The September-October 2010 PNEUMA INFORMER
In this issue
What's New at www.PneumaFoundation.orgThe Pneuma Foundation on Facebook
New Online Articles
- Thanks to the help of some loyal friends, The Pneuma Foundation now has a presence on the Facebook social network. Please mark yourself as a "fan" today.
New Links and Content Worth Noticing
- From the In Depth Resources Index: Web Exclusive Book Review: Alister E. McGrath, A Fine Tuned Universe: The Quest for God in Science and Theology (Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 2009). Reviewed by Bradford McCall. Added September 14, 2010. http://www.pneumafoundation.org/article.jsp?article=/AMcGrath-AFineTunedUniverse-BMcCall.xml
- From the In Depth Resources Index: Web Exclusive Book Review: Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Charles A. Anderson, and Michael J. Sleasman, eds., Everyday Theology: How to Read Cultural Texts and Interpret Trends (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2007). Reviewed by Bradford McCall. Added September 14, 2010. http://www.pneumafoundation.org/article.jsp?article=/EverydayTheology-BMcCall.xml
- 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
- Church and Law: John R. Throop, "Reading the Fine Print: Tips and tactics to remember when it comes to contracts" Your Church (2010 Church Buyer's Guide). http://www.christianitytoday.com/yc/2009/sepoct/readingthefineprint.html
- From the In Depth Resources index, Hebraic Studies section: Day of Atonement Suggested by Kevin W.: "The Temple Institute has some great material (with pictures), on the Yom Kippur service as it would have been conducted in the days of Jesus and the disciples. Of course, it is strictly from an Orthodox Jewish perspective, but if anyone knows how it was observed, these guys do." www.templeinstitute.org/yom_kippur/start.htm
Reports from Around the World
Evangelists Say Muslims Coming to Christ at Historic Rate
Despite intense persecution for Muslim "apostates," pastors say that Muslims in the Middle East are converting to Christianity at record rates and in supernatural ways. "Probably in the last 10 years, more Muslims have come to faith in Christ than in the last 15 centuries of Islam," said Tom Doyle, Middle East-Central Asia director for e3 Partners, a Texas-based missions agency. According to Charisma magazine, more than 200 former Muslims were baptized during July in Europe, led by Iran-born evangelist Lazarus Yeghnazar. Radio, television and Internet-based Christian programming to Muslim nations now reach millions. But Doyle says many Muslims come to faith after having dreams and visions of Jesus. "I can't tell you how many Muslims I've met who say: 'I was content. I was a Muslim, and all of a sudden I get this dream about Jesus and He loved me and said come follow Me," Doyle said.
Source: Religion Today Summaries, August 26, 2010. http://charismamag.com/index.php/news/29125-evangelists-say-muslims-coming-to-christ-at-historic-rate
God delivers a violent possessed man
Through prayer and fasting, a man in South Asia that had to be chained down because of his unnatural strength has been liberated. mnnonline.org/article/14817
India: Moment of justice
A high-profile defendant convicted in Orissa for his involvement in violence against Christians in 2008.
South Africa: Lausanne III to be held in Cape Town in October
In 1974, mission leaders gathered together in Lausanne, Switzerland for a landmark conference in global outreach. Richard Coleman of The Mission Society explains: "Billy Graham and several other leaders got together and thought it would be great to have a diverse gathering of believers to discuss how they could finish the task of global evangelization." At this meeting, the term "unreached people groups" was coined. Fifteen years later, they reconvened to gauge their progress. Meanwhile, they'd been utilizing their mission strategies: "They didn't simply want to have these giant mission conferences that took place, and then you hear crickets. They wanted it to be a continual process of engaging the world in missions." Throughout the years, they've continued to advance the kingdom. This year, mission leaders come together yet again in October 2010 for Lausanne III. "There will be 4000 participants from over 200 countries with one focus, and that's to make sure the name of Jesus is proclaimed in all four corners of the earth."
Editor's Note: Look for more about Lausanne 2010 in future issues of THE PNEUMA INFORMER
Source: Mission Network News, 19 August, 2010. http://www.mnnonline.org/article/14616
China: Special library project
The Foundation for Pentecostal Scholarship made this announcement in early September: "The China Pentecostal Library Project which will place important Pentecostal/Charismatic academic works in hundreds of Chinese libraries will begin its first distribution this Fall. Due to a funding shortfall, the project has been planned for completion in phases. Missionary scholar Robert Menzies proposed the project to The Foundation for Pentecostal Scholarship late last year, and the Foundation approved the initial funding of $3,000 last spring. Additional funding is needed to complete the project. Please visit the Foundation's Web site at www.tffps.org to make a contribution to this worthwhile project."
Leaders from 70 Nations Meet in Sweden for Pentecostal World Conference
Story of the Bible commemorates 400th anniversary of King James Bible
As part of its 400th anniversary celebration campaign for the King James Bible, Thomas Nelson Publishers will, in September, release The Story of the Bible -- a visually-enhanced history covering the writing and transmission of the Bible through the ages.
With a sweeping, colorful, and captivating narrative, The Story of the Bible details the ways by which the many books of the Old and New Testaments were composed and copied, how the writings were collected and canonized, and also tells the stories of the men and women who gave their lives to make the Bible available in common language. Reported clearly and reverently, the book weaves these many tales with powerful anecdotes, gripping historical episodes, and just a touch of whimsy and humor.
