Thank you for bringing this teaching on Romans!
The entire team has done an outstanding job of communicating as God has answered your prayers for us.
I [Joel] began the conference summarizing Rom 1-10. Imagine, it took 2 1/2 hrs to summarize what took a week to teach last trip. This set the stage for the rest of Romans.
So we began on Romans 11-12. We moved from the certainty of our salvation in Christ to the ways we begin to change in our Christian walk. “I appeal to you therefore by the mercies of God, present your bodies as a living sacrifice…”. Working through the gifts, grace, love to others, how to respond to an enemy who harms us. Imagine sharing such a message with people who have lived with years of war, unspeakable brutality, broken economy, and hardship on every front. Romans says “give water and food to an enemy.” They wrestled. Sometime you would hear a lot of voices break out as they spoke to one another.
Yet, as these areas unfolded, they continued to drink in the teaching of God’s Word. Then there were moments of celebration. Singing. Fervent prayers of thanks to God. Smiles. Praise God! They don’t hide their amazement at God’s Counsel.
As you will recall I spent five weeks in India, which included four weeks of teaching Indian pastors. All told, we ministered to some 320 church leaders in three Indian states. Topics included: Doctrine of Christ, Living in Grace, Evangelism, and Bible Survey. I had as a co-teacher my friend Francois who serves as an Elder here in our local church. Francois was with me for three weeks, and I think he will return to India again when he is able.
In fact, I wish all of you reading this could come and get a taste of the wind of the Holy Spirit blowing in that land! Churches are growing and multiplying. I have heard estimates of 20,000 people coming to Christ EACH DAY! Who will shepherd these young believers? Who will care for them, and teach them the basics of walking with Christ and belonging to His family? God gives gifts in His church, including pastor/teachers. But most are poorly trained. We in the North American church are drowning in resources for Bible study, Christian books, radio and podcasts, and many gifted teachers. It is our privilege in ELI to share from the wealth the Lord has blessed us with. Church leaders in India (and most of the world) are hungry for the meat of God’s Word, and for training in the skills of study, preaching and counseling. As you know, ELI provides training for these leaders, at little or no cost to them. Some enroll in a Certificate program and others go on for Bachelors and even Masters work in Theology. (The Indian Masters students began their program last fall.) Be encouraged, friends, God is using your prayers and support to strengthen His church where it is growing so very fast.
I anticipate returning to India in Sept/Oct, God willing. Please join me in praying for co-teachers, funds, and all the logistics.