Why I Became a Christian

I just realised that I’ve been busily posting about Creation, Politics and Evangelism, without first explaining who I am and where I’m coming from.  So I shall do that here.  Just as an aside first, this is the final prepared posting I will make.  From now on I intend making only topical (shorter!) posts.

Why I Became a Christian

My background, from birth to pre-High School

I grew up "outside" the Mormon church, meaning my parents had been in it, but, like so many of my relatives, had left it by the time I came along. This left me "blissfully ignorant" of any Christian influences (positive or negative) in my life.

I am part-Maori, and part-"Pakeha" (meaning non-Maori). In my case, I am of European (French and Scottish) descent. My mother and I moved around a lot after her divorce. This taught me the impermanence of relationships.

College (High School)

I experienced prejudice against my race for the first time at college. I learned to fight back, and after a while, my body size dissuaded anybody else from attempting any kind of racism to my face. This intimidation I was able to exert, played a factor in my acceptance at school.

University Life

Coming to university here in Wellington, my older sister was my inspiration. I’ll never forget, when, in my naïveté, I asked her what she thought of all this Maori Radical Activism, and student support of same. She responded "it’s amazing how, whenever anybody actually investigates the issues, they inevitably end up on the Maori side of the issue."

I took that attitude of scientific yet sceptical inquiry into the realm of Maoridom, and realised for the first time that there were real injustices and resolvable grievances there. Similarly, I gave a cursory investigation of religion and, like many of you, found it wanting, and thus rejected Christianity on the grounds of the external, observable religion.

Instead, the message I was getting from my family was that the only hope for an individual and his family’s "salvation" (being a happy life, through materialistic success) was Education.


I experienced the usual "freedoms" that you do when you’re away from home for the first time, with zero moral restraint. This freedom promptly translated itself into loneliness, which I filled in the time-honoured way of empty sex.

I guess you could sum up my life to this point by the expression "SNAG." SNAG stands for Sensitive New-Age Guy, and means a male who’s "in touch with his feelings, not a sexist, is tolerant towards all religions, is intolerant of bigotry." 

I was also a seven-year practitioner of the Seido Karate style of martial arts. I didn’t realise then, but my New Age tendencies were actually just a reaction to the re-packaged form of Zen Buddhism I was getting. If you look, you will find an earlier post on why I quit karate.


The longest I had been able to hold onto any relationship was about nine months (due in part to the impermanence aspect of my up-bringing mentioned above).


After successfully completing my Information Systems degree, the new hope for salvation lay in the accumulation of wealth. So I formed my own company, which gave me a lot of fun, was unpressured, but was non-directional. I didn’t have anyone to whom I was accountable, so I had nothing left worth striving for.

Then I met Fiona. She was a back-slidden Christian, which as everybody knows, is the best combination a guy like I could hope for: good enough to be nice, but naughty enough to be fun. We began a semi-permanent pre-marital relationship, that I hoped would last, but I knew I would stuff it up somehow.

I found God (He found me?)

Actually, it wasn’t me that stuffed it up at all. It was her!

First, we attended the baptism of a friend of hers. So I’m there and challenge God in my head: "if You’re really there, make that man turn around and say something to me." Of course, the man doesn’t and so I leave perfectly satisfied there is no God (this was arrogant of me, don’t you think?).

Next, she began attending this "Basic Life Principles Seminar" that gave her answers to why she had left Christianity, and why she should come back. So when she came home one night and announced that she was thinking about re-evaluating her spiritual life, I promptly responded in the only logical, purely consistent manner possible. I informed her that if she was "considering putting JC ahead of me, then I couldn’t accept that, and we’d better just call it quits now." Wow! What a jerk I was, but to my mind, I was only being reasonable, and nipping in the bud, what I knew would eventually drive a wedge between us.  Besides, I was hoping my ultimatum would snap her out of this crazy notion of hers.

Then I realised what had happened. I had challenged God to reveal himself, and He had responded in His own way and time, by taking away from me the centre of my universe. My Pakeha side wanted to curse God, but my Maori side knew He was too awesome for me to do that!  I had nowhere to turn, and what was worse was that I knew she would have a church full of caring people offering to help her get over me!

