SHOULD KOREAN CHURCHES STOP ALL MISSIONARY ACTIVITIES IN
Press reports have not been charitable to the Korean hostages; the Korean church has also come under criticism. Questions are being asked:
Why did they expose themselves to danger?
Why did they put their nation and loved ones through so much anxiety?
Why did their government have to put up a ransom for their release (in doing so they only encouraged their captors to repeat their actions!)?
Are Korean churches competing amongst themselves over the quantity of members in missionary teams?
Were some team members not honest with their loved ones concerning their involvement in this missionary team?
Answers to these questions will no doubt provoke comments, accusations and a wide variety of opinions.
There was one report which suggested the departure of all Korean missionaries from Afghanistan as part of a deal which was reached between the Taliban and the negotiators.
Perhaps the Korean Church needs to evaluate their mission strategies and philosophy, especially in high risk areas like Afghanistan. If necessary a temporary halt of missionary activity might be prudent at this point.
Abandoning mission work completely in these high risk areas however is a grave mistake. To do so would be to devalue the martyrdom of the two hostages. They were brave men who gave up their lives for the sake of the gospel. We cannot but obey the great commission even if it means the risk of death or the loss of life. Paul's missionary journeys were fraught with danger. Are we to expect easier treatment from the enemy?
CORRECT ERRORS IN HUMILITY AND MOVE ON
To the brethren in Korea I say: humble yourselves, do some soul searching in the light of God's word and learn from the mistakes. You will come out this experience wiser and stronger in the Lord.
And one more observation: the villains in this episode were NOT the Korean missionary team but the Taliban. They are the ones who kidnap innocent people and murder the defenceless whose only "offense" is to improve the well being of the ordinary Afghan.
The missionary impetus of the Korean Churches to reach the lost is an inspiration to all of us, especially in the Asian Church.