2017 Nepal – David Ha

The Name Above All Names
(audio mp3)

Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. – Philippians 2:9-11

In his book Let the Nations Be Glad!, John Piper writes that “Missions is not the ultimate goal of the church. Worship is. Missions exists because worship doesn’t. Worship is ultimate.” This was the simple truth and mentality that I had going into my missions trip to Nepal. Our team was being sent for no other reason than to proclaim the name of Jesus. While this was powerful and ended up being vital for our trip, God went above and beyond this simple expectation of mine and showed my team just what the name of Jesus actually carries: healing, salvation, and love.

The healing power of Christ was so apparent on our trip, and it was released as the worship of idols was uprooted. While John Piper states that worshipping God is the ultimate goal of the church, I would argue that there can never be an absence of worship. All humans have been wired to worship. The important question is whether it is worship to God, or worship to idols. Worship exists everywhere. This is not so hard to see in a country like Nepal, especially in the town of Bhaktapur, which has a greater population of idols than of people. There were idols everywhere: in the temples, in the homes, on the streets, even on door handles. Our team witnessed the evidence of strongholds and demonic oppression from these idols in the form of mysterious physical ailments and mental illnesses. But this was the context in which God wanted to reveal His nature as Jehovah Rapha, The Lord that Heals (Exodus 15:26). As stated in our field report, we saw many people healed from physical and mental infirmities in the name of Jesus.

In addition to the healing power of Jesus, a personal highlight of this trip for me was witnessing the saving power of His name. One day our team split up into groups to take part in home evangelism. But because of one of the translators running late, we combined two of the groups to form a big group of 10. A recently born-again believer invited us into her home so 5 Nepali non-believers could receive prayer and to hear the Gospel. Each came with their own problems. Two women came with family problems. One young boy struggled with an immense fear and anxiety of being alone, and often had outbursts of anger. One man came with his adult son who had bursts of anger so intense that he would break things around him. So here we were, 5 non-believing Nepalis, our big group of 10, and the homeowner- 16 people in all, crammed into a small, very humble one-room home. And things would only get more awkward, at least for me. In a quick turn of events, I was called upon by our team leader, Sarah Suh, to share the Gospel with the Nepalese people. I was completely caught off guard. I lacked the time to build up the courage and prepare what to say for such an occasion. So I did what any unprepared person would do: I panicked. And while I looked calm on the outside, my brain was going a million miles per hour.

Uh oh. I wasn’t ready for this. What should I say? Should I use the Romans Road? No, that doesn’t seem appropriate for this situation. Lord help me! What do I do? What do I do? Quick, think of something! Maybe I should use my personal testimony? That doesn’t really work here either. Oh no, I need to think of something quick! What do I do? What do I do? What do I do?

After what seemed like an eternity in my mind (but was probably only 10 seconds in real life), God calmed me down and told me to stop thinking about theological approaches. He told me to instead look at these people and their problems. I saw that these people needed healing, whether in their in their mind or in their relationships. I saw how God cared for each of them in their problems. And so my sharing was simple: I shared about Jesus, the son of God who loved us so much that He came to save the lost and heal the sick, and that if we believed in our hearts and confessed with our mouths that Jesus is Lord, that God could save us and deliver us from our problems. I had to make it very clear that Jesus was the only God they could worship, and that in following Him they couldn’t return to their old ways and worship other idols. With full understanding of this, all five people said yes to Christ, and for the first time in my life, I led these people into receiving Christ as their Lord and Savior. Hallelujah! It was amazing. The name of Jesus has the power to save. Our God is a God that saves (Psalm 68:20).

Not only was I able to experience the healing and salvation released in the name of Jesus but I was also so struck by the love that is carried by those who serve Him in Nepal. I was so blown away by the hospitality, joy, and genuine love that Pastor Saul and Mona share. Their love for Jesus and doing His work was made evident from the moment they picked us up from the airport to the time they sent us off. Our team got to experience one week of what their ministry looked like: from holding services at various different churches near or far, to meeting people in their homes early in the morning or late at night, to raising their son, we saw that Pastor Saul and Mona were busy. But even in their busyness, their love for doing the work of God and for the people of Nepal was evident. And I could tell that God was pleased with the work they were doing in Nepal and that He loves them very much. I was challenged and motivated to become a minister that carries this love for God and His people. God is truly the God of love (1 John 4:8).

The theme song for our missions team became “What A Beautiful Name” and I led this song multiple times during our team devotionals. God was revealing to not only the Nepali people but to our missions team what the name of Jesus carries: healing, salvation, and love. But He was also showing us that Jesus is the name above all names, that He had no rival, He had no equal, that not sickness, disease or even death had power over Him. Amen.