“Addition or multiplication?” That is the question in missions in our 21st century context.
Before we hastily divide into our tribes. Perhaps, we should first look introspectively?
Ask any child, and they will tell you. They want multiplication… in their candy, in our time with them, with their toys. My three-year-old daughter already knows and is keeping score.
What about in your bank account, investment portfolio or retirement?
NOW, What does the Scripture say?
Genesis 15:5 declares that Abraham was promised offspring that would be multiplied, which no one could number.
Matthew 13:18–23 says that the word of the kingdom produces thirty-fold, sixty-fold, & hundred-fold.
The word of God increased and multiplied in the church explosion recounted in Acts 12:24.
Peter declares that grace and peace be multiplied to you! (2 Peter 1:2)
John in Revelation 7:9 declares that he sees a great multitude that no one can number from every tribe, peoples & languages.
NOW Putting aside methodologies for a moment, all of us in Christianity should whole heartedly declare
AMEN! “multiplication” is better than “addition” in missions!
The Spears' Personal Testimony
In 2020 through the COVID pandemic, Bethany and I came to this realization when our ministry took a drastic turn. We went from teaching & mentoring in a physical space to teaching & mentoring in the digital space!
It was in June of 2020 when we developed our first logo & mission statement that we realized the incredible potential for global missions. We knew the direction and from then it was only a matter of timing.
Listen to the motto:
Cloud Seminary “Theological education & mentoring not limited by weather, distance, time, finances, or pandemic.”
Whereas in the past, I would teach once maybe 2 times per week in a local context. I would give it my all. The students would be mostly lay leaders with 1 or 2 gifted pastors in that specific context. Once we completed the lecture… that was it. All that effort was gone. Students who missed it would attend the following week only to ask the same questions.
Through the pandemic, we went fully digital, but we still experienced:
Infrastructure issues ~ internet failures & instability, power outages,
limitations to zoom classes bc zoom lowers the resolution for IP addresses outside of America,
Internet providers selling internet without any consideration to their actual bandwidth,
The inability to upload and sync large videos,
Catastrophic failures in hardware such as our laptop and smart phones,
And many more issues of this sort.
In order to use this new medium to its full potential, we would need to go to a centralized location with excellent infrastructure.
This type of thinking might sound counter intuitive to a 19th-20th traditional missions model, but is this not often the case in Scripture?
God uses the folly of the cross to save. It is folly to the Gentiles & a stumbling block to the Jews (1 Corinthians 1:20–25). Shall not the last be first & the first last? (Matthew 20:16)
Now three years later what have we discovered?
We are more effective in the US in this space …
WHY? Because in this digital, social media, internet space, infrastructure is king not physical proximity.
God has multiplied the quality of our content:
We broadcast live zoom sessions in 4K resolution, not 720P.
We have never cancelled a class due to internet instability or power outages.
We meet with our students at all times of the day in various platforms through texting, video calls, & digital classrooms…
God has multiplied our regions in the Philippines
We have increased our range in the Philippines from 1 local region to now at least 8 regions in the Philippines. That is 8X!!!!
God has multiplied the countries
We have now moved beyond the Philippines into Cambodia.
And, now God is multiplying our methodology!
I, Tim have taken on the new role as Global Training Associate within Converge International Ministries to train the next generation of Converge missionaries.
Now we can multiply next level: Equipping 5, 10, 20, 50, 100… missionaries with our recommended hardware, resources & methodologies… dare I say it… reach every least reached people group through the digital, social media, internet space?
We are Converge International Ministries. One of our core values is:
We pursue multiplication strategies.
Partner with us as we ask God for a gospel movement in every least reached people group in our generation!
Message us at:
Tim & Bethany Spears, Missionary
Partner with the Spears, as they equip the next gen of global workers and indigenous leaders and develop visual theological training for oral learners.
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