (Acts 6:8)? Was Philip's focus on the gospel confused when he proclaimed Christ in Samaria and also did "miraculous signs," healing the lame and driving out evil spirits (Acts 8:6-7)?
Was Paul's focus on the gospel confused when, in describing his proclamation of the gospel to the Gentiles, he devotes the majority of his description to the signs and wonders which were part of the full proclamation and expression of the gospel in Romans 15:18-19? Or was Paul and Barnabas's focus on the gospel confused when they did "miraculous signs and wonders" to confirm the "message of [God's] grace" in Iconium (Acts 14:3, 9-10)? Was their focus on the gospel confused when they characterized the work of God through them among the Gentiles by telling about "the signs and wonders God had done among the Gentiles through them" (Acts 15:12)?
Was God Himself confused about the gospel in Ephesus when He "did extraordinary miracles through Paul, so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and evil spirits left them" (Acts 19:11-12)? Or was God confused about the message of salvation when He "also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to His will" (Heb. 2:3-4)?
The answer is obviously no. The New Testament evidence shows that signs and wonders, healing and spiritual gifts do not confuse one's understanding of the gospel, they reveal the grace of God through the gospel.45 It is for this reason that they regularly accompany the proclamation of the gospel in Jesus' ministry as well as that of the apostles and the early churches scattered throughout the Roman Empire. Why should the way the Church evangelizes today be any different?
Footnotes appear in the printed version of this article excerpt.
This chapter is from Gary S. Greig and Kevin N. Springer, eds., The Kingdom and the Power: Are Healing and the Spiritual Gifts Used by Jesus and the Early Church Meant for the Church Today? A Biblical Look at How to Bring the Gospel to the World with Power (Ventura, CA: Regal Books, 1993). Used with permission.
Some Scripture quotations are direct translations by the authors and contributors. Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society, used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers). All italicized words and phrases in Scripture quotations are added by the authors for emphasis and clarification.
Read the rest of this article and many other articles in the Fall 2009 issue of THE PNEUMA REVIEW www.pneumafoundation.org/intro_pr.jsp
- Pray for persecuted Christians in North Africa. Thirty native believers, exposed by American missionaries within the same North African country, were recently arrested by local police, tortured through electrocution and beatings, and put into prison.
One of the American missionaries was murdered by Muslim extremists while "illegally proselytizing" outside of a mosque. When the police questioned his American missionary friends, they accused the native believers of murdering their friend and fled the country, even though Al-Qaida had publicly boasted of the shooting. Full story, with updates: http://www.christianaid.org/Missionaries/MIR/mir20090911.aspx.
- Pneuma Foundation President, Jim Dettmann, is recovering from a major surgery at the end of October that removed his ruptured appendix. Please pray that he will heal and regain his strength quickly. Reference Number: 90038735
- The church I lead has been moving well and the grace of God has been with us. But our urgent prayer request is that we had to stop meeting where we have been gathering. The land lord sold it without our knowledge and the buyer broke the building down, so now we have no place to fellowship. We are resting on God to hire another building if God provides. We need your prayers please.
With much love,
- Child sacrifice on the rise in Uganda. As famine looms, child sacrifice in Uganda is on the rise. A police report confirms 23 deaths since the beginning of the year. But Lee DeYoung with Words of Hope says there's a startling trend: "The numbers have increased, and at least in some cases, those have been the bodies of children of believers." Christian radio broadcasts have contributed to the growth of the church. DeYoung says, "The church is being mobilized to speak against this terrible evil. When a child is executed in this kind of ritual sacrifice fashion, it is a violation of Ugandan law. However, human trafficking is less clearly prohibited in the legal code." He urges prayer. "It does seem that where the Gospel is spreading, the enemy retaliates. We need to be in prayer that those who experience this may be able to respond, may be able to persevere, and that the Lord's provision will prevail."
Source: Mission Network News, 3 November, 2009. Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/13459
- Pastor IK in Katmandu, Nepal asks for prayer for Nepali churches and the difficulties they are facing. Reference Number: 90038339
- The World Evangelical Alliance calls Christians to prayer for the persecuted church.
- Pray for the small, suffering community of believers in Somalia, who have to be daily encouraged to stay strong for their faith in time of fear and tribulation. Pray that those who seek the lives of Christians in Somalia will see the love and grace of Jesus through the lives of their victims.
- Pray for the safety of church leaders and their families in the Cordoba region in Colombia. Pray that Christ might be glorified through the life and the death of His people in every place and circumstance of persecution.
- Pray for significant and lasting advances in religious freedom in Uzbekistan. Pray for spiritual strength and wisdom for the persecuted for their faith in the country.
- Pray that Christians in Myanmar (Burma) will be sustained, kept safe and blessed with faith, peace, and the assurance of God's love and presence in their lives.
- Pray that God will protect Christians in Sri Lanka from the schemes of Buddhist nationalists so that they may witness and worship with liberty and security. May God empower the Sri Lankan Church as a peacemaker to show the light of truth in the midst of long-term ethnic conflict.
- Pray for God to embolden the young church in Bhutan to be a wise and sensitive agent of blessing in the midst of pressure and opposition. Pray for the Spirit of Christ to infiltrate and transform Buddhists, softening and enlightening their hearts and turning them towards peace and progress.
Source: WEA Religious Liberty Prayer News, November 1st, 2009
- "This is our prayer request: please pray for the people of the Philippines, several typhoons have hit in our country. So much property was damaged and hundreds of people lost their lives while others are homeless and suffering from hungers and sickness. Our relatives and loved ones of our members was hit by the typhoon. They are asking for help from our church but our local mission cannot help them all, we also need help so that we can also extend help to them. Please pray for us here in the Philippines.
"Thank you so much we love to hear from you soon.
"In His Service, Ale and Dorothy" Reference Number: 90038948
- Eritrea inflicts another blow on Christians. Evangelical Christians are facing even more problems in Eritrea. Open Doors USA reports Eritrean security forces raided the home of the founding elder of the Full Gospel Church in Asmara. Three people were arrested during the raid, seven more people two day later. More than 2800 Christians remain behind bars for worshipping outside of the state-sanctioned Orthodox, Lutheran and Catholic churches. At least ten believers have died while being incarcerated.
Source: Mission Network News, 21 October, 2009. Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/13411
- A Pastor in Myanmar (Burma) writes: "This is my privilege of making prayer request in the lord. I have decided to be involved in the Church planting ministry at the north western of Myanmar among the NaGa people, so I need your prayers for the success of the church planting ministry. Thank for having you as my prayer partner in the ministry of the Lord." Reference Number: 90038612
- Pastor Sergey says, "Pray for a move of God on Ukraine. Start here, in and through the church we serve in." Reference Number: 90039185