Friday, December 21, 2007

Christianity Today's Top Story for 2007

Earlier this year, the Taliban kidnapped 23 Korean Christians while on a short-term mission trip. In the process, two were killed. At the time, I responded on this blog. In a year-end wrap-up article for the January 2008 edition, Christianity Today has listed this event has the top story of 2007. Another story in the list is an example of religious persecution of Christians. This has sparked a few thoughts this morning.

First, I am thankful to live in the United States where, despite any opposition, I am free to openly worship Jesus Christ and tell others about him. There is no fear of death, imprisonment, or persecution for bearing the name of Jesus. Thank you Lord for this country—God Bless the USA. Second, I am thankful for my Korean brothers and sisters who are committed to world missions. I count it a privilege to be able to study with a number of fine Korean men here at SBTS. These men are not only outstanding scholars, but are also deeply committed Christians with a passion for seeing the name of Jesus Christ exalted among the unreached peoples of the world. It has been one of the real blessings of my PhD studies to be able to learn with (and from) these men. Southern Baptists may not be the last best hope for the world, it may in fact be Korean Baptists and Presbyterians :-). Third, I am thankful for those who are willing to go to dark places with the light of the gospel. Despite many adversaries, Christians have seen doors open for the gospel message and have gone through them (1 Cor 16:9). I am thankful for mission teams that are being sent to difficult places. I am thankful for those who have given their lives to serve as missionaries whose names I cannot know for security reasons. I pray for the persecuted church and those brothers and sisters around the world who serve Christ despite persecution. I pray for more laborers for His harvest.

Finally, I ask. “Lord, what would you have me do?”

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: Who should I send? Who will go for Us?

I said: Here I am. Send me. Isaiah 6:8 (HCSB)

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