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C4 and C5 are levels on a scale of Christ-centered communities. This scale was created by John Travis (pseudonym) and attempts to look at Christ-centered communities and place them in a category.
The scale is as follows:
C1: Christian in churches radically different from their own culture, where worship is in a language other than their mother tongue.
C2: Same as C1, but worship is in the Christian’s mother tongue.
C3: Christians in culturally indigenous Christian churches that avoid cultural forms seen as connected to their religious past (i.e. Islamic, Buddhist, Post-Modernism, etc..)
C4: Christians in culturally indigenous congregations that retain biblically permissible past religious forms (e.g., prostrating in prayer, etc…), investing these with biblical meaning. They may call themselves something other than Christians (e.g., “followers of Jesus”), but do not see themselves as part of their previous religious belief system (i.e. Muslim, Buddhist, etc…).
C5: Muslims (Buddhists, etc…) who follow Jesus as Lord and Savior in fellowships of like-minded believers within the Muslim (Buddhist, etc…) community, continuing to identify culturally and officially as Muslims (Buddhists, etc…).
C6: Secret/underground believers.
One problem is that these scales are vague, and much can fall under them. Some may consider C4 as possibly biblical, though it depends on what the actual “permissible” forms of christian expression are. The biggest controversy tends to be in C4 & C5. Ultimately, the C-scale is a culturally biased scale. Made by westerners to put down western culture, and lift up indigenous culture. The problem is, biblically, we are to put aside all culture, and take on the Kingdom culture of Jesus.
“A recent definition calls it, “a popular movement to Christ that bypasses formal and explicit expressions of the Christian religion”. To be more specific, an ‘Insider’, as I understand it, is someone who considers Jesus as their ‘Lord’ and ‘Saviour’, yet who stays inside their culture (in this case their Muslim culture), inside their biological family (what they define as one’s ‘oikos’), continues to call themselves a Muslim (as defined in Sura 5:111), therefore believes the ‘Shahada’ (that God is one, and Muhammad is his prophet), continues to go to the mosque, attempts to pray five times a day, participates in the Ramadan fast, and some believe can go on the Hajj (pilgrimage). As one might imagine, there will be variations on this definition depending on whom you talk to and where they are ministering.” – Jay Smith
Insider Movements usually are in the C5 on the C-Scale, while some grey issues reside in C4. We believe that the Bible is clear that Insider Movements are not merely unbiblical, but very anti-biblical and anti-gospel and result in ‘converts’ to a syncretized new false religion, that is neither Islam, nor Christianity. Insider Movements are not just in Islam, but can be in any religious system, whether buddhism, and so on. This website has many, many articles elaborating why we believe Insider Movements are anti-biblical.