Series Code: ASAP
Program Code: ASAP000005
00:22 One of the wonderful privileges enjoyed by people
00:26 living in most nations of our world today
00:28 is the freedom that they have to assemble
00:31 without fear of disruption or discipline by police,
00:34 army or civil authorities.
00:38 This along with guaranteed rights of religious freedom
00:41 allows people to gather together in churches
00:43 that have been dedicated to the worship of God.
00:47 Here they can freely express their devotion
00:50 to their Creator in the form of praise,
00:53 prayer and the study of His word.
00:59 However, in many parts of our world
01:02 Christians are not as fortunate.
01:05 In the country of Vietnam,
01:07 still emerging from dark decades of communism
01:10 that controlled the lives of the people,
01:13 freedom of assembly,
01:15 worship and religion is severely restricted.
01:19 Although the constitution of Vietnam
01:21 gives lip service to the freedom of religion
01:24 and official churches are allowed
01:26 to operate in the country this is permitted
01:28 only under the strictest control and regulation.
01:32 Churches that have registered with the government
01:35 find their congregations infiltrated
01:37 at all levels with communist agents
01:40 that monitor and influence the activities of the church.
01:45 Public evangelism is forbidden
01:47 and as a result churches die.
01:51 The pews in most registered churches
01:53 in Vietnam today, lie empty.
01:56 Without the ability to evangelize
01:59 no growth can occur.
02:04 But God had a plan to reach the people of Vietnam
02:07 that bypass the control
02:09 and restrictions of a communist government.
02:11 He impressed church leaders and ASAP
02:15 to work with Isaiah Duong
02:17 an Adventist pastor in California
02:20 that had fled the country of Vietnam
02:22 as a young man at the end of the war.
02:26 They asked him to produce a radio program
02:28 that would be beamed into the country
02:29 over short wave by Adventist World Radio.
02:33 The broadcast called Peace and Happiness
02:36 radio program has now been on the air for over 12 years
02:40 and the results have been amazing.
02:44 The listening audience is estimated
02:46 to be in the millions and many thousands of people
02:49 through out the nation
02:51 now consider themselves to be Adventist Christians.
02:55 To avoid control and regulation
02:58 by the government or local authorities
03:00 Adventist members meet in small groups
03:03 at different locations in what is called
03:05 a underground house church movement.
03:13 Each Sabbath, thousands of groups
03:16 of Adventist believers gather together
03:18 secretly to worship God.
03:21 Sometimes they are able to keep
03:22 one step ahead of the local authorities
03:25 and can enjoy uninterrupted fellowship.
03:28 Other times, their worship service is overrun
03:31 by angry police and they are taken off to prison
03:35 where they are interrogated,
03:37 fined and even sometimes beaten and tortured for their faith.
03:42 Can you imagine living in a country
03:44 that does not grant you the freedom to worship?
03:47 How would it affect your faith in God
03:49 and your commitment to live the Christian life,
03:52 if you knew that going to church
03:53 might mean going to jail, being fined or even beaten.
03:57 Would you still get up every Sabbath morning and go?
04:00 As you meet some of the individuals
04:02 in this video, put yourself in their shoes,
04:05 imagine how you would feel and what you would do
04:08 if you're asked by God to take a stand for your faith.
04:12 I would like you to meet a young woman
04:14 who made the bold decision
04:16 to stand firm for God at all costs.
04:19 Hau An Bao has dedicated her life to God
04:22 and works as a youth evangelist,
04:24 sponsored by ASAP.
04:26 The Lord has been good to her,
04:28 surrounding her with new friends
04:30 that share her same passion
04:31 and convictions to replace those
04:34 she lost in her commitment to stand for Christ.
04:37 She recently experienced a testing of her faith
04:40 when she went out witnessing with some of her friends.
04:43 Before we hear her story though,
04:45 I want to explain that in an effort
04:47 to ensure the safety of our missionaries in Vietnam,
04:50 we have digitally obscured their images.
04:53 I hope you will be able to get the sense of joy
04:56 and genuine dedication these people have in Jesus
04:59 as they share the challenges that they have faced.
05:04 One of the ways that we share faith
05:06 and the message of the Sabbath
05:08 and the soon coming of Jesus
05:10 is to handout literature and DVD's
05:12 that have on them the wonderful sermons
05:14 of pastor Isaiah Duong.
05:17 One night we decided to be really bold
05:19 and stand on the steps
05:20 of one of the registered Christian churches
05:22 and pass out our DVD's to the people as they came out
05:25 from a Christmas evening service.
