Today was a day of further broadening our perspective of the Mongolian mindset. After a delightful breakfast with a key missionary family, and some stimulating conversation of the state of the Christian church both in Mongolia and America, we then set out to see a Russian monument of the peaceful relationship with Mongolia.
The communists relinquished control of the country in 1990. This monument is alongside a huge statue of Buddha and a hillside picture of the national hero Genghis Khan. Piles of rocks with religious paraphernalia dotted the countryside. These are places where people have left shrines to appeal to the gods to help them or to appease the spirits. We then went to town, parked and walked aways as there were one shop after another of Buddhist religious stuff, until you arrived at the Buddhist temple. There was a HUGE statue again of Buddha inside.
The struggle here is over a bible translation that was not professionally done. Among the problems with this translation is that they use the same word for God as for Buddha. As it was explained to us, the meaning of Buddha brings a mental picture of a man for the Mongolian. Whereas when we speak of God we don’t have a mental picture but rather a concept of the attributes of God. Sadly the Christian community is divided over the issue and it looks like a losing battle. More discussion on this issue is coming. We would appreciate your prayers for all the Christians involved in this issue and for us to be used of God however He so desires. This is such a dark place and the gospel is needed here badly. It is easy to see how Satan could take advantage of the opportunity to stir discord. It gives great hope and encouragement to know we can approach the throne of grace and appeal for His leading and understanding in matters like these.