How much does the Gospel cost in South Asia?

By December 12, 2023

South Asia (MNN) — Pakistan arrested 19 young people on blasphemy charges in 2023, according to a story circulating on several India-based news outlets. The allegations claim six kids were formally charged with blasphemy.

MNN could not verify the story, but blasphemy convictions are common in Pakistan. This summer, blasphemy accusations led to significant mob violence against a predominantly Christian neighborhood in Pakistan’s third-largest city.

Whether the recent claim by Legal Awareness Watch is valid or not, “The shock value when people see 19 children held accountable and punished over this [is compelling]; every family that is non-Muslim [is] going to be terrified,” Unknown Nations’ Greg Kelley says.

“They don’t want their children to be thrown in jail. So, it changes behavior, and that is the ultimate objective of these laws – to change the behavior and terrorize minority religions.”

Blasphemy laws provide legal grounds to persecute Christians in Pakistan. Across the border, India’s anti-conversion laws target believers. More about that here.

“They’re trying to suppress the sharing of the Gospel” in South Asia, Kelley says.

(Photo courtesy of Unknown Nations)

Church planters and indigenous missionaries press on despite the danger. “They’re driven by something far greater than what their eyes can see,” Kelley says.

“They’re driven by the eternal destiny of these individuals [who do not know] Jesus. When we hear about places like India and Pakistan, we need to be mindful that a lot of work needs to happen from the church’s standpoint. There are twice as many unreached people groups in India than there are in the continent of Africa.”

The Great Commission calls every believer to sacrifice. “Going” and “making disciples” could cost a believer their comfort and financial security. Or, the task could cost a Christ-follower’s life.

“Every month, we hear of one of our leaders who was killed. We don’t understand it here in America, yet it’s the reality in the places where the Gospel has not been,” Kelley says.

What can you give today? “The greatest resource is prayer. It’s not something said by different guests on Mission Network News because it sounds nice and religious,” Kelley says.

“It is a war, and the greatest weapon we have in our possession as followers of Jesus is to call down the powers of heaven, the power of the Holy Spirit, and the presence of Jesus Christ, to infuse these areas with Good News.”




Header and story images courtesy of Unknown Nations.

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