Monday, September 28, 2015

Are East Asian Nations really all Semites?

There is a hot, still ongoing discussion about the true background in the various biblical tables of nations to distinguish the origin of Asian nations. This especially relates to the question from whom of the three sons of Noah they are descending, from Sem, Ham or Japhet? In his paper Paul Phelps argues not only the Chinese, but all the Asian nations should be regarded as Eastern Hebrew nations (Paul Phelps), while many like  Henry Morris see them clearly as descendants of Ham. He writes about Gen. 9:24: 

"Descendants of Ham included the Egyptians and Sumerians, who founded the first two great empires of antiquity, as well as other great nations such as the Phoenicians, Hittites, and Canaanites. The modern African tribes and the Mongol tribes (including today the Chinese and Japanese), as well as the American Indians and the South Sea Islanders, are probably dominantly Hamitic in origin."
Regarding Gen. 10:16-18 Morris writes:
The Biblical mention of a people in the Far East named “Sinim” (Isaiah 49:12), together with references in ancient secular histories to people in the Far East called “Sinae,” at least suggests the possibility that some of Sin’s descendants migrated eastward, while others went south into the land of Canaan. It is significant that the Chinese people have always been identified by the prefix “Sino-” (e.g., Sino-Japanese War; Sinology, the study of Chinese history). The name “Sin” is frequently encountered in Chinese names in the form “Siang” or its equivalent.
The evidence is tenuous but, of all the names in the Table of Nations, it does seem that two sons of Canaan, Heth (Hittites = Khittae = Cathay) and Sin (Sinites = Sinim = China), are the most likely to have become ancestors of the Oriental peoples. Since it seems reasonable that divine inspiration would include in such a table information concerning the ancestry of all the major streams of human development, it is reasonable to conclude that the Mongoloid peoples (and therefore also the American Indians) have come mostly from the Hamitic line.
30 Ham Nations and their Migration Places

As interesting and biblical this sounds, this is not what other Asians more familiar with local Oriental traditions are willing to agree. One of them is Paul Phelps. Instead of summarizing what seems ("t does not seem") the author of the newly published book "Oriental Origins in the Bible" demonstrates how the Hebrew text itself hints into another direction and says: 
[All men in fact belong to one family because Adam and Eve were parents 
of all (Gen. 3:20,) but there are three genealogies after the Flood; Gen. 9:18-19,
The sons of Noah who went out of the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth...  These three were the sons of Noah; and from these the whole earth was peopled
   Bible scholars have traced Ham’s descendants to Africa, the Mediterranean, 
the Indian Ocean, and into the South Pacific regions.  The name Ham means hot 
and indicates that Ham’s people went into hot climates.  Japheth’s descendants 
are traceable to the Aryan people of Europe, central Asia, Iran and north India.  
The name Japheth means enlarged (expanded in size) which reveals the nature 
of the Japhetic people, and is also prophetic of their world-wide expansion. 
    Bible scholarship tradition has the view that the descendants of Shem settled 
only in western Asia, mostly Arabs and Jews.  But this conclusion does not take 
east Asia into account (half of humanity) and gives only a small portion to Shem.  
But that cannot be correct because Shem was given the greatest honour of all. He also said, “Blessed by the LORD my God be Shem...” (Gen. 9:26). According to the Biblical record, Shem is the original forefather of both the 
West Asian people and East Asian people.  In the Genesis account, the ancestry 
of all the East Asian people can be traced to Shem. Shem means honourable name, which fits well with East Asian cultural values.  
In the Hebrew Bible, God is referred to as ‘The Honourable Name’ (HA-SHÈM), 
thus associating God with the people of Shem.  In Genesis 10:21, Shem is called 
“the father of all the children of Eber,” meaning the Hebrew people.  The word 
Hebrew means ‘of Eber,’ or ‘descended from Eber.’  Gen. 10:25,
                To Eber were born two sons: the name of one was Peleg,
                for in his days the earth was divided, 
                and his brother’s name was Joktan. 
The Hebrew race has therefore descended from Eber in two branches: Peleg 
and Joktan.  The name Peleg means division, (indicating the division of mankind 
in Babylon, Gen. 11:7-9), and the name Joktan means diminished, (indicating the 
diminished lifespan of mankind at that time). 
   Joktan’s family of thirteen sons is the largest family of early Bible times.  Only 
Joktan’s first-generation lineage was recorded; Gen. 10:26-29; I Chron. 1:19-23.  
(Even this much is unusual because Joktan’s descendants are not mentioned in 
later Bible history.)  All later Bible history is based on Peleg’s lineage (Gen. 11) 
so readers have traditionally thought Peleg’s descendants are the only existing 
Hebrews.  Peleg’s lineage has more visibility in the Bible because it led up to 
Abraham—and God took Abraham’s people to lead the Bible narrative.  But the 
descendants of Joktan made another even larger branch of Hebrews.  The total 
disappearance of Joktan’s people from the Bible narrative means that his family 
left west Asia entirely and migrated to another land far away. 
On Josephus'  table of nations ( 1st A.D.), Joktam is placed in Pakistan

