Fifty years ago, on October 6, 1970, Gereja Bethel Indonesia, was birthed in Sukabumi, Indonesia. Partnering with the Church of God, today this indigenous national church, welcoming all ethnic groups across the vast Indonesian archipelago, has grown to 17,000 ministers serving 6,300 in 27 nations. Gereja Bethel still envisions the denominational goal of 10,000 local congregations and is active in empowering the Jeremiah Generation during this Era of the Third Pentecost to Finish the Great Commission in the Spirit and Power of the Holy Spirit.
Due to Covid-19, and the government shutdown across much of Indonesia, the first of several days of celebrations was held on the official GBI YouTube channel. Special greetings were offered from the Director General of Christianity of the Department of Religion of the Republic of Indonesia, and the Dr. Tim Hill, General Overseer of the Church of God.
In the coming days, pastors, leaders and friends from across Indonesia and overseas will be sharing greetings and congratulations. On Tuesday’s special 50th anniversary celebration service, three of Indonesia’s young leaders each shared one-third of 1 Corinthians 13:13…Pastor and assistant overseer Josiah shared on faith, followed by pastor, evangelist and assistant overseer Gilbert who shared on hope, with pastor and General Overseer Dr. Rubin who shared the message of love…a great day and a great future for Gereja Bethel Indonesia and the Church of God.
Rev. Tommy Smith, representative to Indonesia and superintendent of the Southern Pacific Church of God posted the following on his Facebook page regarding the celebration:
“Shalom! Happy 50th Anniversary to Gereja Bethel Indonesia, October 6, 2020! Fifty years of Great Commission ministry in Indonesia & 27 other nations of world! Most humbled and grateful to have served and represented the Church of God, the official partner of GBI, in Indonesia since 1983, together we are what Jesus described as salt & light, making the world better and brighter. From simple beginnings with 129 ministers in 1970, GBI now has 17,000 ministers serving 6,300 churches and a global membership of three million! To God Be The Glory For It All! But as Indonesia remains the nation with the largest concentration of Islamic adherents, there remains much grain in the field not yet in the barn! Jesus said the fields are white ready for harvest! This is what the “Third Pentecost” is all about-an unprecedented outpouring of Holy Spirit anointing exceeding that of Azusa Street-following the pattern of Acts chapter two, especially equipping the current “Jeremiah Generation” to lead in reaping the greatest and final miracle & soul harvest, which will finish the Great Commission and usher in the return of our Lord Jesus Christ! We—the Church of God and Gereja Bethel Indonesia are blessed to be participants in these last days fulfillment of what Christ’ first century disciples began. The Great Commission is too vast a task to be done by one group, and too important to be done alone! Together we will finish the Great Commission! Ayo Maju GBI & COG!”