Many Afghan Refugees Responding to Christ's Love

by Missions Insider Report

Many Afghan Refugees Responding to Christ's Love

Afghanistan is the largest country on earth which has never knowingly admitted Christian missionaries. Orthodox Sunni Muslims have opposed all efforts to introduce Christianity within the country, and have never allowed any secret believers within the country to meet together in the name of Christ.

But many Afghans are now baptized Christians living outside of their native land, and the number is growing steadily as more and more refugees flee the country. Tens of thousands left for fear of U.S. bombs following the September 11 attacks in New York and Washington.

During the past year, 32 new churches have been formed in nearby Kyrgyzstan and 20 of them are made up primarily of former Muslims, some of whom are refugees from Afghanistan. Indigenous churches in countries that border Afghanistan on the north-Uzbekistan and Tajikstan-also have many former Muslims in their congregations, including refugees from Afghanistan.

Nawas Khan, of the Pushto majority, was treated kindly by native Christians in Pakistan and gave his life to Christ. He grew in grace and knowledge rapidly and soon became a zealous witness for his new-found faith within the refugee camps. Some responded to his message but others beat him unmercifully and left him for dead. Miraculously he recovered but had to leave Pakistan and go witness among Afghans in another country.

Numerous refugees have joined churches in India through love and kindness shown to them by evangelical Christians. One, Rahim Fazil, was formerly a minister in the Afghan government. He had become a believer and was baptized in the U.S., then returned to serve his country. When he later fled to India with his family and was received with kindness by Christians in Delhi, his entire family gave their lives to Christ. They all became active in local churches.

Abdul Matin and his family were befriended by native Christians when they went from Afghanistan to Pakistan. They had to flee to China after he confessed Christ as Lord and Savior. They later moved into Hong Kong where he became a fervent witness for Christ among other Afghans, using video tapes to communicate the gospel to them.

Many refugees who have gone beyond neighboring countries have also responded to acts of kindness by loving Christians and are now professing Christians despite threats and persecution. Several churches in Holland, Australia, Canada, and the U.S. have Afghan believers within their church families.

Of the believers who have dared to return to Afghanistan, few have survived. Hussein Attish was killed by his own family members. Another, Mohammed Anwar, was also killed. But before he gave his life he influenced his younger brother to believe. That young man became one of the few who have thus far survived as professing faith in Christ inside Afghanistan.

Local churches and many evangelical indigenous ministries that are sharing Christ with Afghan refugees are also praying that the day will soon come when some of those who are mature in the faith may return safely to their homeland as ambassadors for Christ. They ask other Christians to be praying also that new believers may go home without fear of being killed by orthodox Muslims who want to protect their land from people who have a different understanding of the truth of God.

For more information on the efforts to bring the Word of God to Afghanistan, write to insider@christianaid.org and put 460-MI-239 in the subject line.

Missions Insider Report