Evangelizing in America when Christians are afraid to stand out, distrust is growing

Christians worship in this photo uploaded on November 16, 2017. | Acts 29
As the religious landscape of America continues to change and those identifying with faith continues to decline, the fear of standing out as a Christian is growing.
And that is impacting evangelism efforts.
There’s a greater apprehension among those who do count themselves as Christians to not only share their faith but to even appear differently from the rest of society, according to Bo Rice, assistant professor of evangelism and preaching at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. They’re too afraid to stand for beliefs that might be seen as offensive to others in a diversifying culture.
“I believe in the politically correct, politically charged climate of our culture today, believers are afraid to take a stand and to look different for fear of being accused of being intolerant toward others. Unfortunately, we have reached a point in American history where Christians are afraid to speak biblical truth in love out of fear of retribution,” Rice told The Christian Post.
“Many Christians have just assimilated into the culture of the world so they won’t ‘offend’ anyone."
New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary President Charles "Chuck" Kelley Jr., who earlier in October announced he will be retiring from his position, makes a similar point in his recently released book, Fuel the Fire.  
Kelley laments that Christians are simply blending in with the secular world.
Overchurched to underchurched
While it can be argued that the older generations might have been "overchurched," the reality today is that some people have "never stepped foot in a church,” said Noel Heikkinen, lead pastor at Riverview Church in the Lansing, Michigan.
Many people in the current generation don't have the church experience that previous generations were exposed to.
As a result, “their view of Christianity is what they have seen in pop culture, and what we are seeing even more so is that it's derived from social media," Heikkinen explained to CP.
He said that for a lot of younger people, "their whole perception of Christianity is not about the Gospel, or Jesus, or any of that.”
Unlike previous generations, young people today “have very much an 'a la carte' approach to spirituality," meaning that they want to "pick and choose what strands of their spirituality are important to them,” the Michigan pastor said.
"Even if they hear a preacher say Scripture has to be the ultimate authority in their lives, there is always going to be an asterisk" next to that, and they will turn to their “own truth” if they hear something they disagree with, he noted.
For many young people, “there is no real truth that lies outside of their own personal experiences, biases and assumptions."
“The self becomes the arbitrator of personal truth; personal truth becomes greater than absolute truth,” Heikkinen said.
Rice also believes that the number of people in the U.S. who have never heard of Jesus Christ is growing.
“We are seeing and hearing of more stories right here in the U.S. of people coming to faith in Christ after hearing about Jesus for the first time. However, I do agree, in America, we often encounter those who are ‘disillusioned’ with ‘religion’ altogether,” Rice said.
Christianity in decline
Many polls have painted a complex picture of the religious landscape in America. One overarching trend that has emerged in most surveys and analyses is that the proportion of those identifying with Christianity, especially young people, is shrinking.
A study by Gallup in April found that while 71 percent of Americans identified with a Protestant denomination back in 1955, the percentage decreased to less than half (47 percent) of the population in 2017.
Roman Catholics retained a more stable rate of identification, making up 22 percent of the population in 2017, compared to 24 percent in 1955.
Young people were found to be one of the chief drivers of the rising "nonreligious" demographic, with 33 percent of those aged 21 to 29 stating that they follow no religion.
J. Warner Wallace, a cold case detective, author and senior fellow at the Colson Center for Christian Worldview, chronicled more than 50 similar surveys back in January and concluded: "Fewer people claim a Christian affiliation than ever before, and those who claim no religious affiliation are the fastest growing group in America." 
Researcher George Barna of the American Culture & Faith Institute noted, following a survey of 9,273 American adults in November 2017, which found that only 31 percent of adults identify as born-again Christians, that faith is undergoing a "substantial challenge."