Next, I read an article I just "happened" to pick up, written by the Student Christian Union. (BTW, I no longer believe in co-incidences — God did it.)  This article clearly and scientifically disproved Evolution, and therefore by implication proved its only alternative (which is Creation). This was the first time my Pakeha side was willing to believe that there was a God, let alone which one. By the way, they call this brand of science "Creation Science." The particular principle to which I am referring is the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Write me a Comment for a discussion about it.

The last thing that happened was that my newly rededicated Christian ex-girlfriend gave me a book titled "More Than A Carpenter" written by Josh McDowell. This is an excellent, well-written short book that explains that, based upon what Jesus said about himself (he undeniably claimed to be God), he can only be one of three things:

  • Lunatic: He thought what he was saying was true, when it wasn’t;
  • Liar: He knew what he was saying was false; or 
  • Lord: What he was saying was the Truth.

So I came to this point: Jesus was confronting me with the Truth about who He said He was, and I responded to it in, to me, what was the only logical, reasonable way. After all, as per my earlier scientific yet critical attitude, I had "investigated, and ended up on the Christian side of the issue."

Growth Period

I have never regretted making my decision to allow Jesus to be Lord of my life. Now Jesus is Lord:

  1. of the Universe — by virtue of creating it; and
  2. of my life — by virtue of His paying for it on the Cross at Calvary.

I have seen miracles occur in my life since then: God helped me to achieve a "four-point goal" I set myself:

  1. Find a true, Christian church, which believes in the Jesus of the Bible.
  2. Get baptised
  3. Get financially solvent (I lived with constant debt).
  4. If Fiona would have me back, propose and marry her.

I set myself a reasonable time-frame (I thought) of 12 months, but God enabled me to do it in nine! (And yes, Fiona did agree that God was saying we could get married, and so we are: 13 years in 2006! Also, I know with God’s help, this marriage will not only survive, but thrive!) Simultaneously, I set myself another goal, to undergo a "voluntary period of rapid indoctrination." In other words, I knew that I didn’t know the Bible, and I resolved to read it from cover to cover, in order to more fully understand my decision. This, God also helped me to achieve within the same 12 month period.

I asked a lot of dumb questions at this time, because I did not know Christianity at all. One of which I am rather proud is: since I believe that baptism is very important (from my Mormon background), then why don’t I join a Baptist church to get it done? So I did!

I also went through a phase of having too much enthusiasm, leading to a legalistic view of the requirements of God, which inevitably took me on a brush with a legalistic church. Which is why it was so important to find that Bible-believing church. There is no such thing as a perfect church, because they are all run by imperfect people. However, God is perfect, and His Word is true, so any main-stream, orthodox Christian church that believes in the Bible, can be good for a person like I am, to attend. We need that relationship with others, stronger than ourselves in the faith, in order to learn the difference between Truth and error. I thank God, that He taught me the lesson of "balance in all things" before it was too late. I was a "loose canon looking for an aiming mechanism" and now the Holy Spirit is my aiming mechanism.


Have you ever heard the expression, "the future’s so bright, I gotta wear shades"? In my case, it’s true. Working for the Lord, is all I want to do now, and so Fiona and I have undertaken Ministry training. We have vigorously supported the Future New Zealand Party (formerly the Christian Democrats – now United Future) here in NZ, and now have our third child.

Praise God!


So I guess my basic point is this:

While it is true that we worship a God who is Spirit, and therefore is outside the realm of the observable, physical universe, this doesn’t make Him unknowable.

I believe that we do not have to switch our brains off to be Christians. God is meta-logical, not illogical. Since making my decision, I have gone on to further study, but this time, Bible study, realising the Truth of the psalm: "the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom." I had Knowledge (remember my degree?). However, without God and His Word around which to anchor that knowledge, I did not have Wisdom. All my prior reasoning I had originally based on Relativism (which is the New Age), which is subsequently inferior and false compared to the provable Absolute Truth.

Turn to Jesus now. He is the Only Way to salvation.

Post a comment to me if this message has significant meaning to you!  


