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A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher.    Luke 6:40  ESV


A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher.    Luke 6:40  ESV

Preparing Disciples for Outreach


Thinking through Training

Several years ago I attended an apologetics conference where one of the main speakers presented textual problems in the Qur’an.  That speaker has since begun publishing his research in books, like this one we highly recommend: Corrections in Early Qurʾān Manuscripts: Twenty Examples, by Daniel Brubaker.  

To a lot of Christians, learning how to point out problems with Islam or how to refute Muslim arguments against the Christian faith may be synonymous with training for outreach to Muslims.  While such things can be very helpful when applied in the right way, is there more to training?

Acquiring the language spoken by many of the people in our adopted Muslim country was a major project. The language is written from right to left and features many sounds that don’t exist in English.  The sentence structure is entirely different from English, and the grammar includes masculine and feminine nouns, adjectives, and even verbs.

Getting the language so you sound like a native speaker means mastering all these challenging aspects.  For many of Christ’s people reaching out to the world’s ethnē, language learning is a huge part of training.  It can take years!  But it’s not everything.

Training is so much more than acquiring skills from a book, an online course,  a seminar, or even acquiring a new language.  We think of training as part of discipleship.  And when we think of discipleship, we think of becoming more like Jesus in the way He loved people, spent His time among them doing good, made God’s Kingdom a priority, and ultimately sacrificed His own life to save us.  

Enfolding Training within Discipleship

Enfolding Training within Discipleship

What did training look like for Jesus and His disciples?  A close look at the accounts of Jesus’ parables, miracles, and conversations teaches us that the disciples were constantly learning to overcome their biases and misunderstandings, and learning to be humble servants who love others.  Kenneth Bailey, in his book Jesus through Middle Eastern Eyes, shows how Jesus’ interaction in Matthew 15 with the Syro-Phonecian woman was artfully designed to confront His disciples’ “prejudices against women and Gentiles” (p.224).  Being a disciple in Jesus’ world meant becoming like one’s master.  It is interesting to note that in Acts 4:13 the disciples’ courage is explainable only by their close association with Jesus, not by any formal training:  “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished.  And they recognized that they had been with Jesus” (ESV).  A big part of training is becoming more like Christ!  The more we know Jesus, the more we will do and say things in ways that cannot be explained apart from our relationship with Him. 

There are many excellent resources and opportunities available for training Christians to reach out to Muslim people with the gospel.  We list some of them below.  However, we do not want to give the impression that one is trained simply by gaining a body of knowledge or a set of skills.  As we relate to Jesus as His disciples, building one another up in a team context, our training involves deep, inner change, made possible through the Holy Spirit’s work of sanctification and our continual exposure to new people, new situations, and new resources.  The Lord changes our attitudes, increases our wisdom, gives us new insights into His Word, and enables us to think creatively and lovingly about how to interact with others. 

Training is part of a process of discipleship which the Lord Himself oversees and empowers.  Its central feature is the Word of God, and our submission to Christ and to one another is vital to its success.  Even the resources and opportunities listed below should be viewed and used in the context of our growing as disciples and learning how to “make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19).  

Ethnē Outfitters Mission Trips

Ethnē Outfitters Mission Trips

Most Ethnē Outfitters mission trips last for about one week, including travel, with four or five full days of activities at our destinations.  We consider our mission trips “on the job training.”  Activities include devotional times, worship, team building, cultural exposure, training times, mosque visits, and various types of outdoor ministry.

Past destinations include:

  • Clarkston, GA (home to a large refugee population from many different languages and cultures)
  • Dearborn, MI (the largest concentration of Arab Americans)
  • Hamtramck, MI (the first and only Muslim-majority city in the United States).  

One goal of our mission trips is to help Christians overcome any fears and prejudices they may have related to our Muslim neighbors.  Our trips are designed to give team members personal contact with Muslim people.  Many mission trip team members have shared how by the end of the trip they felt much more comfortable around Muslim people.  

One of the highlights of our trips is outreach in city parks, where families from various cultures like to hang out during the summer.  We love to bring fun activities to do with new friends we meet at the parks, and some of those friends are refugees from places like Syria and Iraq.

Please get in touch with us for more information about our mission trips.  

Ethnē Outfitters Webinars and Seminars

Ethnē Outfitters Webinars and Seminars

Webinars and seminars are one of the ways to engage interactively in a learning environment with others who have the same passion for the love and truth of Christ to impact the nations.  The content of these programs is built on the foundation of the Scriptures and on experience gained while walking with Muslim people in many different contexts. 