05:28 We were all having a lot of fun
05:30 wishing people a happy Christmas
05:32 when suddenly from out
05:33 of nowhere the police showed up.
05:37 It was clear that they were not there to hassle the people
05:40 from the registered church, they were there for us.
05:44 Immediately we stopped what we were doing
05:45 and ran into the night.
05:47 But four of us including myself were caught handcuffed
05:51 and taken into the police station.
05:54 They put us into separate rooms so that they could question us
05:57 and then see if our stories matched.
05:59 I decided that the best thing
06:01 that I could do in that moment was to pray.
06:04 God has promised to deliver us out of times of trouble
06:07 and I began to pray and ask Him to deliver my friends and I
06:11 out of the hands of these policemen.
06:13 I had no idea how He would do that.
06:16 As I was praying one of the policemen
06:18 who saw what I was doing
06:20 came and struck me on the head several times
06:22 and yelled, "stop doing that, stop doing that."
06:26 But all I could think to do was keep praying
06:28 and that is what I did.
06:30 My friends who did not get caught by the police
06:33 found each other on the streets and began praying for us.
06:37 They sent us text messages on their cell phones
06:39 to encourage us and tell us that they were praying.
06:43 The police kept us in the station
06:45 all night long keeping us separated,
06:47 interrogating us, not letting us drink water.
06:51 They accused us of distributing pornography
06:54 and tried to get us to sign statements
06:55 that we had done so, but we refused.
07:00 The next morning strengthened by prayer
07:03 and the Holy Spirit the other members of our team
07:05 decided to come down to the police station
07:08 to see if they could see us and talk to us.
07:10 But the police would not let them into the building.
07:13 They were still trying to get us
07:15 to sign these false documents.
07:17 Then something incredible happened.
07:20 The chief of police arrived at the station
07:23 and as he was about to enter the building
07:24 our friends were impressed to go up
07:26 and plead our case with him.
07:29 After they explained what had happened
07:31 and that we were being falsely charged
07:33 and that his officers were trying to get us
07:35 to sign false statements.
07:37 The chief of police went in and spoke with his men.
07:41 A few minutes later not only were we released
07:44 but the policemen gave us back the DVD's
07:46 that they had confiscated.
07:49 We couldn't believe what had happened.
07:51 Surely, God had answered our prayers
07:53 and sent deliverance
07:54 in the form of the Chief of Police.
07:57 As we came out of the building
07:59 we rejoiced with our friends
08:00 and stood in a circle right there
08:02 in front of the police station
08:04 to thank God for rescuing us from jail
08:06 just as He had the apostles long ago.
08:10 What powerful witnesses these young people are?
08:13 I wonder how eager I would be to share Christ
08:16 if I had to worry about the possibility of prosecution.
08:19 And yet that threat of prison only seems to fan the flames
08:23 of these dedicated laborers in Vietnam.
08:26 Did the images you just saw
08:27 in this video stories surprise you?
08:29 In light of how the media
08:30 now requests that Vietnam has religious freedom
08:33 you may be him yourself what is really going on there?
08:37 Pastor Isaiah Duong leader of the Seventh-day Adventist
08:40 house church movement in Vietnam
08:42 will give you an insider's look into a true state
08:45 of Christianity in Vietnam today.
08:48 You know that's the reason
08:49 we the government in Vietnam open up
08:51 and one took portrait to the word
08:54 that Vietnam have religious freedom.
08:57 The rest one Vietnam believes religious freedom
09:01 for Christian group in Vietnam
09:02 in order to receive financial aid to the country.
09:06 So Vietnam say okay,
09:08 we will give freedom but on out term.
09:11 Everything you do you have to ask
09:14 for permission from the government.
09:16 So we have to be very careful
09:18 when we hear religious freedom in Vietnam.
09:22 I have nothing against the government in Vietnam
09:26 because of my faith I want to share the Lord,
09:28 I don't want to mess that out with politics
09:31 but on the other hand I don't want the church
09:37 be under the government control.
09:39 The church must serve the Lord Jesus Christ
09:44 and only one Lord, one master
09:48 the church cannot serve any other organization
09:51 in that what I believe.
09:53 That's why I don't believe that
09:55 the church should be under government control.
09:59 Once a year Pastor Isaiah and ASAP
10:02 organize a secret training session
10:05 for the leaders of the house church movement.
10:07 It was that one of these sessions
10:09 that I had the privilege of meeting
10:11 Dinh Le Minh and with the help
10:12 of a translator his story unfolded.