But that's only half of the story.
Readers will also find 23 life-sized, removable reproductions of pages from the world's most important Bibles, including samples from The Book of Kells, Codex Sinaiticus, the Gutenberg Bible, even a portion of a Dead Sea Scrolls manuscript. These, as well as over 90 other illustrations, including ancient iconography and contemporary photos, enrich the reading experience, while numerous sidebars add intrigue and entertainment.
"Every Bible lover needs this book," says Joel J. Miller, Vice President of Acquisitions and Editorial for Thomas Nelson's nonfiction division. "It's as inviting as it is comprehensive and as fun as it is informative. Unfolding the removable pages and connecting with pieces of ancient and sacred history in that way is totally thrilling."
Best-selling author, Christian apologist and evangelist Ravi Zacharias wrote the book's foreword and agrees with Miller in his effusive praise. "(Author) Larry (Stone) has done a wonderful job of making scholarly material engaging and accessible," he says. "It's a captivating work."
The Story of the Bible will be available nationwide on September 21.
To view a sample: www.thomasnelsoninfo.com/nms/images/StoryBible/storybibleindex.html
For more information: www.storyofbible.com
Source: Rush to Press, August 16, 2010.
India: Victim of Orissa Violence Rescued from Trafficking Ring
Anti-Christian violence in Orissa state in 2008 left more than 50,000 homeless and vulnerable to human traffickers.
Indonesia: Vocal opposition gaining steam against believers in West Java
Christians in Bekasi, West Java face growing opposition from Muslims opposed to "Christianization." Though it has been relatively calm in the last few weeks, the tension never really goes away. Greg Musselman, spokesman with Voice of the Martyrs Canada, says, "It's always bubbling near the surface, and then these Islamic groups get together and come against the church." Over the last eight months, that's translated into beatings, mob assaults, church burnings, and death threats. Church services throughout the city have been repeatedly interrupted and Christians intimidated into silence. "Those that are staying are growing in their faith, and persecution is strengthening it. Pastor is preaching on persecution, and he's seeing a spiritual maturity within those who have stayed." Believers are praying that their conduct would continue to be a witness for Christ. "Pray that they would be strong through it. That is the prayer that we get most requests for: not necessarily that the persecution would stop, but that they would be strong through the persecution, and also that justice would be done."
Source: Mission Network News, 7 September, 2010. http://www.mnnonline.org/article/14694
USA: Woman Walks for First Time in 22 Years During Alabama Revival Meeting
News and Headlines
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
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.
In order to complete this issue of THE PNEUMA INFORMER while it is still October, no excerpts were able to be included.
- Ethiopia: Somali militants chase Christians who've fled. After months of evading his pursuers, they finally caught up with him. Voice of the Martyrs Canada says Islamic militants found Mohamed Ali Garas in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and beat him severely. He was a prominent Somali church leader and convert from Islam who left his homeland and sought refuge in Ethiopia five years ago. VOMC's Greg Musselman explains that's why the attack is so unsettling. "They [extremists] are not just leaving it back home; they're taking it wherever they find these people that have converted to Christ from an Islamic background." The strongest course of action is prayer. "Lord, our brothers and sisters in Somalia are such a small group. They're trying to be faithful. There are other Somalis that have left the country; they're trying to be faithful, and they continue to suffer attacks, and it's difficult for them. But we ask You, Lord, to move on the hearts even of the enemies that are persecuting these believers, that they would have the
freedom to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ."
Source: Mission Network News, 3 September, 2010. http://www.mnnonline.org/article/14686
- Tanzania: Arrests and discrimination against Christians. Compass Direct News Service reports about the arrest of the evangelist Peter Masanja from Zanzibar's southeastern town of Paje, Tanzania, because of holding religious activities in his home and being suspected by local Muslims in planning to establish a church on his land. Peter Masanja was arrested and imprisoned in Kilimani. Local pastors have several times unsuccessfully tried to meet with prison authorities about Peter's arrest.
Additional disturbing news from Tanzania is in regard to Christian university students on the island of Zanzibar, a predominantly Muslim area off the coast of East Africa, who have been denied the right to worship inside the campus premises, which violates the rights granted by the constitution of Zanzibar Compass Direct News Servicehas also reported about growing discrimination against Christian students at universities in Tanzania.
Prayer points: Pray for the release of Peter Masanja and for God's comfort over his wife and family. Pray God's movement at university campuses in the country. Pray that the faith in Christ among Tanzanian Christians will grow stronger during these difficult days.
Source: WEA Religious Liberty Prayer News, September 1, 2010.
- Uzbekistan: Fines and jail over movies menace believers. An evangelical pastor in Uzbekistan is facing heavy fines for having the "JESUS" film, along with several other American Christian movies, in his possession. Fines for unregistered religious worship are frequent, and they are nearly ten times what the average person earns in a month. Uzbekistan bans religious activity that does not have state permission, despite international human rights commitments. Pray for continued strength for Christians facing charges and harassment from authorities.
Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/14895
Source: Mission Network News, 27 October, 2010.