Category Archives: Missions

Praying for East Asia

1.3 Billion East Asian People Do Not Know Christ

God wants to change the numbers! Through prayer, you can have a vital part in His work among the East Asian Peoples.

Prayer lays hold of God’s plan and becomes the link between His will and its accomplishment on earth

Elisabeth Elliot

2013 Prayer Calendar

2013-Pr-CalendarThe 2013 Prayer Calendar is a resource that can inform and encourage you in your prayers for the East Asian Peoples all year long. You can download the calendar below and save it to your desktop, or make a copy to tuck into your Bible. Please also share this free resource with others in your mission group, prayer group or church.

Keep this guide handy and join thousands of others in lifting a specific request to the Father each day, and the same request four times in one month. (You may also be interested in downloading a Chinese or Korean version of the Prayer Guide.)

2013 Prayer Guide English [.pdf 4.6MB]

2013 Prayer Guide Chinese (traditional characters) [.pdf 5.2MB]

2013 Prayer Guide Japanese [.pdf 4.9MB]

2013 Prayer Guide Korean [.pdf 4.9MB]

 

 

Today Jim Elliot Was Killed (1956)

Pete Fleming, Palm Beach

Today in 1956, five missionaries to the Auca indians in Ecuador were killed. Their deaths brought a sudden end to the project they called “Operation Auca,” but the tragedy became a defining moment in the history of evangelical missions. Hundreds of young people were inspired to take up missionary work, thousands were moved to deeper commitment to Christ, and millions of dollars in resources were mobilized. And the work with the Aucas went on, too.

In the headline, I name only Jim Elliot, the most famous of the group. While the other four men on the team (Nate Saint, Ed McCully, Peter Fleming, and Roger Youderian) were all important to the work and have all received commemoration and attention (they all have Wikipedia pages, if that’s a good index of status in 2009), Elliot has somehow stood out from the group. Why? It may be that Elliot had that certain something as part of his personality, a charisma or magnetism or star power. But I think there’s another reason: Continue reading

They’d heard of Kobe, but not of Christ

By Caroline Anderson ( http://eastasianpeoples.imb.org/field-blog/theyd-heard-of-kobe-but-not-of-christ )

“Have any of you heard of Jesus?” Christian Bell* asked the group of children who formed a tight circle around him.

Confused looks were his only answer.

“Have you ever heard of Jesus, He’s God’s Son,” Bell rephrased his question.

The name didn’t ring a bell.

Bell had traveled all day, crossing a river on a raft and walking the rest of the way to reach this remote village in East Asia. Continue reading

Projecting Poverty Where It Doesn’t Exist

This is an article from the September-October 2011 issue Making Disciples.

Articles may be printed and distributed as much as you like.

by Steve Saint

I have been in relationship with the Waodani since 1956, when they killed my dad Nate and four of his friends. My relationship continued through the time my aunt Rachel lived with them beginning in 1958 through her death in 1994. I most recently lived with the Waodani beginning just after Aunt Rachel’s death in 1994 until later in 1997, maintaining a house and spending about one quarter of my time with them until 2008.

When people visit the Waodani, they look around and think, “Wow, these people have nothing!” People from the outside think the Waodani are poor because they don’t have three-bedroom ramblers with wall-to-wall carpeting, double garages so full of stuff the cars never fit and, I guess, because they never take vacations to exotic places like Disney World.

So, on speaking tours I began describing these jungle dwellers as “People who all have water front property, multiple houses and spend most of their time hunting and fishing.” The most common response I have gotten when describing the Waodani this way is, “Wow, would I ever like to live like that!” I agree completely. Continue reading

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 6)

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 6)

Editor’s Note: This guest blog is written by the IMB’s Regional Leader for Central Asia. It is a six part series, giving the biblical foundations and guidelines for contextualization, and making application to Christian ministry in the Muslim world. This series will appear as a chapter in the forthcoming book “Look What God is Doing in the Muslim World.”

The Church:

Muslim background believers in Jesus (MBBs) should be encouraged to remain in their community as much as possible.

Muslim background believers should be encouraged to maintain their ethnic and cultural identity as much as they can without compromising their obedience to Scripture.