While his arguments for this view could be supported from current research in view of at least some Han-Chinese groups and several people groups in the Indian subcontinent (some claim the Brahmans of India are descendants of Abraham), it is difficult to apply this view for most of the more than 700 non-Chinese people nations in China. –Alexander Zephyr uses Ps. 83 to remind that conclusions done through pure grammatical and cultural comparison are not sufficient for a sound result. Ps. 83 clearly states shows what happened with the descendants of Peleg, which would include Joktams people in the Middle East and refuses to accept Phelps and Kwoks pure speculation regarding the Joktam migration to the East. -Further research must be done. In order to better reach those people nations for Christ and explain what their ancestors once knew from their creator research regarding the Ham AND Sem nations in Asia need to be reflected.  

Monday, August 03, 2015

Taiwan Prayer Updates for August 2015

1] Pray for the Short Term Teams coming this month to evangelize.

2] Praise God for the good English camp at Ping Lin Elementary School conducted by the team from San Diego.  

3] Pray that God will guide in efforts to follow-up the children who attended. 

4] Pray for the Nan Jing Lu Team to minister at a junior high school this month. 

5] Pray for Gary and Mabel Meade as they endeavor to lead the Gongguan Hakka Team working in the church plant in Gongguan.  This area has close to 36,000 Hakka people. 

6] Praise God that Brenda Chan who loves children and is gifted to work with them has joined the Hakka team full time.  Praise God for the thirty-eight who registered for VBS in July. Pray for a much needed ministry center in Gongguan. Pray that God will blossom this church plant into a full grown church.

7] Pray for grace and wisdom in following up outreaches at Ping Ling Elementary School and San He Elementary School. 

8] Praise God that over twenty students professed faith in Christ at Tian Wei Junior High School. Pray for follow-up.   Pray for Living Water Baptist Church launching a new church plant in Tian Wei.

9] Praise the Lord that the Los Angeles team was able to minister to forty-seven children in Daxi Cuo. Pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to draw these youngsters to Christ.

10] Pray for the SEND team that as summer concludes they will be renewed physically, emotionally and spiritually after the rigorous efforts of the past few months.

11] Pray for the SEND East Asia Hub development as its people are serving to engage more unreached people groups in the immediate area by sharing the vision, the spiritual need and organize UPG prayer meetings to more mature churches with a willingness to commit for more. 

12] Pray for a smooth development of TAB (Taiwan And Beyond), the renamed outreach network (formerly called TECC= Taiwan Expatriate Caring Committee) among the major migrant groups in Taiwan (Filipinos, Vietnamese, Indonesians and Thai people) and a growing vision for cooperation supported by migrant church' pastors.

13] Pray for the launching of SEND EA's project "Hope for Asia's Unreached People Groups (UPG)" and good partners to establish an UPG outreach-movement among several local East Asian churches. 

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Examining Engagement in the Asian Buddhist World (A Lausanne Global Analysis).

