Sekai no Hikari: Light of the World

"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden…In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."

Dying to Apologize

on April 26, 2013

        So one thing that I fervently believe about the Gospel is that there are already seeds of it in every culture and subculture out there. It doesn’t always have to be “planted” by Christians. Because we are all human, created in the image of God, we have all received something called general revelation. That essentially means that God has revealed little parts of His truths to all of us, through nature, other people, our own nature, etc.

        One example of this is in Japan. Endo Shusaku, a famous Japanese Christian, often likened Japan to a swamp in terms of ability to accept Christianity. A swamp is not a very favorable environment for seeds to grow in. In the same way, Japan is not a favorable environment for Christianity to grow in, and history has aptly demonstrated this. And for a long time, I thought that Japan’s worldview was almost entirely in opposition to Christianity. However, I was talking to my Japanese teacher one time about Japan’s strange fascination with death. She quoted to me an expression that she thought explained that fascination:

死でおわびます=apologize with (one’s) death

        She said that death, to the Japanese, was a way to say sorry for what they had done wrong, and that is why they have such a high rate of suicide. I immediately saw the connection. The Japanese think they have to apologize for their own sin, but what they don’t see is that someone has already apologized for them! Jesus became a human himself, yet lived without sin, and thus he was qualified to apologize for all of humanity. And that he did, giving the whole world, including the Japanese, the option to have life, and have it to the full.

        Since then, I’ve thought about it, and the Japanese are an incredibly communal people. Sound familiar? They, in an ideal situation, would probably do a better job of Christian community than most Americans. The so-called “swamp” is actually a verdant forest, deep down inside. We just can’t give up on the Japanese. We can’t give up on anyone.

        God has given me a heart for the Japanese people, and I intend to do something for God and Japan, when the opportunity arises. Who has God given you a heart for? Who elicits your compassion? I guarantee, there is hope for them, and there is a plan for them, and God will use you, if you are willing.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: