Church is for amateurs.
Oddly, that’s a lesson I learned courtesy of North Korea and its ruthless dictator, Kim Jong Il—who is perhaps the most violent and merciless persecutor of Christians in human history.
You see, my wife and I belong to a ministry that disciples North Korean Christians. And when you’re discipling North Koreans, you realize pretty quickly that most of the tools that are fundamental to Christian discipleship in the West just aren’t available to help you with the task.
- Church buildings? Illegal in North Korea.
- Paid, full-time pastors? We call them “instant inmates” in North Korea’s network of concentration camps.
- Church growth? When more than two or three gather together (even in somebody’s home in the middle of the night), there the police show up. Guaranteed.
- And Bibles and Sunday School materials? They’re confiscated instantly, and the people who possess them end up dead.
So in order to learn how to disciple North Koreans, we had to study the existing North Korean underground church and find out how they do it. (There are about 100,000 Christians inside North Korea, believe it or not). We also studied other persecuted churches around the world and throughout history, back all the way to the New Testament itself.
What we found—or more accurately, didn’t find—absolutely floored us.
Join us as we unveil “the surprise of the persecuted” in our next post.