This issue covers two broad topics: mission in East Asia and new approaches to research and planning for mission (timely in view of the Lausanne Researchers’ International Network meeting taking place later this month, 23-28 May, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia). Specifically we feature China’s rising missions movement; we continue our series of articles on engagement with other faiths by examining Asian Buddhism; and we consider the benefits both of strategic foresight in ministry and of building national church databases for mission. (Read More)

Monday, March 09, 2015

Chinese New Year, Chinese Immigrants and more...

Chinese throughout the world have just completed their celebration of their New Year.  Many neighborhood homes are visited to show friendship.  PRAY that the seed/Word sown by many churches, groups and individuals will germinate into many conversions who will demonstrate their faith by baptism and identification with a local church. 

Chinese Immigrants 
     There are many homogeneous groups of people who move from their homeland to another country normally to find work.  They are known as the "Chinese Immigrants."  Taiwan is no exception.  There are many Indonesians, Vietnamese, Thais and Filipinos who have come to work in Taiwan's factories, construction sites, building projects, hospitals and in homes.  Ron and Shelby, SEND missionaries in Chiayi, have a special burden for these people groups.  They give these requests related to the Diaspora:
   1] During Chinese New Year forty-five Thai workers accepted Christ at a TECC supported Thai Bible camp attended by 230 workers.  Prayer is needed for follow-up and training these converts. Especially SEND is looking for workers to assist this ministry. Also during Chinese New Year Rita Chen who is ministering the Vietnamese in Taichung in her church plant experienced the LORDs power in conversions of Vietnamese. 
   2] There are two or three Filipino fellowships/church-denominations with more than 300 churches /fellowships spread throughout most of the larger cities of Taiwan and also in country side.  Over two hundred are baptized every year.  The Logos World Mission was born in Taiwan and has since planted churches in ten countries overseas.  Our partner mission [SEND International] assist Logos World Mission in their outreach.  Pray that God will keep His hand of blessing on this people group.
   3] There are almost a quarter of a million foreign brides married to Taiwanese.  The government has some programs to help them integrate into society.  We try to help them with various needs especially in their need for legal advice.  Often their children have special educational and adjustment needs, because they can not assist their own children in learning the Chinese writing and themselves have not gone through it. In Chiayi we endeavor to help with their social needs and hopefully have opportunity to share the Gospel with them.  This ministry needs special prayer for wisdom and effectiveness.
   4] Our burden is for a deeper involvement of the Taiwanese churches in the mission of foreigners employed in our country.  Praise God there is a vision to reach fellow Chinese all around the world.  Pray the vision for more cross-cultural ministries among Chinese churches is growing and allowed to expand. 

Monday, January 05, 2015

Prayer vor the Project "Vision 119"


"Since the creation of the world His [God's] invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. . [They] exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man.."  Romans 1:20, 23

Family Cary and Verna Perdue are reporting: We have just come through the Christmas season with its many opportunities for outreach with the Gospel. Please read some of the updates below concerning these outreaches and ask the Lord  to germinate the seed that was sown and to blossom it into the fruit of salvation for may precious Taiwanese.
There is also an attached page that gives specific pointed requests that reflect deep needs

One pens, "Our Christmas Sunday service on December 21 was held under a clear sky and went smoothly. God heard the prayers of many people. Through God's great grace 196 people participated that day and we hope that all who came received God's blessing. This year was the fifth time that the church has used the auditorium of the LiuJya Junior High School to put on the Christmas Sunday worship service. Each time the school has generously let the church use this facility without charge. This time Principal Tsai also came to show his interest."
And still another writes, "Because Christmas Day is not a public holiday in Taiwan, our church chose to do our celebrating on the weekend before Christmas. Friday evening was a good success. We used a portable sound system and with 17 people we had fun as well as a great opportunity to sing about Jesus in the community. It was really exciting that five of our group were children with whom we are working and some of the parents joined us for refreshments after."

