A History of Biblical Ministries Worldwide in Japan


    Biblical Ministries Worldwide (BMW) began working in Japan when John and Becky Knox and their sons arrived in November 1987.  Even though the country was new to the mission board, Becky’s parents had been missionaries in Japan for many years, and Becky had lived there until graduating from high school.

     During their first term of language study, the Knox family worked with the church that Becky’s parents had established.  This church now has a Japanese pastor and continues to work closely with the ministry of BMW in Japan.

     In 1993 a new church-planting ministry was started in the town of Moroyama, about 25 miles northwest of Tokyo.  Daniel and Karen DeVerna and their children arrived in Moroyama in the fall of 2012 to help with the church plant.  Since this church plant began, many contacts have been made with people in the community and some have received Jesus Christ as Savior and been baptized.  There have been disappointments too when people have chosen to not follow the Lord and left the fellowship.  A great need in this church plant is for Japanese leadership and increased attendance to bring this ministry to a self-supporting status.

Present Ministry in Japan

     The church plant in Moroyama rents the front of an apartment building for its meetings.  Besides regular church services, the facility is used for English classes and Bible studies.  Teaching English is used as a means of contact with people and giving out the gospel through a Bible lesson in each class.

     Fifteen minutes from the town is a camp property that Becky Knox’s parents previously owned in connection with their church ministry.  The camp continues to be used each year and through the camp ministry, believers in Christ have been encouraged and a gospel witness has been presented to many who are new to the gospel.

New Missionaries Needed

     Missionary work in Japan does not seem very fruitful as people are slow to follow Christ and live for the Lord. Many of those who have come to church services or English classes have had very little contact with Christians and have never read the Bible.  The people of Japan are caught up with their busy schedules and do not have time to think about their spiritual needs.  At the same time, some are realizing that social problems are rapidly getting worse and that they do not have peace in their hearts. Ministering to the Japanese takes much persistence and patience, yet they are people whom God loves.  He desires that they receive His gift of salvation and follow Him.

     There are many opportunities for reaching the Japanese.  Teaching English as a second language has been a means often used in Japan to make contacts with people and teach the Bible.  Many young people live and go to school in and around Moroyama and someone who desires to work with teens and college students could emphasize ministry in that area.  Church-planting is the focus of BMW, and those with a heart for that kind of ministry could reach into surrounding towns to make contacts with people with the goal of starting new churches in those areas.  Others could also help with the camp ministry as people will often come to camp before they attend church meetings.

     As the Lord leads, more missionaries could be added to the Moroyama, Japan team.  For information on applying as a career missionary, please contact BMW's International Office.

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