Daily Topic for March 04, 2008

Luke 1:69-73
"He has raised up a horn of salvation for us...to remember His holy covenant, the oath He swore to our father Abraham."

Zechariah’s prophecy was pointing to a work God was doing in fulfillment of His promise to Abraham, that through him and his descendants (including the Lord Jesus) all nations on earth would be blessed. By faith in Jesus we have received both the blessing and the obligation to bless others. God’s intent and purpose in fulfilling His oath to Abraham is that some from every people group, including Buddhists, Muslims, Chinese, Hindus, and tribals, would be able to share in the blessings of redemption.

Father, we don’t want to settle for anything less than Your highest and best. Keep us pressing forward in holiness and commitment to Your mission.

Ainu People of Japan and Russia

“I can almost understand these people!” thought the Eskimo visitor to Russia’s far eastern Sakhalin Island. He was visiting an Ainu village. Linguists have recently discovered that the Ainu language resembles the Eskimo language and also Basque, a language in far-away Western Europe. Most of the Ainu people live in Japan, on the northern island of Hokkaido. We know that they must have traveled far and wide at one time.

Most Ainus worship the sacred bear, but this people group also has a concept of a high God who is above the sacred bear. The Ainu people call this high God “Kami,” which has roughly the same meaning as the Eskimo word “Kammi,” meaning “the ancient one,” or “he who existed at the time of creation.” Such a concept is one step in the right direction, but it doesn’t provide them with a saving faith. Only one percent of the Ainu people consider themselves Christians, and many of these so-called Christians don’t truly know Jesus as Lord and Savior.

Learn more at joshuaproject.net

Pray for the end of such nominalism. Pray that God will open doors that will allow more missionaries to reach out to this people group both in Russia and Japan. Russian laws have often delayed the arrival of new missionaries because the Russian Orthodox Church wants no competition. Pray that the Ainus will come to know the Ancient of Days as their Savior. -WK

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