What did we accomplish?
Jesus was worshipped
Our conference maintained a prayerful spirit, a Christ-centered theology, a love for His church, fire for His name and love for God and others. We worshipped God. We learned from the Word and applied it as the highest authority over our lives. We made the love of Christ central to what we were doing in our time together.
False teaching and methodology was exposed
The Insider Movements (IM) methodology needs to be discussed and assessed until IM is no longer an Evangelical option for Christian missions to Muslims. The methodology was exposed and talked about in the context of such a conference because false teaching was assessed openly and publicly in the Bible.
The highlight of the conference was the interview by Bill Nikides of Anwar Hossein. IMs have thrived on two things: positive anecdotal stories by proponents or a tiny handful of genuine “insiders” and the absence of eyewitness scrutiny by the visible church. Anwar’s story was enormously important. We now have people from the inside personally testifying to dishonesty and duplicity in some groups, falsification of results, and ignorance of the Bible. Much of the conversation revolved around the creation and circulation of illegally produced insider translations that distort the text, omit part of John 1, replace “Son of God” and rephrase “Father” texts. The Bengali Bible Society, representing the visible Muslim background and Christian background churches in the country expressly prohibited its circulation, but in spite of this, the new translation circulated throughout the country until the Bible Society filed a court stay. The importance of this cannot be overstated: insiders claimed persecution, their proponents, trainers, and financiers, which are western, attempted to force Bibles the nationals themselves consider false translations onto their own people. This seems to be a clear implementation of neo-colonialism in missions.
To be clear, our group stands on the shoulders of Samuel Zwemer, Raymond Lull, Henry Martin, Richard Bell, al-Kindy, Carl Pfander, St. Clair Tisdall, William Goldsack, James Levi Barton, Sir William Muir, I. Lilias Trotter, Arthur Jeffery, Temple Gairdner, E.M. Wherry, Arthur Jeffery, J Christy Wilson Sr…who have honored the church and loved the Bible, translating its message into the language of diverse cultures and preaching it faithfully without subverting its message.
Media materials created
The ability to get the media message out to all the pastors, churches in North America, mission organizations, foundations and those interested in missions is vital. It is crucial to influence structures strongly committed to the IM paradigm. The creation of websites, DVDs, papers and a book (see below) is a strategic part of changing the face of missions.
www.bibmiss.wpengine.com — You’re Here!
A book will be published
Insider Movements: A Critical Assessment
Based on the first two conferences, Insider Movements: A Critical Assessment, brings together voices from scholars, former practitioners of IM, Christians from a Muslim background, pastors, missionaries, and mission organizations harmoniously critiquing IM. Included is a thorough presentation of the insider paradigm followed by chapters dealing with problematic IM exegesis and interpretation, deliberate mistranslations of the New Testament, the ethic of hidden truths of some IM proponents, and an examination of IM missiological foundations.
Conference speakers and topics included:
1. Joshua Lingel, “Insider Movements: A Critical Assessment”
2. Bill Nikides, “Lost in Translation: Insider Movements and Biblical Interpretation”
3. Ergun Caner, “Medieval Mormonism”
4. Dave Talley, “God’s Commands for Dealing with Pagan Religions and Pagan Religious Practices”
5. Adam Simnowitz, “In Danger from False Brethren (2 Cor 11:26)?”
6. Abdu Murray, “A Misguided Mission: How IM Robs Us of the Blessing of Persecution”
7. Emir Caner, “The Insiders Movement Equivalent of Limbo: the CAMEL Method”
8. Bill Nikides interview of Anwar Hossein (a believer who previously worked with the IM)
9. Georges Houssney, “Would Paul Become a Muslim to Muslims: 1 Cor 9:19-23?”
10. John Span, “The Confusion of ‘Kingdom Circles’: a Clarification”
11. Jay Smith, “Experiences in Ethiopia with IM”
12. David Cook, “The Islamic Traditions on Insider Movements”
13. Elijah Abraham, “Jesus of Christianity and Islam”
14. Brian Lenney, “Confrontations with IM in the Local Church: a Report”
15. Roger Dixon, “Muslim Replacement Theology”
16. Jeff Morton, “IM means Inappropriate Missiology”
For a brief summary of each speaker’s topic, click the button at www.insidermovements.org
Significance of the Conference
First, insider movements buttress their practices with unorthodox, anachronistic interpretations of isolated biblical texts in a way that ignore the overall redemptive flow of Scripture and its principle motifs of covenantal, exclusive faith against the idolatrous religions of the nations.
Second, the conference unearthed aberrant understandings of Christianity and religion in general. IM methods depend on a view of religion that is sociological and cultural, ignoring the fallen, even Satanic spiritual freight they carry as ungodly imitations of the truth.
Third, IM ignores the spiritual dangers of false religion, coaxing Muslims who profess Christ to remain embedded in a poisonous faith system that eventually must corrupt and distort its practitioners.
This is the first conference to consider insider movements with virtually all of the important participants: missiologists (both for and against), specialists in the understanding of Islam (both missionaries and academics), theologians, church historians, translation experts, church men and women, Muslim converts engaged in ministry to Muslims, former insiders now part of Muslim church planting among Muslims.
Although the conference is convened for the mutual support and edification of people who oppose insider movements (it is the only such gathering in the face of many efforts dominated by insider supporters), it did have a sizable component of insiders (one national) interacting with non-IMers.
Both proponents and opponents called for further gatherings of both to focus first and fundamentally on the Scripture.
It was also strongly suggested further conferences should include a healthy mix of church men and women, pastors and other officers, seminarians and scholars from many fields, leaders of churches in geographic areas impacted by insider movements, indigenous insiders, and ordinary Christians. Too long have missiologies remained in the purview of the “experts.”
We hope you will join our community or start your own. Perhaps we can help you organize an Insider Movements: A Critical Assessment conference in your country and record it in your language. It is not too soon to think about next years conference.
To pre-order MP3/DVD’s of the conference, please go to: www.insidermovements.org