The church in north India has grown rapidly in the last 10 years - over one million people have turned to Christ in a decade. The result of this is that thousands of small house churches have formed, each led by an independent, often untrained pastor. There is an urgent need to train up leaders for these churches, who can teach the Bible effectively and equip the new believers to live as Jesus’ disciples.
North India Bible Training (NIBT) serves to equip this growing body of Christians in North India. The programme seeks to train church planters and other leaders to study, apply and teach God’s word effectively, so that they can train others.
Workshops and conferences are run throughout the region, led by a small number of Hindi-speaking trainers. These bible teachers train a group of ‘A’ trainers (50-100 people), who then teach ‘B’ trainers (600-1,000 people). All participants return to their home parishes equipped to pass on what they have learned to other leaders within their house church. This ‘multiplication’ model has already succeeded in furnishing many thousands of North India’s small churches with trained bible teachers, who can help their congregations understand God’s word.
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From 6 to 9 March 2018 we held the ninth Ezra Conference in New Delhi. This conference has become very popular in North and Central India and we received over 120 applications. Unfortunately we had to tell many that they could not come because of limited budget and accommodation. In the end, 92 pastors and leaders from 14 cities were able to attend.
There were two plenary speakers, Dr Dinesh Panjwani and Rev Mervyn Neal. Rev Neal was in a local pastoral and bible teaching ministry in the United Kingdom for 20 years, serving two churches. He has been visiting India since 1999, helping to train pastors and evangelists to teach God's Word. He taught six plenary sessions on the book 2 Samuel. Dr Dinesh Panjwani serves as an elder of the Kachhwa Bible Church in Kachhwa, Mirzapur. He is also a surgeon and works part time at the Kachhwa Christian Hospital. He taught the epistle of 1 John in five sessions.
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