Doug Robitaille pastors a team of missionaries in Indonesia. He and his family serve with the missions organization Ethnos 360. When Doug and his wife Jael started serving as missionaries 22 years ago they had only one daughter. They have now raised three daughters in Indonesia and have been blessed to minister in this nation that has the world’s greatest number of Muslims.
Doug was raised in Brea and grew up in the local churches in a godly family. He learned at an early age that God’s word is his standard of perfection and that Jesus Christ is God’s word is made manifest in His son.
At San Diego State he became involved with Campus Crusade for Christ and enjoyed sharing the truth of the Word of God with Muslims. He met Jael at a Campus Crusade meeting. He found out that she had been raised as a missionary kid in South America. Jael said to him, if we’re going to have a relationship you need to know that my calling is to be a missionary. If you’re not interested in foreign missions, then we cannot have a relationship.
Doug went to New Guinea as a missionary and Jael was assigned to a missions trip to Russia. They had been dating and when they returned from their respective trips, they reconnected and they both dedicated their lives to serve as missionaries.
Doug and Jael homeschooled their three daughters in Indonesia and all of their daughters’ friends are Indonesian. Their youngest daughter just started college at Biola. Doug’s prayer request is to do God’s will for their next assignment where God calls them.
In Indonesia there are 45 million more Muslims than in all of the Middle East combined. Doug’s mission is to pastor missionaries to serve their fellow Indonesians the gospel of Jesus Christ. Ethnos 360’s mission is embraced by the Indonesian government who makes it mandatory that every Indonesian embraces religion. The government of Indonesia has banned atheism and the government leaders encourage the teaching of the different world religions. With the support of the government, Doug is in charge of a leadership team of Christian missionaries.
Many native Indonesians have never been exposed to the outside world. They live in a Stone Age culture and believe in animism... that spirts are all around them and that these spirits control the resources of the jungle. They believe spirits also control life, death, Justice, and injustice. The people live in constant fear of spiritual retribution including death for death and vengeance against injustice and wrongdoing. Their rituals are strictly controlled by fear of offending their animist spirits.
When these remote Indonesian people heard the gospel, and were introduced to God the Creator, they began changing their behavior in violation of their animist rituals. Slowly they began to realize that their fear of the animist spirits was contrary to the teachings of the Creator. When they heard the gospel of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice for their sins, God began to open the eyes of their spiritual understanding.
The missionary’s challenge is to learn the language of the people and their culture to be able to speak to them heart to heart about the gospel of Jesus Chrsit. Doug’s ministry Ethnos 360 partners with Mission Aviation Fellowship to send missionaries into the interior of Indonesia to minister to the native people groups.
Jael is the most common name for women in Israel. This name comes from the book of Judges. In Judges 4 and 5 Deborah served as God’s prophetess to speak to Israel on behalf of God to save Israel from their enemies. In Genesis after the fall, God cursed the serpent Satan and the lineage of Adam. Howerver, in Genesis 3:15 God gave a promise of redemption through his promised seed, a Messiah who would redeem God’s people. The covenant God made with Abraham were promises to Abraham and his descendants concerning the Land, the Seed, and the blessing.
In the book of Judges, Barak was called by God through God’s prophetess Deborah to command the armies of Israel to defeat the Canaanites who had persecuted the Children of Israel for many years. Jaban king of the Canaanites stood against God and the truth of His Word. Barak was afraid, so he said to Deborah, I won’t lead the armies of Israel unless your go with me. Deborah said by revelation from God, because you were afraid, even though Israel will be victorious, a woman will defeat the enemy’s commander.
The commander of the enemy armies was named Sisera. When Israel attacked his army, Sisera left his chariot and ran from the battlefield. Eventually he came to Jael’s tent. Jael promised Sisera that she would protect him... she covered him with her mantle and she gave him salted milk to drink. Then she welcomed him into her family tent. When she did these three things, each act was a token of her covenant with Sisera to protect him with her own life. When she covered him with her mantle, this indicated that she would cover for him to the point of death. When she gave him milk to share, the milk was salted so they partook of the covenant of salt. The covenant of salt is like a blood covenant where two parties agree to keep the sacred terms of their pledge of allegiance to one another. When she welcomed him into the tent, she pledged to give him safe haven under the canopy of her protection.
However, that night Sisera went into Jael’s side of the tent and fell asleep. Jael took a tent stake and drove it into his temple into the ground, killing him. Why did Jael kill Sisera? When Sisera came into Jael’s side of the tent, this was a breach of the covenant Sisera had made with her. Sisera knew that since his enemies were looking for him, they would never enter into her bedchamber. This is the private chamber where only she and her husband were allowed. When Sisera entered this private area, he dishonored their covenant and according to their law he was required to forfeit his life. He broke their covenant by disrespecting the place set apart where only Jael and her husband were allowed. Jael is forever remembered as a hero of Israel for eliminating the commander of Israel’s enemy. After Israel defeated the enemy army and their commander, Israel was blessed with forty years of peace.
Charles Spurgeon preached a message about the story of Jael and Sisera. According to Spurgeon’s sermon, The king of Canaan, Jaban represents Satan and Sisera represents sin. According to Spurgeon, What do you do with sin? Do you accommodate it? Do you negotiate with it? Do you compromise with it? The way you deal with sin is to slay it. Sin breaks God’s righteous covenants. When sin enters into the sacred places God has set apart, we must “mortify” or put to death sin and the deeds of the flesh.
Jesus Christ himself slayed sin when he laid down his life and suffered the consequences of our sins. He shed his innocent blood taking upon himself the punishment we deserved in exchange for our guilty blood. For he who was without sin was made the perfect sacrifice for sin on our behalf that we may be made the righteousness of God in him. This is the message of salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
This is our Mission and our Great Commission as God’s missionaries, his emissaries to deliver this message of deliverance to the uttermost part of the earth. For Jesus Christ came not to condemn the world but that the world through him might be saved...
... that together we may live to the praise of the glory of God’s grace!
Your brother in Christ,