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All articles in category Asia

July 2002
Mongolia

Missionary Spotlight-Facts

Area: 604,250 square miles. Neighbouring countries: China and Russia. Environment: Landlocked, with a harsh, continental climate, desert plains (especially the Gobi Desert), grassy steppes and forests. The west is mountainous. There are frequent dust (or snow) storms, grassland fires and drought. Water for irrigation or drinking is scarce. Natural resources: Oil and coal; minerals, especially copper, iron, molybdenum, tungsten, tin and gold. Population: 2.8 million. Life expectancy: 64 years. Infant mortality: 53 deaths/1,000 live births. Ethnic groups: Mongol (mainly Khalkha) 90%, Turkic (mainly Kazakh) 7%, others (including Chinese and Russian) 3%. Languages: Mongolian (official), Turkic, Russian. Literacy: 87%. Capital: Ulaanbaatar (774,000).Urbanisation: 62%. Economy: The economy...

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Missionary Spotlight-A cautionary tale
July 2002
Mongolia

Missionary Spotlight-A cautionary tale

My wife and I came to Mongolia three years ago, to work in rural areas. We knew that much had happened in the country since the end of communism more than ten years ago. A fast-growing church was emerging. Mongolians were reaching out to neighbours at home and to people beyond Mongolia. We heard from some missionaries that we would soon no longer be needed! Having completed two years of language study we moved from the capital, Ulaanbaatar (UB), to a remote provincial town several hundred miles west. Expectations Understandably, we went with certain expectations. We envisaged that we would be strengthening a local church...

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Missionary Spotlight-Mongolia – land of contradictions
July 2002
Mongolia

Missionary Spotlight-Mongolia – land of contradictions

The Gobi desert paid me a visit today: icy wind, sand, rain and snow all arrived together, screaming off the steppe, lashing around me, boring sand into eyes, nose, ears and mouth. I am getting warm again in our apartment on the top floor of a building in the eastern sector of Ulaanbaatar. The sky is now deep blue and crystal clear, except for the trail of an international jet. The trees’ buds are a promising green, poised to make the sudden growth we’ve longed for all winter. That startling, vivid, clear blue Mongolian sky! The Mongols of old worshipped the sky as god above...

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Missionary Spotlight – Obeying God in Jordan
March 2002
Jordan

Missionary Spotlight – Obeying God in Jordan

‘We must obey God rather than men’ (Acts 5:29). This short but powerful quote kept coming to mind during a recent trip to Jordan. Much of our journey was spent visiting sites rich in biblical significance.   Jordan’s legal system is founded upon Islamic principles. Muslims are forbidden to convert to Christianity on pain of death. When I first arrived I wondered whether such a law was just languishing on the books without real enforcement. By the end of our trip, I received my answer. No apologies   While there, we met quietly with some evangelical Christian leaders. On our last night we met a...

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Missionary Spotlight – Advances in Thailand
March 2002
Thailand

Missionary Spotlight – Advances in Thailand

It has been nearly two years since Maran-atha Bible Presbyterian Church in Singapore sent out its first missionary couple.   Robert and Dara Peh (with their two young children, Evangel and Evangeline), both graduates of the Far Eastern College, Singapore, are labouring diligently in Thailand. Thailand is a country of more than 60 million people of whom only a few are Christians. Although it is a Buddhist nation, it does allow freedom of religion, so that missionaries are free to preach the gospel to its many indigenous tribes-people, including those inhabiting its mountainous regions. The Pehs work among the Red Lahu, the tribe from which...

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A Bible for modern Turkey
January 2002
Turkey

A Bible for modern Turkey

The date is 6 October 2001 and there is great rejoicing in a church in Istanbul. One lady puts it like this: ‘I have cried a lot today. Today the Bible is in my hands’. She expresses the feeling of the other Turkish believers when she says, ‘We are very happy … more than happy, we are proud. Today I feel myself closer to God in my own language, in my own being. For this is my language. The Lord speaks to me in my own language’. Lampstand removed This lady’s excitement is like that of those who heard the apostle Peter on the day...

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January 2002
China

Chinese puzzle

It can be difficult to grasp the true state of a church from a distance. This is particularly true when we live many thousands of miles away and speak a different language! In recent years there have been reports of great movements of God in China. We hear of large numbers of converts to Christianity and frequent periods of persecution. It is therefore helpful when the situation is assessed by someone who has researched it first hand and can provide a biblical perspective. We reproduce below an edited version of a letter received from Phoebe Ma, former chief editor of the Chinese Reformed magazine Faith...

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Missionary Spotlight – Understanding Jordan
November 2001
Jordan

Missionary Spotlight – Understanding Jordan

To understand what it means to be an Evangelical Christian in Jordan requires an understanding of the country’s recent political history. This article provides such an outline.   Jordan is unusual, being the only Arab nation whose royal dynasty is not indigenous — the Hashemites originated from the Arabian Peninsula. The Hashemites and Al-Sauds were once the most influential families in Arabia. Both helped the British to drive the Ottoman Turks out of the Middle East in 1918, and both claimed the right to rule Arabia. Eventually the powerful Al-Saud family got the upper hand and declared most of Arabia a Saudi Kingdom. Hashemites  ...

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