Terror group inadvertently creates Gospel curiousity in Iraq

By October 13, 2014

Iraq (CAM) — Editor’s Note: We share this news story released by Christian Aid Mission, your link to indigenous missions. The personal experience described here about ministry opportunities made us decide to publish it in its entirety:

(Photo courtesy Christian Aid Mission)

(Photo courtesy Christian Aid Mission)

Working in northern Iraq’s Kurdish region day and night to help meet the needs of people displaced by the threats and violence of the terror group Islamic State (ISIS) in Mosul and other areas, members of an Iraqi ministry team recently came into contact with a colonel from the Kurdish forces battling ISIS.

The colonel was serving as a division commander of the Peshmerga, the Kurdistan Regional Government’s armed forces, which have helped to slow the incursion of ISIS in its brutal push to establish a caliphate imposing a strict version of Sunni Islam. With the aid of U.S. airstrikes, the Peshmerga have also slowly retaken some territory. They are helping to secure the Kurdish capital of Erbil, where the ministry team assisted by Christian Aid Mission is supplying displaced people with food, clothing, beds, and medicine.

The colonel had a few questions for the team members: What was the reason for offering all this aid? What was the motivation, what was the source of it?

“We spoke with him explicitly, explaining everything to him, saying that Christ taught us to love and express our love to the people in a practical way,” said the team director, who informed the officer that all relief items had been donated or purchased locally.

The Peshmerga colonel, whose name is withheld for security reasons, was quick to respond.

“You see the Arabs around you in the Gulf states, which claim to be religious Muslims, have not sent us anything but terrorists,” he told the ministry team members. “But you who follow Christ send love and peace and goodness to people every day.”

(Photo courtesy Christian Aid Mission)

(Photo courtesy Christian Aid Mission)

The conversation continued at length, the ministry team director said.

“After we had a long talk with him about Christ, he bowed and prayed, asking Christ into his life,” the director said. “And he said, ‘Today I am the happiest person! I’ve had the privilege of making this decision,’ and he received a copy of the Bible.”

The colonel’s experience was just one of many taking place in Iraq. In cities of refuge like Erbil for people displaced from their homes in other parts of Iraq, people are turning to Christ at a stunning pace. Tent churches are springing up in the makeshift camps. Under normal circumstances, mission strategies focus on how to proclaim Christ effectively, but the challenge now is keeping pace with the number who would receive Him, the director said.

“The greatest challenge in the ministry right now is not whether these people will accept Christ or not,” he said. “In all our travel to deliver the aid and preach God’s Word, we did not find anyone opposed to or rejecting our message. The challenge is how and when we will reach all those people with the message of salvation in the squares, sidewalks, roads, inside the tents and out, and everywhere.”

Christian Aid Mission’s Middle East director said that as a result of this trend, some church leaders and workers for ministry organizations are remaining in Iraq even as the cruel practices of ISIS–beheading Iraqi children who refuse to deny Christ in Qaroqosh and Western journalists elsewhere–gain greater notoriety.

“I think of workers who stayed behind in Mosul and the surrounding areas because there are so many who are receptive to the gospel,” he said. “They are willing to risk being in an area under the rule of ISIS for the privilege of more and more fruit for Christ.”

(Photo courtesy Christian Aid Mission)

(Photo courtesy Christian Aid Mission)

Forced to trust God more than they ever have before, these Christians are growing in their relationship with God in ways they had never imagined, he said.

“I respected them before the Arab Spring because they were serving in Islamic areas, but now they are serving more and maturing even more,” he said. ”We need to intercede for these workers. They are all always in danger. They need God’s power to show His love to the thousands of helpless people.”

When Iraqi ministry workers assisted by Christian Aid Mission obtain more funds for food, water, medicine, and other supplies, they have the opportunity to demonstrate Christ’s love in a tangible way, he added.

“God has put within the hearts of thousands of Muslims a desire to read His Word,” he said. “We can be the instruments of providing them with New Testaments and audio Bibles.”

 

11 Comments

  • Amazing, Praise God for His great work there. Certainly , Christ’s love is what is most needed there. Appreciate God’s servants there. Surely will be praying.

  • Hallelujah!!!

    Christ is victor even during these troubling times. May His life grow into millions and millions. That is the purpose of creating man. (Gen:1:26-27)

    Christ is the shield.

  • Amazing and touching. There is no such thing as impossible with God. THe can turn the hardest heart into a loving one. So can He do it with these persecutors. They will turn to the Lord. All things are possible.

  • Rick says:

    I am going to encourage our people in our home study to join me in praying for CHRIST to continue revealing Himself to Muslims and Jews throughout the Middle East…I have been praying this very prayer daily for several years, and am thrilled to read this message!

  • Wale says:

    May the Name of Jesus continue to be glorified until all nations hear about Him and bring glory to Him.All glory to the Almighty God for the millions who are now hearing about His Son Jesus and making dicision for Him.Allejah!

  • Your Name says:

    May the Name of Jesus continue to be glorified until all nations hear about Him and bring glory to Him.All glory to the Almighty God for the millions who are now hearing about His Son Jesus and making dicision for Him.Hallelujah!

  • Ellen Paver says:

    Praise the Lord for His mighty works for bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ to these people and religious group. God is making a way let us continue to endeavor in whatever ways we can as God’s people. My heart and prayer goes to each and every one out there in the field. May the Lord empower you with strength & endurance and may the love of God fill you more and more each day as you minister to these people. May the Lord give you utterance as you have the opportunity to share the message of God’s love. May His face shine upon each & everyone of you.

  • Stephanie says:

    So proud that God’s will is still being accomplished through these brothers and sisters in the Lord!

  • PRAISE OUR MAGNIFICENT KING!

    He WILL send His Living Word to the ends of the earth so that every tribe and tongue will be represented in The Kingdom and every knee will bow in worship of King Jesus!

    But it’s the amazing Love of this King Who came to die once and FOR ALL PEOPLES that will win their hearts and minds!

  • Libby says:

    To God be all the Glory. God works in mysterious marvelous ways. He can use anything for His Glory. May many people,comes to Jesus Christ in such a mist of turmoil. Even if just one sould comes to Jesus Christ it’s worth every mile, every trial! I thank God for the many men and women helping out to these precious people.

  • Rosen John says:

    I praise God Almighty with my whole heart when I see His unconventional Ways of bringing people to hear and understand the Gospel. And those knocking at Christ’s door for succour are even greater now than ever before.

    I am the Way,the Truth and the Life. Said He. And the world must know this truth in greater measure.

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