Sermon Illustrations

Something's Happening...

This last week I began reading a book by James Rutz. James wrote this book to make the Christian church aware that God is moving all across the world. His observations are a wakeup call to the American Christian and churches in America. Listen to some of his thoughts:

"Miracles are happening like popcorn starting to pop. That alone is amazing. But they are also attracting global numbers that no movement in history has ever seen. Back in 1970, the world had 71 million core apostolic, born again Christians with a vision to reach out to the world. As of mid-2000, it had 707 million. That comes to 11% of the planet. And it doesn't even count the more than one billion Christians who are growing too slowly to fall within the fast-growing core. Their ingrown cultures, spiritual inertia, or liberal beliefs have stunted their growth. But surprisingly, it does not include North America and Europe, where the overall growth rate for Christians is zero. We've gotten so used to being on a no-growth treadmill that it comes as a major brainshock whenever a yankee, euro, or canuck hears these numbers for the first time (Page 8)...In any case the new realities are massive in scope. The future of your world is being written at this very hour. For instance:

Up until 1960, Western Evangelicals outnumbered non-Western Evangelicals-mostly Latinos, blacks, and Asians-by two to one. As of 2,000, non-Westerners had shot ahead by four to one. By 2010, it will be seven to one.

If you go through Latin America on a Sunday morning, you will now find more evangelicals than Catholics in church.

As soon as we produce some church models that are culturally acceptable to Hindus, we could see an additional 70-100 million secret Indian Christians go public.

There are more missionaries sent from non-Western nations than Western nations.

Are you starting to see the outline of the new world? (Pages 15-16)...God has stormed onto the scene like a tornado...By tomorrow, there will be 175,000 more Christians that there are today (Page 25)...From our vantage point in North America and Europe, where church membership is going nowhere, this sounds like a cooked-up fantasy. But it's true. This is the biggest megashift in history. Can you think of any time when over a billion people eagerly changed their lives and loyalties in one generation? (Page 27)....There are 23 million in the U.S. who have made a conscious decision at some point to follow the Lord Jesus Christ, yet seldom go to church anymore (Page 29)....Are you ready to move up? (Page 30)...Be an overcomer. And start today (Page 39)...There's never been a time like this. In 1960, there were 24 nonbelievers for every believer in the world. Now there are six. In 1960, even the strongest part of the church was growing as slowly as the rest of the world. Now we're growing almost seven times as fast. Do you see the picture? Can you feel in your spirit the excitement of what the Lord is doing? Back in the golden days of early Christianity, we were outnumbered by 360 pagans for every believer. That's pretty intimidating. Today's 1:6 ratio of born-again believers to everyone else is much less daunting ...This is the most massive event that will ever touch your life. Don't be a spectator! (Page 41)

I add -- don't be ignorant to what is happening in our world and get aboard-now! Don't miss the boat by being ignorant to the truth!

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