"The Church at-large is not likely to grow in the future unless some fundamental changes in practice are made," Barna warned.
The survey found that people are most likely to accept Christ as Savior before they finish high school, with two out of every three individuals who say they are born again revealing they made the choice before the age of 18.
Evangelism efforts
Baptism ceremony, May 31, 2016 | Acts 29
Currently, evangelism — defined as the act of proclaiming the message that Jesus Christ is Lord — in America is in what Rice calls a “confused” state.
One of Merriam Webster’s definitions of confusion is “a state or situation in which many things are happening in a way that is not controlled or orderly.”
“I believe that this is a good picture of evangelism today. We are not seeing the large-scale, structured evangelism campaigns emphasized as strongly in present-day churches like we have in the past,” Rice, who is also the dean of Graduate Studies at the Southern Baptist Convention-affiliated NOBTS, observed. “So we have lost the ‘controlled’ aspect of systematic approaches and more accurate reporting of numbers.”
Evangelism is still being done by individual churches and individuals but for Rice, the main question is whether their approach is effective in “reaching people for the Kingdom of God.”
Heikkinen is, meanwhile, involved in another approach to evangelism: church planting.
He serves as the U.S. Midwest network director for Acts 29 Network, which focuses on planting churches in areas that have "a lot less Gospel influence.”
There are certain pockets in America where there’s been a good response to church planting and evangelism.
“Some of the most successful efforts in the past 30 years” have been "primarily in suburban areas,” Heikkinen noted. "It's been a much easier place to plant churches.”
He acknowledged that churches in America are "declining faster" than they are growing. And church planters are struggling to plant in an urban context as well as in rural small towns.
In the major cities, people, especially in economically disadvantaged zones, are "suspicious of those coming in from outside" and would ask "why are you here?"
Acts 29
Suspicion against the church has intensified with the rise of the #MeToo and #ChurchToo movements. People are seeing churches "as a place to cover up" sexual assault and to "protect those that are hurting vulnerable people,” Heikkinen added.
Church planters are encountering a lot of that sentiment, particularly from the younger generation.
Both the Protestant and Catholic world have been mired in sexual abuse cases. The sexual assault accusations against and downfall of high-profile megachurch pastor Bill Hybels, as well as Andy Savage in Tennessee, have prompted much discussion on accountability in evangelical circles. While the Catholic Church has faced scandals worldwide, decades of clergy sex abuse and institutional cover-ups were revealed in Pennsylvania and other states earlier this year.
Underlying those scandals have been the thousands of #ChurchToo stories shared in online circles by people, mostly women, who say they have suffered rape and other forms of sexual abuse by Christians in leadership and others within churches.
All of this has a direct consequence on how Christianity is perceived in America and creates difficult challenges for evangelism, both Rice and Heikkinen affirmed.
“Unfortunately, I do think when a believer falls, especially clergy and lay leaders, it's a deterrent to the advancement of the Gospel,” Rice commented.
“Satan uses the ‘fall’ of leaders whether it be through the abuse of innocent children and the abuse of women, adultery, and addiction, to name a few, to attempt to destroy the credibility of believers and of the Gospel. Through this, the sin is magnified and these ‘Christians’ are made out to be ‘worse than the world’ so that all who see their fall and who do not know the story of Redemption through Christ have no desire to be associated with them.
“However, it is our job to make sure we preach the Redemptive portion of the story. … We need Jesus because of those very sin issues.”
Heikkinen reflected that there is mistrust in the U.S. toward authority in general, and that mistrust "bleeds into the church," especially when it comes to cases of sex abuse.
Looking at just how many people have been accusing Christian leaders and churches of varying degrees of abuse and cover-ups, the Michigan pastor said that he can't claim to be surprised.
“But I would say I am heartbroken,” Heikkinen said.
"I truly believe that sin is real," he added, stressing that when looking at history, people know such abuse has "always been there.”
Moving forward
