India: a story with an unexpected ending

By March 14, 2016
(Photo courtesy ASM/FB)

(Photo courtesy ASM/FB)

India (MNN) — There are some villages in India that are so remote, radio isn’t a practical way to reach the people living there.  Even if a radio station did saturate the area with its signal, some of the poorest of the poor might not own a radio to hear what’s being broadcast.

But God has made a way.

It’s not totally known if that’s the area in question in this story.  JP Sundararajan with Audio Scripture Ministries says they recently got a letter and a picture of a family of farmers in rural north India.

In the letter, the family shares that a missionary had been serving their community and had recently provided ASM’s solar-powered digital audio Bibles in their heart language.

Sundararajan explains, “It just so happens that after they had received these audio Bibles, there were some religiously affiliated terror groups that occupied their community and cut off connections between the missionary and the community of people that he served.”

The situation was distressing to the community because they were cut off from their “pastor.” Not only that, but they were forbidden from attending church and worshipping together with the people, notes Sundararajan. Even though they were cut off, their story had hope.  “They said, ‘The terrorists can stop us from going to church, but they cannot stop us from worshiping God.’ And thanks to these audio Bibles, it continued to minister to them even though their pastor was taken away.”

(Photo courtesy WCOI via ASM)

(Photo courtesy World Cassette Outreach of India via ASM)

This is what helping provide an audio Bible unit does: it provides access to God’s Word. “It ministers to people, 24 hours a day, any day of the week, and the pastors then have this joyful task of visiting their parishioners, wherever they might be–scattered in jungles or in tough areas of the world, and know that they have been fed,” he explains.

Together with their ministry partners, ASM records audio Bibles and transfers them to the players. By recording the available translated Scripture in audio format, they can make the Bible accessible to more than 650 million people who cannot read in India alone.

(Photo courtesy ASM/WCOI)

(Photo courtesy ASM/World Cassette Outreach of India)

According to ASM, there are over 1,652 languages spoken in India today, and the Bible or a portion of the Bible is only available in 200 of them. To add to this challenge, less than 40% of India is considered literate. So, even with the remote possibility of a Bible being available in an individual’s heart language, the chance that they will be able to read it is almost zero.

That means that the demand for the audio Bibles is increasing steadily. Because WCOI has helped plant approximately 5,000 churches, requests pour into the office of the ASM India partner, the World Cassette Outreach of India, daily. Says Sundararajan, “We just don’t have enough to provide for this need, but God does. Pray for encouragement on this journey. Pray for partnerships that will arise.”

Even $10 helps get an audio Bible started toward waiting hands in India. Click here for more information.

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