Saturday, 31 March 2007

bible power

Nepal—Reaching remote mountain areas

Early this month the Nepalese Parliament voted to change the country to a federal state. This move, together with the political violence during April last year, has drastically altered Nepal’s status as the world’s only Hindu Kingdom. It is now a secular state. The king no longer is revered as the incarnation of the Hindu god and there is freedom for all religions.

The political change creates a climate of receptivity to the Gospel. “God has blessed the churches in Nepal with much growth through Bible League,” says Bible League's National Director in Nepal.

Bible League is currently the only source for Scriptures for Christians in the remote areas in central and northern Nepal. Many of these areas are only accessible by long hikes on difficult mountain trails, making it a challenge to locate and minister to churches here. Yet, Bible League is actively searching out new churches to provide them with Scriptures, Bible study materials and training. At present, Bible League is able to partner with more than 800 churches in these areas.

“Despite much difficulty, we praise the Lord that 2,649 new Philips (Bible study leaders) were trained last year. We also saw more people than we had anticipated who became members of a local church,” says the National Director. Last year, Bible League baptised a total of 7,450 new believers, trained 10,784 Bible study graduates and placed 60,000 Scriptures in Nepal.

“The local churches remain strong and optimistic. Nepali Christianity has an enthusiastically evangelistic flavour,” says the National Director. These ambassadors of Christ need God’s Word to equip them for evangelism and discipleship. Will you help expand God’s kingdom in Nepal by providing them with God’s Word? Click here to donate now.

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Thursday, 29 March 2007

Bible Power

Middle East

A crack in the door
In the Middle East, many doors are tightly closed, locking Middle Easterners in with the darkness.

But Bible League-trained Christians eagerly watch for a crack in the door—a small opening through which to spread the light of the Gospel.

Sometimes the door opens on one group of people, and not another. But Middle Eastern Christians patiently wait, ready to implement careful, extra-sensitive approaches when the Spirit makes a way.

In some places, ministry is just beginning. In other places, long-suffering Christians have been glowing steadfastly for years. And despite the suffocating darkness, it is the light of God that shines through them.

The darkness comprehends it not
Islamic hostility—combined with the threat of terrorism and the added heat of international pressures—has made the Middle East an undeniably volatile mission field.

In many places, sharing the Good News about Jesus with Muslims is forbidden, and the authorities often strictly enforce laws designed to keep Christians in their place.

Brokenness and openness among Muslims, where it can be found, is often held in bondage, fearing backlash from angry neighbors, families, and friends.

Not a spirit of fear
But Christians in the Middle East long to see God illumine the darkness in their lands. They work comfortably and dynamically among their own people—in places that are tightly closed against the efforts of anyone else.

One soul at a time, the Spirit is using the Word of life to transform lives and break spiritual bonds. The body of Christ in the Middle East is growing.

While there are stories of restrictions and persecutions, there are also stories of breakthroughs over the radio airwaves and in personal relationships.

Christians face countless risks, including death, yet they continue to discreetly share Jesus with their countrymen. The "veils of mystery" surrounding God are falling away, as many come to know Jesus as their Savior.

Making dark places light
In spite of overwhelming odds, many churches have been planted. New bodies of believers are being established in areas where there were none before. And these Middle Eastern Christians are being further trained to take the Light of Jesus with them wherever they go.

Their firm conviction: Open the door a crack, and the light pours in.

A ray of hope
Please pray for the brothers and sisters seeking to establish and shepherd new bodies of believers in the Middle East, who face overwhelming persecution and resistance to the message of hope that they long to bring to their fellow countrymen. And petition God to open the doors in the hearts of Middle Eastern peoples, and to flood their weary, dark lands with His Light.

“The ‘veils of mystery’ surrounding God are falling away, as many come to know Jesus as their Savior.”