"I want our churches to be a light to this world," Heikkinen emphasized, admitting that "it's hard right now to be a voice in our culture" due to the scandals.
Christians need to regain trust and the universal Church has to take big steps in that regard.
He pointed to 2 Timothy in the Bible, where the Apostle Paul says in part:
"Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, the offspring of David, as preached in my Gospel, for which I am suffering, bound with chains as a criminal. But the word of God is not bound! Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.”
Rice turned to Acts 1:8, which reads:
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the Earth.”
Rice insisted that the future of evangelism in America is not bleak.
“If the believers of Christ will look to Him for His promised Spirit, direction, and power, then we will see Him accomplish great things through us,” he underscored. “In short, evangelism will be successful because Jesus is on His throne, and He still desires to use His people to bring about His purpose and will.”
How to evangelize
Acts 29 baptism, January 10, 2017 | Acts 29
Traditional methods of evangelism include preaching on the streets, which was popular in the '70s, but it might not be as effective as before.
For Heikkinen, the most effective way to spread the Gospel message and bring people to Jesus is through relationships.
”I think what we are discovering is that evangelism is about being friends with people,” speaking with them honestly, and not hiding one’s own sins, he explained.
Rather than starting with theological teachings right away when engaging with nonbelievers, he emphasized the importance of building friendships with them first.
When something happens in their lives and they need someone to talk to, the Christian friend can step up and share how their beliefs have helped them, he said.
“Some of the people I have personally been able to lead to faith in the last several years have all been my friends first,” he revealed.
Heikkinen noted that the opportunity presents itself when something happens in people’s lives, and then they think of him: “He is a pastor and a Christian, I should talk to him."
That strategy is also discussed in Friend of Sinners: An Approach to Evangelism by author and pastor Harvey Turner, also of the Acts 29 Network. The book details how the approach mirrors the ministry of Jesus Himself, who had conversations with everyday people and chose to be a “friend of the sinners.”
Rice noted that while his personal approach to evangelizing hasn't changed much, he also tries to practice what he called "Gospel conversations," namely "taking the time to develop relationships with people (even if it’s in a short amount of time) and then transitioning to a Gospel presentation in regular conversation.”
And that presentation must be the “full truth,” Rice stressed.
“To many, the Gospel and biblical principles are controversial and offensive. But we are called to be witnesses of the full truth, not just the parts of the Bible that make us ‘feel good’ or ‘comfortable,’” he said.
“So yes, the culture is changing and the context of ministry might be more difficult in our postmodern world, but that doesn't mean we should water down biblical truth just to make it ‘easier’ for us … because if we do that, what Gospel are we preaching? Our own? May we never make a mockery of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross in such a way.”
Christians must also not forget to extend a clear invitation to respond to the message of Jesus Christ.
Rice observed that in recent decades, fewer evangelicals ask for an “explicit response to the Gospel.”
“Some no longer extend an invitation because they are fearful it might come across as manipulative,” he cautioned.
“I believe we must never use any form of manipulation in calling people to respond to the Gospel, but we must call for a clear and decisive response of people to repent of their sins and trust in Christ as Savior and Lord. We must plead and urge people to respond to the truth.”
Heikkinen often wonders what the state of Christianity in the U.S. will look like in the future.
"The trend that I see happening, and I hope I am wrong, is that American churches will [continue] declining in influence,” he said.
But that doesn't leave him pessimistic in seeing more people in America gain salvation through Jesus Christ because the work of evangelism will still go on, but not always from within.
There's another trend that can't be ignored — the Christian faith is growing overseas, such as in China and in parts of Africa and South America. And they will send a new “generation of missionaries to come to the United States and preach," Heikkinen said.
Those overseas churches are earnestly praying for faith in America, he highlighted.
"God is going to use that.”

