ROBERT E. SCOTT
World Christian Broadcasting
Advancing the gospel in Communist Asia poses challenges and presents
opportunities. Too long have Churches of Christ failed to understand those
lands, much less worked determinedly to take the good news to them.
People's Republic of China
By size and circumstance, People's Republic of China (PRC) holds a
unique place of urgency for evangelism. More than 1.2 billion people
inhabit a land that has only 2% more land mass that the 50 United States.
While missionaries are forbidden to reside there, God's Word has been
proclaimed daily in most of that needy land since July, 1983. It
penetrates homes all over China by daily broadcasts in Mandarin Chinese,
the official language. Those messages go forth from Radio Station KNLS in
Alaska, owned and operated by World Christian Broadcasting on behalf of
Churches of Christ.
Mail response indicates a great hunger for God's Word. Many from all
over China are enrolled in Bible correspondence courses both in Chinese and
English. Visitors have baptized believers in Shanghai. Other students are
progressing toward a time of decision also. In spite of the tragic manner
in which the government used brutal force to overcome student demonstrators
in June, 1989, there is hope for doing more to spread the good news to the
largest nation in the world.
The Soviet Union
The Soviet Union makes up much of Asia and Europe. The Russian Soviet
Federal Socialistic Republic (RSFSR) is the largest of the 15 Soviet
republics and the only one spanning both continents. Ten of the republics,
including RSFSR, are in Europe. Along with Asian Russian SFSR, in Asia
there are: Uzbek SSR, Kazahk SSR, Tadzhik SSR, Kirghiz SSR and Turkmen
These republics have cultures and use languages far different from the
language and culture of European Russian SFSR. Islam has strong influence
there and, as in most of the other 14 republics outside Russian SFSR, they
all share a hatred for the Russians.
Visiting Christians have baptized a few people in various cities for
many years. Daily broadcasts in Russian from Station KNLS in Alaska have
received mail response from most areas where Russian is widely used.
Bibles distributed freely since Glasnost and Peristroika have had their
influence. Yet, 70 years of official atheism have left most people
Biblically illiterate. An insatiable hunger is manifest in virtually every
contact there by mail and in person. There is opportunity for missionaries
to enter there now. Time to stay and teach is limited, but barring a
reversal as seen in China, the opportunity for longer missionary presence
may occur quickly.
Indigenous groups may already exist who share our desire to be
Christians only. There is evidence that this may be true both among Soviet
Jews and Gentiles. Opportunities abound to teach whole congregations of
believers. Spiritual hunger in the Soviet Union is vast and unmet.
Republic of Afghanistan
Though the scene of a recent bitter civil war, where the Soviet Union
exited much as the United States did Vietnam, the Afghan government remains
under the influence of Moscow. This Islamic land would be very difficult
People's Republic of Kampuchea
A nation the size of Missouri, formerly known as Cambodia, has
suffered horribly under communist rule. There is no known opportunity for
a missionary presence.
Democratic People's Republic of Korea
As a closed society, North Korea appears unaccessible to missionary
presence. Yet, radio broadcasts can penetrate all of the nation daily.
Lao People's Democratic Republic
This Buddhist land has no known means of missionary presence today.
It has suffered much, as have most peoples in Indo-China.
Mongolian People's Republic
This socialist state between the Soviet Union and mainland China has
sided with the USSR. No known efforts exist for reaching these Lamaistic
Socialist Republic of Vietnam
After decades of ravaging warfare, Vietnam is under communist rule.
We have had missionaries there and many have been baptized. How many
believers were not killed or did not emigrate is unknown. There may be an
opening for medical assistance there soon which could provide a door for
Steps to Solution
No easy effort will evangelize these communist lands of Asia.
However, here are suggestions, if followed, that could help advance the
First, we must pray as never before for those people and for reapers.
Where possible, we must lead students and refugees from those lands to new
life in the Lord. National Christians provide a more immediate cadre of
evangelists than nationals who must learn the language, history and culture
Beginning immediately, church leaders must encourage Christians to
feel a burden for the unmet needs of those lands. Many must be encouraged
to pray, learn languages, study cultures and history before visiting there,
going as teachers, or filling other professional roles. When possible,
full-time missionaries must be ready to enter and spend a lifetime
Until those steps are accomplished, we must use international radio to
teach lost people God's Word in their own tongue. The time is short!
This site mirrors the JAM site at the ACU web site.
Mirrored by permission of ACU Missions Personnel
Direct questions and comments to Ed Mathews,
Last updated on February 4, 2013
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