Give Now
To send Bibles to pierce the dark in the Middle East, Click Here

Wednesday, 28 March 2007

bible power

"He heard our fears and prayers"

Nearly two years after the establishment of anti-conversion laws, Indian Christians are celebrating the effects of their repeal. Only time will tell the long-term blessings of this legal change, but several resulting miracles have already taken place. In the first month alone, a group of 50 Indian church planters reports having baptized over 1,200 new Christians!

Christians throughout India were stunned when the pro-Hindu government was overturned in the Spring 2004 national election, and several state governments annulled local anti-conversion laws.

Said one local Bible League-trained Christian, "I praise God for enabling us to spread the Gospel in our country .He heard our fears and prayers regarding the election .God gave us an extra bonus when He made our state government remove the anti-conversion law which was in force until now. Hallelujah!"

Undeterred by fear
Indian Christians have faced many hardships in sharing the Gospel. Bible League-trained Christians in India report that they or fellow believers have faced threats, physical attacks, and jail time for sharing their faith.

Baptisms, in particular, became a significant challenge for local churches. Under the anti-conversion laws, anyone who chose to become baptized was legally obligated to seek permission from the government, as well as provide them with the name of the person performing the baptism. Fearing repercussions, many new Christians did not make this outward profession of faith until after the laws were repealed.

Still, thousands of Indians were undeterred in their faith. A local Bible League-trained Christian, while under the anti-conversion law, wrote, "We continue to encourage Christians through the Word of God. We remind them of the promises (Matthew 28:20) and the testimonies of the great martyrs . We are encouraged to fulfill the Great Commission of Christ, regardless of what happens to us. We are prepared for imprisonment, punishment, and even death for the sake of Christ."

Relying on God's faithfulness
Continue to pray for the Church in India. The repeal of state anti-conversion laws has been a tremendous miracle-but challenges still remain. One state continues to uphold anti-conversion laws, and persecution persists throughout the country.

Yet God has been faithful to His children in India, and they are recognizing Him as their Savior by the thousands. Praise God for increasing opportunities to share His Word with the lost.

The Great Commission

Matthew 28:19-20
19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

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Monday, 26 March 2007

Bible Power


A scarred past
In Cambodia, a church might consist of 10 Christians gathered beneath a sugar palm—its trunk still bearing shrapnel scars from the battles that have been fought around it. Or it might be 40 worshippers who congregate in the house of a Bible League-trained church planter.

In either case, Cambodian Christians cannot erase the deep scars that have been left by decades of brutal violence.

Years of atrocities and political turmoil have gouged out a spiritual void in the hearts of Cambodians. It is a void that the national religion of Buddhism—with its unattainable path to enlightenment—has failed to fill.

Picking up the shards
In the aftermath of the Vietnam War, Cambodia was left with socialist groups fighting for control. Millions of innocent people were executed, and civil war raged for decades.

Although a democratic government has begun with the help of the UN, the painful scars still remain. And the wounds reopen every time another mine explodes, planted years ago by the warring factions.

The vast majority of Cambodians have looked to Buddhist rites to try to heal their wounds. But Christians in Cambodia know that the peace their country aches for is a peace that only Jesus Christ can impart.

A different explosion
Eager to impart that peace to their fellow countrymen, Cambodian Christians are enthusiastically entering church planter training. And church growth is exploding.

Cambodia is the first Buddhist country in Southeast Asia to show such a mass movement toward accepting the Gospel message. In a country shrouded so long by Buddhism, it is remarkable to see hearts being opened, one by one, to the light of the truth.

The people of Cambodia are on their way to discovering that the only true refuge from turmoil and trouble is found in the saving blood of Jesus. And Bible League-trained church planters long to shepherd them with an eternal, unshakable comfort.

Fire burns their heart
Cambodian Christians have a vision for their nation and a heart for the whole world. “Fire burns in our heart!” one pastor says. “We long to bring our nation, every community, into His heavenly kingdom.”

And God is using them to do just that. As they impact their communities with the love of Jesus, their nation is changing, one soul at a time. The body of Christ is growing, as local gatherings of believers are established in areas where there were no churches before. We are excited to be a part of what God is doing in Cambodia.