10:15 Dinh Le Minh is a poet and hymn writer
10:18 that has dedicated his life to God
10:21 and now works for the Adventist house church movement
10:23 as a lay pastor sponsored by ASAP.
10:27 I believe that we can gain inspiration
10:29 from the way that he has taken a stand for God
10:32 against the pressure of his family, friends and country.
10:39 I was born into a Buddhist family
10:41 but as I grew into an adult
10:43 I found little satisfaction in the rituals of Buddhism
10:46 and began a search for something more.
10:49 I began to study the bible with some friends in my village
10:53 and in 1993 I was baptized
10:55 and joined the Baptist church group
10:57 that met close to my house.
10:59 The first thing that I did after I was baptized
11:02 was to destroy the Buddha idol that was on my property.
11:07 My wife, my parents and my siblings
11:09 became very angry with me
11:11 because of my decision to become a Christian.
11:18 They would shout at me
11:19 and sometimes even hit me in anger.
11:22 At first I was discouraged
11:24 but then I remembered the passage of scripture
11:26 that says, "When my father and mother forsake me,
11:30 then the Lord will take care of me."
11:33 This brought me the greatest comfort and strength
11:36 but it was still difficult
11:37 to lose the friendship with my wife.
11:39 She stopped preparing meals for me
11:42 and when I would come home from my Bible studies
11:44 I would often find the door locked.
11:46 I would have to sleep on the roof
11:48 with only a straw mat for a blanket.
11:52 On those sad lonely nights
11:53 I would repeat the scripture text
11:55 that I had learned and it would always make me feel better.
11:58 I specially like the one in 1 Corinthians that said,
12:02 "No Temptation has overtaken you
12:05 except as is common to man, but God is faithful,
12:10 who will not allow you to be tempted
12:12 beyond that what you are able,
12:14 but with the temptation will also
12:16 make the way of escape,
12:17 that you may be able to bear it."
12:20 Finally I was able to obtain a Bible of my own
12:23 and I spent a lot of time reading it.
12:26 My wife began to wonder what I saw in this book
12:29 that could hold my passionate interest for hours at a time.
12:33 Without my knowledge
12:35 she began to read the Bible for herself
12:36 whenever I would leave the house.
12:39 God worked on her heart
12:41 and little by little she began to believe in God
12:43 and accept Jesus as her Savior.
12:47 After two years of study
12:48 she also became a Baptist Christian.
12:54 Everything was well in our home for five years
12:57 until one day a lay Bible worker from ASAP
13:01 visited our home and told us
13:02 about the Peace and Happiness radio program.
13:05 As my wife and began to listen to the broadcast
13:09 I had the strong impression that God was leading me
13:11 into a deeper understanding of His word.
13:14 And it was with joy that I accepted
13:16 an invitation to attend an ASAP lay Bible training program
13:21 where I had the opportunity
13:22 to learn many new things about God
13:24 and the teachings of His word.
13:27 While I was away at the seminar
13:29 pastors from the Baptist church visited my wife
13:33 and convinced her and my sons that Adventist were a sect
13:37 and that she should have nothing to do with them.
13:40 One day when a group of ASAP
13:42 lay pastors came to visit me in my home
13:44 my wife became very angry
13:47 pointing her finger at them said,
13:48 "you are teaching false believes."
13:51 Even though my wife and sons
13:53 have not followed me into the Adventist message
13:56 I'm still happy that the Lord has called me
13:58 into His service in this great movement
14:01 that is sweeping the country.
14:03 The day that I was baptized again
14:05 into the Adventist church
14:07 was the happiest day of my life.
14:09 My family does not yet understand
14:11 this new joy that I have
14:14 and they have lost their respect for me.
14:16 My sons shout at me and sometimes even hit me.
14:20 But I continue to pray for them everyday
14:22 and I believe that one day
14:24 they will join me in my new faith.
14:27 With the training that I have received
14:29 from ASAP and the Adventist Mission
14:32 I'm now a lay pastor for the Adventist Movement
14:34 in my corner of Vietnam.
14:37 We face many challenges everyday
14:39 but it is a joy for me to serve God.
14:43 Harassment and prosecution from local authorities
14:46 are among the many challenges faced by Dinh Le Minh.
14:50 He and his Bible workers have been
14:52 thrown in jail many times.
14:54 In during days of interrogation,
14:57 hunger and torture for their faith
15:00 through it all he continues to stand firm for God.
15:04 In a recent hymn that he wrote he penned the words
15:07 "My blood is more precious in God.
15:10 Whenever Jesus needs it I'm willing to give it."
