Malachi 1:11 - For from the rising of the sun to its setting my name will be great among the nations, and in every place incense will be offered to my name, and a pure offering. For my name will be great among the nations, says the Lord of hosts.
Opposition to the Gospel:
We faced opposition from within Chembo and the encroaching presence of 70 terrorists invading villages around us, but our God is working mightily and more doors have been opened for the sake of the gospel.
First we faced our greatest opposition from the 'Dios es Amor' church. They started 2 churches among the Ashanika people and then abandoned the people except to collect money and spew legalism. They taught the people that if we didn't have ties and button up shirts we were false teachers. The main leaders of this legalistic sect told the Ashanika people that if they wanted to continue with them they must not invite us back again.
Therefore the leaders of the church in Chembo told us that this would be our last time to come into the village and teach of God. We graciously accepted the time we had and continued to teach and preach expositional through the Bible. On the last night of the preaching the leader of the church stood up in front of the entire village and publicly apologized to us and asked us to continue coming and teaching and preaching the truths of God.
While we were in Chembo we heard reports that a group of terrorists were in the area. The first night we heard that 70 terrorists had invaded a village about 6 hours away from us. Then we heard later that they were really 10 hours away. On Wednesday night a school teacher with a radio said the terrorist were only 2 hours away from us up river. Who really knows where they were, but they were in the area.
The terrorists will come into villages and take kids from their homes to serve in their military. They also take weapons and food from the people. They tell the people that Americans come to kill their kids and use their body parts and steal their grease. If a terrorist group comes into the village where Americans are they will kill the Americans as a way to show the community their desire to protect and care for the community. On my way back down river as we were leaving we passed a boat of Peruvian soldiers heading up river to find the terrorists. You can google and find out much more about the terrorists if you desire and fox 31 did an interesting article on it a year ago.
Opportunities for the Gospel:
- First we praise the Lord that Ricardo our friend and leader of the church in Chembo (pictured to the left) stood up and publicly asked us to continue coming and teaching them about God. So we will continue to preach and teach as long as the Lord allows us to. The men were so encouraged as they heard the word of God taught and were growing in truth. They said that when the other group 'Dios es Amor' would come in and teach, they only taught them that they must wear ties and do all these different things that are not even biblical.
- A pastor named Wilder from another tribe 3 hours up river and 6 hours hike into the jungle came to hear the preaching. He is not only a pastor but also the community jefe. He told us that his entire village is saved and he wants us to come and preach and teach his village about the Lord. He shared with us that there are lots of villages around his village high in the jungle that have never heard the gospel of Jesus. They call it the 'chakra blanca' which is the white field ready for harvest. We are presently praying about going into this village and starting a work.
- There were also school teachers in the community that the Peruvian government sends into the villages to train the kids. The school director pictured to the left is a believer and he came to hear the teaching where Scott Dollar was teaching in the mornings. At the end of one of the teaching sessions he had many questions about eternal security. Scott showed him from the Word of God how we cannot lose our salvation. He was very encouraged by the teaching and invited us to teach the school kids. So last minute we came together to teach in the public school about God.
The Catholic church has offered to send teachers to help the school, but he wouldn't let them come because he want's a clear presentation of the gospel in his schools. They had about 15 bibles in Spanish and need some more. In the picture above he is showing us the Bibles.
- The last thing I will share on this post is something awesome. As we were preaching and teaching the Jefe of Chembo came to us the second morning around breakfast time. He told us that as long as we meet in the little church building many of the people from the village would not come and hear us at night. Our plan was to work with teaching and preaching at the church, but our plan was too small according to God's plan. So the Jefe opened up the community meeting house to us and invited the entire village to come and hear us preach. We had to bring in 5 extra benches to fit the people who came to hear the gospel.
|Scott Dollar teaching the daily sessions|
These are the doors God opened up as a testimony of His faithfulness to make His name great among all peoples.
I may write more about other parts of the trip later, but this is the heart of why we went into the jungle.