Woman Who Miraculously Survived Rwandan Genocide Gives Back to Community

When massive genocide swept through Rwanda in 1994, hope and salvation seemed out of reach for the persecuted Rwandans, but God’s hand of protection intervened over Liberty alumna Sonia Gwaneza (’18).
Born in 1992, she was a small child when the Rwandan genocide forced her family to separate and hide within the homes of friends and neighbors. Given to an older woman for protection, young Sonia was battling malnutrition when a group of ravaging murderers entered her neighborhood block and forced everyone to line up. Her neighbors were killed one by one. But when the murderers reached Sonia, they spared her, deeming her too young and unlikely to  survive anyway. However, God had other plans for Sonia.
Today, Sonia is a graduate of Liberty University with a Master of Arts in Public & Community Health, and her passion for service and advocacy is rooted in her personal history. She may have been underestimated as a child, but she proves her childhood oppressors wrong with each passing day.
Sonia is the first person in her family to earn a master’s degree, and she may not be finished yet. With her degree in public and community health in hand, she aims to use the skills and knowledge gained at Liberty to impact her home community. In Rwanda, she has seen the positive change that has blossomed from the buried anger and devastation. She hopes to return home and build an orphanage for those affected by the genocide, as well as a hospital to provide maternal and child health care to those who cannot afford it.
She gives Liberty credit for inspiring her to develop and pursue her passion for service. Through opportunities on campus and with LU Serve, Sonia was able to apply what she had learned in the classroom to real-world communities. “It’s not about going to school, taking classes, and submitting assignments,” Sonia said in a recent interview. True learning is “to go out there and to start serving the community. Getting into the Lynchburg community has prepared me to serve on my own,” she said. Those opportunities helped her grow and develop as a person, challenging her to discover new ways to serve and deeply impact the people she encountered.
When asked what being a Champion for Christ means, Sonia replied that it is “to represent Christ in everything that we do, that everything that I do in my life glorifies God.” Being a champion means “making sure it isn’t really about me, but about Christ.”
Sonia has held on to Liberty’s mission of Training Champions for Christ as her personal motivation to become the champion God has called her to be, and she has certainly succeeded.
“I’m ready to go out there and do something,” she said. “Ready to learn. It’s the start of something new, not the end of the program. I cannot wait to see where God brings me into the future.”

Steph Curry and Liberty University Graduate Donate Thousands of Shoes to Children in Need

Nearly two decades ago, Liberty alumnus Emmanuel Ntibonera (’13, Health Promotion, MBA) was a refugee—a child on the run from the Second Congo War. He and his family, including eight younger siblings, eventually immigrated to the United States, but his heart hurt for those suffering back home—over 5 million dead in ten years.
He returned to his homeland in 2014 and was overwhelmed by the need he saw, especially the preventable infections spread by walking barefoot. Emmanuel founded the Ntibonera Foundation, and his family spent the next two years collecting shoes as they ministered in
churches and at conferences across the U.S.
As shoes filled up the family home and overflowed into a storage unit, the complexity and expense of shipping them to the Congo hit home. One day, Emmanuel visited Liberty Senior Vice President for Spiritual Development, David Nasser, to ask for prayers for his country. Soon afterward, Nasser set up a meeting between Emmanuel and Liberty alumnus Chris Strachan (’11), who had his own organization called Kick’n It.
The end result was that three men—Emmanuel Ntibonera, Chris Strachen, and NBA player Steph Curry, rallied Liberty students and raised $10,000 and an additional 20,000 pairs of shoes. Liberty volunteers packed the shoes at the nearby headquarters of Gleaning For The World (GFTW), a worldwide Christian humanitarian organization that partnered with Liberty to ship the shoes.
The following July, the men and their families traveled to the Republic of Congo and set to work. While the LU and Kick’n It teams ministered to Congolese people in refugee camps, Emmanuel set off to the eastern villages of the Congo. In addition to the 20,000 pairs of shoes that were distributed, villagers received 3,500 pounds of rice, 2,600 pounds of beans, and 2,200 pounds of cornmeal, as well as soap, clothing, candies, and toys donated by GFTW.
The villagers had never received outside aid before, and as the large truck rolled in, people gathered by the thousands.
“In every village that I would go,” said Emmanuel, “I would talk to the children. So many were orphans; they lost their parents during the war. We were meeting kids who were kicked out of their houses, out of the family, because they came as a result of rape. Some of them have no place to sleep. They tell me they have no parents. Some of their parents went to work in mines and they died there. I met so many kids who were just about to die because they have not eaten for three to five days; they have no idea where their meals are coming from.”
Emmanuel’s work isn’t finished, but he knows that champions are stronger together than they are on their own.
“What we did with Liberty was unbelievable, he said. “I couldn’t have done this without Liberty, without all those people who gave a pair of shoes, the people who were praying; they all made it a success. I tried to do it myself and I wasn’t able to. …  I couldn’t have done this without them.”