A SEND missionary laboring in DaLin exclaims, "Praise the Lord for about 150 people attending our Christmas program at Ping Lin Elementary School Dec. 21. Pray the Lord to bless Mr. Hu, the school principal, and the many supportive teachers and staff who have welcomed us to the community. 
     Teacher Huang performed with his violin, and says, 'I feel peace when I come to church.' Pray for Mr. Huang and the many that came under the influence of the Gospel.  They need the long term peace which only Christ can give."

Monday, July 21, 2014

SUMMER CAMP 2014 JULY 7-11 DAXI CUO VILLAGE, CHIAYI CITY (by SEND Missionary Ron and Shelby Adhikari)

Many of you were praying for this, here is a first report of what the LORD did in Daxi Cuo during this summer Camp time. Enjoy the account written by SEND Missionary Ron and Shelby Adhikari

Theme: Happy Summer Colorful Camp
Team from Bread of Life Church, Torrance, CA, USA (9 Members)
The LA Team visited Dalin on Saturday 12 for the Medical and Dental lectures
Initially we had 61 names with some attending part time. Due to other school and family programs 42 kids showed up the first day. On closing day, we had 35 kids and 14 Parents.

The LA Team's second visit made it much easier to plan accommodations and local transportation and since all of them were of Chinese origins, food and language was not a problem. They had an excellent schedule and they brought all the equipment and materials as well as prizes and candies for distribution. The program included home visits.
The 5 Classes or groups were held at the Community Hall and simultaneously at the Center which had air conditioning.
Bible stories and the gospel were presented every day. Singing gospel choruses and scripture memorization was a daily exercise. Games and crafts were enjoyed by all. Lunch and snacks were provided. Dental check was given to all the kids and they learnt basic hygiene. The bigger kids were given English classes.
The main expenditure for the Camp was borne by the LA Team, which came to NT$15000.
No one became sick because of the heat. But it was an exhausting schedule because of the high temperatures (33-35C). One kid got hurt while riding the bicycle. The Team Leader lost his wallet in the taxi but was found later.
After the hectic camp program, we were able to follow up (10) families by giving food provided by other Churches and Christians.
Praise God for all those who were able to attend. Friends (Pastors) from two local Churches visited during the Camp and prayed for us. We made new friends and renew old members.

Thank you for your partnership and prayers.

Ron and Shelby Adhikari
DXC, Chiayi City

Sunday, June 01, 2014

A Global Mission History From Jesus to Post-Reformation (26-1689 A.D.) (in Chinese)

    /    /     郝安倫, Alain R.  Haudenschild
協助出版/活石文化事業有限公司,台北市光復南路 505 11 樓之4

Prof. Dr. Stephen Chiang writes about this book:

The four church traditions aiming for one goal
The book compares the LORDs Great Commission with its original intent on the background of its development in all major cultures and traditional church rites, including Taiwan in its early mission history from a new global angle. The more than 700 footnotes, 60 maps, 30 historical tablets, 19 photographs and two graphics quickly familiarizes the reader with key events and used mission ministry methods. With its multilingual bibliography the author attracts learners to study Christian cultures with their impact for mission - and church ministries. In a time in the Chinese Christian world where we shift to cross-cultural mission ministries this book integrates key biblical teaching in the missiological developments of Christian denominations in their cultures of ministry from a new perspective. Apart from the interesting research material, the author provides historical and missiological insights in a timely fashion to encourage leaders for background research in the World of Chinese missiology. I warmly recommend it to everyone who intends to prepare for any type of missions in the Chinese and none-Chinese world.

中國社會科學院,哲學研究所,東方文化研究中心,台灣文化研究部門Prof. Dr. Stephen W. Chiang 江萬里,博士/教授SR.PhD.

