In 2010, almost 90 percent of Chile’s population identified as Christian, but that number didn’t tell the whole story. A rising number of the population was religiously unaffiliated. Of those who remained Catholic (64 percent), many were nominal. Of the 17 percent of Chileans who were Protestant, most believed some form of the prosperity gospel. Nearly 60 percent of Chile’s Protestants—and 48 percent of its Catholics—told researchers that God grants wealth and good health to believers who have enough faith.
A group of churches joined Mobilization Outreach Urbana, a program that focused on street evangelism in major Chilean cities. As it picked up momentum, several thousand young men and women worked to share Jesus with those around them. Yet over time, the leaders noticed a lack of depth—the conversion conversations were shallow and short, and some health-and-wealth theology was creeping in.
So they paused the work, pondered, and prayed. They studied good theology. Then they restarted with volunteers who were more committed to the centrality of the gospel and to building long-lasting relationships with those they evangelize. That means fewer sinners’ prayers. But it also means more discipleship—and, perhaps, more authentic conversions when they come.
Ways to pray:
- Praise that leaders throughout Chile are working, not only for evangelism, but deep and lasting Bible teaching
- For Chilean Christians to continue to develop friendships as an evangelism tool and to serve their congregations in a committed and enthusiastic way
- For those caught in prosperity theology to hear the gospel and be relieved of the pressure to perform
“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” John 3:17
Your gift to TGC’s Global Resourcing initiative will go directly toward the development and distribution of gospel-centered resources throughout the world. Thank you!