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(By Tom Langley)
Recently, I was blessed to personally visit Vijayawada, India and many of the WEI teachers and brothers and sisters involved in a very fruitful effort called WEI – India.
This work began in 2007 under the direction of an Indian preacher named Prabhu Kumar. He has been preaching for churches of Christ for twenty years after earning Bible degrees from World Bible School and College at Chennai, and the Jack Nelle Institute. He was encouraged to begin this work by his dedicated WEI Internet teacher in Texas.
If you are a regular reader of this newsletter, you have, no doubt, viewed many baptisms as a result of this amazing work. There have been 552 baptisms since the beginning of WEI-India. There were 83 baptisms in 2014, and already 92 baptisms in 2015. Praise the Lord!
There are currently twenty-eight Indian WEI teachers in the state of Andhra Pradesh in association with twenty-six different churches of Christ. This ministry is fully operated and staffed by Indian Christians.
I was asked to come and speak in January of this year at a number of churches and to preside over several graduation ceremonies at these year-round WEI schools. I was also privileged to meet many of the Indian WEI teachers involved in this work and to speak to several new classes of students enrolling in the WEI schools for the first time.
Arriving at the Vijayawada airport on a Monday morning after a long, sleepless 30 + hour flight, I was greeted by many Christians with beautiful garlands of flowers and handheld bouquets. They had prepared banners for my arrival and in honor of the WEI founder Dr. Dick Ady and the brother in Texas who began this great work from scratch eight years ago.
Tom Receives Royal Welcome at Vijayawada Airport
I was rushed off to speak to a local congregation that was waiting patiently for my arrival, and then hustled into a small car to drive to a location many hours away where WEI graduates were waiting for me to preside over their graduation ceremony. I had to recover from jet-lag in the seat of Prabhu’s small car. It’s amazing how a person suffering from sleep deprivation can comfortably sleep in contorted positions in the cramped seat of a little car.
I have never in my life been treated with such hospitality and genuine Christian love. It was the most humbling and the busiest experience of my life. The next four days were a blur of traveling from location to location, speaking to different crowds of people gathered to hear an encouraging message from the word of God. Everywhere we went, I was greeted with flowers. garlands, and shawls. It was incredibly humbling, invigorating, and inspirational—all at the same time.
Prabhu rearranged our schedule so we could find a little more time to catch our breath and rest. Still, we seemed to always be traveling to a new location to speak to interested crowds.
Crowds Gather to Hear the Word of God
Scores of brothers and sisters saw me off at the airport five days later. It was truly a once-in-a- lifetime experience, and I am so grateful to God to have been blessed with this most humbling opportunity.
This amazing work is in danger of losing most of its financial support in a few weeks due to the expected passing of its primary supporter. This has to be one of the most fruitful works in our entire brotherhood and in the kingdom of God worldwide.
We encourage any church or individual who is looking for a way to invest in The Great Commission to seriously consider WEI-India as a proven investment opportunity that will produce eternal rewards in God’s glorious kingdom.
There will soon be a shortage of approximately $2500 per month to sustain and grow this work. Please contact either Dick Ady or me if you would like to learn more about this opportunity. Brother Ady and I have personally witnessed this amazing work with our own eyes. Our telephone numbers and e-mail addresses are printed on the front page of this newsletter.
During the first quarter of this year, at least ninety-two people were baptized in India by Prabhu Kumar and his fellow-teachers. And the number grows almost daily.
Obviously, there is not enough space in this newsletter to include ninety-two baptism pictures, so one picture must represent all the precious souls who are now on friendly terms with God. Most of these students were Hindus when they enrolled in WEI. Now, they are Christians.
Bro. V. Satyam Baptizes Hindu Student, Kommu Sirisha
Steve Cate, a missionary in Indonesia, writes, “Without you [WEI], we would not be able to preach over the air; teach our English/Bible classes or our Indonesian Bible classes; translate and print new books; or feed, clothe, shelter, educate and provide medical treatment for needy children every day.
Indonesia is a Muslim nation, and without the English component, American missionaries could not function there.
For twenty-five years, we have used the same WEI logo. It has served us well, but the time has come to adopt a fresh new look. We are indebted to David Crouch, the Director of Public Relations at Harding University and a faithful supporter of WEI, for offering the services of his artist, Tim Cox, free of charge.
