The need for new and diverse media tools to share the gospel with the unreached is immense and hasn’t changed. Calvin and Carol Conkey, the International Directors of Create International, shared a paper at global missions conference that highlights this need and suggests some strategies for meeting it.
Put simply, there are around 6500 distinct people groups out in the world today that most would classify as “unreached” – basically where the local church lacks the means to reach out to the rest of the people without significant help from the international church. Some of these people groups are large and some are small. In some of these places, for a variety of reasons the local church barely exists at all, and in many the international church – myself included – has barely begun the work of reaching out to them.Because of the language and cultural differences that exist between people groups, we cannot expect the same presentation of the gospel to be equally effective in every situation. This is an obvious idea when it comes to language barriers – clearly a Bible in French will not effectively communicate to an audience who only speaks Mandarin – but similar limitations arise due to cultural and social differences between peoples.
In our ministry of Create International, one of our aims is to produce presentations of the gospel that are tailored made for specific cultural groupings, and are effective at communicating the message to people in particular local contexts. Over the years, Create teams past and present have produced over 50 presentations of different sorts (dramatic films, music videos, comics, art pieces) that have the potential to share the gospel with several dozen different people groups.
However, as I mentioned there are around 6500 total unreached people groups! Many of them are over a million in population. Of those over 210 are considered to be “least evangelised” – where over half the population have apparently not even had the opportunity to hear about Jesus. So even if we just limit our target to those least evangelised mega peoples, there are still 150 people groups that we’ve never done a contextualised presentation of the gospel for – and in many cases, nobody has. There is still so much that can be done, still so much opportunity for artists, film makers and media producers in and out of YWAM to put relevant media resources into the hands of the long and short-term workers who are faithfully trusting God for breakthrough amongst all the nations of the earth.