Incredible things are happening in certain parts of the Middle East. There is a true awakening taking place amongst Muslims, a sovereign move of God like we’ve never seen in our lifetime. In one strategic area you would know well, Muslims are coming to Jesus in mass numbers.
Here are some highlights:
In one country, so many Imam’s (Muslim religious leaders) have come to faith in Jesus that we stopped counting at 100. That’s right, over 100 Muslim Imams are now following Christ. Literally thousands of Muslims have come to faith in Christ. Somewhere between 30-40 thousand, but it’s growing so quickly that numbers from even a week or two ago are outdated.
I’m not talking about people who have just raised their hands in a group meeting or prayed a prayer of salvation. The threshold in this part of the world is much higher than that. To become a part of one of the cell group churches, you have to do five things:
- Make a commitment to Christ
- Be baptized in water
- Be filled with the Holy Spirit
- Share the Gospel with someone else
- Do something for the poor.
In this modern move of God, we’ve seen nearly 40,000 people who were born Muslims embrace those steps and become a part of a cell group church.
The painful side of a move of God like this in a difficult place is that there is always resistance. We have now accounted for thirteen Muslim background believers who have been martyred for their new faith in Christ. They’ve been shot, burned, poisoned, and beaten. One new believer was being baptized when a small mob walked in on the ceremony and drowned him in the baptismal tank. This move of God has come at great cost to many.
Jesus is worth it
In one town that I can’t identify publicly, the team was able to lead someone to Christ. Now that may not sound like that big of a deal, but in this city the penalty for being a Christian is immediate death. When this man became a Christian, he began weeping uncontrollably. Our workers are used to people expressing emotion when they finally give their lives to Jesus, but this was unusual. Was it fear? Relief? What was this emotion?
Through his tears he said, “I now believe in Jesus, and it’s like I am no longer blind. I now see clearly that my grandparents died without Jesus, that my parents died without Jesus. They were all lost.”
And then he said the words that should light a fire under every Christian:
This new believer stared into the eyes of our workers and asked, “What took you so long?”