Dallas school bus driver on ‘mission from God’ buys Christmas gifts for all 70 kids on his route

Curtis Jenkins, a Dallas Texas school bus driver surprises students with gifts for Christmas, December 2018. | nbcdfw.com
A school bus driver in Texas bought Christmas gifts for every child on his route by using money that he saved as a way of fulfilling his "mission from God."
Curtis Jenkins surprised students from Lake Highlands Elementary School in Dallas the last day before winter break with a bus filled with Christmas presents. Overwhelmed by what they saw, one student asked if he was Santa Claus.  
"I'm not at a job, I'm on a mission from God," Jenkins told the Dallas-Fort Worth NBC affiliate. "I don't say anything about religion to the kids. I just let them know whatever they love is fine with me, just love somebody on the way."
Jenkins said his job also gives him an opportunity to show each child that they have value and are loved. The gifts he gave the students included electronics, puzzles, games and even a bike.
"Seeing the faces of those kids was more than anything that I could ever do with the money," Jenkins exclaimed.
"We talked about the things that they would want and I made a mental note of it and wrote it down," he said.
Eleven-year-old Ethan Ingle, one of the 70 children who received a gift from Jenkins, was elated to receive a pair of headphones in red, his favorite color.
“It makes me feel like I belong and I mean something to this community,” said Ethan's mom, Katrina Clift, in response to Jenkins' gift to her child. The generous bus driver also gifted their family a turkey for Thanksgiving.
Lake Highlands Elementary School PTA President Jennifer Wilcox said Jenkins heart to give is rubbing off on others. She said families across the district are now inspired by his Christmas giving. Jenkins' co-worker chipped in to buy the bike and another parent gave $100.
"We are just so thankful for his spirit, and his kindness and his generosity to the kids," Wilcox said. "Thank you for being a wonderful example for all of us."
Jenkins has worked for the school district for seven years and remembered the times as a child when he didn't get much for Christmas.

