NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Several Korean-American Baptists are calling for an "awakening moment" of prayer amid military tensions between North and South Korea that are at their highest point since the Korean War.
North Korean soldiers stand guard at the Panmunjom "truce village" that straddles North and South Korea. As tensions between the two countries reach dangerous new levels in the wake of the North's deadly Nov. 23 attack on Yeonpyeong Island, Korean-American Baptists are calling for an "awakening moment" of prayer.
North Korea shelled Yeonpyeong Island in disputed waters off the west coast of the Korean Peninsula Nov. 23. The attack killed four South Koreans, including two civilians, and injured 18. South Korean forces returned artillery fire and have threatened stronger action in the tense days since.
"This crisis reminds us that the Korean Peninsula is always the kind of place where there is not just physical tension but a lot of spiritual conflict," said Park Se-yung*, a Korean-American church mobilizer. "Remember, the North was once called the 'Jerusalem of the East.' A very powerful spiritual revival happened there a century ago. In the last half-century we have suffered this crisis of national separation.
"This is another 'awakening moment' for us -- especially Korean churches, not only in South Korea but around the world. We must desperately pray for the North Korean people. We have a good life physically and spiritually and we have freedom, but somehow we have lost God's heart toward the North Korean people, who have suffered so much and are still suffering. This is another call, especially for Korean churches, to see them through God's eyes."
South Korea has been thrown into a political crisis since the artillery barrage. The government has faced criticism for its response -- and heavy pressure to retaliate more forcefully. The defense minister resigned in the wake of the attack. The nation's intelligence chief, according to news reports, predicted Dec. 1 that another North Korean attack was highly likely.... Read More