Short highlights from Christians around the world
Moving to a new place can be difficult, especially if you don’t know anyone in your new community. Muslims from across the world have moved to America for work or school yet they are often ignored by those around them—even Christians. Fouad Masri, president of the Crescent Project, says our job as believers is not to convert anyone, but to shine the light of Jesus and rely on him to draw our Muslim friends to himself.
Masri is the author of a new book, Sharing Jesus with Muslims: A Step-By-Step Guide (affiliate link). Listen in as he talks about conversational apologetics, thought-provoking questions to ask a Muslim friend, and myths still circulating within the Muslim world about the Christian faith. You’ll also hear Fouad’s joy as he shares about his ministry and stories of Muslims coming to Christ.
With over 30 years of sharing the gospel with Muslims, Fouad reminds us we are not called to bring anything new, but to pray for sincere hearts ready to receive the gospel. He emphasizes that we should pray for the leading of the Holy Spirit to help answer Muslims who are seeking spiritual truth, and to ask questions that provoke self-examination.
Jesus is building his church among former Muslims—including inside hostile and restricted nations where Christian persecution is common and among Muslims living in the United States and other nations with more religious freedom. To learn more about how to witness and build bridges cross culturally with Muslims, sign up for the Sahara Challenge in Nashville, TN from May 1-3, or join online from May 23-25.
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How can I share Christ with Muslims when I don’t know more about Islam? What if I can’t answer all their questions? What can I do to overcome my fear of sharing the gospel?
Fouad Masri, founder and president of Crescent Project, answers these questions and more in his new book Sharing Jesus with Muslims: A Step-By-Step Guide (affiliate link). For more than 30 years, Masri has been training Christians how to share Jesus with Muslims. He says Muslims are more open today than ever to hearing the gospel, and many are actively searching for Christian books or information online.
Yet many Christians are still fearful to reach out to Muslims. Fouad says his goal is to move believers from fear and fascination to compassion, and it is that passion that led to this new book.
Fouad encourages us to pray for God to open the door for friendships and conversation with the Muslims we meet in our work, school or community. He says one of the first challenges is to learn to listen. Listen to what our Muslim friends are telling us and listen for God to open the door for a spiritual conversation. Listen as Fouad shares an example from his own life when he really didn’t want to have a deep conversation but realized the Lord had already been at work preparing his new friend to hear the gospel.
He will also discuss Christian persecution of Muslim-background believers in the context of western nations. Do MBB’s face pressure and persecution in the United States as they do in Middle Eastern nations like Egypt, Saudi Arabia or Yemen?
Pray the openness of Muslims right now will result in a great harvest of people coming to know Christ in a personal way. If you want to learn more about sharing your faith with Muslims, Crescent Project’s Sahara Challenge provides an in-depth training on how to serve unreached Muslims locally and globally. The event is offered in-person from May 1st-3rd in Nashville or online from May 23rd-25th.
Would you like to hear more about how God is working in the Muslim world? You’ll be encouraged as you listen to more stories of Muslims who came to faith, like Rachid from Morocco, Al Fadi in Saudi Arabia, and Benesh in Iran.
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Just before Covid shut down the Peoples Republic of China, Pastor Pan Yongguang and members of his congregation, known today as the Mayflower Church, made the difficult decision to leave their country. After 16 families from the congregation arrived in South Korea in 2019, relatives and other family members still in China faced increasing pressure from the communist government, especially when members of the church went public about the persecution they’d faced and their decision to leave China.
Listen as Pastor Pan shares about his life before he became and believer, how he came to faith in Christ, and how the Lord raised him up to be the pastor of the church he was baptized in. Before Pastor Pan considered personally following Christ, he knew people in China must pay a price for being a Christian. He says, “That’s a special part of Chinese Christians. They know they have to pay a price.”
The roots of the decision to leave China trace back to a day in 2018 when Pastor Pan had lunch with Pastor Wang Yi, who is now serving a nine-year sentence as a prisoner for Christ. Christian persecution was rising in China. Wang Yi knew he faced imprisonment for his faith; he challenged Pastor Pan to prepare himself to go to prison as well. Pan will share about the regular visits he received from police after Wang Yi’s arrest.
Pastor Pan and his church members had a decision to make. Should they leave China, or should they stay? Many had good jobs in China, but they worried about raising their children in Godly truth amidst communist pressure and indoctrination. After a year of discussions, knowing each Sunday could be their last one together, they felt unified in the decision to leave China.
Today, Pastor Pan and the Mayflower church are educating their children to follow Christ as they wait to receive refugee status from the United Nations and resettlement in a free nation. Pray for favor for them in the UN refugee application process. Pray also for family members still in China, who constantly face threats and intimidation.
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“As we commit daily to being Christ’s witnesses to a lost world, we must understand that we will be opposed. In fact, the more faithful we are, the more serious the opposition.”
Cole Richards, President of The Voice of the Martyrs, joins VOM Radio this week to talk about helping Christians in free nations, like the United States, discover what it means to follow Christ when it’s unpopular or even costly—something Christians living in restricted nations and hostile areas deal with every day. We’ll also introduce a new resource from The Voice of the Martyrs to inspire believers to learn about and develop a faith worth suffering for.
Cole recently wrote a series of editorials in The Voice of the Martyrs free monthly magazine on the topic, “Prepared for Persecution.” The Bible promises opposition (John 16:33) and persecution (II Tim. 3:12) when we live out our faith as biblical disciples of Christ. If Christians in free nations don’t learn these scriptural truths, we will be unprepared to face persecution when it comes.
Cole and Todd will also discuss The Sabina Group Study, a new resource from The Voice of the Martyrs offering inspiring examples of Christians who have taken up their crosses and followed Christ in spite of opposition, persecution, suffering and pain. Examples in the study come from the lives of VOM’s founders, Pastor Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, and also from seven “modern-day Sabinas,” women who endured intense persecution as faithful witnesses for Christ in our day.
A FREE copy of this brand-new video resource, including the full-length Sabina feature film and six video study sessions, is available right now to anyone who makes a donation to The Voice of the Martyrs.
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Last week we heard Gary Witherall talk about how God called him and his wife, Bonnie, to evangelize Muslims in the Middle East. In this second part of our conversation, Gary describes the day Christian persecution hit home as his wife, Bonnie, was martyred in the clinic where she served Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.
Gary talks about hearing God’s voice in that time of grief as he sat on the floor; in the next room was the body of his martyred wife. Faced with the choice of bitterness and hatred or forgiveness and love, Gary chose forgiveness. In that moment, Gary prayed, “Lord, you have forgiven me of all things. Today I forgive whoever killed my wife.” Gary calls that forgiveness the greatest gift he’s ever given anybody.
Listen as he shares the responses of friends and neighbors when they saw that forgiveness in action; his wife had just been martyred for her faith yet Gary still loved the Lebanese people.
You’ll also hear about how God has brought fruit from Gary and Bonnie’s sacrifice, and how God is still using Gary today to share His love around the world as he continues to serve with Operation Mobilization. You can learn more about Gary’s story by reading his book, Total Abandon (affiliate link).
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