During the last couple of decades, the Jesus Film has been shown in countless places—many of them not mappable and even secret. I once gave enough $ to get a free copy of the VHS tape. Why I still have it, I don’t know, because you can see the film online.
The organization found me again and sent me an October letter about film-showing activity in a dangerous region under hostile control. The report said that 50 film teams had fanned out on foot in mountains, on motor scooters and in cars, and even on camels.
Here is a quotation about response and results:
Through hundreds of film showings and many miracles, 60,000 people experienced the power of “JESUS,” His Word and His love. About 13,000 became ‘Christ followers,’ 6,000 were baptized and 900 underground churches were planted!
I like several aspects of the letter and report: the news-sharing, the careful honesty, the positive tone . . . the differentiation among experiencing, becoming a follower, and being immersed. (Each one of those is significant in its own right.)
It’s further exciting that all those church groups were begun. I imagine the count is pretty accurate, as much as humans can count such things, and given the credibility of the JESUS Film Project organization, but I do worry about the sustenance of those groups of believers. One thing they don’t need is the institutional organization or hierarchies of western churches. They don’t even need preachers or missionaries in the traditional sense. But I do hope they continue to get the Message, whether orally passed on or in scripture format.
Another matter for the grace of God. . . .