By Mark Ellis –
Reports that North Korea may be opening its doors to Christianity are erroneous, according to a ministry leader that has focused on the country and its oppressive regime for many years.
“Kim Jong-un has never said anything on this issue,” says Thomas Kang, a director of Cornerstone Ministries.
When the North Korean leader met with South Korean president Moon Jae-in at the end of April, he announced that their conflict is over. “I came here to put an end to the history of confrontation,” Kim Jung-un said.
“There will be no more war on the Korean peninsula, and a new age of peace has begun,” the two leaders said in a joint statement.
The soaring rhetoric and dazzling photos of the two leaders elicited huge expectations for lasting peace. “Just like that, swords were converted into plowshares,” noted Lee Grady in Charisma Magazine. “The two leaders, all smiles for the cameras, agreed they will denuclearize the Korean peninsula within a year. They also agreed to set up reunions with families that have been divided since the Korean War started in 1950. It feels like we should declare a global holiday and dance in the streets.”
But will North Korea agree to denuclearize? And will any peace deal mean religious freedom for Christians?
Thomas Kang believes some are presuming too much. “Kim Jong-un intended to create division in South Korea,” Kang says. “There will be a short peace, but not a true peace. Their tactics have never changed. They always lie and never tell the truth.”
He says the North Korean military will balk at a peace deal and may even attempt to eliminate Kim Jong-un. “I hope they don’t do that before he meets President Trump,” Kang says. China also appears to be exerting its influence to slow the peace initiative.
“Can a crow change into a dove over night? Kim Jong-un killed his uncle and his brother. He’s killed so many people. Does he really care about people? How could he change? Let’s not be fooled by this proposal.”
Kang believes Kim Jong-un’s peace initiative is driven by his desperate desire to evade U.S. sanctions. “He is trying to get out of the sanctions, but long term he wants South Korea. They want to unify on their terms. They don’t want freedom.”
But Kang believes God will bring freedom to North Korea. “Our God is greater than anyone else. God can do anything. It will change not because of anything Kim Jun-un will do.
“I believe God will answer the prayer of millions who have been praying for North Korea.”
While some have been praying for unification, Kang says it is also important to pray for freedom, so God’s kingdom will flourish.
Kang believes there may be as many as 300,000 Christians in the underground church in North Korea. “From the Bibles we have been able to smuggle in and the activities I hear about, I am starting to believe there are 300,000,” he says.
To learn more about the work of Cornerstone Ministries in North Korea, go here