We are deeply grateful to Tim for creating five excellent logos while he was in a hospital bed recovering from major surgery.
After carefully considering our options, the WEI board chose the logo pictured here.
The old logo is still on WEI books now in storage, but the new logo will appear on all books printed in the future.
We hope you like the new logo as much as we do.
Have you considered including WEI in your will? You can’t take your money with you, but you can send it on ahead. Why not let your wealth keep working for God after you are gone? Nothing is more satisfying than knowing you have helped other people spend eternity with you in heaven.
God is using WEI to attract people who are eager to learn English but who have little or no interest in the Bible. But while learning English, they also learn about God and his Son, Jesus Christ. That is why atheists, Buddhists, Communists, Hindus, Muslims, and even Satanists are coming to Christ.
Please think about this opportunity.
This intelligent Muslim woman, Priscilla (not her real name for her protection), lives in a country that is surrounded by Russia, China, and the Middle East. As soon as she enrolled in WEI, she said to her Internet teacher, “Thank you for praying for me. I don’t know how to pray.”
About her own religion, Priscilla said, “I’ve tried to read Koran, but I feel I am not ready to accept it.” But when she was shown that the Bible predicted the coming of an eternal King 700 years in advance, she readily accepted it. She was excited in later lessons to learn about Jesus’ miracles, and she declared, “He was the Son of God, the true King. He demonstrated his divine power to prove that God had sent him.”
But she was confused about something. She said, “I am not afraid to change my belief; I am ready to do that. But what will happen when I will die? I don’t afraid to die, but I think about funeral ceremony. All my family relatives are Muslims, and if I turn secret Christian and they not know about it, they will do my funeral by Muslim traditions. So that is why I am confused.”
The teacher set her mind at rest explaining that the funeral won’t make any difference because, as a Christian, she won’t be there. She will be safe in heaven.
Her teacher continued to encourage her to become a Christian. She finally replied, “How is it possible to become a Christian? Tell me.”
After her teacher explained how to become a Christian, she wrote, “People need to be baptized to get God’s forgiveness. . . . Only Jesus can save people from Satan.”
She was baptized in secret in her bathtub. Her teacher gave her a Christian name to use just between the two of them, and to protect her identity.
“I like the name Priscilla you gave me,” she said. “Thank you.”
Our New Sister-in-Christ
For many years, Mongolia has been very receptive to our Internet teaching ministry. We have been praying for a way to take advantage of the 10,000 plus student registrations in that country.
Now, we are about to embark on a new project to further teach these students and to plant the first church of Christ in the capital city of Ulaanbaatar. We will be hosting a WEI reception on Saturday April 18th. Two weeks ago we invited thousands of our WEI Mongolian students to this event. At the time of this writing, seventy students have officially registered to attend. We will surely have over 100 by April 18th. Praise the Lord!
Mongolia, a Receptive Nation
Please pray for the success of this event and for the Bible studies that will follow. If this proves to be as fruitful as it appears, we will surely repeat this project in other countries where there is an abundance of WEI students but no churches to follow up on them.
A team of three Bible teachers and preachers associated with Bear Valley Bible Institute (Bill Snyder, Luis M. Camacho, and Adam Dollen) will travel to Ulaanbaatar for this event and will remain there to conduct one-on-one and small group Bible studies with interested students for twelve days. They will be joined by China missionary Michael O’Brian, (aka O.B.), who will remain for a period of time and be actively involved in continued follow-up in the city. We already have teachers here in the States who are prepared to continue studying these students face-to-face by Skype.
Please pray to the Lord of harvest that we might be successful in reaching lost souls for Christ in this remote part of the world.
Katheryn Haddad received the following e-mail from a Muslim student in Pakistan: “I am happy to find such a nice teacher who will teach me English and also the Christianity. You will be glad to know that I am interested in this religion. Of course, you will keep it a secret that I love this religion in view of the present extreme in my country from Muslims. Time will come when I will join you.”
Silas (not his real name) was baptized in secret in his locked bathroom in the Middle East after deciding to leave Islam and embrace Jesus Christ.
When he first enrolled in WEI while a university student in his country, he thought the course would be “useful for understand English and learn about Bible.” However, he continued to defend Islam and the Qur’an in several of his lessons. “The Qur’an teaches God created man so he would have someone to worship him, while the Bible says he created us to have people to love.” Silas decided both were true. He said, “I have faithful both Qur’an and Bible.”
