Following are testimonies from the Wa people of northern Myanmar concerning being animists and their conversion to evangelical Christianity. Reading on the internet about animists, some writers would lead you to believe that being an animist is a positive thing. The Christian Wa people would beg to differ as the following testimonies reveal:
“My name is Khuat, and I am a 53-year-old pastor. My parents were animists who offered sacrifices to the spirits every month, and our family was plunged into poverty and bondage to cruel demons. In 2001 I heard of God’s love and forgiveness, and I committed my life to Jesus. We smashed all our idols and the Lord blessed us in every way. I was eager to read the Bible, but for years I could not find even one for sale. Now you have brought many Bibles to us, and we are overwhelmed with joy. Thank you! You have done the greatest thing possible.
“My name is Nyi. Everyone in my family lived in fear of the spirits for generations. We did all we could to appease them, but in return we got death and suffering. My mother died when I was a baby, and my father died when I was 8. Then when I was 13 my brother died and there was no one to take care of me. I started using drugs, and at my lowest point a Christian told me about Jesus, and He changed my life! I even graduated from Bible school, and now I serve my Wa people, getting as many saved as I can. The Word of God you gave us is so precious!“
“My name is Moe, and I am 19 years old. My family were animists, so we served the spirits and had never heard about Jesus. My friend told me the Good News, and I went to church with her. The pastor gave me a Bible and I brought it home, but my father was the village shaman so he didn’t let me read the Bible. One day my mother fell ill, and my father spent all our money to try to make her well. He heard that Jesus could heal the sick, so he let her go to the church with me. She was healed that day, and now my whole family are Christians! Thank you for the wonderful Bibles you freely gave us.”
The anthropologist who say that these tribes should be left alone and not evangelized are deceived themselves by the powers of darkness and do not have the spiritual discernment to understand the great spiritual and physical deception that these people suffer under.
Lord Jesus understood it, that is why He said to go into all the earth and preach the gospel and set the captives (of the demons) free!
Has He set you free from the sins or idols that bind you up?
(The Bibles they refer to were printed and donated by the supporters of Asia Harvest.)
“Any doctrine claiming to be based on the Bible must be carefully checked against the Bible — an option open to anyone who knows God’s Word. Relying upon one supposed biblical expert for an evaluation of the opinions of another would be going in circles. No matter whose opinion one accepted, the end result would be the same; one would still be held hostage to human opinion. Each individual must personally check out all opinions directly from the Bible.” Dave Hunt – What Love Is This? p.25
If you cut off the tails of cats, will they give birth to tail-less kittens? Of course not! Yet, more than 3,000 mainstream biologists were dismissed, imprisoned or even killed for disagreeing that a similar idea might work when applied to plants.
Soviet genetics research was effectively destroyed in the 1930s and ‘40s because the scientist at the head of the Soviet Academy of Agriculture Sciences squashed all dissent from his own view. And he had the power of the communist state behind him!
His name was Trofim Lysenko, and he believed the Soviets could transform Siberia into “a land of orchards and gardens” by “training” seeds to handle cold weather and harsh conditions. He believed that plants could be engrafted to permanently change the heritable characteristics of the stock. Such ideas were based on Darwin’s predecessor – the early evolutionist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829). Lamarck argued for evolution through inheritance of acquired characteristics. In other words, build up your muscles so you can then pass bigger muscles on to your kids.
Charles Darwin wrote his book On the Origin of Species in 1859 to make Lysenko’s ideas seem more scientific by appealing to “deep time” to allow for the imperceptible changes we cannot observe, and appealing also to “natural selection” to try to make the heritable changes more plausible.
But Lamarck was the first to suggest the famous evolutionary scenario of giraffes acquiring a long neck. Giraffe parents supposedly stretched above other animals to reach the leaves of tall trees. And thus they passed on their increasingly stretched necks to their offspring through succeeding generations.
Lysenko was an evolutionist too impatient for Darwin, so he put Lamarckism into practice. For example, he believed he could transform a spring-wheat species into an autumn-wheat species via 2 to 4 years of autumn planting. It would supposedly condition them to “a revolutionary change”. But genetically this was impossible since the spring wheat species had 28 chromosomes in 4 sets of 7, and the autumn species had 42 chromosomes in 6 sets of 7. Change and adaptation is always limited to within the original species or “kind” by virtue of the genes needing to be there in the first place – put in place by our Great Designer and Maker. Lysenko’s plantings on the collectivist farms never took hold or simply rotted away. Geneticists in free market countries knew Lysenko to be a fool.
But Lysenko and the Soviets under Joseph Stalin were true believers in the ideology that mankind needed to “reset” the old and traditional (“bourgeoise”) ways. And that this could be made to happen as society “toughed it out”. In other words, they believed in Marxism. “Tear down the old order to build a new one.” Build it back better! Sound familiar?
