There is one last unreached people group. They number in the thousands, perhaps even hundreds of thousands but there is not a single mission or church plant directed at them. Perhaps it is not surprising, their language is difficult, their culture is hostile to the notion of Christianity, and those few who have committed to Christianity have largely refused to change their way of life despite the disapproval of evangelicals.
Yet is it strange that neither the evangelical church planting movement nor the missional church have birthed work among them. There are missional churches amongst surfers, punk rockers, even artists, but none to this group. Missional churches immerse themselves in subcultures except this one.
Intellectuals are the last unreached people group. Almost uniquely they are ignored when not vilified as arrogant and out of touch.
Of course there are reasons for this. It is through intellectuals that the sustained attack by Modernism on the Christian faith was primarily propagated. University campuses, books and ideas were the terrain of struggle, and defeat (at least in the view of many fundamentalists and evangelicals) during much of the 20th century. Campus ministries did flourish in the second half of the 20th century but largely ignored where they were located, and taught those involved to do the same.
As Mark Noll pointed out decades ago in The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind there are historic reasons for this attitude, an attitude that has not served the Evangelical church well. But this attitude hasn't changed much. An apologetics group which I attended were insistent that any intellectual work done on issues such as suffering must immediately be converted into language that "everyone can understand" as if there is no value in speaking to intellectuals, only non-intellectuals. It was also suggested that intellectual doubts are really not doubts at all but excuses.
Perhaps doubts aren't the real reasons so many intellectuals fight shy of the Church, perhaps the real reason is that they have had a glimpse of how the Church treats intellectuals, as if being intellectual is something to be repented of, rather than the way God made people. Perhaps they have heard the routinised attacks that pastors make against "philosophy" and "science".
They may even know how the few Christians who persist in being intellectuals, or few intellectuals who persist in being Christians are treated in the evangelical church, how they are admonished "you think too much" or "you ask too many questions".