Southeast Asia (MNN) — It seems that persecution often goes hand-in-hand with the growth of the Christian Church.
This is how it is for a closed country in Southeast Asia. So exponential is the growth that there aren’t enough Bibles to keep up with the number of new believers.
Vision Beyond Borders plans to send 30,000 Bibles into the country.
Patrick Klein of Vision Beyond Borders says that people are abandoning Buddhism and animism to follow Christ in pursuit of truth: “We’re seeing incredible growth among the Church. Even though there is persecution in the country, we are seeing the Church is growing and people are asking for Bibles.”
VBB is sending them across the border in vehicles or carrying them on their backs.
They want more, and more, and more… to what end?
So, why is it so important for believers to have a copy of the Bible?
Klein says, “Without God’s Word, how do we know what God requires of us? How do we get to know what God is like if we don’t have His Word?”
In order for these believers to be able to construct their life in a way that pleases God, Klein says they have to be grounded in the absolute truth of the Bible.
“I think it’s really important that we get the Word in and be able to help disciple these people in the Word of God.”
Without the Bible and without knowledge of God, Klein explains, people tend to do what’s right in their own eyes.
Confiscation and risks in closed country
If VBB gets caught bringing Bibles into the country, the Word could very well be confiscated.
This is especially true in remote villages where the general attitude toward the Gospel is more hostile.
In big cities, authorities often ignore Bible distribution because of a heavier foreign presence.
Over the last five years, many remote villages have progressed from having no believers to having church plants full of believers.
Klein has been going to this country for the last 20 years, and over time, the government has backed off in some ways. There’s more openness to the Gospel. Underground churches in the cities are now meeting openly, though often under the observation of government spies.
By providing Bibles for new believers, VBB has high hopes. Klein says, “We’re hoping to see the Church grow stronger and stronger, and we’re seeing more and more of these tribal people becoming Christians. Even the majority peoples are also coming to faith, and it’s really exciting because when they turn from their religions, when they get grounded in the Word of God and see the truth and have assurance of salvation, it just completely changes them.”
It’s your turn
To print each Bible costs about $4. Just think: every $4 you spend is a Bible for a new believer, or perhaps even a whole family.
If you’d like to help with that, click here.
Klein says, “As you consider helping us print Bibles, please also just take a minute and pray for this [undisclosed] country. Pray for the Christians, especially the tribal ones: they’re really watched by the government. These people, once they come to know the truth of Jesus Christ and find forgiveness for their sins, they’re so grateful for what God has done and they go out and tell many other people.”
Here’s a word from Patrick Klein himself. Use password: vbb.