251 unengaged unreached people groups in East Asia totaling 12.3 million in 41 countries throughout the world have yet to hear the Good News
Reaching the Unengaged, Unreached People Groups (UUPGs) of East Asia
East Asia is home to some of the world’s largest people groups, yet many of these groups have had a missionary presence for over 100 years. However, there are 251 UUPGs who are totally oblivious that Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World exists, because they have never had a single opportunity to hear this message of Good News. Sadly, this Gospel has not been Good News for the millions who have already died, because it didn’t arrive in time for them to hear and respond. You can make a difference as you prayerfully consider how you and your church can embrace one of these UUPGs with the Gospel. The process is as follows:
In I Timothy 2:1, it says, “The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know” (The Message). So, you will initially adopt that UUPG in prayer, and become a Priority Prayer Advocate (PPA). A PPA is an individual, church, or church group that is devoted to prayer, and they are persistently praying for the lost among this UUPG to come to saving faith in Jesus Christ. There are many things you can be doing to effectively advocate and promote prayer for your UUPG:
- Receive the UUPG profile and broadly disseminate it throughout the church.
- Passionate, prevailing prayer for the UUPG, and the three to five strategic prayer requests referenced on this profile.
- Fasting and praying one day a month for this UUPG.
- Exploring possibilities for members of the church to travel to where this UUPG resides and prayer walking on site (with insight) and developing a passionate heart that will seek to impact lostness among this people.
- Exposure to the UUPG in order to get to know their language, culture, worldview, history, customs, habits, and traditions (vital information that will paint a picture of these people on the hearts of the church members, and will be critical to your communication strategy).
In Numbers 13:2, it says, “Send some men to explore the land…” These exploratory trips will help you: “Look the land over, see what it is like. Assess the people: Are they strong or weak? Are there few or many?” as it says in Number 13:18. What types of information are you seeking to discover as you begin planning your strategy, and how to effectively deploy the resources of your church?
- Identify needs and opportunities by which you will be able to engage in long-term ministry among your UUPG.
- Assessing the situation to determine what opportunities might exist for the placement of long-term personnel that would be sent through your church.
- Researching needs to determine if there are any potential marketplace opportunities within these cities, towns, and villages where the UUPG resides so as to advance the strategy among this people.
- Visiting any colleges and universities within this region to determine if there are any members of their UUPG studying, as well as investigating prospects pertaining to the placement of foreign students or teachers at these campuses.
- Conducting a needs assessment and feasibility study to determine whether you will be able to live among your target UUPG. You will need to have a legitimate and credible means of living and traveling in and out of the areas where your UUPG is located.
In II Corinthians 8:3-4, it says, “For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints.” You should financially contribute through appropriate channels within your church so as to support the needs of this work among the UUPG. You need to give in a way that helps, and not hurts, so that your gifts and financial support doesn’t create an unhealthy dependency on your resources and cripple the efforts of new believers and churches to support their own work. We must rise to a higher plane of sacrifice and give to support the advancement of the Gospel, so that His kingdom will come to all peoples—nothing less.
- Your giving could help in the development of heart-language Scripture resources that will aid in the evangelization and discipleship of your target UUPG.
- Your giving could support community development projects among your UUPG that will open doors and hearts to the Gospel.
- Your giving could help sponsor short-term mission trips, and enable someone to go who doesn’t have the financial resources available.
- Your giving could provide long-term support (salary/benefits) for any missionaries that would be called out of your church to work among this UUPG. NOTE: Short-term trips are not as effective as long-term placement of personnel being sent out and supported by the local church and/or through the IMB.
In Daniel 1:4-5, it says, “to bring some of the…young men without any physical defect, good-looking, suitable for instruction in all wisdom, knowledgeable, perceptive, and capable of serving in the king's palace—and to teach them the Chaldean language and literature. The king assigned them daily provisions from the royal food and from the wine that he drank. They were to be trained for three years, and at the end of that time they were to serve in the king's court.” If your church is going to be effective in this “embracing” effort, then you need to think about exile. You will make the greatest impact by seeking to cooperate with the Holy Spirit of God in setting apart those from within the church that He has called and send them out (Acts 13:2-3). You seriously need to consider placing somebody long-term on the field that will learn the language and the culture of the people.
- Long-term personnel are resident explorers and discoverers seeking to increase their awareness and developing a comprehensive knowledge of their people.
- Gleaning insights and information vital to bridging an understanding of the Gospel that makes sense to your target UUPG.
- Seconding long-term personnel to an established mission organization for mentoring, accountability, and support (e.g., the IMB). New personnel need accountability and closer supervision as they apprentice on the mission field. They need support from experienced practitioners on the field, so that they can be mentored and coached through directed ministry environments. These learning opportunities are designed to develop the knowledge, skills, and abilities which increase the effectiveness of the personnel among their UUPG.
- Working in teams with another established mission organization will provide the community they need, so that they are exposed to training and tools that will help them communicate the Gospel effectively, as well as disciple new believers, develop leaders, and plant healthy reproducing churches.
There are 251 East Asian UUPGs totaling 12,292,020 people in 41 different countries around the world. There are 168 (66.9%) of those UUPGs inside of China, which are outside the scope of current strategies and very little to no resources have been committed to reaching them. There are an additional 83 UUPGs in 40 countries. Some of the countries with the largest number of East Asian UUPGs are Bhutan, Japan, Nepal, and Vietnam, although there is a large growing segment of mainland Chinese populating various countries throughout Africa.
We are committed to working together with you as you embrace an “ends of the earth” strategy that will impact lostness among one or more of these East Asian UUPGs. We can make a difference so that these “red, yellow, black, and white, precious peoples in God’s sight” can come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, and spend eternity with Him.
RESOURCES TO ASSIST
- Talk to the East Asian Peoples Embrace Coordinator.
- The East Asian Peoples Embrace Coordinator is sensitive to the needs of churches and has an understanding of East Asia and the highest priority UUPGs of EAPAG. The Coordinator will be able to assist you as you explore various options. Contact the Embrace Coordinator.
- If you are ready to view the top East Asian UUPG list contact the East Asian Affinity Connection Strategist.
- Visit IMB http://gettingthere.imbresources.org/.
- Visit http://www.joshuaproject.com.