15:15 When I think about the persecution
15:17 this man faces from his family
15:19 I remember what Jesus used to say to His disciples
15:22 and others who suffered estrangement
15:25 from their loved ones as a result of following Him.
15:28 He encourage to them with these words
15:31 found in Matthew 19.
15:34 "And everyone who has left houses
15:36 or brothers or sisters or father or mother
15:40 or children or fields for my sake
15:42 will receive a hundred times as much
15:45 and will inherit eternal life."
16:02 Nguyen Thi Minh is no ordinary ASAP lay pastor.
16:06 With fierce determination
16:08 she works in the rapidly expanding
16:10 underground house church movement in Vietnam.
16:14 Constantly she sees God's hand at work.
16:18 Recently while Nguyen Thi Minh was visiting members
16:22 in her district to nurture their faith
16:24 she encountered police.
16:27 What shall God helped her
16:29 turn a very difficult situation into a soul winning venture.
16:36 When the police brought me to the prison
16:38 they interrogated me briefly
16:39 and when my answers did not satisfy them
16:42 they threw me into solitary confinement.
16:46 I did not have any idea
16:47 how long they would keep me there
16:50 but God gave me strength and I was not afraid.
16:54 I decided to pass my time in prayer.
16:57 Once a day they would bring me some food
16:59 and pass it through the door
17:01 then after four days they pulled me out
17:04 of my small dark room and let me to in larger cell
17:08 that had 21 other women.
17:11 When the other inmates saw me
17:12 I think they most of thought that I was crazy
17:14 because I had a big smile on my face.
17:18 I was just happy to be somewhere
17:20 where I could once again have the opportunity
17:23 to talk to people about Jesus.
17:27 They were only enough blankets
17:29 for about half of the women that were in that cell.
17:31 And so it was necessary to share a blanket
17:34 with another inmate.
17:37 Being the new person in the cell
17:39 I was paired up with the meanest woman
17:41 the one that no one wanted any thing to do with.
17:45 When I went over to her that first evening
17:48 she glared at me in an angry way.
17:51 She gruffly said, "This blanket is only for me."
17:55 And then turned her back towards me.
17:59 Not knowing what else to do
18:00 I started praying for this lady.
18:03 I asked that God would change her heart
18:05 that He would speak through me
18:07 to help her see His love.
18:09 Right there before my eyes God performed a miracle.
18:13 The woman turned around and looked at me.
18:16 I smiled at her and began talking softly to her,
18:20 sharing the love of God with her.
18:23 I told her that it did not matter
18:24 what she had done in the past
18:26 that God still loved her and wanted to be her friend.
18:30 How could God love me, she asked,
18:32 when I stole so much money from the bank?
18:36 I shared with her the story of Jesus
18:39 and how God loved us so much
18:41 that He gave His only son to die for our mistakes.
18:45 Her eyes cold heart melted
18:48 and she asked me to help her pray the prayer of repentance.
18:52 And right there in that cold cell
18:54 she accepted Jesus into her heart.
18:57 She was a changed woman.
19:00 That night not only did I thank God for a warm blanket
19:05 but I also thanked Him for a new friend,
19:08 a new sister in Christ.
19:11 The next morning when the other ladies
19:13 in the cell saw that change in the woman
19:16 they began to ask me what had happened?
19:19 What had I done to change the attitude
19:22 of this woman so dramatically in one day?
19:26 I was happy to share with them
19:28 that it was nothing that I had done
19:31 but that it was the Creator God in heaven
19:34 that had changed her.
19:35 Nothing is too hard for Him.
19:38 He created us once,
19:40 He also has the power to create in us a new heart.
19:45 That day three other ladies accepted God into their hearts
19:49 and accepted Jesus as their Savior.
19:53 After spending about ten days in Jail the police called me
19:57 into the interrogation room again
19:59 and asked me many questions about the work that I do.
20:03 Knowing that my new friends were in the cell praying for me
20:06 I felt the power of God come over me
20:09 and I spoke to the men with assurance and confidence.
20:13 God gave me the words that
20:15 I needed to answer their questions
20:17 and even gave me the courage to witness
20:19 to the police officers about the Bible
20:22 and God's love for them.
20:24 I guess I may never know
20:26 what my word had any effect on them.
20:29 But I continue to keep them in my prayers.
20:32 In the end they made me
20:34 sign a piece of paper and let me go.
20:38 I thank God for the opportunities
20:41 that He gave to me by sending me to jail.
20:46 Praising God for jail time
20:48 is to be expected from our ASAP pastors.
