Bridging the Cultural Divide

Douglas VanBronkhorst

READ : Acts 8:4-17

Philip’s ministry in Samaria illustrates two mission principles. First, persecution can lead to growth. Philip’s successful mission in Samaria was the direct result of persecution.

Secondly, the Great Commission includes evangelism to those nearby who come from other cultures. Samaritans and Jews lived near each other, but they had different cultures. To Philip’s credit, when forced to flee a dangerous Judea, he took advantage of that situation to be a cross-cultural missionary.

Things don’t just happen. God has a plan and purpose, always related to Christ’s command to be witnesses. In our day immigration has scattered many people into unusual places including suburban and rural America. The core areas of most cities have many “Samaritan” neighborhoods. Are you and your church proclaiming Christ to these people?

Sometimes God moves us into new places; sometimes he moves “different” people near us. Either move can be uncomfortable but always gives opportunity for witness. Are you willing to be a bridge across cultures for the gospel?

PRAYER

Lord Jesus, help me to pray for and reach out to the “Samaritans” near me.