FEARLESS PEACE OF JESUS
The arrest paper stated “missionary.” On May 8th Benin (name changed) was heading home as he crossed the border. The guards found Bibles in his suitcase and now he found himself being interrogated. “Why are you a missionary?” The guard screamed. The police barraged Benin with questions such as “Who are your contacts? “Who are the Bibles for?” They were trying to upset him. Benin reports that he did not get upset. He was full of God’s peace. He thought of Matthew 10:19, When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour. “What is a missionary?” Asked Benin. “It is like you,” responded the exasperated police officer, “giving Bibles to Muslims to convert them. You are like a computer virus that enters into society and then spreads all over.” This statement gave Benin joy and laughter as he shared his story. Yes, the police officers recognized the gospel was penetrating this North African nation that is considered 100 percent Muslim. The unintended compliment could not have been greater.
In the past decade, hundreds of Muslims have responded to the message of God’s love through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In this pure Islamic nation, faith in Jesus Christ is not easy. In the past 12 months, 185 Muslim background believers have been arrested, beaten, and fined for faith in Jesus. Fundamental Muslims killed two Christians. Only two men have turned back to Islam. Many believers have lost their jobs, been threatened, insulted and made homeless.. They have experienced the joy of 2 Corinthians 4:17, For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.
Benin was not given food or water for the first twenty-four hours. The mosquitoes were so bad that he could not sleep. He tried to cover his legs with a plastic bag, but was bitten all over his body. A mosque was right next door to the jail. He heard a fundamental Muslim yelling outside, “You need to apply Shariah law and kill him.” Benin reported that God created division between the chief of police and the investigator. One wanted to deal with Benin immediately. The other wanted to send the case to the courts for a conviction. Benin’s lawyer warned the police that if they convicted him distributing Bibles then the Christian nations like France and America will make a big deal of this case and it will make this country look bad. (May we never disappoint them and always pray, write letters and speak up for those being oppressed.)
Finally they agreed to release Benin if he signed a paper saying that he or his associates would not bring Christian materials into their country. If caught again he would face severe consequences. Benin did not want to sign the paper, but his lawyer told him that he needed to sign it. Benin told us that even though he signed the paper he has a higher contract with Jesus. He will continue to feed the souls of his nation with God’s word. Benin says, “We do not know when our time is to die. We know we will go to prison again, but God has the timing.” Benin is a bold living martyr of love. His witness is changing the spiritual landscape of the Islamic world.
When we received word of Benin arrests Spirit of Martyrdom ministries e-mailed and texted believers around the world to pray for Benin. On day four of his imprisonment we held a phone prayer conference. Within 24 hours of that prayer conference, Benin was released from prison on day five. Benin reported that he is rejoicing that he is not alone. He thanks everyone for their prayers. He says he will not shrink back in sharing Christ. He asked that we do not stop praying.
Spirit of Martyrdom adds our thanks. We are able to support the witness of Benin and his family by your prayers, advocacy and financial support. The Muslim background believers in Islamic countries continue to share Christ at great risk and sacrifice today. May you be faithful to share Christ with Muslims seeking hope here in America.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
You too can help men and women like Benin find the path of righteousness. Join us in praying for Muslims to receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and not only as a prophet. Consider giving a Bible to a Muslim. Last of all, consider joining Spirit of Martyrdom by financially partnering with us with a one time or monthly contribution.