20:53 The Apostle Paul says in Philippians 4:4
20:57 "Rejoice in the Lord always."
21:01 As I have traveled to churches sharing the amazing things
21:05 that the Lord is doing in Vietnam today
21:08 I often have people asking me if there is something
21:11 that they can do to help the work of God in Vietnam.
21:16 I am happy to tell them about there are many options.
21:20 For $70 per months you can support
21:23 one ASAP lay pastor like Nguyen Thi Minh,
21:28 for only $5 you can supply a Bible
21:31 to one of your brothers and sisters,
21:34 $65 for purchase a DVD player
21:37 and set up sermons on DVD.
21:40 This resource will be used to nurture the faith
21:43 of entire house church congregation.
21:46 It's been such a privilege for my wife
21:48 and I to be members of the board of ASAP
21:52 and also to have opportunities to donate
21:56 in accordance with how God has blessed us.
21:59 As you hear the stories that are being told about
22:02 what's happening in Vietnam today
22:04 it seems like the latter rain is being poured out
22:08 at least in its initial stages on that country.
22:12 And there is just a hunger and thirst for God's word.
22:16 And I think anyway that we can distribute God's word
22:20 whether it's through the scriptures themselves
22:23 or DVDs or over the radio waves
22:27 there are million of people
22:29 wanting to listen and they are listening.
22:33 Pastor Isaiah produces DVDs
22:35 that are being distributed all over the country.
22:39 It's very inexpensive but huge amounts of material
22:43 can be placed on one DVD.
22:47 I just can't think of a more important project
22:51 than to actually getting God's word
22:53 into the hands of the people.
22:56 One of the lay pastors that came for training
22:59 when I had the opportunity of being there
23:03 had helped to make arrangements for a book
23:06 that Pastor Isaiah had written
23:08 on "The Truth About the Sabbath"
23:10 to be printed in Vietnam.
23:12 There was a printing press
23:14 that was kind of a alternatives sort of location
23:18 and they did work for Buddhist actually
23:21 and for Christians sometimes
23:23 and he had made arrangements for 10,000 copies of this book,
23:27 "The Truth About the Sabbath" to be printed.
23:30 And right during the time
23:31 when the book was being printed the authorities
23:34 broke into this press and ransack the place,
23:38 burn the many of the books, threw the people out
23:42 and it seem does though it was just a total loss
23:46 and then this faithful lay pastors
23:49 thought well I'm gonna go back and see.
23:52 So couple weeks later he went back to the location
23:55 and kind of sifted through the rubble
23:57 and under all the dust and dirt
24:00 he found a canvas lifted it up
24:03 and here were all 10,000 copies
24:06 of "The Truth About the Sabbath"
24:08 unharmed and unhurt.
24:10 All the Buddhist material and all the other books
24:13 that have been printed have been destroyed
24:15 but God's hand had been
24:17 over those 10,000 books, precious books.
24:23 God loves those books enough to protect them
24:26 than He certainly gonna give them
24:28 into the hands of people who need to know the truth
24:31 and by sending a donation to ASAP
24:35 you can ensure that this kind of ministry would go on
24:40 that there will never be a lack of resources
24:43 to provide truth filled literature
24:46 to people in Southeast Asia.
24:48 I want to take this opportunity to thank you
24:51 for your prayers and financial support
24:55 as you partner with ASAP
24:57 and this important ministry
24:59 you are joining arm and arm with the lay pastors
25:02 who are finishing God's work in Vietnam.
25:06 May God bless you as together
25:08 we look forward to the soon coming of Jesus Christ.
25:22 Jesus, I stand for you
25:29 No matter what you lead me through
25:35 They will chase me out
25:39 And close me down
25:41 But Jesus I'll stand for You
25:48 Jesus, I've stood my ground
25:54 When unbelief was all around
26:00 I have felt the sting
26:03 Rejecting brings
26:06 But Jesus I'll stand for You
26:12 I'll always stand, I'll always stand
26:18 I'll always stand for You
26:24 I'll always stand, I'll always stand
26:30 I'll always stand for You
26:35 A time will come, when everyone
26:42 Will turn their eyes on the risen Son
26:48 But until that day, this world will turn away
26:54 And so I'll take Your hand
26:57 I'll always stand for You
27:12 Guilty of disgrace
27:16 But You took my place
27:21 So Jesus
27:24 I'll always stand for You
27:30 A time will come
27:33 When everyone
27:36 Will turn their eyes on the risen Son
27:43 But until that day, this world will turn away
27:49 And so I'll take You hand
27:52 I'll always stand
27:58 For You