World’s first Christian airline to cater to missionaries, charge no luggage fee

A Judah1 mission trip. | (Photo: Facebook)
Christians traveling around the world and locally for mission trips and religious tours may soon be able to kiss lost luggage and baggage fees goodbye as Judah 1, an aviation ministry out of Texas is set to become the world’s first Christian airline.
The ministry announced on Wednesday that the FAA had accepted their application to switch from a private operator to “becoming the first and only Christian Airline!” last month.
“This means Judah 1 (upon receiving its DOT and 121 Certification) will have the freedom to transport as many different churches and mission organizations as we can. This is a huge honor and privilege and we give God all the glory! We will be posting more information as we are able. Thank you so much Judah 1 partners and friends for making this possible!”
The ministry’s website explains that it serves missions-minded Christian people of all denominations traveling to the mission fields of the world. Their planes have also delivered hundreds of missionaries and transported thousands of pounds of cargo.
In an interview with The Christian Post on Monday, Everett Aaron, founder and CEO of Judah 1, explained that he hopes that the ministry’s airline status will be approved by next summer and noted that the FAA has been very supportive of their efforts.
Everett Aaron is founder and CEO of Judah 1, an aviation ministry set to become the first Christian airline. | (Screenshot: YouTube)
“If everything goes as planned we are looking at some time in the summer of 2019,” he said.
While Christian customers can expect to pay competitive ticket prices with Judah 1, Aaron is assuring his potential customer base that they will no longer have to worry about baggage fees and travel hazards like lost luggage.
“We will have to charge regular ticket prices just like you do for the [other] airlines. This is not available for just the general public, you have to be part of a mission team. It will be very competitive with the airlines. The advantage is there’s no luggage fees. Absolutely none. All your cargo travels with you as well. So that’s the biggest thing,” Aaron said.
He pointed to research that shows how frequently Christians traveling on mission trips tend to lose their cargo and said it’s one of the burdens of missionaries traveling with secular airlines that Judah 1 hopes to eliminate.
“About 50 percent of missionaries lose their cargo when it travels via container and that’s one of the problems we have. I know some of the trips we have been on ourselves with other missionary groups traveling, they ship their stuff via container and medical supplies and stuff either get tied up in customs, food spoils, some things it just gets lost,” he said.
Sometimes, according to Aaron, missionary cargo like Bibles have been known to get stolen as well.
“Even the Bibles. I found out Bibles are one of the largest black market items in the world. People steal Bibles and sell them,” he said.
He explained that the ministry’s MD 80 aircraft carries about 2,000 pounds of cargo and several Boeing 767s they plan to introduce once they are approved will carry 30,000 tons of cargo.
The plan for Judah1 is to have a fleet of 20 aircraft over the next five years.
The livery for Judah1. | (Photo: Facebook)
“Once we get our certification (in 2019), we have four more MD 80s that are on standby for us as well as two 767s that are on standby,” he said. This will bring Judah 1’s short-term operational fleet of aircraft to seven.
The ministry plans to work with ministries such as Kingdom Living Ministries to plan mission trips to such areas as the unreached mountain villages of Kisumu.  
When asked if he has reached out to large ministries like Kenneth Copeland Ministries or Creflo Dollar who have used private jets for their ministries to see if his business would be a competitive option, Aaron said he had not done so but he hopes to cater to similar ministries.
“It’s hopeful that we can help with that because that’s one of the sore spots for a lot of people — the fact that ministers do use corporate aircraft for travel, ” he said.
He did note, however, that he understands that it may sometimes be cheaper for pastors to use private jets and it also saves a lot of time when traveling with teams of more than four or five people.
In a video about his ministry posted on YouTube, Aaron explained how God gave him a vision for the aviation ministry in 1994.
“Judah 1 came about in 1994 when the Lord gave me a vision. In the vision, He showed me airline, aircraft lined up as far as you can see. They were full of food, medical supplies, Bibles, the engines were fired up and they were ready to go. There were people lined up in front of these planes ready to get on them but they wouldn’t get on the planes,” Aaron said.
“And so I asked God why won’t the people get on the planes … and God said ‘they can’t go into the mission field until you get the airplanes. This is what I’m calling you to do. So Judah 1 really came about from the Lord showing me the need for mission aviation. And as we researched and did our due diligence we found out that there was a great need for large commercial aircraft to transport missionary teams into the mission field,” he continued.
After getting his vision in 1994, it was several years later in 2011 that Aaron incorporated Judah 1 and made their first mission trip with a chartered commercial plane in 2013.
Aaron noted that there were about only two or three other mission aviation organizations he was aware of but said they use small aircraft.
“Judah 1 as far as we know is the only mission aviation organization that uses large commercial aircraft to transport complete teams. So that’s how we differ from other aviation organizations,” he said.
"It's not just about the preaching of the Gospel. We want to see the miracle-working power of the Holy Spirit in action."

Sponsor A Child - St. Mary Home for Orphans and Destitute, Gwagwalada, Abuja has appealed for financial and material assistance to cater for its 53 vulnerable persons.

Rev. Sr, Josephine Nwogwugu, made the appeal in an interview with TEAM BIBLICAL UNIVERSITY in Gwagwalada , Abuja, when some of the TEAM Members paid a visit to the home. Nwogwugu said the home needed assistance to pay the school fees, feed and take care of the children as well as sustain the home. 