The choice of content is influenced by feedback we have received, informing us of specific areas of felt need in outreach to Muslim peoples.  Webinar and seminar content breaks down into five main areas of personal development and growth in understanding as disciples of Christ:

  1. Spiritual
  2. Theological
  3. Intellectual
  4. Relational
  5. Practical

Owing to public meeting limitations resulting from the Coronavirus, near-term offerings will be limited to webinars until announced otherwise.  Webinars are a new feature of Ethnē Outfitters, so registration for our webinars is not yet open.  To be added to our contact list to receive notifications about webinars, please use our Get in Touch form.  


Video-Based Training Courses

Video-Based Training Courses

Some Christian ministry organizations have invested significant time, funding, and expertise into developing excellent training resources for groups and individuals who are interested in growing as disciple makers among Muslim people.  Please consider using any of these three courses, which can be of great benefit to a team growing together as disciples and disciple makers:    

Bridges Course

The Bridges course, from Crescent Project, has been used in many churches and helps to train and equip Christians for positive and friendly outreach to Muslims. 

The Bridges course curriculum is:

  • Lesson 1: Islam Rising
  • Lesson 2: Belief and Ritual
  • Lesson 3: Attitudes of an Ambassador
  • Lesson 4: Bridging the Gospel
  • Lesson 5: Understanding the New Testament’s credibility
  • Lesson 6: Understanding Jesus’ sacrifice

Available from Crescent Project here:

Journey to Jesus Course

This excellent DVD-based training course on how to overcome fear and hesitation in witness and outreach to Muslims is perfect for your family, small group, or Sunday school class.  It features high-quality, live-action episodes, and is broken down into three sections:

  • Sessions 1 and 2:  “Saalima is new to the neighborhood.  She meets another young mom, Kate …”
  • Sessions 3 and 4:  “Coworkers Larry and Azim are lunchtime friends.  Will conversations about faith bring them closer together or …”
  • Sessions 5 and 6:  “Two college students, Bryan and Abdul, have a class assignment to investigate the other’s worldview.  Their meetings are strained …”

Order it here:

Friendship First Course

The Friendship First DVD-based course comes from longtime missions organization Interserve.  The six week course provides training in the areas of attitude, knowledge, and skills.  Here are the course contents:

  • Week 1:  Islam and Muslim people
  • Week 2:  Muslim Values and cultures
  • Week 3:  Our Muslim friends
  • Week 4:  Good news for our Muslim friends
  • Week 5:  Ways to witness
  • Week 6:  Next steps

To order, visit:

Al Massira Training Course

Al Massira Training Course

The Al Massira course, first conceived of in Cairo, Egypt, is a film-based documentary series that “can be used with small groups of friends.”  It is ideal for people from a Muslim background who are open to discovering biblical truth, beginning with prophets whose names they are already familiar with. 

Unlike the DVD training courses above, Al Massira is a resource designed to use with non-Christian friends.  Imagine the impact this kind of resource could have in making disciples!  Al Massira means “The Journey.”      

Here is the course outline:  

Introductory Episode

Foundations & Signs

1. The Story of Adam & Eve
2. The Story of Noah
3. The Story of Abraham & Sarah

Signs & Prophecies

4. The Story of Moses
5. The Story of King David
6. The Story of Mary & the Messiah

The Messiah & his Family

7. The Story of the Messiah
8. The Messiah & the Father
9. The Messiah &the Holy Spirit

Following the Messiah

10. Living with the Messiah
11. First Steps with the Messiah
12. The Fellowship of the Messiah

Additional material available for every episode:

  • Questions from the journey
  • Notes to the journey

The Al Massira video resources are only available to training conference participants, since proper training is needed to use them effectively.  To learn more about Al Massira, visit:, and to request information on participating in a training conference, please get in touch with us to let us know.

Refugee Ministry

Refugee Ministry

A refugee is a person who has been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster.

It is impossible for most of us to even begin to imagine the tragedy refugees arriving in North America have had to face.  Yes, they are often in need of many kinds of assistance during their adjustment after arriving among us.  This can include things like…

  • Airport pick-up
  • Housing
  • Groceries and other supplies
  • Job services and English as a second language
  • Culture and job classes
  • School enrollment
  • Public benefits
  • Social security application
  • Health screening and immunizations
  • Job search
  • Transportation, including training for using buses and other public transportation
  • Language interpretation

Try to think what it would be like to suddenly be uprooted from your home and placed in a new country and culture, with a language you may not speak at all.  Besides all of the practical assistance you would need, think of how priceless the friendship of people in your new adopted country would be! 

Ministering to refugees is a way of being a friend during a truly vulnerable time in people’s lives.  Is an immense honor to serve people during their time of need.  It is perhaps one of the most tangible kinds of ministry through which the church can express the love and truth of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Our own experience is that this kind of ministry is both a privilege and a blessing to those who serve, as well as those who receive service.

Maybe you have met refugees yourself, or maybe you have seen and heard things that make you feel deeply for them in their need. Please reach out to us if you have an interest in getting involved in refugee ministry in your area. 


Ethnē Outfitters