The Maori Names for God

Io nui Io, the Supreme Greater than all other gods.
Io roa Io, the everlasting His Being is eternal, he will never die.
Io matua Io, the parent He is the parent of the heavens, worlds, clouds, animals, cosmos, etc. He is over all, and is the parent of all things, including man.
Io matua te kore Io, the parentless He has no beginning, no brothers, sisters, etc.
Io take take Io, the original Io is permanent and enduring.
Io matangaro Io, the hidden face He cannot be seen anywhere by his Creation.
Io matanui Io, the many eyed All things are seen and observed by Him.
Io te toi o nga rangi Io, the crown of heaven He is the highest of the 12 heavens, beyond him there is nothing.
Io te wananga Io, the source of knowledge  
Io te pukenga Io, the source of all thought  
Io mataaho Io, the radiant  
Io te whiwhia Io, the giver of all  

World Christian Gathering on Indigenous People

Report on the Inaugural

World Christian Gathering on Indigenous People

Rotorua, New Zealand
10-17 November 1996

(The Voice of Reason in New Zealand)

"We’ve been deceived by the Devil too long,
What he said was his, has been ours all along!"

Executive Summary

The Inaugural World Christian Gathering on Indigenous People was a spectacular event that marks the "coming of age" for many Indigenous followers of "the Jesus Way." But what does it hold for the rest of the Church in New Zealand? Some have expressed reservations about whether this Gathering can claim to be definitive at all. What can we say to alleviate the fears of Pakeha Christians? Specifically, these fears translate into the following concerns:

  1. What is all the fuss? Are Maori pushing for separatist, apartheid-style policies?
  2. Are Native forms of worship truly Christian?

This report sets out to answer these questions and others. It does so by drawing upon the personal experiences of its author. I and my wife were merely spectators ourselves during the Gathering, but by virtue of being a mixed Maori-Pakeha marriage, we find ourselves called upon to be a model for the reconciliation process this Gathering initiated.


There were 32 nations represented, with probably 1,300-2,000 people attending over the course of the week. A different group of nations had each day dedicated to it:

  • Sunday Opening Ceremonies
  • Monday Maori and Pacific Islands (Fiji, Samoa, Cook Islands, Hawaii)
  • Tuesday North American and Canadian First Nations Peoples
  • Wednesday Break
  • Thursday Asia (Korea, Haka Chinese, Borneo Malaysians, Philippines) and Australia (Mainland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander)
  • Friday The Sammi people (from north of Norway, Sweden, Finland & Russia) and Israel
  • Saturday Africa
  • Sunday Closing Ceremonies

Interesting Comparisons

Among the many enlightening comments heard during the course of the week, were comparisons between the WCGIP and a preceding "World Indigenous People Conference" minus the Christian influence. This earlier conference (held in Brussels) became a forum for voicing the hurts and anger of Indigenous People. Without the hope of peace that comes from the Prince of Peace, this earlier conference was unable to offer any solutions. Consequently, those who were present at both found that whereas the previous one left them feeling empty and unsatisfied, this one gave them hope for the future.

Most groups recounted only a brief summary of the historical, cultural & current events that affect their people. In every case, delegates discussed only the facts, not in an emotive, blameful way. An interesting point of note was the similarity of situations involving contact between indigenous people and colonial powers, although certain details were different, for example:

  • All were banned from speaking their languages at school, from a misguided attempt at assimilation; but
  • Colonial powers removed forcibly Australian Aboriginal and Native North American children to boarding school, away from their homes. This was from a similarly misguided attempt to "educate" them into the white man’s ways (this never happened in NZ).

Throughout the Gathering, the delegates gave due recognition that the source of our shared woes was not the white man. If God had turned the tables, our sinful natures would have caused us to behave in exactly the same manner. And in the matter of bringing to us the Gospel, the delegates throughout the Gathering maintained a proper attitude of thankfulness.

However, what has the Church of Christ lost through these attempts at "assimilation" rather than "partnership"? What does a Native world view have to offer the Church? For a more thorough examination of this issue, we highly recommend The Turtle and the Snail by Richard Twiss. A brief summary would be:

  • A more relational, community-based society.
  • A more environmentally friendly society.
  • A more spiritually aware society.

Call To Repentance

Please note that the Gathering was not saying that a Native world view is necessarily a better, more Christian way to live than the prevailing Western, materialistic, individualistic way we currently have. Both have their weak and strong points. The point is, that both systems are equally valid, and we all should be free to pick and choose aspects from either system to the greater Glory of God.

Attempts to legislate or peer-pressure these differences out of people, for the sake of "unity," are wrong. These are attitudes from which the Church should repent. This form of assimilation is not unity, but instead is uniformity. Uniformity is a passive form of racism, in that it does not allow for the unique differences God has built into cultures.

