Ways To Witness To a Buddhist

C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,034

Brethren,

Buddhism -- non-Judaeo-Christian religion –"teaches that salvation and liberation involve a process of mind-body transformation that is effected through practicing restraint with respect to actions of body, speech, and mind. They lived extremely austere lifestyles refraining from sensual pleasures and the accumulation of material wealth. This is to be understood not as an eschewal of the enjoyment of life, but a recognition that spiritual and religious goals are impeded by such indulgence" ("Asceticism," Theological Dictionary, Timothy Ministries).


There are many Buddhists who have never heard about Jesus; there is a large number who have. Some have studied the Bible or have formed various opinions about Jesus in multiple ways. Some Buddhists view Jesus as a good human. Others see him as a Bodhisattva—an enlightened being who has the power to help people. In general, Buddhists are likely to be very inclusive in their beliefs. They may be happy to put up a statue or picture of Jesus with their Buddha image and the elephant god from India. They may even value Jesus as an enlightened Buddha.


These same people are likely to be surprised or even offended to hear a Christian say that Jesus is the only way for salvation. Buddhism may sound arrogant and ignorant, for they place great value on other teachers and other means of enlightenment.


In many Asian countries, Buddhism is reviving and growing. It is also significant to note that people in the West are turning to Buddhism in unprecedented numbers. Given that the Buddhist philosophy values balance, harmony, humility, and peace. How do Christians witness to the many Buddhists who either do not know anything about Jesus or have major misunderstandings about him?


1.   What it is that makes it difficult for Buddhists to come to Jesus?

2.   Do Christians and Buddhists share some similar concepts?

3.   What are some of the significant barriers that you think would keep Buddhists from believing in Jesus Christ?

4.   Should we even try to reach them? If so, how?

5.   Above all, what methods would you suggest Christians use to reach this people group?


Brainstorm with me. CM


Sources:

  • Bowker, J. (2006). The great faiths explored and explained. New York, NY: DK Publishing, Inc.
  • Wagner, Paul. n.d. Good News for Buddhists. Unpublished paper.

Comments

  • C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,034

    CD Users,

    You don't have Buddhists in your family, community or state? Are they worth the effort to try reach them for Jesus? Do you believe only trained missionaries or specialists are to lead them to Christ? Are Buddhists unreachable? Any thoughts? CM

  • Thankful for time talking about Jesus with three Yoga practitioners during Kairos Prison ministry. Thankful for focus on God's Love 😍(especially when my spiritual gifting is encouragement & teaching)

    Thankful for God's vision change in me to see the image of God in every one, which allows me to look in eyes and say with a Smile:

    • I can see the image of God in you
    • You're special
    • God Loves You
    • Loves what you did to get here ? no
    • Loves You
    • Hallelujah 😍

    Typical response is person Smiling 😍

    Keep Smiling 😀

  • WolfgangWolfgang Posts: 1,959

    You don't have Buddhists in your family, community or state?

    I do not have buddhists in my family; I do not know about situation in the community, I would think that there are some Buddhists living in this state in the FRG.

    Are they worth the effort to try reach them for Jesus?

    What do you mean with "reach them for Jesus"? What do you mean with "are they worth" the try?

    Do you only live an example of a Christian as a witness for CHrist when in the presence of certain people but not when in the presence of others?

    Do you believe only trained missionaries or specialists are to lead them to Christ?

    What is meant with "lead them to Christ"? I have known plenty of people who became interested in Christ because they noticed the particular manner in which no "trained missionary or specialist" was nearby.

    Are Buddhists unreachable? Any thoughts?

    Who would determine unreachable and what would that mean?

  • C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,034

    Who is the Buddhists' God?

    What is their view of salvation? CM

  • WolfgangWolfgang Posts: 1,959

    Who is the Buddhists' God?

    What is their view of salvation? CM


    I do not know .... I would think it is not the God portrayed in the Biblical Scriptures, and the same would be the case regarding their view of salvation.

    Now, I would be interested in learning your answers to the questions I asked in reply to your earlier post, in order to pursue this topic further.

  • C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,034

    I speak of making intentional steps to carry out the Great Commission of Jesus in Matt 28:18-20. As disciples of Christ, we're to "go", "preach", "teach" and "baptize" for Christ all that he commanded.

    How do we get them to take an interest and develop faith and trust in Jesus, the Christ? Are the Buddhists worth the time to study, research, incarnate, observe and befriending this people group? How much do you know about them will determine your challenge to reach them. This is what I have in mind. I am sure you knew this. In short, contextualizing the "Gospel" across culture. Any thoughts, gentlemen? CM

  • MitchellMitchell Posts: 471

    Greetings CM

    Here in Japan a sizeable percentage the population claims to be Buddhist.

    Almost all of the homes I visited in Japan have a butsudan (A Buddhist Altar). And, many Business, and stores have a Kamidana (a shelf Shrine). usually Shinto.

  • MitchellMitchell Posts: 471


    (a) Actually, yes there are a number of individuals in the community I live in that claim to be a Buddhist.

    (b) Sure, I think Christians can share the gospel with their Buddhist relatives, associates, and friends.

    (c1) If, a Christian is from the same cultural background as the Buddhist he/she is trying to share the Gospel with I do not believe that he/she need any special training. However the Christian in question may need to read and study about Buddhism in order discuss it with his/her friend.

    (c2) If on the other hand the Christian does not share the same cultural-linguistical-social background as the the Buddhist he/she is trying to reach I believe that the Christian in question may have trouble avoiding miscommunication if he/she has not done any study before hand and is not willing to continue learning.

    (d) Yes, I believe Buddhist are reachable if one(a Christian) is willing to invest the time (years), patience, effort, and study.

    (e)Now, if a Christian wants to go beyond sharing to making/traning disiciple then I believe he or she needs to have experiance and to have done some serious studying in order to spend a few years disciplining another.

  • C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,034
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