Nigeria (MNN) – World Mission recently sent 200 of their solar-powered audio Bibles, the Treasure, to the Hausa people in northern Nigeria.
Ministering to the Hausa
“Nigeria is a high-priority for World Mission when it comes to sending our solar-powered audio Bibles, particularly in the Hausa language,” World Mission’s Greg Kelley says.
“Hausa’s a major trade language spoken largely in the north. And Nigeria is such a fascinating country for a lot of reasons in Africa. We believe it’s one of the most strategic countries in all of Africa. It’s the most populated country in the entire continent. And literally, it’s broken and divided 50 percent Christian, 50 percent Muslim.”
The Christians are mainly congregated in the south and the Muslims are mainly in the north.
There are over 30 million Hausa speakers in Nigeria and about 99 percent are Muslim. Kelley says this has made it difficult to connect with the people to share the Gospel.
“But what we’ve found is the Treasure has been incredibly well received because it speaks their language and the people embrace it. So, these 200 Treasures that are going in right now, more than 28,000 Muslims will hear the Gospel for the first time in the next few weeks as a result,” Kelley says.
World Mission has previously distributed five thousand Treasures in the Hausa language into northern Nigeria.
Teams connect with nationals that have access to Muslim villages or refugee camps and World Mission national leaders set up listening groups to share the Treasures with people.
“But it’s not quite as simple as that because many times, our people who are doing distributions are faced with great hostilities when they’re trying to engage them, but we just love them and encourage them.”
Kelley shares that their teams have been blocked from going into villages by the chiefs. One chief was particularly stern in refusing to let a team enter to minister to his people.
“But then our people recognized that they had a major water problem,” Kelley says.
People had to walk several miles a day for water. World Mission offered to build a well and the chief was interested. Once they built the well, everything seemed to change. The chief invited the World Mission team into the village and asked them to bring in Treasures for every person.
“It’s amazing what loving people in the name of Jesus can do to open up a Gospel introduction.”
Kelley says World Mission sees Muslims coming to know Jesus every day through this method.
However, the Muslims who step out and choose to follow Jesus or even to simply listen to the Gospel can stir persecution. Many times, people are cast from their villages and their families no longer accept them.
A Vision to Transform Lives
Yet, Kelley shares, “these people, we’re seeing as they come to know the Lord, it’s about the life being transformed, and nobody can deny that when a life is transformed by the Gospel… that gives that person boldness and confidence to go and share with other people. And so, for us, it’s not about what we’re doing or even our team. It’s about seeing indigenous Church planting movements and that’s by one changed heart at a time.”
World Mission has a vision to see all the Hausa people in Nigeria reached with the Gospel.
However, resources are limited. Kelley says the 200 Treasures that were recently sent was actually a response to a request for 2,000 Treasures.
World Mission knows they can’t spread the Gospel to the 30 million Hausa people on their own and fortunately, they don’t have to.
“There’s tens of millions of Christians in Nigeria,” Kelley says.
“However, they’re largely consolidated in the south. We need to specifically pray that God would mobilize and raise up Christians in the south with a passion and a burden for their Muslim brothers and sisters that are in the north because they’re the ones most strategically positioned – many of them even speak their language – to go up into the northern part.”
World Mission has a leadership training facility to train nationals and send them out to minister to people in Nigeria. Pray the Lord would raise up more Christians in Nigeria to share Truth with the Hausa people.
You can help equip World Mission with the resources they need to reach Muslims in Nigeria.