At the beginning of this report, we have quoted from a popular worship song "We’re Going Up To The High Places, To Tear The Devil’s Kingdom Down." A recurring theme of this Gathering was that for too long, we have believed a certain lie of the enemy. Namely, that certain aspects of each of our cultures were repugnant to God, and therefore we could not use them in our churches to glorify Him. What we did not realise was that as the only Creator, everything we have belongs to Him, and should be used to glorify Him. God created every cultural thing, as only God can create. Satan misuses and corrupts these things, but Christians are to reclaim these cultural expressions to give glory to God.

So, for instance:

  • Maori haka should be used for spiritual warfare;
  • Sammi Yoik should be redeemed from "just a traditional pub song" to a distinctive sounding praise song;
  • and so on…

There is no definitive list of what is right or wrong in each culture. For example, could not a marae be a "church?"

Process of Reconciliation

The Gathering gave various groups several opportunities for expressions of confession, repentance and forgiveness. All the groups did this with appropriate attitudes of love — not out of bitterness, resentment, or hatred. Three such calls were between:

  1. Jew and Gentile
  2. Indigenous and Colonial
  3. Maori tribes, one to another

In this process of reconciliation between Indigenous and Colonial Peoples, we recognised that there is a continuum along which we all lie:

  • At one end, Native Americans and Australian Aborigines have their own independent indigenous churches. For these people, total vertical reconciliation between their ethnos and God mean bringing all of music, dance, drama, song and language to Him — dedicated and consecrated to God.
  • At the other end, some groups are happy with an occasional song in their language. For example, we sing Maori words to English hymns.

Both ends of the spectrum are valid for that people group at this time. The Gathering did not seek to push one form over another. What it did accomplish was to introduce the various reconciliation ministries to one another, to aid in this on-going, continuing process.

Native Illustration

A delegate told a story that relates well the feeling of many at the Gathering. It tells of the journey of the kahawai (a medium sized fish). A passing shark swam by the kahawai. The shark asked, "Would you like to journey together?" The kahawai thought this sounded like a good idea and agreed, since they were heading in the same direction. The shark promptly swallowed the kahawai. The kahawai was surprised at this and commented upon it, to which the shark replied, "Why are you complaining? We’re going in the same direction, aren’t we?" The kahawai thought about this and had to agree, so they continued their journey together. However, after a time, the kahawai noticed several difficulties about this arrangement:

  1. Because he could no longer see where they were, he could not be certain they were going in the right direction.
  2. When he asked the shark to relay the details of where they were, he received the information as seen through the eyes of the shark.
  3. Because he was unable to accurately work out where they were, his input into direction was misinformed as well as unwelcome.
  4. Over time, as he grew, he could only grow to the size of the belly of the shark.

The morals of this story are that in Maori to Pakeha Christian relations:

  1. Earlier colonial powers removed our indigenous forms of worship from us, so as a people we had to choose between being Maori or being Christian.
  2. The information necessary to our current growth is being relayed to us in Pakeha forms, which are inappropriate.
  3. When we attempt to influence the New Zealand Church, our brethren (largely) ignore us.
  4. The Pakeha church confines our growth.

Repentance Without Restitution?

It is the personal opinion of the author that repentance without restitution is like faith without works: a shallow faith (James 2:14-26). Another delegate told a story that relates to the depth of hurt felt by Native Christians:

Soon after the arrival of the Pakeha to New Zealand, most Maori were quick to adopt Christianity as the True Way. As a sign of gratitude to the missionary for bringing the Good News, Maori gifted a block of choice land near a particular marae to the Church. However, when the wars between the colonial powers and local Maori commenced, the missionary not only housed the soldiers upon this land, but also blessed them in their battle. When the Maori refused to battle on Sunday, "because it is the Lord’s day" but instead agreed to fight on Monday, the soldiers promptly went back on their word, and attacked the unsuspecting tribe. These actions caused a major negative reaction away from the Gospel. Subsequent to this, the Maori ceased worshipping the "white man’s god." This activity established a spiritual strong-hold, that we the Church must break before a revival for Maori can take place.

What are the actions we can take to rectify these situations? Would it be too bold and presumptuous of the author to respectfully submit that the Church has some attitudes and actions from which she needs to repent? Specifically, those earlier churches who committed these acts need to seek forgiveness. In those rare cases where the Church has retained title of gifted land not utilised for its original purpose, then returning this gifted land to Maori would be a monumental act of restitution.

