Here are a few facts David Sills mentions in a blog post on Desiring God.

  • 70% of the World’s population are Oral Learners (they cannot read or write)
  • Most of the people groups unreached by the Gospel are pre-literate.
  • Over 90% of the resources developed for evangelism and discipleship are developed for highly literate people
Some astounding facts, ones which i had not known until I read that article today. But it drives home the need not only to know the gospel, but to know how to communicate it to others in a way they can understand. It’s the “communicate it to others in a way they can understand” that is the hard part. How do we create a resource for those who cannot read or write? Pictures? Memorized points to talk about? More effort is required here. David Sills finishes with this…
Our faithfulness to the Great Commission calls us to learn new ways of communicating the Word that are intelligle to those who sit in darkness. We must love the world’s least reached peoples enough to share the gospel with them in ways they can understand. It’s then when pagans will be won, believers will be discipled, pastors will be equipped, and the church will expand for the glory of Jesus Christ.
Your thoughts? I am thinking there is a broad principle at work here that overlaps even with the literate society we live in. We need to work out ways to communicate the gospel in ways our hearers are used to doing their learning / discussing / thinking. This includes our young people, who will now very rarely pick up a book and read it, who don’t want to sit and listen to someone speak for 3o minutes… hmm… some food for thought anyways.