Image result for sponsor a child images

“We depend mainly on charity-what people bring, individuals, people, churches – that is what we use to take care of the children. “So, we appeal to the people of good will to participate in this work by donating generously with whatever they have. “You can donate your time, to come and stay with the children, you can also donate materially and financially to help bring the children up responsibly,’’ she said.

Nwogwugu said that the children needed care, saying that they struggle to provide the care they can for them and that they will grow up to become citizen of this country. She said the home, established by the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja in collaboration with the Sisters of the Needy to take care of children in difficult situation doesn’t discriminate. “We have Muslims here; we have children from different denominations because the focus is on human persons, to bring about wellbeing of these children so that they can grow to become responsible.

St. Mary Home for Orphans and Destitute, is situated at Maryland Gwagwalada, Opposite Coca-Cola Depot Passo, after the University Teaching Hospital, immediately after the Rayhanah Filling Station.

Account Name: Holy Family Sisters (St. Mary's Orphanage Home)
Account No: 5600256320
Bank: Fidelity

For More Information,
Contact: Holy Family Sisters of The Needy, Maryland, Gwagwalada Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja. Tel: +2348064329672, Email: st.marysorphanageabuja@yahoo.com, Website: www.abujacatholicarchdiocese.org

Thank you and God bless you.

Creflo Dollar: Make Withdrawals From God's 'Heavenly' Bank Account With $19/Month Bible Study

Televangelist Creflo Dollar, promotes his Grace Life Academy. | (Screenshot: YouTube)
Televangelist Creflo Dollar, founder and senior pastor of the nearly 30,000-member World Changers Church International, is now offering a $19 per month online Bible study that he says will help people make withdrawals from God's metaphorical bank account.
Through Dollar's online discipleship courses that launched during the summer, Grace Life Academy, subscribers will have unlimited access to his Bible studies which he recently explained in a promotional video will help them live a life of "joy and abundance."
"I would like to take this opportunity to share a practical example of how to empower your life with an understanding of the grace message," Dollar said in a video posted to YouTube on Monday.
"Let's use an example you all are familiar with. You have a bank account. A need arises so you access the funds in that account to pay for dinner or to pay for something nice for yourself. We know in order to access the account, you need a couple of things. You either need the bank account information or the bank card. Without the account information or the bank card, you will not be able to access the funds contained within it," he said.
"So many of us are living our lives with unmet needs, although God has already freely given us access to his heavenly accounts to make those withdrawals," he continued.
His messages in Grace Life Academy, he said, will help people better understand God's words in a way that will give them the access they need for God's provisions.
"This grace life message is about providing you with the access which is understanding of God's word. Listen, understanding God's word enables you to receive all of the abundant provisions, resources and promises that are available through Jesus's finished work on the cross," he said. "... Become a student of grace and join me and thousands of others in the Grace Life Academy."
In 2015, Dollar, who is a proponent of the prosperity gospel, made international headlines for trying to convince 200,000 people to donate $300 each so he could buy a brand new luxurious $65 million Gulfstream G650 airplane for his ministry.
The campaign was abandoned after public backlash, but then his ministry bought the jet a couple of months later.
In addition to his work at WCCI, Dollar also oversees World Changers Church-New York which hosts over 6,000 worshipers each week. He is also the publisher of CHANGE magazine, a quarterly international publication with nearly 100,000 subscribers, and The Max, a bi-monthly resource newsletter for ministers and ministry leaders. His award-winning Changing Your World television broadcast reaches nearly 1 billion homes in nearly every country in the world, according to the televangelist's website.

