Teaching About Sin – Part 2

There are several ways to teach about sin to people who have a hard time understanding. Remember to be patient. Be sure they understand.

1. Pictures. Many sins can be taught by using pictures. They can be photographs found in magazines or on line. They can also be drawings. Pictures are a good way to teach sins that you may not want to do to show the deaf. This includes sins like smoking, drinking, etc. You need to teach these sins but do not want to do them. Some pictures for sins may be more difficult to find. (If you need help with a picture, please let me know.) Pictures of sins can be: 1. A simple picture of the sin. 2. A picture comparing good and bad. (For example: jealous is taught with one picture of a man with a small fish standing by a man with a really big fish.) 3. Pictures of facial expressions can teach sins like anger, hatred, etc.

2. Dramas/Skits. Some sins must be taught with a skit or drama. I have used a skit to teach “lie” and at the same time, “steal.” While I am teaching, I put my wallet or some other item on a table. While I am teaching, someone comes up and steals my wallet. I then notice the theft and start gesturing where is my wallet. All the deaf point to the thief. The thief should stand with the wallet behind him/her clearly visible to the deaf. I ask, you steal my wallet. He says no. I then show the wallet and sign “lie.” This method can be used for several other words like rebel, jealous, anger, and fight.

3. Real situations. Sometimes some people just cannot admit or understand their sins. I have taught sin by pointing out something they are doing at that time. For example: I had two deaf girls in a class who (they said) never sinned. However, one day I watched them pull each other’s hair and elbow each other. I saw that, and said, “You pull hair. You elbow. Wrong. Sin. Bad.” The girls said, “Yes. Me bad. Me sin.” They both were later saved. Please be careful with this one. We do not want to offend anyone, but real situations clearly teach sins to some people who would not understand otherwise. More next issue.

(Note: Articles will later be printed in an SWM booklet)

Questions About Deaf in Foreign Countries

My Most asked Question: “Is Sign Language Universal?” The answer is, “No. Sign language is not universal.” There are over 200 categorized Sign Languages in the world today. Next, they usually ask, “How do you communicate to the Deaf in the different countries if they use different Sign Languages?” There are three basic answers.

First, there are a few countries where ASL, American Sign Language, is used. Obviously, this makes it much easier and quicker to communicate with these Deaf. Secondly, in advanced countries and cities where an official Sign Language of some type is used, I spend time picking up the language in order to use it in teaching and preaching. Thirdly, if I had not had time to pick up the Sign Language, or, if I am working with deaf people who have no knowledge of any Sign Language, then it is necessary to communicate in actions, gestures, pantomime, and bodily expression. I do much of this due to my passion and burden for reaching the Deaf with the Word of God for the glory of God.

Although all of these things can be done in the flesh in order to communicate with deaf people, it is even more important to have the power and blessing of the Holy Spirit of God upon one’s life in order to be effective in this type of communication.

It is not a matter of ability, so much, as it is a matter of supernatural imagination, creativity, and divine enabling. Some have asked about the types of ministries that we have overseas. Although the answer varies, the one ministry we want to highlight, and in which we see the most fruit, is training. I will give weeks of teaching with a small group of men, training them for deaf ministry. These are generally nationals who are already in full-time ministry, but who now have a vision or a burden for Deaf people. At times, these men come without a burden, but leave with a burden for the Deaf.

Also, at times I train some laymen for the deaf ministry. The goal is always to see more men trained in order to begin Bible studies with the Deaf, and to also begin either a church for the Deaf, as in Myanmar, or a ministry for the Deaf within a hearing church, as in Liberia. These are just two examples.

Multiplication of laborers is the goal of SWMI, whether that involves laborers from the USA who go to foreign fields to reach the Deaf, or laborers in other countries whom God chooses. SWMI is in the business of spiritual multiplication.

Pray – Support – Come and Join Us!

