Next Steps

The “what” and the “how” of Friendship First is as follows: The gospel calls us to engage in the Great Commission of Christ to reach all ethnic peoples; but this is to be done in the spirit of the Great Command of Christ to love our neighbour as ourselves.

Interserve England & Wales

Friendship First is published by Interserve, a mission fellowship, witnessing through words and actions, seasoned by grace and truth, among the peoples of Asia and the Arab World, and also among their diaspora in the UK. Interserve identifies with the Apostle Paul’s assertion that: ‘we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations’. Interserve is a ‘fellowship of disciples’ and a ‘discipling fellowship’ that is committed to the vision of seeing lives and communities transformed by an encounter with Jesus Christ.

The Bible is a mission manual and the
church is a mission community. Interserve exists to serve the church as it responds to that challenge. Every follower of Christ should be involved in mission. Mission is no longer from the ‘West to the rest’ of the world but ‘from everywhere to everywhere’.

The ends of the earth now start at the door of the local church. So for many of us, this means we can take simple cross-cultural steps in witness right where we are, without necessarily jumping into the deep end and going overseas. If you feel called to cross-cultural ministry, please get in contact with us at interserve.org.uk.

Interserve offers the following mission opportunities:

The Mahabba Network

The word mahabba means ‘love’ in Arabic. Mahabba is a network of non-specialist Christians from all walks of life, who pray for Muslims and want to be an effective witness to Muslims. In partnership with the local church and in consultation with church leaders, Mahabba promotes prayer, training and resources for Christian witness to people from the minority communities around them.

Like Friendship First, Mahabba also affirms the potential when ‘ordinary Christians’ share good news with ‘ordinary Muslims’. Mahabba also promotes initiatives by local churches and Christians in their area who are helping Christians to be effective witnesses to Christ among their
Muslim friends.

Christian Responses to Islam in Britain

‘Christian Responses to Islam in Britain’ (CRIB) is a network started in 1998 and is now affiliated to Global Connections. It exists to link together, Christians and churches who are involved in prayer and Christian witness to Muslim people in Britain. CRIB has the following goals.

  • To provide opportunity for face-to-face meetings to network, share ideas and resources, to be encouraged and to pray.
  • To foster mutual respect and unity among Christians from a variety of theological backgrounds and approaches to Muslims.
  • To develop credible and Christ-honouring strategies for the British church in responding to Islam in this country.

Link up with the University Islamic Society

For CUs this is probably the best way to link up with Muslims at University. It starts with individual
Christian and Muslim students becoming friends, and then the leaders of the two societies getting to know each other. After trust is established, consider running a topic based discussion event together, giving opportunities for clear gospel witness in an atmosphere of respect. Or encourage CU members to attend Islamic society events and form friendships with the Muslims they meet.