A few months ago we got a request from Cotabato, Philippines to please come and start Antioch Institute training in their area. This is in the Muslim area of Mindanao and is usually unsafe with bombings and kidnappings common. Finally in October, Pastor Ben Embaan had a chance to go. The churches had been praying because they had not seen any growth in many years. The different churches did not like each other either because of their different “doctrinal” backgrounds. Finally, they saw the light. They are all people from the Manobo tribe, but were divided by artificial “doctrinal” positions. The non-believers in the area were not about to join that mess!
In October the churches agreed to unify under the love of Christ and so Pastor Ben came into start an Antioch extension. One church in Magpit, Cotabato prided itself for being so “large”. There were about ninety people in the church on a good Sunday.
In Antioch Institute our key verse is 2 Timothy 2:2 which says, “And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others”. We don’t just train teachers or pastors, but anyone who is willing to teach others in the ways of God. So Pastor Ben started teaching. Today we got a report from one of the pastors in Magpit. He said, since last month’s training, they started discipling their own people and then those people started discipling others in the village. People started coming to Christ rapidly. The church has now grown to more than 400 people in one month! Praise the Lord!
Following Jesus is not that complicated, it only requires courage and hard work on behalf of everyone. Once everyone is working together, it is amazing what God allows to happen.