He told his teacher, “I was knowing that Christians believe in three Gods, and God have two partners” (God, Jesus, and Mary). Silas’ teacher explained that Muslims are told several things about Christians that are not true, and he would discover the truth as he progressed through the lessons. He replied, “I feel happiness when I saw your comment.”
After being a student for a month, he finally believed that humans can be children of God and not slaves like the Qur’an teaches. After two months, he said he learned that the prophesied King “is from David’s descendants and will suffer from torture. . . . I hope to read about him later.”
Finally, after three months, he concluded, the big truth of what Isaiah said about Christ before 700 years, every adjective he said about Christ was exactly the same as he said. The Christ, the Son of God.” Later he said, “Sunday is a special day for Christians [Muslims worship on Friday]. Christ will be with them always, even the end of the world. I hope to be one of them.”
In the beginning of the fourth month of study, he said that people are saved “by changing our hearts and lives and being baptized. I hope to do that. But I fear my country if the officials know what I am doing.”
His teacher sends him the weekly worship guide that she sends to isolated students throughout the world. Each worship guide contains a short lesson, guides to prayer and the Lord’s Supper and giving. For songs, she gives short Bible verses to be whispered as chants.
After his baptism, Silas said, “Can I continue learning from WEI? I hope to receive your worship guides.”
Our New Brother-in-Christ
Many other Muslim students have come to believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God. They have a deep affection for Jesus but they hesitate to risk their lives by converting.
One student wrote the following to his Internet teacher: “Of course, you will keep it secret that I love this religion, keeping in view the present extreme in my country from Muslims. Time will come when I will join you.”
May God hasten the day when all men and women everywhere bow before Jesus and confess him as Lord.
In order to perpetuate the wonderful soul-saving work that Tom Langley has described in his lead article, two things are needed: (1) a sponsoring church that will help support and oversee this work, and (2) funds for printing the WEI materials used by twenty-eight Indian preachers to save souls.
A total of $2,600 is needed for printing the next batch of materials in India. Matching funds have been offered to help cover this need, so every dollar you contribute for teaching materials will be matched by another dollar. Here is a way to double your investment in eternity while, at the same time, helping others go to heaven with you. It’s a win-win situation.
As Tom mentioned, this exciting work in India is facing extinction. The WEI Internet teacher who started WEI-India in 2007 is on hospice care and is not expected to live. He says he is ready to go home to be with the Lord, but he is anxious about the future of WEI-India.
We are praying that he will be able to die in peace knowing that someone has stepped up to assume responsibility for perpetuating the great work that God has done through him.
If you are interested in sponsoring WEI-India, or if you would like to help support it, please contact Tom Langley or me. Our mailing addresses, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses are listed at the bottom of page one.
Bob and Jan Towell
How can the effectiveness of the many tools for teaching God’s word be evaluated? The number of baptisms per year is used by many, but there is a better measure.
God tells us His word will accomplish what He sent it to do. And when God’s word was clothed in the human flesh of the man called Jesus, he told us what he was sent to accomplish.
JOHN 12:48 "There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day. 49 For I did not speak of my own accord, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and how to say it. 50 I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say."
Is Internet teaching an effective method? Using the number of Bible lessons taught as a measure, WEI’s teaching website reached the remarkable number of 10,000 Bible lessons/month during each month of 2014.
What’s next? WEI’s teaching website is capable of handling 10 times as many [100,000] Bible lessons per month, without any major revisions to its design, but we are limited by what current teachers can do.
Please, if you have been thinking about teaching, stop thinking and start doing. If you know a Christian who has the ability to teach and is willing to use computers, tell them WEI finds people every day who want someone to teach them God’s word and they often wait three or four days for a teacher to claim them.
As Christians, we have the lifeline for those drowning in sin. Let us throw it to them while there is yet time.
“Soon will the season of rescue be o’er
Soon will they drift to eternity’s shore.
Haste then, my brother, no time for delay,
But throw out the lifeline and save them today.”
Write us at JRTowell@aol.com for help every step of the way.
Matthew 9:37, 38
---Bob and Jan Towell
Tom, Angie, Bianca, and Brianna Langley
We all know very well the scripture in Ephesians that reads, “There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” In this beautiful context, the simple little number one represents so much power, even the incomprehensible power of God Himself.
