India (MNN) — Hundreds of
thousands of families in the states of Punjab and Uttar Pradesh are receiving
copies of the Gospel of John, and the church is growing as a result.
"Last month, two families and 22
individuals–brand-new believers–were baptized in Punjab, and last Sunday, 11
new believers in Uttar Pradesh," said Mawii Pudaite of Bibles for the World. She just returned from a trip to India with her husband. "God is working in a mighty way among the
people of Punjab these days."
The ministry has already
hand-delivered 800,000 copies of the "No Greater Love" New Testament to families. A previous distribution of 200,000
copies took place in October, resulting in the formation of 12 new
churches. In the state of Orissa, another program delivers the Gospel
of John in the Oriya language to people who are serious about
seeking the truth.
Many recipients of "No Greater
Love" express their gratitude. "It is a
lifeboat in a sea of hatred, aggression, and utter foolishness," one wrote in a
letter. "In reading your book, my soul
is steadfast, peaceful, joyful, and enlightened. It is like going down a tunnel and finally at
the end of it seeing the good light. 'No
Greater Love' is the first book I've read about Jesus Christ, and in general, my
first book about religion."
Bibles for the World is encouraged
by the outcome of India's latest election. Pudaite said the church has greater liberty to serve the Lord without
fear of repercussions.
"With the new government, persecution
of Christians has decreased, and there is a great measure of freedom, we feel,
to share the Gospel with non-believers," she said.
The Sikh religion originated in
the state of Punjab, which is also the only state where Sikhs are in the
majority. Tens of thousands died in a
war for independence, which came to an end in 1992.
"This was followed by rapid
economic progress, healing of communal wounds, and unprecedented openness for
the Gospel," Pudaite said.
Anyone can be a part of
supporting the Bible distribution in northern India, financially or in prayer.
"No one is too young or too old, too rich or too poor to participate in this Bible printing and distribution,"
Pudaite explained. "It costs 25 cents to print, deliver and follow-up a copy of the Gospel of John, and $2.25
to print and deliver a copy of the New Testament."
"Christ has given us the
privilege of giving His life-transforming life to the people of the world. Let us be faithful to Him and to His calling."