(The Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet)
We are living in exciting times. According to several reports over 200,000 Buddhists have come to Jesus in the last year. Here’s the story from Charisma News:
All the revival needed was the first spark of a Tibetan monk. When he converted to Christianity last year, the revival fire exploded. Now, more than 200,000 Tibetans have accepted Jesus into their lives, according to multiple reports.
Asian Access’ Joel Handley says he believes much of the faith sweeping the region stems from Christian response to the devastating Nepalese earthquake more than a year ago.
“They haven’t seen Buddhists, Hindus or other religious groups helping in the midst of the rubble. Rather, week after week, it is the followers of Jesus who have proved the test of time, sacrificed their own lives to serve and been the hands and feet of Jesus,” Handley says.
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Response: Not only is this exciting but miraculous. The Buddhist mountain nations of Tibet, Nepal, and Bhutan have been untouched by Christianity for centuries. Every missionary effort in those countries was shut down and rejected by the people and the government authorities in the past. Now the door has been miraculously opened and folks are coming to Christ in those far away countries.
What is happening now in Tibet could not have been planned or expected accept by the Lord himself. Remember, Tibet is politically an autonomous region of China which would limit any formal missionary activity.
This is similar to what is happening among Muslims who were rarely converted to Jesus until recently. Now there are reports all over the place of Muslims secretly coming to Christ through dreams and visions. Then there is the example of more Jewish folks coming to Jesus in the last ten years than any other time in history since the first century. Now Buddhists in unreachable places are coming to Jesus in unprecedented numbers. Praise the Lord.
Pastor Kong Hee with his wife, Sun Ho. (Facebook)
Will the largest ‘end-time’ revival take place among the Chinese? According to Pastor Kong Hee that will be the case. Here’s the story from Charisma News:
“Many pop celebrities have received Christ and are boldly proclaiming their faith on traditional and new media. I have no doubt that the largest revival in the End-Times will be a move of God in the Chinese-speaking world,” Kong wrote.
Response: In many ways a hidden revival has been on-going in China since the Communists shut down the churches and missions after WWII. At the time there were less than a million Christians in the country but a generation later there are at least 100 million and maybe as many as 150 million Chinese believers mostly worshipping in house churches.
Now the Chinese church seems to be ready to go prime time and maybe affect the entire culture. However government persecution has also increased as many of the house churches came out of the closet and began building large worship facilities to hold all of the converts.
It will be interesting to see how a hundred million or so Christians will end up affecting the economy and the government in the future. According to reports, there have been numerous conversions of government officials in some areas. Will the supposedly pragmatic current Communist regime continue to crack down on the churches or allow them to be mainstreamed? A turning point one way or another seems to have been reached and the exponential growth of the Christian church in China can no longer be culturally ignored.
(Image via Wikipedia)
Most of the time when it comes to China, Western Christians hear about all of the great stuff happening in unofficial house churches while many contend that the official ‘Three-Self Patriotic’ Churches are somewhat compromised by the government.
According to the following article, that is no longer the case as real revival has also come to the official churches and faithful leaders are becoming pastors and leaders in that movement and are increasingly left alone to teach and preach the Gospel.
Here’s a link to the article: “Fires of Holy Ghost Revival Burning in China”
According to the writer, revival has been going on for some time in the house churches in the rural areas of China now it is raging also in the large official churches in the big cities with thousands of young people coming to Christ. Not only that but the ‘official’ churches are experiencing a genuine Holy Spirit revival with healings, praying in tongues, and prophesying.
All we can say about this is that it is a real mark of a genuine move of God when a revival goes beyond the organizational, denominational, and political boundaries that people are comfortable with and touches people and places where most proper Christians will not go.
For a long time the ‘official’ churches were considered to be cursed and tainted by the government but God is doing a work there anyway touching thousands of young people in urban areas and bringing with it exponential growth. Praise God.
Here’s quote from a recent article in Charisma magazine (Link NLA):
“Every day, 30,000 people believe in Jesus—even communist party members. It’s the greatest revival in church history.”
When the Communists took over China in 1949 there were only about 900,000 or so Christians in the country according to the best estimates. Now there are more than 150 million and no one really can keep tabs on the actually number since there are actually thousands of Chinese coming to Christ every day. Some are calling it the greatest revival in History.
It is transforming the country and has real implications for the future. Consider that at the current growth rate of the church, China could actually become a majority Christian nation within a generation or so.
Nevertheless, most of the Christian ‘house’ churches do not have official recognition and their existence is rather precarious even though most are meeting openly. Also, there are still jurisdictions in that rather vast country where Christians are still being persecuted and must meet in secret. However, increasingly the government is leaving them alone in most areas. Note also that nearly all of the major Christian leaders have spent at least some time in jail and prison for the faith.
Here’s one report from the article:
“I’ve never seen this in America. I saw hungry people, people getting healed, and heard of stories of revival. It’s like the book of Acts. Living here we have a completely different perspective [than Westerners have.”