SWM Note: It has been stated, “If they do not understand the way you sign, then sign the way they understand.” Naturally, some Deaf people must be educated in their own sign language before they can be evangelized. Leaders: Please join us in helping your Deaf group become more aware of the spiritual needs of Deaf people in foreign countries. Ted Camp, SWM  To Contact David click here

Introducing Nicole Condra – Missionary to the Deaf of Romania

Nicole Condra is a second-generation missionary to the Deaf. She grew up knowing sign language and working withswnp-118-04-02a Deaf people alongside her parents, Reed and Donna Condra (SWM). When once asked about her specific call into deaf missions, Nicole replied, “I don’t ever remember a time when God called me out of deaf missions.” In 2010, while serving as SWM home office missionary, Nicole realized a growing conviction that the Lord wanted her to be a foreign missionary. In 2011 on a mission trip to Romania, Nicole met many Deaf people and introduced the deaf ministry to churches, national pastors, and missionaries. It was there she received a deeper and abiding desire to be a foreign missionary. Many churches on foreign fields have no ministry to the Deaf, even though many Deaf people may live in their area. Nicole’s burden is to assist existing churches on various foreign fields by starting deaf ministries, training nationals, and reaching and teaching Deaf people with the Gospel.
Nicole is on deputation to serve in Romania and Eastern Europe as a missionary and needs your prayer during her pre-field ministry of raising her support and sharing her burden. Special Prayer Request: Nicole is raising funds for a good car for deputation(Present need: $4,000). FMI or schedule a meeting, contact: Click Here – 706-657-8000

Stories of Deaf Salvation

I read the story of Peter and Jesus from the Bible in John 21:15 to 22. Peter rebuked and denied Jesus. Peter departed from the Lord and went back to work the net of fishes. Jesus still loved him. When they were together to eat, Jesus asked Peter, “Do you love me?” Peter answered Him, “Yes.” Jesus said to him three times, “Feed My sheep (people).” Peter was sad in his heart because he denied the Lord three times. He then became glad and later stood and preached at Pentecost. Three thousand souls were saved. Peter remained faithful and never again denied the Lord. Peter had a new beginning.

In 1975 I graduated from Tennessee Temple Schools. I become Deaf pastor of Bel Air Baptist Church in El Paso, Texas. One year I took our deaf to Bill Rice Ranch. Later, as I preached in my church five Deaf boys came to the altar and told me they need saved. I thought they were recently saved at the Bill Rice Ranch. They explain that they now understood and want to be sure they are saved. I show them Gospel. They prayed and now know they are saved. Praise the Lord! It is good to know for sure you are saved. If you are not sure then the Gospel can also help you know you are truly saved.

My desire is to preach, witness, and see more Deaf saved. I pray for all my meetings, Fantastic Saturdays, and deaf camps this year that more Deaf will be saved this year. Please pray for my ministry.

Deaf need spiritual help… Contact Allen by clicking here.

The Deaf Can Serve the Lord

There are some things the Deaf cannot do. Deaf people cannot play the piano or sing with their voices. Deaf people cannot hear a bad muffler, birds, or even a crying baby. Deaf people cannot hear the chimes of Christmas or the Christmas Cantata. Deaf people cannot hear radio broadcasts, sirens, alarms, or a knock on the door. There are some things that the Deaf cannot do. But all Deaf can serve the Lord and do right. Not everyone can be the pastor, but everyone can be faithful and serve the Lord. The church needs more Deaf to be involved and become leaders and followers. The Deaf can be leaders in their classes and church. Deaf are becoming deacons, ushers, and helpers. Some Deaf are singing specials in deaf services. Some Deaf ladies help in the kitchen and nursery. Some Deaf are teaching and discipling other Deaf. Some Deaf are now preachers, evangelists, and missionaries. It is wonderful to see the Deaf do it! First, the Deaf need to become faithful and meet all the requirements of the church to serve. Just being Deaf does not qualify or disqualify you. You can get involved in your church and Deaf ministry. You can do it! Remember, Deaf people should also meet the same standards as hearing people.

