It’s All About Japan!

Tokyo Skyline

I can’t even begin to comprehend how the people of Japan are feeling.  I won’t even begin to pretend I understand.  Because I don’t.  I don’t understand or comprehend what it must feel like to lose thousands (possibility of that number going up into the tens of thousands) of your countrymen in a matter of hours while nuclear reactors leak radiation into the air which will ultimately lead to a sad and painful death for some of the workers.  I don’t understand it, but I know it bothers me.  And I hurt for them.

One thing I do know, what’s happening there reaffirms for me that we were designed for so much more.  We weren’t created for this.  We were created for more.  For better.  For perfection.  For eternity.

I know that I’m not the only Christian hurting for the people of Japan or thinking about them constantly.  I also know that some people are waiting on the Pat Robertson’s of the world to say something ridiculous.  Well, they got it, but it didn’t come from Pat.  It came from this man…Reverend David Cho.

David Cho

The Reverend David Cho leads an Assembly of God church in Korea with more than one million members.  Before Pat Robertson could get his speech together, Pastor Cho had this to say…

Because the Japanese people shun God in terms of their faith and follow idol worship, atheism, and materialism, it makes me wonder if this was not God’s warning to them.

If you can stomach it, the rest of the article is here.

Let’s assume for sake of argument that Pastor Cho is right.  Let’s say that this awful tragedy in Japan, was done by the very hand of God and it is His judgment on their country for their idol worship, etc.  Let’s say that God appeared in the sky and spoke in all languages simultaneously to tell us all that the tragedy in Japan was His idea, His plan and that He would take all the credit (blame).  Let’s just say that everything I just wrote is accurate.  With that in mind, how do Pastor Cho’s comments help this situation in any way?  Even if we could say with 100% accuracy that this was an act of God’s judgment, do his comments help any of the dying and hurting in Japan?  Wouldn’t he be of better use if he mobilized his one million members to get to Japan immediately and make a difference for Christ in the lives of the Japanese?

Let me be perfectly clear, I, 100% do not agree with this man’s comments.  They are uncalled for and out of place.  They only add to the hurt and make Christians around the world look like self-righteous jerks.

Pastor Cho, from me to you, please don’t talk about this anymore.  Get down from your million-member pedestal.  Get involved in a messy world, as Jesus did.  Use your influence to share a message of hope, grace & forgiveness with the people of Japan as Jesus did with the woman caught in adultery.  Love those who are without hope the way Jesus did.  Don’t speak.  Act on the grace that has been given you.  You have that platform for a reason.  Please, don’t use it to add pain to the people of Japan or to hurt the cause of Christ.

What do you think about Pastor Cho’s comments?



About Stan Rodda

Follower. Husband. Father. Shepherd. Apostle. Husker.

Posted on March 18, 2011, in evangelism, God, Jesus, journey, Leadership, Life, love, missionary, outreach, pastors, risk, story, the basics, the world, thoughts. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I think his comments reflect his own personal opinion on Japan rather than God’s. And even if it was God’s direct doing, then you are right, it doesn’t change much except get people to shape up so they don’t get destroyed. Though that doesn’t feel like love to me, from either God or from the people to God.

    • I agree. That wouldn’t be very loving of God at all. And it sounds like there isn’t a lot of “practical Jesus-style” love in Pastor Cho. I can’t judge that for sure, but it seems that way based on the comment.

  2. It comes off as very Old Testament. And even Jesus, according to the gospels, somewhat randomly killed a fig tree and constructed a whip to use to attach the merchants in the temple. Not exactly the meek and mild impression Christians try to present.

    • No, Jesus wasn’t mild at all. A true study shows that he was basically a rebel who bucked the traditional system and instituted an entirely new way of thinking. His actions were strong because of His frustration at what “godly” people had done to the world. Yet, in my opinion, God does not randomly send earthquakes to kill people because somehow He can’t control His temper. Great point NAS. Would love to hear more of your thoughts. Thanks for taking time to read and comment.

      • “Yet, in my opinion, God does not randomly send earthquakes to kill people because somehow He can’t control His temper.”

        Not that I believe it happened, but according to one of the stories in the OT, he once lost his temper so much that he decided to drown the world. Assuming you believe that (and maybe you don’t), why is hitting an island with an earthquake out of his character?

      • That’s a great question. I have been rereading the Old Testament this year. There are many instances where I have wondered the same thing. I’m really struggling with that too. For me though, it’s not a temper issue, but it’s an issue of justice; in the Old Testament. The biggest difference between the Old Testament and now is Jesus. Because when God sees the sins of humanity, He sees His Son and is reminded that humanity is justified through Jesus. God’s character demands He be just, and God sees justice for humanity through His Son. There is not a need for God to intervene in the world in that way. So I don’t believe that these “acts of nature,” are God’s temper tantrums on humanity.

  3. Hi, Stan. Thanks for giving me the link to your blog and this post. You’ve already read some of my thoughts on the subject. I can’t crawl inside God’s head and know what He’s thinking, but I certainly don’t think He caused the destruction in Japan. I do think that violence is in the world because of mankind’s sin. But does that mean that every natural disaster is an act of divine punishment? Nope. Doesn’t mean that every bad thing that happens to a person is punishment aimed at him or that it was aimed at someone else but missed and hit an innocent instead. Has God ever punished anyone? We have records of it in the Bible.

    Does any of that have anything to do with Japan? I don’t think so. And far from talking about God punishing anybody, all the Christians I know have been praying for the Japanese people since the earthquake and tsunami hit, and sending whatever aid they can. Christian groups were there on the ground before it happened and have been doing what they can to help in the aftermath. May the Lord be with them all, the Japanese and those trying to help them and may we keep them all in our thoughts and prayers.

    Peace be with you, Stan. Glad to make your acquaintance!

    • Couldn’t agree more, D. God is not sitting up in heaven with a smite button waiting to pounce on us. Unfortunately, there is a lot of pain and hurt in the world, primarily because of sin. Fortunately, God is preparing a place for us that will be far better than where we are now. Now that’s pretty exciting to think about. Thanks for swinging by and commenting. I appreciate it. Grace & Peace.

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