Finally, the Pakeha church need not fear the formation of an indigenous church. Frankly, to question whether a people-group who have had the Gospel for 150 years can adapt it without compromising it, is patronising. Birthing these daughter congregations would become another form of restitution, as they will require resourcing initially.


In a secular sense, this Gathering did not achieve much. It did not pass any binding resolutions capable of being implemented by either governments or churches. Neither had the workshops been designed to "reach a conclusion."

However, in a peculiarly Native sense, the Gathering did achieve much:

  • On a spiritual level, we sounded a declaration of war against Satan.
  • On a relational level, many ministries networked together.
  • On an organisation level, the people affirmed the Gathering’s usefulness. Other nations will now repeat it, probably in Canada 1997 and Australia 1999.

What needs to happen now is for more Christians to heed this call. For too long the Church has been the tail, and not the head. The two greatest social justice issues of secular society today have been for a number of years:

  1. Women’s Rights
  2. Maori Partnership or Tino Rangatiratanga

But when talking with Christians, it’s as if these issues do not exist in the Church and do not matter to God. They do and they do! It’s time for the Church to embrace and affirm the validity of these causes rather than attempt to ignore or run away from them. It’s time for the Church to lead!  

Global Consultation on World Evangelisation

Global Consultation on World Evangelisation


Pretoria, South Africa
30 June – 5 July 1997

Dear GCOWE 97 Prayer Partner,

Welcome to this global consultation on the call to world evangelisation by the year 2000 and beyond!  We come to GCOWE 97 with a purpose – to pray and seek a further movement of God to advance the implementation plans of key AD2000 national and global initiatives towards the fulfillment of the goal of a church for every people and the gospel for every person by the year 2000, with a special emphasis on Africa’s involvment through national initiatives and Joshual Project 2000.

GCOWE 97 is not designed to be a pep rally or a parade of speeches but rather we trust it will be a time where God will do a deep penetrating work in the hearts and lives of each one of us.  We want to give the Lord room to change paradigms and directions and the focus of our ministries where needed – and to offer a sobering reality check!  In addition, we hope to lay vital foundations for the ongoing thrust to expand the Kingdom of God in the 21st century.

We come here with a contrite spirit, repenting for our lack of heart, vision, and compassion – yet grateful for the blood of Jesus that cleanses us from all of our sins.  We are thankful for the power of Jesus that enables us to go on; thankful for your being here – many of you as a result of major sacrifice; thankful for our hosts, the South African churches and particularly the World Mission Centre.

As God’s servants among the peoples of the earth, we do not come with forms of crusading triumphalism in the mission contexts of the unreached peoples. Our purpose in GCOWE 97 is to see the gospel willingly embraced in every ethno-linguistic people in such a way that it meets their diverse needs, heals their deepest wounds, redeems their distinct culture, and restores their God-given dignity and destiny.

At the same time, we come to CGOWE 97 with greta spiritual expe tation.  As God’s people from more than 110 countries of the world we believe we have moved from the generation of Moses to the generation of Joshua.  The serving, surveying, soldiering spirit of Joshua moves us to ask of our Lord for the remaining peoples on earth prior to the end of th emillennium and to act as though it might be so!  He has prepared the way that there be a church for each of these people.  Our goal is to have at least an outreach team and a church for each of the remaining Joshua Project 2000 peoples by the turn of the millennium.

GCOWE 97 is strategically positioned three and a half years (or 42 months or 1279 days) before the end of the century.  This is a critical time to assess what still needs to be done as we embark on our final major drive to establish a church for every people and make the Gospel available to every person.  We come with a sense of urgency – prasing and thanking God for His provision along the way!

We come to GCOWE 97 with a spirit of hope – not of despair – with regard to what God is doing in our world.  We have seen how God has broken through resistant ideologies, peoples, cities an countries.  We have seen how the church world-wide has joined together in praying through the 10/40 Window in October 1993 and October 1995 and the plans in place to pray for the unreached peoples in the month of October later this year, even believing for over 50 million to participate!  We have seen  how the churches around the world are adopting these peoples, how mission agencies are focusing to plant churches among the remaining unreached peoples, how the women in Africa and elsewhere have mobilised so many, how the business executives are becoming involved, how the students and young people are mobilising, how the needs of the poor are being increasingly addressed, how children are getting involved, how creative avenues and approaches are bing explored such as worship and fine arts.  We are delighed to see the presidents and acdemic deans from around the world amongst us with the purpose of considering how to train students to become more effective in the context of the current evangelisation thrusts and the new millennium needs.  For all this we say "Alleluia!"

