China (MNN) — In the business world, two companies may work together when it’s beneficial for both financially. However, for Christian ministries, what they gain isn’t money, but a greater efficiency in the spread of the Gospel. That’s why two ministries — Bibles for China and China Partner — have decided to see how their individual strengths working together could benefit China.
Bibles for China is a group that focuses on resourcing the Church with Bibles so isolated communities can learn more about God and share that knowledge with their neighbors.
China Partner also resources the Church, but their main focus is to train up leaders.
The Great Commission
We talk a lot about the Great Commission at Mission Network News. We’re referring to Matthew 28:19 where Jesus says to his disciples, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…” (ESV)
Wendell Rovenstine, President of Bibles for China, says that while this command was given to all of God’s people, many have fallen into a relaxed pattern of attending church without taking this command into account. For him, however, the command is literal. He believes he must go.
Bibles for China is a way of doing just that — they are going into China, meeting the people where they are at, and providing for their very basic need as a Christian: the need for a Bible.
Several years ago, Rovenstine and Erik Burklin, the President of China Partner, were introduced to each other. Since then, the two teams have visited together often. This March, they are going to visit rural China to see what opportunities there are to work together.
Rovenstine says, “I am personally looking forward to being with China Partner and networking and coming together so the Body of Christ universally is involved in what’s taking place in China.”
You might wonder, why is it so exciting that these ministries would team up? What does it matter? The answer is pretty simple — the need is great.
“As each of the ministries are spending time in China, we’re realizing the China believers — there [are] unbelievable numbers coming to Christ and unbelievable [numbers of] individuals that haven’t had access to God’s Word,” says Rovenstine.
On this trip, the teams will go to places one of the ministries has been before to meet with the believers. They will learn about each other and brainstorm. They will talk with the church to discover what ways they can best meet needs.
“We don’t have a plan. We don’t have a box, we don’t have a silk package that we’re going to come and train you. We’re setting down and going back multiple times, how can we be an encouragement to make a difference that leverages the Body of Christ to be trained in an area where there’s leaders, and those leaders pick up resources that both China Partner and we want to provide for them.”
In other words, these ministries together will be able to train leaders and then resource those leaders to train more leaders within their own communities.
The work these groups do is legal under the regulations set by the Religious Affairs Bureau. In-country associates help these organizations plan trips to the most strategic locations where the biggest needs can be addressed.
Stand with Bibles for China
If you’re looking to help, there are a few ways. Rovenstine says to start with prayer.
“If they do nothing more than pray, I’m convinced by what I see God doing through our ministry, that prayer is the greatest asset we have as a ministry.”
He suggests you visit their website, and ask God to show you how He wants you to help.
And finally, continue praying for these ministries as they work together.
“I really want everyone to know the networking we have as a ministry with other ministries in China is crisp, and clean, and cherished; and the Lord’s really given us favor.”