A tale of two cities
“And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there. They will bring into it the glory and the honour of the nations.” (Revelation 21:22-26)
The Apostle John’s vision of the New Jerusalem can be an encouragement to missionaries in Bangkok. The vision points to the final outcome of the age-old struggle between the two cities—the City of God and Babylon. The latter enticed the kings and merchants of the earth with immorality; Babylon, who shed the blood of the apostles and prophets will be overthrown (Revelation 18:1-24). Instead, all rulers and nations will bring their honour and worship to the New Jerusalem. The vision of God’s city inspires hope. It also reminds us that God is committed to the cause of city-building for his ultimate glory.
The challenge for urban workers today is to keep this vision continually before them. As the OMF Bangkok Regional Leader, I have had the privilege to encourage missionaries and Thai Christians to press on towards the vision of planting and nurturing churches that will bring renewal and righteousness across the city.
This past month, 300 Thai believers from 14 churches in Bangkok met for three days of rich fellowship, worship and feeding on God’s word. What a joy it was to participate in this event and pray for the 300 men and women to be like Gideon’s army. At the same time, I received news of two young pastors that plan to leave Bangkok at the end of the year. What does it take for workers in Bangkok to stay for the long haul? Read my next Bangkok Blog if you are interested.