By Dr. James C. Denison
President, the Center for Informed Faith, Dallas, Texas
May 27, 2010
Topic: persistent prayer
Be grateful you’re not Wen Jiabao. Reuters is reporting this morning that the Chinese Premier is trying to convince South Korea and Japan that Beijing wants to be their economic partner. At the same time, his country has maintained enough support for North Korea to perhaps influence the rogue nation to abandon nuclear weapons. This is not the last time China will be in the headlines this week.
In the last five minutes, 67 babies were born in the U.S., while 274 were born in China and 395 in India. China will soon be the largest English-speaking nation on earth. China and India together graduate six times more engineers and scientists than America. If current trends continue, within a generation China will be the world’s largest economy.
God’s Kingdom is on the march in this fascinating nation. Missiologists think that as many as 100,000 people become Christians every day in China. Estimates range between 100 million and 300 million believers in the nation. If the latter is true, the largest Christian nation in history is the People’s Republic of China.
It was my great privilege to spend last week in Beijing, where I witnessed personally the power of the Christian movement in China. Our hosts were Jon and Cyndi Davis; Jon serves the Beijing International Christian Fellowship (http://www.bicf.org/) as Senior Elder while Cyndi is working to develop youth resources for the church and nation. Natives of Oregon, the two have been serving in East Asia for more than 20 years. They are gracious beyond words, Spirit-filled and servant-hearted.
Their congregation numbers some 4,000 worshipers, meeting in 16 different languages. They have an enormous vision to impact the business community of Beijing through seminars, relational events and worship services. World-class CEOs and leaders are part of this initiative. They are making a critical difference every day in the most populous nation on earth. I urge you to join me in praying for God to empower and use them in miraculous ways today.
BICF is part of the Great Awakening taking place in many nations today. Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul, Korea is one example of this movement. The largest church in history with more than a million members, the congregation began on May 15, 1958 with seven in attendance. They are organized through house churches and cell groups. They also meet at 4 every morning to pray. Their pastor says that everyone wants to copy his cell groups, but no one wants to copy his 4 AM prayer meeting.
When we pray, God works in ways we cannot see or measure. George Mueller, the great minister and man of faith, prayed patiently for five personal friends who did not know the Lord. After five years, one came to Christ. In ten more years, two more became Christians. After 25 years, the fourth friend came to Christ. He kept praying for the last friend for 52 years, then Mueller died. The fifth friend came to know Jesus a few months afterward.
Jesus’ exhortation, translated literally, is to “ask and keep on asking, and it will be given to you” (Matthew 7:7). Is God calling you to persistent prayer today?