About the Author:
As a Swiss Rev. Dr. Alain Haudenschild (DMin) and his family spent many years in church-planting and special ministries in Taiwan with SEND International. – When he joined the Global Mission Centre of Chinese Christian Evangelistic Association in 2002 in Taipei as part of his responsibility to promote cross-cultural missions he was busy with mission research, the translating of mission information, e-publishing and the writing and teaching of mission courses. On his heart are the unreached people groups in Taiwan. Reportedly many know him from his blog- or book publications about the Taiwan Expatriate Caring Committee’s (TECC) church- planting efforts among the grossly neglected Thai-, Vietnamese-, Indonesian- and Filipino- migrants in Taiwan. He earned his M.A. degree at Akademie für Weltmission, at Korntal, Germany(2003), where his first thesis about the Hakka in Taiwan, another unreached people group, was rewarded with the George W. Peters Promotional Price. His M.Div thesis (TTS, Taipei, 2011) was regarding biblically contextualized church-planting in a non-Christian environment. For orders: 

國家圖書館出版品 預行編目資料:
普世宣教史之研究 : 從耶穌時代至改教運動後為止 (26-1689 A.D.)  / 郝安倫作 .
ISBN 978-986-88828-9-8(平裝)
臺北市 : 活石文化,2014.3
   / http://www.livingstone.com.tw        / office@livingstone.com.tw

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Make Your Choice

Sometimes it is hard to really face the reality. A friend of us is just running an exhibition about "faces". Her eight faces speak a language in itself. Every face is different and has a different "message" 
The same applies when we "face" challenges of a special type: You have to see the facts and their message to you. 
No matter what you think, feel or tell yourself, you always have a choice in life. In the case of a day where you want to crawl back under the doona, you absolutely have a choice to make.
Will you allow external circumstances such as deadlines, a difficult boss a huge workload or a challenging relationship to dictate how you live your life on a daily basis? Or will you stand up, take responsibility for how you feel and do something to change the situation? The people who have most so-called “success” in life (and I say that because success is a very subjective term) are almost 100% likely to fall into the second category.
For a Christian there is another dimension in life which goes far beyond the sole visibility of physical facts: Christians stand before the Almighty with their life they are aware that their "success" lies in Christ and what he did out of love for us. They "face" the fact that there is sin in their lifes and the holy Creator must punish sin. 
Unforgiven sin results in aggression, intolerance and cements the absence of peace. - For followers of Christ know the real "success" if this word could ever be used in that connection is their faith in Christ, which is enough to have God's forgiveness to be applied to their lives too. This often requires an almost heroic decision. Many so called "heroes" never did this decision and therefore lack true heroism. - They were told to show everything they can, but were unwilling to give God, who has given them such strength, the glory for it.
There is a need to taking responsibility for yourself, your actions and therefore your outcomes, but the outcome is not the sole guarantee that you all did it right, there is also much grace from above int that, yet with a thankful heart to the LORD you get  yourself back on track and firing on all cylinders.
Cultivating the feeling of being a victim and blaming everyone and everything else around you for what is going to change something, it is rather the sure way toward disaster as word history shows.  If something isn't working for you, seek help; advice; assurance; whatever you need to assist you in moving the situation forward. Only YOU can take the responsibility to know when a situation needs to change, and go about making those changes. - 
Sometimes life's success can be determined by the answer to the question: to whom give I face? This however lies rooted in a deep decision whether I am willing to accept the call of the Creator to be his special child and to face the reality and the life he has prepared in an unique way for me/for you. 
As we prepare for a time in Europe - the creative Elijah's Hut ministry through which the "Giving Face" Exhibition was made possible in Taipei will have a short break.  Pray that its pictures, when sold, continue to underline this message in the places where they will be put with the question: to whom do I give "face" with my life?