Great famines took place in the Soviet Union under this ideologically driven pseudo-science and the false hope it raised. The famines were made worse, of course, as private farms were stolen and put into collectives, and successful farmers were persecuted. Lysenkoism was kept in place throughout Stalin’s life, and it ruined agriculture in other communist countries, too. These included Eastern Europe and Communist China, where horrible famines took place in the 1950s under Mao Tse Tung.
As I’ve pointed out in previous letters, we are bombarded today with much pseudo-science, not only Evolutionism but also Climate Change Alarmism. We are fed fear and false hopes which are driving a “great reset” of world culture, education, government and economics. Many are on board with it – just as they were in the days of Lysenko, Stalin and Mao.
Every storm or series of storms now gets blamed on Climate Change – which is, of course, ridiculous. What little science there is in an agenda-driven pseudo-science becomes tainted by whatever assumptions about earth history enter the narratives or computer models. And much scientific research is funded by government grants. The research grants are written with a desired outcome in mind, and those applying for the grants know in advance whether to assume Evolution or to assume man-made Climate Change.
An interesting development is the new awareness of how much Communist Chinese money is funding elite American University research. Since the Department of Education recently began enforcing Section 117 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 for disclosure of university funding, it has come to light that most of the $6.5 billion of undeclared university research funding has come from Communist China. And much of it is to promote climate alarmism – considered a weapon for distracting and weakening the U.S. economy.
We need to keep going back to the Bible. That’s where the truth is. The desire for a “great reset” goes all the way back to the Serpent in the Garden with Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve believed Satan’s lies, and they wanted their “eyes to be opened”, “to be as gods”, knowing (a perfected knowing of) good and evil” (Genesis 3:5). They wanted to be “enlightened” (as they were in a way, vs. 7) and, therefore, they went along with the temptation to tear down the original order.
This Satanic philosophy of tearing down God’s order is what Karl Marx promoted (The Devil and Karl Marx, P. Kengor; Marx and Satan, Rev. R. Wurmbrand). It also manifested at the Tower of Babel, as Nimrod (whose name means “to rebel”) argued against God and for the “enlightenment” of making themselves “as gods”. Nimrod is the classic type of anti-Christ. It should be no surprise to see in our day a great push for a Great Reset to One World Economy, One World Government and One World Religion under a controlling system apart from God.
But we know from the Bible who wins in the end. And we know that those who follow Christ will win with Him! Thank you, dear friend, for helping us reach others from “all nations” with the message of truth! The Bible is true, and it is to be believed and proclaimed so that more can believe!
When David Livingston started his trek across Africa, he had 73 books in three packs, weighing 180 pounds. After the party had gone 300 miles, Livingston was obliged to throw away some of the books because of the fatigue of those carrying his baggage. As he continued on his journey his library grew less and less, until he had but one book left— his Bible.
There is a simple shortcut to truth: start with the Bible first and investigate it thoroughly. Why start there? Not just because the Bible claims to be the only inspired Word of the one true God who created us. It also claims that all of the world’s religions and their scriptures are false and actually in the service of Satan. The Bible calls Satan “the god of this world” (2 Corinthians 4:4) and thus the author of its religions. So if the Bible is true, we have saved ourselves a lifetime of vain searching through false systems.
In fact, we can prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that every word in the Bible is true. The Bible has several unique features not found in the scriptures of the world’s religions, making it possible to substantiate its claims. Christianity is not a philosophy, mystical experience, or esoteric practice [but] is based upon undeniable and historical facts. The Bible stands on a four-fold foundation, every part of which can be examined and verified: 1) prophecy foretelling events and doctrines in advance, 2) fulfillment of those prophecies in detail, 3) secular history testifying to the fulfillment of prophecies and events, and 4) factual data corroborated by archaeology and science. None of this is the case with the teachings or scriptures of any of the world’s religions. —Dave Hunt[Excerpt taken from Seeking and Finding God (Bend, OR: TBC, 2007), pp 66-67) – Berean Call
As a relatively new believer in Christ, who spent over two decades as a devout Muslim, I am often asked for the best way to introduce the Gospel to Muslims. There are many opinions on this topic, ranging from using apologetics to just being a “good Christian.” Though most Christian’s natural inclination in approaching Muslims is apologetics, it often turns into arguments about doctrine and hurling insults about Islam that alienate the listener. I believe the real power lies in the reality of the Trinity– God the Loving Father, His only begotten Son Jesus Christ, and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
God is Love. In over 20 years of being a devout Muslim, I never heard God referred to as being love or commanding us to love others. Islam teaches that God is merciful and kind, but the word love is never mentioned. A Muslim must worship and sacrifice for a God that does not ever tell you he loves you. You cannot rely on him to console you in times of trouble, and he was mainly there to judge you. Quite frankly, it was incredibly depressing since I could never maintain the countless set of rules and laws that demanded strict obedience.