Former President George H.W. Bush Dies

Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush arrives on the field to do the coin toss ahead of the start of Super Bowl LI between the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons in Houston, Texas, U.S. on February 5, 2017. | REUTERS/Adrees Latif/Files
Former Republican President George Herbert Walker Bush, who served a term that saw the collapse of the Soviet Union and the first Gulf War, has died. He was 94 years old.
Former President George W. Bush released a statement through the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library Foundation confirming that the former Commander in Chief passed away on Friday.
“Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Doro, and I are saddened to announce that after 94 remarkable years, our dear Dad has died,” said W. Bush.
“George H.W. Bush was a man of the highest character and the best dad a son or daughter could ask for. The entire Bush family is deeply grateful for 41’s life and love, for the compassion of those who have cared and prayed for Dad, and for the condolences of our friends and fellow citizens.”
Born in Milton, Massachusetts, in 1924, Bush served as a U.S. Navy pilot during World War II, flying 58 combat missions.
George H.W. and Barbara Bush in an undated file photo. | (Photo: George H.W. Bush Presidential Library Foundation)
In January 1945, he married Barbara Pierce. The couple had six children, including former President George W. Bush and former Republican presidential hopeful and former governor of Florida Jeb Bush.
Moving to Texas to work in the oil industry, Bush eventually turned to politics, serving two terms in Congress and a series of high level federal posts including ambassador to the United Nations and director of the Central Intelligence Agency.
From 1981 to 1989 he served as vice president under President Ronald Reagan before being elected president in 1988. His administration oversaw the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union with the fall of the Berlin Wall that separated East and West Germany. 
“The Soviet Union ceased to exist; and reformist President Mikhail Gorbachev, whom Bush had supported, resigned. While Bush hailed the march of democracy, he insisted on restraint in U.S. policy toward the group of new nations,” explained the White House’s official website.
“In other areas of foreign policy, President Bush sent American troops into Panama to overthrow the corrupt regime of General Manuel Noriega, who was threatening the security of the canal and the Americans living there. Noriega was brought to the United States for trial as a drug trafficker.”
In 1991, Bush oversaw Operation Desert Storm, in which a U.S.-led coalition of nations liberated the Middle Eastern nation of Kuwait after Iraq, under dictator Saddam Hussein, invaded.
Despite the foreign policy successes, Bush lost re-election in 1992 to Democrat challenger Bill Clinton due to a poor economy and a strong showing from independent candidate Ross Perot.
After leaving the White House, Bush maintained an active presence in politics and kept an active lifestyle. In 2009, to celebrate his 85th birthday, he went skydiving.
In 2001, Bush became the first president since John Adams to have a child elected commander in chief when his son, George W. Bush, was sworn in for his first term.
Raised in The Episcopal Church, Bush was known to be a devout Christian, according to historian Gary Scott Smith, retired chair of the history department at Grove City College.
Sailors and representatives from the USS Houston visit with former President George H.W. Bush and his wife Barbara Bush in Houston, Feb. 25, 2016. | U.S. Department of Defense/Petty Officer 1st Class Chris Fahey
“Bush saw God as active and all-powerful and the Bible as divinely inspired and authoritative. ‘One cannot be America's President,’ the Republican frequently asserted, without ‘the strength that your faith gives to you,’” wrote Smith in a 2017 piece for The Christian Post.
“The Bible, which had helped shape America's values and institutions, Bush attested, ‘has always been a great source of comfort to me.’ He affirmed that Jesus was God's divine Son and frequently referred to Christ as ‘our Savior.’ Moreover, Bush peppered his speeches with biblical quotations, precepts, and stories to underscore his positions.”
In 2012, Bush was diagnosed with vascular Parkinsonism, a condition similar to Parkinson’s that left him wheelchair bound.
On April 17, Bush’s wife, Barbara, died. According to a family spokesperson, the former president was by her side to the very end.
“He held her hand all day today and was at her side when [she] left this good earth,” said former chief of staff Jean Becker, as reported by The New York Post.
The day after Barbara’s funeral, Bush was sent to intensive care at Houston Methodist Hospital due to a blood infection. A statement released April 23 by the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library Foundation said that the former president was “responding to treatments and appears to be recovering.”
Bush was preceded in death by his wife of 73 years, as well as their daughter, Pauline Robinson Bush, who died of leukemia in 1953 just shy of her 4th birthday