Absorbing God’s Word without reading

By April 23, 2009

Paraguay (MNN) — Missionaries regularly face obstacles in their ministries, prompting the need for creativity. For example, how do you lead a study of the Bible with people who are unable to read it?

Many Christians undoubtedly face this problem often and likely have several solutions. One SIM International missionary has created a program in response to this question that has reached enough people with the Gospel to successfully begin transforming an entire community.

This missionary conducts oral Bible studies in a small village in Paraguay, but they contain a bit more than just oration. Each participant in the study is given an MP3 player loaded with five Bible stories the first week. From then on, they are asked to listen to the assigned story for the week three times before they come to the Bible study. When they arrive at the study, they are asked questions to review what they've heard.

The Bible study has an evangelism aspect, as well. When the group meets, the leader tells the story, and the whole group is encouraged to memorize it. They say it over and over again until it becomes implanted in their memories so they can go share it with others. Even if they never get the chance to share it, it is still rich with spiritual nourishment for these hungry villagers. It allows them the opportunity to take ownership of the Word, whether they can read or not.

This oral Bible study approach has already worked to transform the village for Christ. "[Villagers] tell me that husbands are nicer and that neighbors have noticed a difference since they have started listening to God's Word," says the SIM missionary there. The people there are hungry for the Gospel and meet with the study to learn more, no matter the weather or circumstances.

If you would like to learn more about how God is using SIM missionaries to reach people with God's Word, click here.

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