We celebrate the vision and reality of the River of Life flowing from God’s throne for the healing of all peoples (Rev. 22), broadening and deepening even as we go!  We believe that the Gospel has the power to break down every wall of hostility among all the peoples of the earth, and to make them one in Christ.  We join with God’s strong desire that none should perish, but that every person on earth should be given real access to the good news of Jesus Christ within the context of their own cultural environment, through the emergence of a viable, indigenous, church-planting movement among them.

May God bless each one of you as we gather, and for your loved ones, ministry’s and/or institutions you represent.  Thank you for your many sacrifices!  What a joy to labour together in this great cause that brings/knits us together.

Sincerely in Christ,
Luis Bush
International Director – AD2000 & Beyond Movement

The Global Consultation On World Evangelisation consists of 10 consultations in 1:

  1. Business Executives
  2. Mission Executives
  3. Poor and Needy
  4. African National Initiatives
  5. Church Planting Movements
  6. Pastors
  7. Theology and Academics
  8. Youth
  9. Worship & Arts
  10. Children’s Ministry

1. Business Executive Consultation

As business executives and professionals, they are challenged to give our response to the call manifest in the Great Commission.  Christian leaders are calling on the successful business and government leaders because they hold the key to many of the unreached nations, and peoples, in their hands. They plan to do a case study, on "How to impact a nation."  Partnership opportunities in the 10/40 window and reaching the unreached.

2. Mission Executive Consultation

The objectives of the Mission Executives consultation are to give mission executives from major denominations, parachurch organisations, and emerging mission boards the opportunity to discuss together what God is doing: to share how each is involved; and to develop networks so that each part of the Body knows what the rest is doing and how the various parts may partner in our common mission.  To give mission executives who have the missionary forces and resources to give the world an opportunity to move in unity of the heart toward the fulfillment of the Great Commission.  To give the leaders of old and new missions agencies an opportunity to dialogue and learn from one another.  To assess work among the Joshua Project’s 2000 peoples and look for places where we can cooperate for the good of the Kingdom.  To encourage the formation for people-specific networking/partnership to reach all the 1739 peoples in the Joshua Project.

3. Meeting the Needs of the Poor and Needy Consultation

People already ministering to-and involved in working with the poor and needy of the world will meet.  Their first objective will be to learn from each other and secondly to, strategically seek ways together on how to reach the "poorest of the poor" among the unreached people’s groups of the world.  In this they target the 10/40 window specifically, with the GOSPEL.

4. Africa National AD2000 Initiative Consultation

The objectives of the African National Initiatives consultation include the mobilisation of national churches in partnership with the wider body of Christ to:

  1. Penetrate the least evangelised peoples groups, geographical areas, and classes of society through effective pioneer church planting movements;
  2. Play a significant role in reaching the least evangelised peoples, areas and classes worldwide (Joshua Project); and
  3. Develop cooperative national Saturation Church Planting strategies designed to saturate each country with accessible groups of believers in Christ. 

Critical to this process is a strategic integration of all-existing AD2000 Task Forces and Resource Networks.  Among these will be a focus on national research, prayer mobilisation and strategy development.  Specialist ministries focusing on church planting among Muslims, rural and urban outreach and church planting will be covered.  Breakout groups also are geared towards resource development, and the strategic use of radio and media, audio communications, audiovisual (Jesus Film Project), Bible translation and availability and distribution of Christian literature. Further attention will be given to denominational and local church mobilisation.  The role of denominational leader pastors and lay leadres, along with the mobilisation of women and cross-cultural missionaries is vital to the process.  Under-girding all of this is a commitment to the unreached peoples and those least likely to be reached through "business as usual."

5. Training for Church Planting Movements Consultation

Church planters will discuss ways in which to train others in methods that will lead to multiplying indigenous churches amongst the unreached peoples of the world.

6. Pastors Consultation

We believe that the Essential Ingredient that is missing in the task of world evangelisation is the Local Church and that the amazing resources of people, finances, etc. that are locked up in the Local Church, needs to be released.  This consultation seeks to encourage the South African Church to fulfil the vital role that it is called to play.  We are committed to facilitating the formation of strategic vision and committed relationships, which will lead pastors into a well-defined missions process and thrust the South African Church into reaching the unreached across the spectrum, to the very ends of the earth.  This Local Church-based network of involvement in world evangelisation will serve as a model to the rest of the world and will make a church for every people, and the gospel, for every person possible by the year 2000.