“The Lord uses the Bible League here in Cambodia,” another pastor explains. “It is really a great help to our hungry nation and us. His living Word enables us to be fully fed, and will help us bring our whole nation to the Kingdom of Jesus Christ our Lord in the near future. May the Lord bless the Bible League to carry on this good ministry until we reach the whole world for Jesus. Amen!”

Cambodia’s future
As more Cambodians are brought into fellowship with Jesus Christ and His Church, please pray for the shepherds who care for this tender new flock. Pray that God would call more Christians to labor in this teeming harvest field, as the indigenous church planting movement spreads throughout the country.

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Bible Power

We talk a lot about the power of the Bible, so here is a verse and a short comment on the Word.

Galatians 2:20 -- I myself no longer live, but Christ lives in me. So I live my life in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (NLT)

When you feel overwhelmed and everything seems out of control, remember that Jesus lives in you. He loved you enough to die in your place, and He is strong enough to save you each day. When did you first trust Jesus?

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Saturday, 24 March 2007

Bible Power

Church Planting
Bible League often works with trained Christians who take our evangelism and discipleship Bible studies into church-less areas. When people come together to study God’s Word, and accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, a need for worship is born. That’s why Bible League provides church planter training—so people desiring to worship together will have a pastor to lead them.

This unique, hands-on training program is designed for lay Christians. Local believers, chosen by their churches, become empowered through training and Scripture materials to establish new churches in church-less communities.

In 2006, Bible League helped local Christians establish 5,807 new churches worldwide. And, over the years, we have published and placed Scriptures in more than 450 languages in countries from the Arctic to the jungles of Africa and the Amazon.

To visit our website, Click Here

Friday, 23 March 2007

Bible Power

Spring is here! But in a season bursting with new life, consider this stark contrast—and your response. 30,000 people in India will die today.* And in this land where people worship millions of Hindu gods, how many of them knew the one true God? When you give Bibles, you introduce them to Jesus.

They Want to Know Him
Millions of Indians are open to the Gospel, yet few encounter it. However, many who do come to a saving faith in Jesus Christ. God’s Word is transforming lives in India today.

Be Part of the Action
You can help people across India discover Christ right where they are—today—without ever leaving your home. You can send God’s Word into action in India! You can send Bibles!

Double Your Impact
Right now, for a limited time, you can send two Bibles to India for the cost of one. Every $4 you give will place God’s Word into the hands of two people.

Bring New Life to India
This spring, let God’s love burst forth from hearts when they encounter His Word. Millions of people in India long for the hope and joy of the Gospel. You’ll give someone new life in Christ when you give a Bible. And remember, right now, for a limited time, every $4 you provide will provide two Bibles to two people.

Please Click Here to go to our website to make your donation

*Based on 2005 UNICEF death rates.

Wednesday, 21 March 2007

Bible Power

China —Help Chinese people welcome New Year with God’s Word

Last week, Chinese people around the world celebrated 'Year of the Pig' with feasts, lion dances and displays of firecrackers—an ancient Chinese tradition meant to drive away evil spirits and bad luck. They also greeted one another with, “Kung Hei Fat Choi” (which means “wish you wealth”), believing that this will bring them wealth and good luck for the year ahead. Many Chinese people also flocked to Buddhist or Taoist temples to pray and to offer incense, hoping to secure their blessings: fortune, health, good luck and peace.

Being 'blessed’ is very important in Chinese culture. However, not all Chinese people understand what it means to be truly blessed as David writes,

“Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.” (Psalm 1:1-2, NIV)

Millions of people in China are waiting for God’s Word to enlighten them with truth. They need God’s Word to come to faith, so that they may rejoice in God’s blessing.

“God used the Scripture to enlighten me, to let me know that no matter how much money I could earn, I should take it and be thankful. I needed to make sure I had enough time for my faith and my family,” says Chen, a Bible League-trained Christian. Last year, Bible League placed 665,322 Bibles in China and trained 108,420 Christians through the Project Philip Bible study program.

