When Ellen White once portrayed the final delivery of the third angel's message in Revelation 18:1 as "servants of God, with their faces lighted up" hastening from place to place, she could just as well been describing the bright light of Adventist broadcasters. Through television, radio, satellite and the internet, shining testimonies of God's Good News are indeed hastening from place to place at the speed of light — beyond closed doors and into open hearts.
There are dozens of Adventist owned-and-operated media outlets in the Northwest. They are predominantly lay-driven ministries with a heart for people who need an encouraging word and Bible-centered message. Whether it's from Three Angels Broadcasting, the Hope Channel, Positive Life Radio, LifeTalk Radio or something entirely different, these channels are reaching far flung communities with a uniquely Adventist twist.
While one-on-one personal contact is still a critical component of evangelism, Adventist broadcasters are creating "circles of light" that offer a barrier-breaking, friend-making, relationship-building connection to Northwest communities — what many believe is the most unchurched population in North America.
The Efforts Bear Fruit
Adventist broadcasters realize their efforts may represent the first time an audience member has heard the gospel. It is often an introductory medium, without any expectations of direct baptisms. But they do happen. Ron and Marta Davis, Better Life Broadcasting Network leaders, headquartered in Grants Pass, Oregon, were introduced to and baptized in the Seventh-day Adventist Church as a result of 3ABN programming over a Better Life station.
A sampling of Positive Life Radio listener testimonies witnesses to the power of Christian broadcasting: "Every time I turn on the radio, God uses the music to bless me, chastise me, turn me to Him, remind me of who He is, and create in me the desire to serve Him"; "It helps me get through the day, keeps me centered and focused on God"; "It inspires me to be the kind of person Christ wants me to be."
FROM ANALOG TO DIGITAL
Broadcasters have embraced digital technology as well. Television outlets are transitioning from analog to digital broadcasting.
Both radio and television ministries use the Internet for streaming their programming for live feeds or digital downloading. While the online audience is still relatively meager, it is growing and allowing each media ministry to extend its reach around the world.
The Outreach is Growing
Better Life expects to soon double its audience with two new stations broadcasting in Roseburg and Eugene, including basic cable and satellite services to Benton, Coos, Douglas and Lane counties in Oregon. Next on the horizon — a low power digital station to serve the greater Portland, Oregon area, including coverage in Clackamas, Columbia, Multnomah and Washington counties in Oregon, and Clark County in Washington. Better Life has until October 22, of this year to raise the $700,000 needed for the purchase, which will effectively triple their potential viewing audience to three million people.
Reaching the Alaskan Bush
What started in the Tok/Delta Junction, Alaska area several years ago, may blossom incredibly in the coming months. The Alaska Conference currently has six construction permits for radio stations — one of which will eventually cover the majority of the state's population in the greater Anchorage area.
But that's not all. Gavin and Judi Thompson, Dillingham members, have pioneered a way to reach across the arctic tundra to provide an evangelistic presence in more than 230 bush villages. Their dual plan involves small, computer-driven radio stations with just enough power to cover each small village. Due to the low power, these tiny transmitters do not need FCC approval. They can be put directly into service. The Thompsons and the Alaska Conference are looking for a volunteer in each community to place one of these "micro-stations" — not much bigger than a laptop computer — in their home. The potential long-term impact in terms of evangelism could be incredible as this 24/7 model of constant contact develops.
Gospel Commission in Action
The bottom line is unmistakable — God is using Adventist broadcasters to warm people to the truth. In a dark and pessimistic world, they are creating circles of light and opportunities for Northwest members to take the next step — to reach out and make a personal contact, with potentially eternal results.
The following two pages will introduce you to several of these important Northwest Adventist media ministries.