As I have said before, our critical growth path forward remains the need to recruit more teachers. Our teaching web site, now programmed and maintained by Justin Acuff, has the capacity and ability to start 10,000 new Bible studies per month. The students are available. We desperately need more teachers. To start 10,000 new Bible studies per month we need at least 1000 more active teachers. But before we recruit 1000 new teachers, we all must first simply recruit one.
I’d like to challenge all our current Internet teachers to recruit just ONE new WEI teacher in 2015. With all of us just focusing on recruiting one additional teacher, we can double our current teacher base, and be well on our way to 1000 new WEI Internet teachers. That could equal 10,000 new souls hearing the truth of the Gospel for the first time every month. The Power of ONE. Let’s all commit to recruit one teacher in 2015.
Please write me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and let me know when you recruit that one new teacher. I’d like to send a short little personal note of encouragement to each new teacher.
It’s so easy to register as a teacher. Simply go to www.worldenglishinstitute.org/register/teacher
---Tom and Angie Langley
Dick and Maudine Ady
Two preachers were discussing the Great Commission. One said, “Too many Christians have spiritual myopia. They are so near-sighted they can’t see beyond their local congregation.” The other replied, “Too many Christians are just stone blind and can’t see any need for saving the lost.”
Two things are eternal: the human soul, and the word of God. That’s why WEI has eternal significance. God is using WEI to plant his eternal word into eternal souls. He is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9).
Jesus warned, “Whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son” (John 3:18). This fearsome warning should propel us to action.
We are ambassadors of Christ. We represent him to the world. From an eternal perspective, YOU are more important than any ambassador of the United States of America.
The apostle Paul shakes us awake by asking how people can call on the name of the Lord and be saved when they have never heard of him (Romans 10:13-14). It is our job to get the word out.
Do you hear the voice of Jesus calling? Listen to his words: “Go into the entire world and preach the good news to all creation” (Mark 16:16). Sign up today as a postal teacher, an Internet teacher, or a short-term missionary. You can make a difference in someone’s eternal destiny.
May God bless you if you are already teaching, or if you are sacrificing to support this worldwide outreach ministry.
God loves you, and so do we.
—Dick and Maudine Ady
In Honor of Dick & Maudine Ady & Debbie Henry: Hitt, Art & Dorothy
In Memory of Fred Atkinson: Edwards, Art & Bonnie
In Memory of Dianne Brewer: Edwards, Art & Bonnie
In Memory of Bill Brown: Loeffler, Keith & Marty
In Memory of Ben Campbell: Edwards, Art & Bonnie; Kincer, Iva; Morgan, Bill & Mozelle; Jordan, Leon & Dittie
In Memory of Genevieve DeGrassee: Edwards, Art & Bonnie; Gallaher, Roy & Carolyn
In Memory of Keith Dockery: Downey, Joe; Edwards, Art & Bonnie; Morgan, Bill & Mozelle
In Memory of Steve Dunbar: Edwards, Art & Bonnie; Gallaher, Roy & Carolyn; Morgan, Bill & Mozelle
In Memory of Bud Elliott: Gallaher, Roy and Carolyn; Bishop, Joy
In Memory of Teresa Gardner: Edwards, Art & Bonnie
In Memory of Megan Godinez: Edwards, Art & Bonnie; Kervin, Mike & Shirley; Maryville Church of Christ; Morgan, Bill & Mozelle
In Memory of Bobby Goodwin: Edwards, Art & Bonnie; Gallaher, Roy & Carolyn
In Memory of James Greek: Edwards, Art & Bonnie; Morgan, Bill & Mozelle; Gallaher, Roy & Carolyn
In Memory of Hazel Luallen: Luallen, Wayne & Donna; Helm, Judith; Pytell, Dorothy; Logan, Tom & Patti
In Memory of Jean Markham: Hale, Lewis & Ruth
In Memory of Theodore Ogle: Danielson, Jewell; Ryder, Judith
In Memory of Bill Patterson: Loeffler, Keith & Marty; Henry, Debbie; Hitt, Art & Dorothy
In Memory of A.L. Salvage: Morgan, Bill & Mozelle
In Memory of Thelma Stevenson: Edwards, Art & Bonnie
In Memory of Ethel Thannisch: Weare, Virgil & Marry Anne; Edwards, Art & Bonnie
In Memory of Roberta Walker: Gardner, Claud & Jan