I hope that in the future Deaf people will be used more and more to serve the Lord. It is my desire to see Deaf people become mature and used of the Lord. It is my desire to serve God. I want to encourage Deaf people to do more and get more involved. I am Deaf and I can do it! I have been serving for many years. If I can do it – so can you!

Marquette Manor Baptist Church


While at the Bill Rice Ranch, I established a deaf ministry in this church. It was my practice to teach Sign Language at night and visit the deaf during the day. As I visited the Deaf, I heard of a deaf man who worked at the post office and felt greatly impressed I should visit him. It was wintertime, it was cold, and the snow was deep. I got his address and visited him several times, but he was never at home. I left notes each time for him to come and visit our church. Finally, one night, he came to our church. He wanted to know who kept visiting his home and leaving notes. His name was Daniel Lievens, and he really enjoyed the church and made new friends. He later became a member of the church. But that’s not the end of the story. Daniel had a Deaf son, Brian, who also decided to follow his dad in church. But that’s not the end of the story. Brian became a preacher and became one of few Deaf to graduate from Bob Jones University. But that’s not the end of the story. Brian married the daughter of Mark and Jan Coleman, Deaf pastor in Illinois. But that’s not the end of the story. Brian later became the pastor of a deaf church in East Delavan, WI. But that’s not the end of the story. Many years later, in 2012, I spoke at a Deaf Retreat in Wisconsin. Brian personally thanked me for visiting his dad many years before. I am also very glad I did not give up! The story still continues…

Sloooow Doooown!

Many years ago, when I was still new at preaching to Deaf people, Dr. Cathy Rice (Bill Rice Ranch) gave me good advice. She said, “Slow down, Jon.” In fact, she repeated that to me almost every time before she saw me preach in sign language. At first her advice did not seem to make sense, but later I understood the wisdom of her words.

Interpreting and preaching to a group of Deaf people is not the same as signing a conversation. Casual conversation allows for interaction between two or more people. When the message is not understood, questions can be asked. If the signed message is too fast, sometimes the “listener” may not understand, even with a “normal” conversation. It is possible to sign so fast that normal people cannot understand. Recently I watched a Deaf person share a prayer request. He signed very fast. Later I asked a Deaf preacher if he understood the other Deaf person’s prayer request. He said, “No. It was signed too fast.” Never assume others understand you. It is wise to sign slowly and clearly.

When you interpret for a fast speaking pastor, consider Paul’s words, “Yet in the church I had rather speak five words [signs] with my understanding, that by my voice [signs] I might teach others also, than ten thousand words [signs] in an unknown tongue [signing too fast]” (1 Cor.14:19). Slow down. Consider the message you are interpreting. Do not sign every word; sign the ideas, the concepts. Rephrase the message into simple, easy-to-understand signed sentences. Choose one clear way of signing the message, rather than including the duplicate words, phrases, and ideas that you may hear.

As you sign more slowly, you will notice that your mind works faster, and your body will relax more. Only sign what you understand. Order SWM pamphlet DM10, “Speaking to Deaf People Using an Interpreter,” FREE PDF download use coupon: DM10 – Visit: catalog.silentwordministries.org

As a Missionary to the Deaf I Have Learned…

(Please keep an open mind and remember that these are my personal opinions about the Deaf in general, not all Deaf.)

I Have Learned that when you teach the Deaf difficult, but learnable ideas, remember that they are also visual. The Deaf listen with their eyes. Use common sense illustrations, pictures, object lessons and white boards. Explain the concept from every angle until you see understanding on their faces. Then to ensure they truly understood, ask some probing questions that require answers other than just yes or no. If they really understand, you will notice them explaining it to others. When one of your Deaf understands what you are teaching, use him to explain it to the other Deaf. This will allow you to see if they “really” understood it, and it also serves as a way for you to learn a new way to explain it … the “Deaf” way! There is nothing wrong with the minds of the Deaf. They just can’t hear, and English words are not their first language. ASL is the language they prefer. Put the thoughts in signs the best way you can, and watch your Deaf grow and grow and grow.

