Through “Equipping Leaders,” Rural Pastors Worldwide Are Growing in Christ

In Ministry by Biblica Staff

Paul tells us that The Holy Scriptures are “able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” He goes on to explain that “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

The Bible is essential to the life of a Christian.

That’s why it’s so tragic and can be quite dangerous when believers either don’t have access to God’s Word or misinterpret it. History is filled with examples of people who have veered into error, false doctrine, heresy, and even established cults because they didn’t keep God’s Word central to their life and teaching.

In places like China, Brazil, and Ethiopia, where the Church is rapidly growing, leaders often don’t have the opportunity to learn how to read, study, and teach the Bible accurately. Many have no formal training. Some don’t even have their own copy of God’s Word. They are simply Christians who find themselves thrust into positions of leadership.

Providing pastors — especially those in rural areas — with the Bible training they need to lead their congregations is the goal of Biblica’s Equipping Leaders.

As the name implies, this program equips leaders with the skills and tools to teach and preach God’s Word. Equipping Leaders seminars include training in Bible translation, how we got the Bible, hermeneutics (interpretation), and homiletics (preaching). It also provides each leader with a precious gift: their own study Bible.

Neima is one of those leaders. She grew up in a mostly Muslim area and didn’t encounter Christ until after she was married. When she chose to follow Him, it came at a heavy price — her husband divorced her.

Despite this, Neima remained faithful in her walk with God and soon became a leader in her church. Like many other pastors and church leaders in Ethiopia, she had never been taught the basics of studying and teaching God’s Word.

Which is how she came to find herself at a Biblica Equipping Leaders seminar held in a small Muslim town just north of Addis Ababa.

During the training, she and 27 other pastors were taught basic Bible interpretation and sermon writing. They were also given Amharic Study Bibles to help them lead their congregations.

Poverty and rural environments keep many new pastors and church leaders from getting any training in Bible study and teaching. They are often left to learn on their own and through online sources that are sometimes inaccurate.

“With this gift and training, I now look at this as my Bible college,” writes an inmate pastor in Uganda. “The study Bible has widened my understanding of Scriptures. I am now able to explain to the inmates I pastor what a particular Scripture means using the training the Biblica team gave me. I look forward to sharing the gospel more boldly because I now understand.”

Understanding the Bible is the key to effective evangelism, discipleship, and church growth. This growing need for biblical training gave rise to Biblica’s Equipping Leaders. The program has already trained hundreds of pastors and, with your help, will train thousands more!

Listen to what some of the participants are saying:

“I have been part of a number of leader trainings. But this has been different. I have not only learned to interpret and prepare to preach, but also to lead others through a Bible study. I have never owned a study Bible, let alone known how to use it. Biblica has not only changed my life but the lives of the 200 members of my congregation.” —Pastor I, Uganda

“[This seminar] filled us with a very inspiring message and my life as a pastor was greatly changed. I was very refreshed spiritually. Before, I questioned myself – was I really called and chosen by God? But through the message I heard in the Biblica seminar, I realized that God has chosen me as his servant.” —Pastor S, Philippines

“I am so glad about the seminar. May God bless you and help you to keep on communicating the Word. I will tell people to come to the seminar to learn with confidence. It helped me qualify ideas.” —L.F., Argentina

“This has empowered me 1,000-fold! Before, I felt inadequate, but now I have the tool I need and I will share the same knowledge with others.” —R.M., Kenya

“It is with tears in our eyes that we give thanks. This is our neighborhood, our mission field. We are serving the Lord, but with limited resources. How we enjoy having our own Bibles. Now we understand better and can help others.” —Pastor, Peru

“From the workshop, I realized that there are different kinds of study Bibles which provide me with some new knowledge. I will apply it to my devotional time with God in order to get closer to him as well as to my serving in the church.” —P.K., China

“Equipping Leaders is God’s way of bringing out the best in every leader and pastor. It opened the door of realization, knowledge and wisdom from God. It stirred the fire of the Spirit within each participating in serving the Lord.” —Pastor V., Philippines.

Join us in training more pastors and church leaders to study and teach God’s Word accurately. Your gift today of $25 will allow a pastor to attend an Equipping Leaders training, and provide a free copy of a Bible in their heart language. Partner with us to provide them with the training and resources they need to lead their congregations.

Biblica Staff

Biblica, the International Bible Society, is a worldwide ministry that has been helping people read and understand God’s Word for over 200 years. We are committed to providing the Bible in accurate, contemporary translations and formats so that more people around the world will have the opportunity to be transformed by Jesus Christ. We do this through translation and publishing, by making the Bible accessible, and with innovative Bible engagement programs like Community Bible Experience. To learn more about our ministry and how you can partner with us to share God’s Word with people around the world, go to our ministry page.

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