by Managing Editor, OMF UK
Christians in East Asia are seeing a growing number of Muslims wanting to read about Jesus in the New Testament, and longing to know him for themselves.
Hamid was an unhappy man.
His wife, along with 24 other villagers, had committed their lives to Isa al-Masih (Jesus the Messiah). He tried to put pressure on her to return to her old faith, but it didn’t work. She even had the audacity to try to convince him of what she now believed. But Hamid was certain he wanted nothing to do with this foreign religion.
And then Hamid was involved in an accident. He was taken to the village doctor who took one look at Hamid’s badly damaged leg and immediately said there was nothing he could do.
Hamid returned home with little hope of recovery. To his great surprise, however, the new followers of Jesus, the very people Hamid had rejected, visited him. They even laid hands on him and prayed for him in the name of Jesus the Messiah.
A week later, Hamid was walking around with a completely healed leg. He is now a follower of Christ. Not only that, but he is also an answer to the group’s prayers: he is the first literate believer in the village.
Esther was the first of her people group to believe in Jesus.
Some years ago, Esther had had a vision of Jesus. Like most Muslims, she was afraid and she thought she would die because of the vision. She didn’t, but she became very ill, in a place that was far from home.
Esther was very lonely and wondered if anyone would ever come and visit her in the hospital. Then one day some Christians arrived. They began to minister to Esther in little ways, and it was these little acts of kindness that took away her fear of Isa (Jesus) and his people. It also opened the door that eventually led Esther to the truth.
Some time later, she heard of a Bible study being held by some Western Christians for their housekeepers. It was there that Esther took the final step of trusting Isa with her life, even in the knowledge that she was likely to be persecuted for her faith.
Ahmed was startled to see a face looking up at him as he reached for water to prepare for the ritual washing before prayers. ‘Why do you continue to persecute me?’ came the astonishing question. Ahmed had just come from witnessing his sixteenth church burning in another province.
Shaken to the core, Ahmed went to the Koran to see what it had to say. He also wrote the headquarters of Koranic studies to ask about Isa al-Masih – Jesus the Messiah.
When Ahmed received their reply it warned him against associating with Christians – but Ahmed didn’t know any!
The more he studied the Koran, the more he became convinced that Isa was indeed the ‘Word’ of God, as the Koran described him.
It was some time before Ahmed finally managed to meet up with some other believers from Muslim backgrounds. He had already met the living Word of God. They introduced him to the written Word of God and encouraged and discipled him in his faith.
Abudullah was astonished to see how much his friend Yusuf had reformed since coming out of prison.
“Yusuf, what has caused this change in you?” Abdullah asked him.
“Abdullah,” Yusuf replied, “let me ask YOU a question. Where is Isa al-Masih at present?”
Muslims believe that Jesus was a prophet of God, and that he is presently alive with God in heaven, having been rescued from earth before the crucifixion. They believe that he will come back to earth again to judge mankind, when he will marry, have children and finally die.
Abdullah answered, “Isa is in heaven with God!”
Yusuf smiled, and then he softly asked, “So, Abdullah! Since Isa is alive today, do you not think that it would be worth following him?”
This question challenged Abdullah, and the next day he went with Yusuf to visit some Christian workers. They explained many things about Jesus to this earnest Muslim man.
“Then we prayed together and I committed my life to Isa al-Masih,” says Abdullah simply.
Bill has coffee every morning at 6.30am. He dislikes early starts and he hates coffee. So why does Bill do it?
He goes to his village coffee house, drinks sweet black coffee and talks to the men there because it’s a great way to find out what’s happening locally, to learn more of the language and to tell people Bible stories.
The Muslims in Bill’s village love to hear stories of the prophets along with Jesus’ parables, especially when they see they have relevance to everyday life. They do not know Jesus but they are keen to learn about him.
A Muslim who now believes in Jesus and is now witnessing to other Muslims said she needed to hear the message of sin and grace over 100 times before it began to make any sense to her.
God is doing great things among the Muslims of East Asia, but many have yet to hear the gospel. Why not join in with what God’s doing?
It might take time. It might be costly. But it’s worth it.
Names have been changed to protect identities
Share this Post