Monday, March 24, 2014

Dr. Ulf Eckmans Decision even in Taiwan can not be understood

When the news broke about Dr. Ulf Eckmans conversion to Catholic faith many in Taiwan did not understand his decision. His coming to Taiwan stirred up a lot of questions. More about it under: Conversion of Sweden's Most Influential Pastor Causes 'Pain and Disillusion'
       While discussions and inquiring notes filled the facebooks and Christian magazines it became apparent what moved Eckman: the lacking knowledge about the theology of this large group in the Latin Rite Church tradition. -  In Taiwan the Christian media had a hard time to explain his conversion from positive perspective.               Unfortunately, the missing historic background of the growth of Christianity had its toll. Although he led his church in Sweden during its growth to the size of 3,200 members he apparently never spent enough time to study the Roman Catholics Church teaching background. - The more he found out about the outside commonalities in a friendship with Catholics between Protestant Faith and Catholic Faith the more he got interested. He looked for a way to somehow "harmonize" both theologies, yet failed. - He should have been given some help on this road. It is a pity, that he saw no other way to find answers to his questions but to leave his church. - He himself felt he was theologically "ill equipped" to face the questions of Roman Catholics (There are many non Roman Catholic churches too, which are not part of this discussion). How to know what is right? How can one know without studying for years what is different? - 
How to advise? While really exploring the details always needs time, the following website of Richard Bennet, a former Catholic priest, could make it easier for the start to see "behind the curtain" and especially punish the idea of organized "fragmentalization" of Christ's body  by the Protestant church camp, with its several denominations as contrary to Reformed Theology.  http://www.bereanbeacon.org/en/ 
The website of course shares his views, as a contribution from a former insider they show how old characteristic Roman Catholic Convictions and beliefs are applied in the RCC's in the modern day context. Bennet has a list of interesting topics published on the web to just serve this type of need.http://www.bereanbeacon.org/articles/ 

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Crisis in Ukraine is driving people to Christ: Requesting urgent Prayer

Ukraine map
SEND has teams in four major areas of Ukraine and is developing church planting teams to work among some of  Ukraine’s unreached people groups. The missionaries work with Ukrainians to assist young churches and plant new ones as well as train church leaders and Ukrainian missionaries through Bible colleges and theological seminaries.
[Update from SEND Ukraine: d 3/10/14] – Please continue to pray for peace in Ukraine, especially concerning the situation in Crimea. The Crimean parliament voted on Thursday to join Russia and announced a public referendum next Sunday (March 16) to allow the people to decide whether or not to seek Russian annexation or simply increase the region’s autonomous status as part of Ukraine.  This is a critical week in the country’s history.
All of our workers are back in Ukraine, with the exception of those who serve in the south (and those who were already out of the country for other reasons).  Our people are experiencing no local threats, and ministry continues.  However, they are remaining at a high alert level, given the situation in Crimea and tensions in some eastern cities (where we have no workers).
Additional Information:
The 1990’s saw tremendous growth in the churches of Ukraine through mass evangelistic events. Today’s Ukraine needs missionaries prepared to share the gospel and disciple new believers through personal relationships. Major ministries include theological education, church planting, Bible studies, camping, children’s ministry, women’s ministry and teaching English (TESOL)The radio program “Faith, Hope, and Love” draws listeners from Ukraine, Russia, and other countries in the former Soviet Union.
Slavic Radchuk: Burning for the LORD: In the few days where he
was in Taiwan in 2013 he wanted to start a Ukrainian Church. 
Ukraine is a powder keg ready to explode. Russia is keeping a tight grip on Crimea, and pro-Russia protests are spreading throughout Ukraine’s eastern and southern cities. But there’s good news: the crisis in Ukraine is driving people to Christ.
“During this difficult time, my radio program [is] going on, non stop. And people are very, very hungry, especially now,” says Slavik Radchuk. “People [are] still coming to Christ like never before, [in] all churches.” 
“From Crimea, we have reports that former Muslims are coming to our churches and saying, ‘Can we pray together to God?’” says Radchuk. They don’t want to die without hope, he adds. “This is a very difficult time for us, and all people stay together now and pray to God for peace.” Over the weekend, thousands of people gathered at a church in Crimea and prayed through Monday morning. “ Missionaries said attendance was 1806 in one church, but over 2,000 people came and stayed,” Radchuk shares. “All night they prayed because it was a very difficult time in Crimea.” ). 
In Taiwan we pray for our brethren in Ukraine. Also pray for the Chinese in Ukraine. Nothing has ever happened that did not pass God's throne first. May this become a time where Gods glory prevails  and the evil has to withdraw. SEND Ukraine reports "All of our workers are back in Ukraine, with the exception of those who serve in the south (and those who were already out of the country for other reasons).  Our people are experiencing no local threats, and ministry continues.