Today, there are still over 50 million Christians in China who don’t have a Bible. In some rural areas, there is only one Bible between 10 or more Christians. These Christians are longing for God’s Word to help them grow in faith and to be reminded of God’s grace in their suffering.

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Monday, 19 March 2007

bible power

Karwana’s father, a revered witchdoctor in his region, received the demonic message “that his wife would bear a son with a black spot in the eye—that this son would inherit the witchcraft.”

Four days after Karwana was born, his father died suddenly with no apparent signs of sickness. The boy grew up a marked person. From childhood on, he felt absolutely controlled by dark forces. These demons kept him in bondage, instructing him not to go to school, not to sleep on a bed or cover himself with bed sheets, and to eat only two meals per week.

A timely intervention
Benjamin, a Bible League-trained Christian, met Karwana just before the witchdoctor launched into his most daunting tasks yet. Karwana had received the “assignment” to kill 75 adults before the end of the year, and to sacrifice 6 children within months! Benjamin acted quickly, inviting Karwana to a Bible study led by a local pastor. Already curious about the good things he had heard about God, Karwana accepted.

The Bible’s message broke through and an intense prayer time led to deliverance! The pastor says, “That man was delivered by the power of the Word of God. I didn’t even have to try to cast out demons; they fled by themselves!”

More powerful than he expected
The witchdoctor embraced the Gospel of Jesus Christ and surrendered all of his demonic possessions—burned in a celebration of transformation! Karwana had no idea that anything could replace the power he enjoyed as an instrument of evil. Until … the Bible’s power was introduced to him. A divine meeting, a nurturing relationship, and God’s transforming Word.

Today, Karwana has harnessed that power, lives by it, and shares it with more lost Ugandans.

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Saturday, 17 March 2007

Bible Power

Just a reminder in this posting that we do have a website where you can read a number of stories not shown in this Blog.

Why not take a moment to visit our website by Clicking Here

Thursday, 15 March 2007

Bible Power

Please pray as we embark on the translation of our Project Philip booklets into Tonga, a language spoken in the northwestern parts of the country. It is a very neglected area. The people are poor and are involved in ancestral worship and false religions. To be able to penetrate this area, we need to have the right materials. Pray that the process will go on well and that we will get people who can do the job well and work together without strife. This is a very strategic area that we have only reached in a minimal way working with those who are able to understand English and Shona, who are the minority. We thank the Lord for opening this door and giving this vision to our Zimbabwe team.

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Wednesday, 14 March 2007

Bible Power

Tatiana, of the ethnic group called the "Kalmyks," has experienced a lifetime of disappointments. At a very young age, both of her parents died. Then as an adult, her husband went through a botched leg surgery that left him unable to walk or work. Even as their finances were falling apart, Tatiana received more heartbreaking news from her doctor: she would never be able to have children.
Tatiana was a devoted Buddhist, but this did nothing to bring her peace. Tatiana says, "I became depressed, but had no one to turn to."

How can God help me?
She had come to be friends with a woman at her workplace. Soon Tatiana found herself pouring out her problems and disappointments to this new friend, who listened intently. "You should put your cares into the hands of God," her Christian friend said.

"How can God help me?" Tatiana asked. "Can God give me a bag of money?" She wasn't mocking her friend; she truly didn't understand how God-if He really does exist-could possibly help her.

To help find answers, her friend invited Tatiana to come to church with her.

In the presence of God
Tatiana looked around at the people in the service. She saw faces of peace, heard joyful singing, and was amazed at how they prayed to God. "It was as though they were really speaking to God and God was invisibly present and hearing the prayers!" says Tatiana. It occurred to her that if this were true, then God was not high in the sky and far away, as her grandmother had told her.

Then the realization hit her. "If God is present in this church, then I am in the presence of God!" It was at that moment she knew in her soul that God was real and personal.

The pastor's message taught Tatiana that the Bible is the Word of God-the same God she had just come to recognize. She accepted the truth she was hearing from this Bible.

