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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...




From the Incarnation to the Internet

Light for the Lost spreads life-changing message in a changing world

By Christina Quick
March 28, 2010

In 1953, a young insurance salesman named Sam Cochran knelt at an altar at First Assembly of God in Santa Ana, Calif. As he prayed, he saw a vision of a diverse crowd of men and women extending their hands toward a Bible and pleading, “Give us the Book.”

That vision inspired the formation of Light for the Lost, a ministry devoted to taking the gospel to the masses. A decade into the 21st century, the mission remains the same. Yet the methods for carrying it out continue to change with the times.

Tom Greene, national director of Assemblies of God Men’s Ministries and Light for the Lost, says a more modern version of Cochran’s vision might include people saying, “Give us the DVD.”

“Light for the Lost will forever be associated with literature,” Greene says. “But literature in the 21st century is not just the printed page. It includes CDs, DVDs, television, radio and even Internet evangelism. Today’s technology allows us to reach people who don’t have the ability to read. And it opens doors to places where we can’t send printed gospel literature.”

LFTL funds help support Network211, an Internet ministry that is reaching thousands of people with a series of online gospel presentations. The Network211 name reflects the concept of using 21st-century technology to communicate the first-century gospel.

Launched in October 2008 by Network211 and AG World Missions, the Web site, journeyanswers.com, has drawn 803,510 unique visitors. Among those, nearly 16,000 people have either recommitted their lives to Christ or accepted Christ as Savior.

Staff members and volunteers follow up on individuals who provide contact information. So far, nearly 26,000 people have received discipleship, prayer and information about local AG churches.

“Without Light for the Lost, we could not have reached such a huge number of people,” says George M. Flattery, Network211 president. “We look forward to a growing partnership with Light for the Lost. As we invest more in this outreach and begin efforts in other languages, the numbers will continue to grow dramatically.”

Most users find the Web site via Google searches, such as, “Who is Jesus?” LFTL is raising funds to purchase online ads designed to drive even more traffic to the site.

“It’s costing us 19 cents for every person who comes to the Web site and receives the presentation of the gospel,” Greene says. “Though many use the Internet for unseemly messages, I’m convinced that the Internet is one of the gifts God has given us for fulfilling the Great Commission. We constantly get reports about people receiving Christ in countries where we may never be able to send a missionary.”

Other efforts in which LFTL is involved include:

• Making online Bible training available in foreign nations

• Airing evangelistic advertisements on a television satellite network that reaches Spanish-speaking viewers from South America to Canada

• Distributing DVDs of The Jesus Film and The Cross and the Switchblade

• Making evangelistic DVDs and CDs available on college campuses through Chi Alpha Campus Ministries

• Purchasing PowerMark comics for children’s ministries

• Distributing copies of The Book of Hope to junior high and high school students through Youth Alive campus missionaries

• Providing printed grocery bags, volunteer T-shirts and gospel literature for Convoy of Hope events.

“The support of Light for the Lost gives us an advantage of being able to go into all the world to preach the gospel through DVDs and evangelism literature,” says Bob Marks, personnel director for Chi Alpha Campus Ministries. “Without this partnership, most of our missionaries’ evangelism activities would suffer from lack of finance to reach this generation of students who are so dependent on their technology.”

Light for the Lost even helps send copies of the Pentecostal Evangel to prisons through the Key Bearers program.

“Because of our partnership with Light for the Lost in the Key Bearers program, 10,000 magazines are going into 500 correctional institutions every week,” says Ken Horn, editor of the Pentecostal Evangel. “Hundreds of inmates make salvation commitments every year. Light for the Lost clearly reaches the lost and builds the kingdom of God.”

Of course, helping distribute Bibles remains a major focus of Light for the Lost. While LFTL is not a Bible publisher, the ministry collaborates with other Assemblies of God agencies to get God’s Word into the hands of those who are waiting to receive it.

“We work closely in partnership with Life Publishers Bible Alliance to make the Fire Bible available in nations around the world, including many closed nations,” Greene says.

Alton Garrison, assistant general superintendent of the Assemblies of God and president of the Bible Alliance, says the eternal impact of that effort is immeasurable. He notes that the Bible Alliance and Life Publishers recently released the 28th edition of the Fire Bible in the Thai language.

“Twenty-eight different language groups can now study a Bible with Pentecostal study notes in their own language,” Garrison says. “Light for the Lost has been a significant partner in providing a literal ‘Bible school in a book’ for millions who are called to spread the light of God’s grace to more than 2 billion who are still lost. With the help of Light for the Lost, the Bible Alliance will be able to complete more than two dozen language editions of the Fire Bible already in process.”

Though LFTL is the missions resource project of National Men’s Ministries, spreading the gospel is a mandate of the Church as a whole, Greene says.

“At this time of year, we’re reminded that Jesus is coming again,” Greene says. “As wonderful as it is to celebrate the risen Savior, we must also be committed to taking His truth to those who still need to learn about Him.”

To spread the message in a changing world and respond to the needs of a growing church, the support of individuals and congregations is more crucial than ever, Greene says.

“The whole reason we have church is to do what Christ came to do, and that is to save the world,” says David Raley, national LFTL field representative.

For more information about LFTL, visit lftl.ag.org, e-mail lftl@ag.org or call 1-800-988-0292.


CHRISTINA QUICK is a freelance writer and former Pentecostal Evangel staff writer. She lives in Springfield, Mo., and attends Central Assembly of God.

Email your comments to pe@ag.org.