Imagine if you could not find a church in your city or even within a couple of hours for where you live. A church that believes in the inerrancy, necessity, and sufficiency of the Scripture, and is actively preaching and reaching out with the biblical gospel. A church that has its goal to let the Bible speak for itself, by preaching through the whole Bible, and allowing the main point of the text to be the main point of the sermon. A church that is focused on discipleship and the raising up of faithfully trained leaders.
For many of you, this might be unthinkable where you live, but this is the current reality for many people in Sweden. They have no gospel-preaching church near them. This was not always the case. At one time in history, you could find gospel-preaching churches in every major town and village, but those days are gone. In certain areas of Sweden, one would have to travel for several hours to reach one. We regularly get in contact with people throughout Sweden who believe in the authority of the Bible, desire gospel preaching, but can’t find a church in their area.
While we are very thankful for existing churches that are faithful to the Lord, and for others who are growing into this, the fact still remains that there is a crying need for more healthy churches. Last month a report came out which revealed that since the year 2000, 38.5% of all the free churches (churches not part of the Lutheran Church of Sweden), have been closed down. That’s more than one church a week! This report reveals that there’s a huge need for churches to be planted. In the midst of all of this, we see sparks of life. We have witnessed people around the country coming together to study the Bible from place to place.
I did a study of the population of Sweden and discovered that it is very centered around urban areas, in the south between the greater Stockholm area and in the north and the greater Malmö area. In my studies, I found out that if 5 churches would be planted or revived by the Word of God in 5 specific cities, this would mean that 60% of the Swedish population could reach a church within one hour. This would mean that people in 37 out of the 50 biggest cities would be one hour from a healthy church. If you extend the drive time by 1.5 hours, it could reach nearly 80% of the Swedish population (or the people in 41 of the 50 biggest cities in Sweden).
It is exciting to know that we are currently in contact with (or helping small groups) who meet together to study the Word of God in all of those 5 cities, plus an additional strategic city.
Please join us in prayer for:
- The groups in those cities to be molded by the Word of God and the gospel.
- Leaders to be trained and discipled among them. Pray that God would give us wisdom, discernment, and guidance as we try to help them.
- For God to raise up more church planters in Sweden, and these 5 cities would have health churches established.
Thank you for partnering with us in the spread of the gospel here in Sweden!