Desperate for rest
Tatiana felt welcomed by the kind Christians at the church, and was compelled to return. The third time she did, she came to the service feeling crushed by the weight of her problems. Then she heard from the Word.

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls" (Matthew 11:28-29).

"The words of Jesus gripped my heart," says Tatiana. "It was as if He had spoken directly to me because He knew about how weary and burdened I was over my problems." She decided to accept Jesus' invitation and let Him bring her the rest she so desperately wanted.

A Buddhist believes
"I really cannot explain it, but in those moments of hearing and thinking about the words of Jesus I, a Buddhist, came to believe that Jesus had spoken to me and I needed to go to Him. Faith was born in me. My eyes filled with tears at the reality of it all."

She accepted Jesus that day. Tatiana explains, "I cried out to Jesus to take away my heavy burden of troubles and to give me rest. What joy flooded my inner being as I actually experienced the Lord Jesus lift away from me my burden and then gently place on me His peace."

"I was no longer a believer in Buddha but a believer in Christ."

Miraculous blessings
Tatiana went home and destroyed the relics of her former religion. "I only wanted room in my life for Christ and the Bible," she says. She was baptized and, upon completing a Bible study, received her very own Bible. Shortly after that, her husband accepted Jesus, too.

God miraculously blessed Tatiana and her husband. His leg was healed, so he was able to walk and work again. And they now have two children, a son and a daughter!

Peace despite persecution
Now that she's a Christian, Tatiana's life has a new hardship.

"The anger of my Buddhist relatives is sometimes expressed in ways to humiliate me. They have cut me off from family activities and I am no longer included in relatives' events," she explains. "For comfort I turn to reading the Word of God and hold His promises tightly in my heart."

Tatiana also feels the love and acceptance of her new family, her brothers and sisters in Christ. "I have so much to rejoice and be glad about, because of Jesus."

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Bible Power

Southern Sudan—Over 1,000 soldiers find Jesus

On the 7 March 2007 two African Union (AU) peacekeepers were killed and one was seriously injured in Darfur. According to BBC news report, the faction of the Sudan Liberation Army rebels who carried out this attack were supposed to be AU’s partner in implementing Darfur’s peace agreement. This incident has upset the peace agreement signed in 2005 by Sudan’s Islamic government and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army.

In the last two years since the signing of the peace agreement, Bible League took the opportunity to rebuild the ministry in the churches and explore new ministry fields. God amazingly led Bible League to start a ministry in the army barracks. God’s Word, sharper than the double-edged sword, has penetrated the hearts of the soldiers, convicting them of sin and leading them to salvation.

“I joined Sudan People Liberation Army when I was seventeen. My goal was to kill every Arab I met. When the peace agreement was signed, I had nothing to do. But the Lord had His plan. Someone invited me to join a Bible League Bible study group. Out of curiosity, I joined the group and began reading God’s Word. After four days of study, I was convicted by the Word of God. I realised that my hatred of the Arabs was a sin and sinners have to face God’s wrath. I confessed my sin. Praise God that now I love my Arab brothers,” a soldier testifies.

Another witnesses, “As a soldier, my job was to kill. I lived in war all my life. I had no reason to live and I always wished that I would die. When one of the commanders asked me to accompany him to attend Bible League’s Bible study group, I sat down and listened. Something touched and burned in my heart. I began to cry as I confessed my sins of killing and raping. The person sitting next to me sensed my agony and prayed for me. God restored my life that day.”

These men were two of over 1,000 soldiers who had completed the Project Philip Bible study program. They all were baptised. Last year, Bible League placed a total of 154,763 Scriptures in Southern Sudan, trained 43,576 Bible study graduates and baptised 9,333 new believers.

However, there are still millions of people in Sudan who need God’s Word, including many more soldiers. The National Director in Southern Sudan believes that the Sudanese will only find true peace when they find Jesus, the peace-giver. Will you help place more Scriptures in Sudan, so that more people can be transformed by God’s Word?

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