Today, about 7.6 billion people live on this planet. Christians make up one-third of that number, which means that at least two-thirds of the world’s population, or about 5 billion people, don’t know Jesus as their Savior.
For some time, many Christian denominations have talked about the 10/40 Window, an imaginary rectangle drawn on the world to show the area that is least reached by the gospel. If you imagine a world map, the 10/40 Window extends from 10 to 40 degrees north latitude and stretches from northern Africa to Asia. It includes the Middle East, India, and Southeast Asia.
Although geographically it’s a relatively small part of the entire world, this area is densely populated: nearly 60 percent of the world’s population lives here. It’s home to most of the major world religions, including Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam, whose followers make up most of the population. There are also many people who don’t follow any religion.
Within the 10/40 Window are more than 5,800 unreached people groups or roughly 3 billion people.*
The 10/40 Window is also home to some of the world’s fastest growing cities. People are flooding into major cities such as Mumbai, Tokyo, Jakarta, Casablanca, and Beirut, seeking work and opportunities. As they grow, these cities are improving their infrastructure, education, and economic development, but there are still areas where people struggle to make a living.
When most people think of mission work, they often think of remote villages. People still live in rural villages, but as more flock to the cities, you could say the villages have become vertical. These vertical villages are also known as high-rise apartments. The number of people in one high-rise building is equal to more than the number of people in many of those small villages.
And whether they recognize it or not, today’s high-rises are starting to accept their role as villages. Many modern apartment complexes have one or two floors, usually near the ground level, which feature shops and restaurants—sort of like a village center. So people who live in these buildings become part of an apartment community and rarely have to leave their “village” except to go to work.
In countries such as Indonesia, church members are starting new church plants in these vertical villages. Some have even started small Urban Centers of Influence to offer a connection point for Adventists and the people in these communities.
Please pray for the people of the 10/40 Window, especially for the vertical villages there, and pray for mission in this challenging frontier. Thank you for your mission offerings and Global Mission donations that are helping to touch lives and start new groups of believers in the 10/40 Window.
* The figure for people groups is by country, which means “counting every group once for each country in which they reside.” So, for example, a single people group whose population is in both Libya and Algeria would be counted as two people groups. “Global Statistics: People Groups: The 10/40 Window,” Joshua Project, accessed March 15, 2018, https://joshuaproject.net/people_groups/statistics.
You Can Reach Vertical Villages
Please help us reach the millions of people in the 10/40 Window who don’t know Jesus. Visit Global-Mission.org/giving, and select the project “Pioneers to the 10/40 Window.”