The Foreigner Among Us
By the International Project
June 2, 2020
In light of the violent events that have increased migration around the world, many believers are being lured into a posture of anger and hatred toward those from other lands. In this pivotal time, it is crucial that the Church leads the way in revealing God’s heart to love the foreigner and His desire to see all nations and people groups come to an understanding of the gospel and hope that is only in Christ. This video is not seeking to communicate a perspective on policy but on loving people. We feel an urgency to share this important message during this confusing time.
When Christians think about the Great Commission or reaching the nations, we often default to thinking about crossing oceans and living in another country. Yet, that’s not always what we see in Scripture. In Acts, Paul and other missionaries repeatedly visits and starts churches in the urban hubs of business, religion and politics. Thousands of people passed through those cities every day on their way to and from their homes and workplaces. The early church targeted these transient places to see the Gospel spread outward from those places to the rest of the surrounding regions and beyond – much like the story of Philip’s interaction with the Ehtiopian Eunuch (Acts 8:27-28).
While Paul and Philip were missionaries, the churches he started were simply local churches who continued ministry in their own areas of influence. When Jesus said to go and make disciples of nations – the nations were right there in own backyards! Philip himself never went to Ethiopia, but he shared the Gospel with a migrant who was on his way home. Many scholars believe this is why Ethiopia was one of the earliest Christian nations.
At International Project, we have a similar vision of reaching the world through migration. We exist to see church-planting movements through unreached people groups living outside their homeland. People are on the move now more than ever before. Our teams in New York City, Rome and Dallas work with migrants, refugees, international students, and anyone else who has moved away from their homeland. Many of these groups come from places with little to no access to the Gospel. New York City alone has over 100 unreached people groups. Rome has several refugee camps with people from Northern Africa who are moving north to restart their lives. As the Gospel spreads through these transient communities, we have seen numerous churches planted in unreached nations across the 10/40 Window.
Many Christians feel stalled in their pursuit of the Great Commission, so we provide innovative opportunities and trainings to maximize their impact to make disciples of all nations. For example, one of our teams in New York City runs our Salaam Center – a thrift store and community center in a majority Arab Muslim neighborhood. This for-profit store puts every dollar earned back into the community through classes and activities, such as English classes, citizen classes, art groups, and other events that meet their tangible needs. The store itself provides a beautiful and safe space to shop and provide for the felt needs of the family. Additionally, our workers regularly engage the people in the neighbrohood, primarily Arab Muslim women and their children, to have spiritual conversations about Jesus and begin discipleship. We are also currently looking for mission-minded leaders with retail experience to step in as a manager for our Salaam Center. If you are interested in applying, please go to our website.
God is on the move, and he is pursuing the least reached. As the church, we are anxiously waiting for the day that every nation and every tongue will declare his name. Are you ready to join us?
Communications Manager at International Project
Jana holds a degree in Intercultural Journalism and currently lives and works and New York City.
International Project exists to initiate church planting movements through diaspora unreached people groups.
Initiate – We believe in indigenous leadership and contextualized worship. Thus, we will serve as coaches instead of overseers.
Church-Planting Movements – We are not satisfied with planting one church. Rather, we want to help plant churches that will plant other churches.
Through – Diaspora ministry is key to unlocking their home countries to the Gospel. We want to see the Gospel extend out to the nations!
Diaspora – Those displaced in the United States should be opened to cross-cultural ministry.
Unreached people groups – God cares about all ethnic groups having access to the Gospel.
Please see original post video here.