Daily Topic for August 20, 2007
How human it is for us to be concerned primarily with our own salvation. Our own welfare is a natural concern. But it is wrong to stop there. We must be concerned for the spiritual safety and security of others also. Remember God’s challenge to Ezekiel: “If you warn them and they do not listen, that is their responsibility. If you do not warn them and they perish, I will hold you responsible” (Ezekiel 33:8-9, paraphrase). That is a great challenge to us as we think of those who still have not heard the gospel!
Our Father, we want to be faithful to share Christ with the unreached peoples. But all too often we are afraid of rejection and scorn. Give us the same courage You gave to Ezekiel to warn others of the judgment awaiting those who reject Your grace.
Sikkimese peoples of all religions celebrate the Buddhist New Year. Costumed dancers perform, in the shadow of Mount Kangchendzonga, the third highest mountain in the world. Mount Kangchendzonga dominates the western border of Sikkim. Buddhists, Hindus and Animistic peoples worship its divine power. Though 70 percent of the population of this Indian state wedged between Nepal and Bhutan are Nepali Hindus, we will focus our prayers on the Bhotia and Drukpa peoples that together we will refer to as “Sikkimese.” “Peoples of the Buddhist World” calls the Sikkimese peoples “the most complicated Buddhist groups profiled in this book.” They speak a Tibetan-based language.
But since Sikkim became a state of India in 1975, they find themselves in a land that allows people to encounter Christians. “Operation China” says, “In 1997 ... Sikkim counted 250 churches, but almost all the believers were ethnic Nepalis.” Gospel for Asia adds, “There are notably few believers among the Bhotia people.”Learn more at joshuaproject.net
Pray that the Lord will call South Asian believers to go to Sikkim and reach out to the Buddhist peoples. Pray that the Holy Spirit will soften the hearts of Buddhist Sikkimese so that they will receive the seeds of the gospel. Pray for God to show Himself powerful and merciful in Sikkim.-EF