7. Theological Institution Presidents and Academic Deans Consultation

For the first time in the history of international evangelical congresses focused on global evangelisation, the most strategic training institutions in the world are meeting together as a distinct group to consider their role in the fulfillment of Christ’s Great Commission.  They aim to learn from one another, to explore ways to coordinate efforts in a spirit of partnership, and to consider how to help accomplish the task of a Church for every people and the Gospel for every person.

8. University Students and Youth Leader Consultation

Ultimate objective of consultation: to construct a tailor-made strategy to mobilise the youth for missions.  Key goals: Analyse the input and expertise of all the participating youth leaders on the following subjects:

  1. Facilitating a mission movement.
  2. Community compassion.
  3. Short term outreaches.
  4. Training for missions.

9. Worship and Performing Arts in Missions Consultation

The ultimate goal of this Consultation is to raise up an army of those involved in worship and the arts, so that God will be worshipped by all peoples throught the earth (Rev 7:9).  Our objectives in this Consultation are to bring key motivators and catalyst in the field of the arts together, to share, to learn from one another and from the Lord.  To seek the Lord and in this spirit to strategise together how best to fulfill the above goal. Each person will contribute from their experience, wisdom and knowledge, culminating in the formation of a strategy, which we believe could be part of one of the greatest moves in worship and the arts since the Renaissance. Gifted Christian artists and heads of like ministries will discuss how to use the arts to gain access to restricted countries and how to impart the gospel through non-threatening presentations.

10. Children’s Ministry Consultation

Because of the vital importance of the evangelising and spiritual building process in the most receptive years of a person’s life, the committee took this challenge with great enthusiasm.  Leaders in Children’s Ministry will discuss the different circumstances of children and plan strategic initiatives for effective global child evangelism and to mobilise children in world evangelisation; both locally, as well as amongst the unreached people groups.


Why I chose to leave karate after accepting the Lord

In the past, these reasons have helped clarify the issues for others. I thought it would be good to do so in a wider forum:

  1. The difference between Christian meditation and Eastern meditation is that Christian meditation is about "filling our minds with the things of God" and "whatever is lovely, good, pure, think on these things". But Eastern meditation is about emptying our minds, relaxing them, and opening them up to "ideas dropping into them like ripples in a pond." I believe this leaves a person open and vulnerable to demonic suggestion, and over time to possession. Please note, I am not saying that everything Eastern is wrong. Christianity came from the East!
  2. In my particular style of karate there is a "kata" (precise pattern of movements) called "gek sai dai". This translates to "breaking down a small fortress." The philosophy behind this, and most forms of martial art is that whatever obstacle I come against, if I break it down into small enough components, then I can overcome anything. This sounds good on the outside, but from a Christian perspective, I know that I am a finite human being. I am not invincible nor infinite. When I am confronted by an obstacle larger than myself, if I do not acknowledge my source of strength as coming from God, then I will seek some form of "inner strength" that will come from somewhere else. Again, I believe I would find this strength from a demonic source.
  3. Finally, no matter how careful you are, the main purpose of karate (to learn self-defence) can only be tested by fighting somebody else. This will eventually lead to damage to "the temple of God." This is not good. Please note, that I am not saying that the violence aspect is wrong per se, else we couldn’t have Christian rugby players!  (Nor did John the Baptist tell the soldiers to stop being soldiers — just to be content with their pay.)  It’s just that when I was practising karate, every person I would meet on the street would instantly be sized up and their weak points considered for attack.  My mind-set was not one of peace, but of war.

Caning not the real abuse

Did you see Joe Bennett’s opinion piece in yesterdays (Wednesday 30 Aug 2006) Dom Post?  I don’t normally find myself agreeing with Joe, but he hit the nail on the head.  Click here to see his article.  In summary, Sue Bradford seems to believe "kids are little balls of innocence who would grow into loving angels if only we adults didn’t warp them."  Whereas, I believe:
  • We all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23)
  • God disciplines those He loves
  • Nobody likes discipline at the time, but it is necessary for character building, and improvement of behaviour.

Setting the record straight.