MBB churches should be encouraged to be indigenous in their expressions of their faith and worship, without compromising Scripture. This is particularly true in matters of style. The church should look, sound and feel local, not foreign. Continue reading

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 5)

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 5)

Editor’s Note: This guest blog is written by the IMB’s Regional Leader for Central Asia. It is a six part series, giving the biblical foundations and guidelines for contextualization, and making application to Christian ministry in the Muslim world. This series will appear as a chapter in the forthcoming book “Look What God is Doing in the Muslim World.”

The Message of the Good News

We can use their book as a bridge to the Gospel, as long as we do it in a way that does not imply divine inspiration or equality with the Bible.

We can choose our terminology carefully, and delay the use of red-flag terms like “Son of God” in favor of other equally-Biblical terms until we have reached the point where we can explain those red-flag terms Biblically.

We can and should utilize the full scope of Biblical narrative to establish a worldview in which the Gospel is intelligible. The Bible doesn’t jump straight from the Fall of Man in Genesis 3 to the birth of Jesus in Matthew 1. Continue reading

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 4)

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 4)

Editor’s Note: This guest blog is written by the IMB’s Regional Leader for Central Asia. It is a six part series, giving the biblical foundations and guidelines for contextualization, and making application to Christian ministry in the Muslim world. This series will appear as a chapter in the forthcoming book “Look What God is Doing in the Muslim World.”

Contextualization Guidelines

How do we apply these principles to the work of the Gospel in the Muslim world? Based on years of wrestling with the task under the authority of the word of God, here are guidelines for our work in the Muslim world, founded on these Biblical principles. The guidelines are grouped under three headings: The Messenger of the Good News, the Message of the Good News, and the Church.

The Messenger of the Good News (with primary focus on us, the foreign workers)

We must openly identify ourselves as followers of Jesus. Hiding our identity is out of bounds. Jesus made it clear that we must not deny Him before men. Security concerns are real, and we need to take them seriously. However, we must never let security concerns drive us into hiding Continue reading

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 3)

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 3)

Editor’s Note: This guest blog is written by the IMB’s Regional Leader for Central Asia. It is a six part series, giving the biblical foundations and guidelines for contextualization, and making application to Christian ministry in the Muslim world. This series will appear as a chapter in the forthcoming book “Look What God is Doing in the Muslim World.”

1 Cor 9:1-23 (cont’d)

The key to understanding this passage is found in verse 12: “We endure anything rather than put an obstacle in the way of the Gospel of Christ.” Paul’s passion was the advance of the Gospel. He didn’t want anything unnecessary to stand in the way of that advance. This did not mean that he was prepared to compromise any Biblical truth or Biblical command in the process. Verses later on in the chapter make that clear. However, he was willing to endure any inconvenience or personal hardship himself that might enable the Gospel to spread more effectively. He expanded on that thought with some key principles for cross-cultural ministry.

Contextualization as Renunciation of Rights

First, Paul voluntarily chose not to make use of legitimate rights. He had a right to eat meat, to take along a believing wife, and to receive monetary support. He would not be sinning at all if he did any of those things. Indeed, such things would be considered normal and even expected, and other apostles apparently did them. Never the less, Paul gave up those rights in order not to put any obstacle in the way of the Gospel.

We struggle with this as Americans. We are raised to demand our rights. Continue reading

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 2)

Biblical Foundations and Guidelines for Contextualization (Pt 2)

Editor’s Note: This guest blog is written by the IMB’s Regional Leader for Central Asia. It is a six part series, giving the biblical foundations and guidelines for contextualization, and making application to Christian ministry in the Muslim world. This series will appear as a chapter in the forthcoming book “Look What God is Doing in the Muslim World.”

What does the Bible have to say, then, about contextualization? Are their grounds for it in Scripture? In fact, the process of contextualization begins in the New Testament itself. There are several examples of it in Scripture, and these examples both establish the legitimacy of contextualization and teach us something of how we should go about it ourselves.

Theos & Elohim

One of the most pervasive examples of contextualization in the New Testament is also one of the most subtle. It is the use of the Greek word theos to refer to God. Theos in origin was a thoroughly pagan word, used to refer to the capricious and immoral deities of the Greek pantheon. In content and conception, it was light years away from the Biblical understanding of God. However, when the Hebrew Bible was translated into Greek in the centuries before Christ, theos was the word chosen Continue reading