By Alexei Salapatov
Published November 1, 1995
Published in Predvestnik No.3, 1995
Have you ever realized there are still a number of places in the earth where access is still denied for Christian missionaries. This is not because of a lack of training, zeal or finances. It isn’t due to a lack of faith. You have probably heard a lot already about computer networks and have possibly even had a chance to work with this. In this article, I’d like to talk about the Internet and opportunity to use it for missionary purposes.
Even in our super-technological time, when it seems like nothing is impossible, there are many obstacles which prevent the Good News from spreading around the world. First of all, Muslim countries give no chance for Christian missionaries or domestic believers to work in the field of preaching the Gospel. Many cases are known of Christians who were executed or arrested for their confession of faith. (Predvestnik reported such facts in a special issue dedicated to Islam – No.2, 1994.) What solution can be found to remedy this situation? Should missionaries be sent to be killed in Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia?
Invention of moveable type freed people from retelling and hand copying the Bible, invention of the radio allowed us to address millions of listeners, television made possible to see things from thousands of miles away. However, let’s remind ourselves of the near past – the USSR. Didn’t our custom officers confiscate and burn thousands of Bibles and didn’t missionaries used to be deported out of the country? Didn’t we have a unique complex of “stunners” which jammed everything in the air from “The Voice of the Vatican” to “The Voice of America.” Satanic inventions found the means to prevent evangelization. Though, as we know, they couldn’t prevent it.
So what is the difference between the Muslim world and the former communist bloc? A big difference. Even in the most cruel years of persecution, our preachers were not executed and new Christians were not imprisoned with the same ferocity as in the Muslim world of today. Muslim customs officials confiscate Bibles with greater zeal, and find more effective ways to jam “undesirable” radio signals on the air. What action should be taken to destroy this wall?
At this point, I’d like to go back to the title of this article. First of all, a definition: The Internet – the world’s largest computer network that links millions of computers from different places around the world. According to the most recent statistics, 160 thousand new users join this net monthly. The main purpose of this network is free and operative distribution of information. We should mention that the Internet handles this task excellently. Anyone who’s got a computer with a modem and phone line can get access to the network – no matter where you are – in New York or even in a forgotten village somewhere in Siberia. Once connected, any type of information can be received: from weather forecasts to cooking recipes.
So what is the difference between this new thing and every other type of media? Well though it may sound a bit strange – uncontrollability. The world biggest net doesn’t belong to anybody and isn’t controlled by anybody. Access to it can’t be shut down, jammed or put under the control of a state no matter how powerful it is. This opens many great opportunities for evangelizing the nations. Imagine, translations of the Bible in any language can be transmitted to millions of users. If the Internet is used by everybody for any purpose (from clothing sales to air-ticket reservations) what keeps us Christians from using such a powerful net for ministry?
There are already many Christian Internet sites in the West. What prevents the same thing from happening here in the CIS? Right now there are not many obstacles. Many churches and missions have personal computers that can be successfully used for such purposes. Besides that, connecting to the Internet significantly boosts sending and receiving of messages (letters, etc.) and also saves money on sending faxes abroad (i.e., the need for it practically disappears).
By 1997, we will have electronic version of Predvestnik in Russian and English. We’ll let you know how to get it in further issues. Possibly you have ideas or suggestions, articles or testimonies that will be interesting for others. We encourage to share any material you may have for publication in our newspaper and we will place it on the Internet.
So if you or your organization have a computer, but no access to the Internet, consider becoming a user. Also, we ask you to send us information on churches and missions who have who have e-mail addresses. We plan on compiling a database of Christian organizations on the territory of the former USSR. Good luck in the world of information!
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Who is the dreaded beast of Revelation?
Now at last, a plausible candidate for this personification of evil incarnate has been identified (or re-identified). Ken Gentry’s insightful analysis of scripture and history is likely to revolutionize your understanding of the book of Revelation — and even more importantly — amplify and energize your entire Christian worldview!
Historical footage and other graphics are used to illustrate the lecture Dr. Gentry presented at the 1999 Ligonier Conference in Orlando, Florida. It is followed by a one-hour question and answer session addressing the key concerns and objections typically raised in response to his position. This presentation also features an introduction that touches on not only the confusion and controversy surrounding this issue — but just why it may well be one of the most significant issues facing the Church today.
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God’s Law and Society powerfully presents a comprehensive worldview based upon the ethical system found in the Law of God.
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Sixteen Christian leaders and scholars answer some of the most common questions and misconceptions related to this volatile issue:
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2. Does the Old Testament Law apply today?
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5. Was America founded as a Christian nation?
6. What about the separation of Church and State?
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9. Would there be “freedom” in a Christian republic?
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Foundations in Biblical Eschatology
By Jay Rogers, Larry Waugh, Rodney Stortz, Joseph Meiring. High quality paperback, 167 pages.
All Christians believe that their great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will one day return. Although we cannot know the exact time of His return, what exactly did Jesus mean when he spoke of the signs of His coming (Mat. 24)? How are we to interpret the prophecies in Isaiah regarding the time when “the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:19)? Should we expect a time of great tribulation and apostasy or revival and reformation before the Lord returns? Is the devil bound now, and are the saints reigning with Christ? Did you know that there are four hermeneutical approaches to the book of Daniel and Revelation?
These and many more questions are dealt with by four authors as they present the four views on the millennium. Each view is then critiqued by the other three authors.
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“Here I stand … I can do no other!”
With these immortal words, an unknown German monk sparked a spiritual revolution that changed the world.
The dramatic classic film of Martin Luther’s life was released in theaters worldwide in the 1950s and was nominated for two Oscars. A magnificent depiction of Luther and the forces at work in the surrounding society that resulted in his historic reform efforts, this film traces Luther’s life from a guilt-burdened monk to his eventual break with the Roman Catholic Church.
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Who is the Real Jesus?
Ever since the dawn of modern rationalism, skeptics have sought to use textual criticism, archeology and historical reconstructions to uncover the “historical Jesus” — a wise teacher who said many wonderful things, but fulfilled no prophecies, performed no miracles and certainly did not rise from the dead in triumph over sin.
Over the past 100 years, however, startling discoveries in biblical archeology and scholarship have all but vanquished the faulty assumptions of these doubting modernists. Regrettably, these discoveries have often been ignored by the skeptics as well as by the popular media. As a result, the liberal view still holds sway in universities and impacts the culture and even much of the church.
The Real Jesus explodes the myths of these critics and the movies, books and television programs that have popularized their views. Presented in ten parts — perfect for individual, family and classroom study — viewers will be challenged to go deeper in their knowledge of Christ in order to be able to defend their faith and present the truth to a skeptical modern world – that the Jesus of the Gospels is the Jesus of history — “the same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). He is the real Jesus.
Speakers include: George Grant, Ted Baehr, Stephen Mansfield, Raymond Ortlund, Phil Kayser, David Lutzweiler, Jay Grimstead, J.P. Holding, and Eric Holmberg.
Ten parts, over two hours of instruction!
Running Time: 130 minutes
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