I have learned that most Deaf want to help hearing people learn sign language. Some hearing think that they must be perfect in signs before signing to the Deaf. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Deaf are some of the most patient people I know. They have been my best teachers. Many different Deaf have helped me very much. They still teach me signs today. Deaf are willing to invest in someone who is serious about learning sign language. I have also learned that if they think you have ulterior motives for learning signs, they may shun you. I have watched the Deaf encourage new interpreters when they have problems. Why? In my opinion, the more interpreters a Deaf person has, the more opportunities they have for fellowship and a social life. If there are more people who know signs, then they will get to know more people. Deaf people are very patient if they see a genuine desire on your part to learn their language. Jump in; the water’s fine! If you start drowning, they will throw you a life preserver!


When you think of the book Obadiah, think of the prophet Obadiah and his message about Isaac’s twin boys, Jacob and Esau… (and the nations they became).

swnp-118-04-01aThe Jewish Nation began with the patriarch Abraham. He had a son named Isaac who had twin sons named Jacob and Esau. Jacob’s name was later changed to Israel. The Promised Land was named Israel after Jacob. His descendants were called the “children of Israel” or “Israelites.” Jacob’s twin brother also had a land. Esau’s land was called Edom. Descendants of Esau were called Edomites. When enemy armies marched into Israel, the Edomites were glad. They were happy that the Jews were being destroyed. When some Jews tried to run and hide, Edomites told the enemies where to find them. Many suffered and died because Edom was jealous against Israel. The book Obadiah tells how God would punish Edom’s hatred. Because Edom stood against Israel, God would destroy the Edomites and their fortified dwellings. Obadiah is the book of Edom’s downfall.

Think About: “Pity” – pity (noun) – feelings of sorrow for someone else’s pain

“Pity” in Obadiah
Of all people, Edom should have pitied Israel in their time of trouble. The Edomites were close relatives of the Jews, but they did not show love or pity.

“Brotherly love” is a virtue you need to succeed for God. Who is there that needs your mercy, grace, love, or pity? Reach out today to those closest to you!

Note: To obtain Highlights click here.

You are a Rock

The wise man built his house upon the rock …
The wise man built his house upon the rock …
The wise man built his house upon the rock,
and the rains came tumbling down.
The rains came down and the floods came up …
The rains came down and the floods came up …
The rains came down and the floods came up
and the house on the rock stood firm!

You may remember singing this song as a child. It contains great truths from God’s Word (Matthew 7:24-27). Do you want that kind of house? Do you desire to have a firm foundation? When you are going through a storm – tornado – flood – snowstorm – where will your house be when it is calm? Someone said to me one time, “You are like a rock – stand firm!” I was quiet, but I know Who my Rock is – Jesus! I want to build my life on Jesus alone! I want to stand on a firm foundation.

You will never know how strong you are until you go through a storm in your life. Recently, my husband, Jim, went out hunting with his cousin. They always go out with two or three men at a time. They hunted all afternoon and saw nothing. Jim was up in his tree stand and it was time to come down. He took his safety strap off the tree from his safety harness. He was getting ready to come down the tree when his tree stand broke and he fell down ten to fifteen feet to the ground. He was hurt badly, but knew his cousin was close enough to call to come and help. He was able to get up with help and went to the hospital. Jim called me and I immediately drove to the hospital to meet them. As his wife, I wanted to be there for him, to help him, to care for him, and to support him, even in this testing time. Jim’s cousin said to him later, “Wow! I was amazed how calm Terry was in the hospital.” How can that be? Only because of Jesus … He is my Rock … He is my strength! …Thoughts from Terry

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