‘n Japannese Boeddhis kies vir Jesus

Die Christendom in Japan word oorskadu deur ‘n lang en gewelddadige geskiedenis van vervolging en martelaarskap. Duisende gelowiges was in Japan op die wreedste maniere deur die owerhede vermoor, nadat die destydse Tokugawa Shogunate-regering Christenskap in die vroeë 1600’s verbied het. Alhoewel Christene in Japan vandag nie meer hierdie vlak van geweld ervaar nie, hul word steeds kultureel vervolg en deur familie en vriende met minagting behandel. Die meerderheid Japanese weier om mense te aanvaar wat van tradisionele praktyke wegbreek en Christenskap nastreef. Dit is die rede hoekom ons uitsendings so ‘n belangrike bron van inligting is vir mense wat kerk vermy uit vrees.

Mev. K, ‘n Japanese luisteraar het geskryf; “Ek het onlangs opgehou om ’n sutra (‘n Boeddhistiese vers) daagliks te herhaal. Nou gebruik ek my eie woorde om te bid, want ek glo in Jesus Christus. Dit was in hierdie jaar dat die oortuiging dat Jesus Christus my verlosser is sterker geword het. Ek kan steeds nie glo hoe ek verander het nie. Ek was voorheen ‘n toegewyde Boeddhis. Ek het vinnig besef dat Boeddhisme ‘n afgod is.”

Die kerke in Japan se lidmaatgetalle is min, met gemiddeld ongeveer dertig lidmate in elke kerk. Gelowiges is baie versigtig en beoefen meeste van die tyd hul geloof in die geheim. Die mense in Japan is veral onverdraagsaam teenoor Christene en beskou hul geloof as ‘n onbetroubare godsdiens, weens die manier waarop dit in die media uitgebeeld word.
Die tipe Christenskap wat in Japan beoefen word, word sterk deur Japannese wêreldpersepsies beïnvloed. Dit het daartoe gelei dat mense sukkel om God as alomteenwoordig en alwetend te aanvaar. Hulle glo ook dat enige individu hierdie goddelike eienskappe kan bemeester.

Mev. K is dankbaar vir FEBC se evangeliese uitsendings en Bybelkorrespondensie-programme, wat haar help om in haar geloof te groei. Sy sê; “Alhoewel ek dikwels vrae het oor die skrifte en nie altyd saamstem nie, glo ek steeds. Eerstens glo ek in God as die skepper van die hemel en die aarde en in Jesus Christus as die Seun van God. Ek kan nie die feit dat Jesus my van my sondes verlos het ignoreer nie.”

Ons dank die Here dat Hy deur ons uitsendings die lewens van die Japannese mense met die boodskap van hoop aanraak. Ons uitsendings versterk mense wat afgesonder en deur hul gemeenskap verwerp word.


A Buddhist from Japan chooses Jesus

Christianity in Japan is overshadowed by a long and bloody history of persecution and martyrdom. Tens of thousands of Japanese Christians were murdered during horrific acts of torture by the authorities, after the Tokugawa Shogunate government banned Christianity in the early 1600s. Although Christians in Japan don’t face this same kind of brutal persecution today, they still face considerable cultural persecution in the form of social pressure from friends and family members who can’t accept their choice to stray from traditional Buddhist and Shinto practices. For this reason, FEBC’s broadcasts are a vital source of information for people who are afraid to attend church.

Mrs K, a listener from Japan wrote; “I recently stopped reciting a Sūtra (a Buddhist scripture), Instead I pray to God with my own words because I believe in Jesus Christ now. Starting from this year, the conviction that Jesus Christ is my saviour got stronger. I still can’t believe the way I have changed. Previously I was devoted to Buddhism. But I soon realised that Buddhism is an idol.”
Churches in Japan are very small, with an average of a mere thirty members per congregation. Most of these members are especially cautious to practice their faith and do so with discretion. Locals are generally indifferent towards Christianity and view it as an unrelatable foreign religion because of the way it is portrayed by the media.

The Christianity that is practiced in Japan is heavily influenced by the Japanese worldview which opposes the idea that God is omnipresent and omniscient. This is mainly due to the belief that these attributes can be attained by any individual.

Mrs K thanked FEBC for broadcasting gospel programs and Bible correspondence programs that are helping her grow in her faith. She said; “Although I often have questions about the scriptures and don’t always agree with everything, I always believe and respect them. First of all, I believe in God as creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ as the Son of God. I can no longer remain oblivious to the reality that Jesus redeemed me from my sins.”

We thank the Lord for invading the lives of the Japanese people through our broadcasts with the message of hope that is found in Jesus Christ. For many Japanese people who feel isolated and ostracised, our broadcasts keep them strong in their faith.