Shadow Lands – Part One

Hebrews 8:4-5 (ESV) Now if he were on earth, he would not be a priest at all, since there are priests who offer gifts according to the law. 5They serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things.

Colossians 2:16-18 (ESV) Therefore let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath. 17These are a shadow of the things to come, but the substance belongs to Christ.

As I read these scriptures I am amazed at these profound phrases “shadow of the things to come” and “a copy and shadow of the heavenly things

When I stop to think about the meaning of these verses I cannot help to wonder what other things are copies and shadows of things to come? I don’t want to read into these verses, and I am not by any means injecting what is not there.

I am just wondering…

I wonder if the evil and war that we see in the world today is just a copy and a shadow of a greater spiritual evil and warfare that is happening in the heavens.

I wonder if these evil spiritual forces have declared a war upon humanity.

I wonder if this is just a precursor of a greater evil to come.

If the evil that we are seeing today is just a copy and a shadow of a greater spiritual evil, then I think we better start praying to a greater degree than we ever have before.

Win, Build, Send

Pastor Chris Chapman (Praise Chapel, Indonesia) asked the question “how are we (Praise Chapel) going to deal with the under-ground church“?

90% of the unreached world is hostile towards Christianity. How does this translates for us? Well for starters we may not be able to have our traditional building, traditional outreach, and may have to seek other methods to Win, Build, Send.

How would we do this? What about our lives being in danger? How do we support those that go? Most of will not visit a missionary work if there is no building. Why, because of the preconceive notion that there is no church without a building. However, the lack of a building does not define the church, or Body of Christ. The first century Christians mostly met in homes, and not in an official church buildings. That should not prevent us for recognizing an established Body of Christ, and should not prevent us from going and supporting them.

There is a great opportunity for us to do so much more. Just because we are not able to preach a sermon behind a pulpit does not mean that we don’t minister. We must adjust and be ready to support those that are called and willing to go. We already have a few works in the Middle East, China, and Indonesia, and some of them are in very difficult places. The reality is that they may never have a church building. How many of our top USA Pastors have gone and visited these workers? If you have not gone, ask yourself why? Are you only able to minister if they have a building? We have to change our paradigm if we are going to truly make an effort to reach the world with the Gospel.

Here is another thought. The Muslim world is vastly different than the areas that we have been successful in. For instance in the Philippians, and Africa we have had great freedom, and openness. We can hold crusades, and conferences. It is highly unlikely that we will be able to do those types of functions in Muslim countries. Now there are areas in the Muslim world where that might be possible, places such as Lebanon, and Turkey, where the government is not ruled by Muslim law. But even then there is a certain amount of danger. Other areas like North Korea, Cuba, and Northern Africa to name a few are hard places that we have not yet made any impact in. Our new work in Iran, only time well tell what the possibilities are. But to be frank we may have to go under-ground there. If that is the case how many of you would be willing to go and spend a week or two and support them?

I say all of that to ask this basic question, “How do we build a model where we can Win, Build, Send in areas where we are restricted, where we can’t have buildings, where we have to be under-ground?”

Just some things on my mind that I pray and think about. I am open to hear your suggestions. So post away.

Robert Jimenez