A Surprising and Often Unheard Approach to Ministry Among the Poor

A Surprising and Often Unheard Approach to Ministry Among the Poor

Gary Wilkerson – September 12, 2016

Poverty is not a sin. But living in sin can lead to poverty.

When a man or woman uses their family’s income to get drunk, gamble or seek prostitutes, they often end up like the Prodigal Son, squandering all they have. Proverbs says, “He who loves wine and oil will not become rich” (21:17). “He who follows empty pursuits will have poverty in plenty” (28:19).

Since 1958, when this ministry began working among the poor, we’ve always operated in God’s compassion. At the same time, we’ve never held back from speaking his truth about sin. All over the globe today we serve people mired in extreme poverty, and the vast majority are poor by no fault of their own. But often we encounter a problem that causes or complicates their poverty: sin. No amount of charity will lift an addict out of poverty.

That’s why God commissions his church not just to help the poor but to preach the whole gospel.

It requires the faithful preaching of a message of repentance—one that leads to real change of heart and life. Unfortunately, not all ministers in the poor nations where we serve preach the full counsel of God’s Word. Their unoffending messages don’t mention sin, so people remain stuck in their sins—and blocked from Christ’s liberating freedom.

To help remedy this, we offer training to the faithful ministers we support worldwide. These servants already live among the poor to extend God’s mercy and compassion. Our training exhorts them toward their calling as preachers—to be filled with the Spirit and empowered to preach biblical conviction. All over the world we’ve seen people drop to their knees under the weight of God’s truth, turn from their sin and find new life in Jesus. Many of these men and women immediately end their addictions and begin caring for their families. Their turnaround doesn’t make them rich, but it leads to a healthy life that blesses their family rather than causing it to suffer.

We hope you’re encouraged by your partnership in a ministry that believes in the Holy Spirit’s power to transform broken lives and restore families worldwide. If you would like to help, please use secure online donation form. Your prayers and support are making a difference!