Compare that to the Bible, God’s infallible, living Word where God describes Himself as love.
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love, lives in God, and God in them. 1 John 4:16
In a life filled with disappointment from people who claim to love you and a God that doesn’t consider love significant enough to mention, the simplicity of this Truth was very appealing. Our Heavenly Father is the originator and fulfiller of everything we know and experience of love. He so loved humanity that He sacrificed His only Son to rescue us. Not only does God extend His love to His children, but love for Him and those around us is the foundation of our faith.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these. Mark 12:30-31
Being loved unconditionally and learning to love others the same way has brought me extraordinary joy. Never underestimate the power of explaining to a Muslim how significant love is to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Jesus is God incarnate. In Islam, you never really know if your good deeds are enough to enter God’s Heaven. On the Day of Judgement, God will decide if you were “good enough” and that terrified me. What if there was one big sin He could not forgive despite my hundred acts of obedience? It was very unsettling to live every day, wondering whether I would spend eternity in hellfire. Then I learned that God would guarantee a place in His eternal Heaven if I put my trust in Christ as God incarnate. I needed to accept that Jesus was God wrapped in flesh, who came to Earth and died on the cross, then rose again from the grave to pay for my sins.
The Divinity of Jesus is the most significant point of contention between Islam and Christianity. However, if you know all the miraculous qualities Christ has in Islam, unpacking what they think happened on the cross may be the key to their salvation. All Muslims believe Jesus was born of a virgin birth resulting from God’s Divine Spirit impregnating Mary. They know Jesus healed the sick, raised the dead, and performed countless miracles during his life. They also believe Jesus ascended to Heaven and will descend from Heaven in the End Times to defeat the Anti-Christ. However, Islam claims Jesus did not die on the cross. Instead, they claim Judas Iscariot’s soul was placed inside Jesus’ body so people would think it was Jesus, but God took him to Heaven. So, Muslims attribute many Divine abilities and manifestations to Christ but only deny the crucifixion because His death and resurrection would prove the integrity of the Bible. When you state these facts to most Muslims, it immediately leads them to question their understanding of Jesus. How can they believe that he had so many God-like abilities, but He is not God incarnate based on some illogical explanation for who died on the cross? Therefore, planting the seeds of doubt about how Islam portrays the crucifixion is essential.
Receiving the Holy Spirit. In Islam, it says God is closer to you than the veins on your neck, but he will not speak directly to you. In fact, it claims it is not befitting of God to do so. There is no intermediary between the Muslim and God, but prayer is a one-way communication. As a Muslim, I had no way of knowing whether he ever heard me or even accepted my prayers and pleas of repentance. There was no conversation between us. Conversely, when we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, God dwells within the believer in the form of the Holy Spirit who speaks directly to us, continually.
…He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you. John 14:16-18
Once I was saved and baptized, I was excited for what would happen next. I kept asking my mentor, “so now what?” She would lovingly but persistently keep saying, “wait to hear from the Lord.” I had no idea what she meant by this. I did not know how to talk with God, and I surely did not expect Him to talk back! It was not until I studied what it meant to receive the Holy Spirit that it made sense. Learning and experiencing the Holy Spirit’s guidance within me is how I know that I am in a relationship with the one TRUE God. Many Muslims have no idea that accepting Christ as their Lord and Savior leads to God’s indwelling through the Holy Spirit. It definitely piques their curiosity to think they would be able to hear from God directly.
Be sure it is clear the Trinity is three manifestations of the one true God and not three separate gods. We have God the Father who loves us; He came down in His Son to save us and leaves us His Holy Spirit to guide us. Muslims accuse Christians of being polytheists because they do not understand this, and unfortunately, many Christians cannot properly articulate it.
Having left Islam, it saddens me to hear even Christians make the false claim that we all worship the same God and each religious path can lead to the “truth.” Do not be content to give false or comfortable versions of a “truth” that leaves the individual without salvation and the love of God that comes through faith in Christ. The listener may not readily accept it, but that is not our concern. There is only one God, and no one will reach His presence except through faith in Christ. I understand and believe that now but I did not think that as a Muslim. I wish someone would have had the courage to say it to me earlier in my life.
Finally, I always end the discussion, challenging a Muslim to pray for God to reveal Himself and the reality of Jesus Christ. Their mind may fight the Truth of what you have told them but if it is His will, trust in the power of our God to lead them.
Hedieh Mirahmadi was a devout Muslim for two decades working in the field of national security before she experienced the redemptive power of Jesus Christ and has a new passion for sharing the Gospel. She dedicates herself full-time to Resurrect Ministry, an online resource that harnesses the power of the Internet to make salvation through Christ available to people of all nations, and her daily podcast LivingFearlessDevotional.com.
They will fight against you but will not overcome you. Jeremiah 1:19
1878: If there were a prize for Christian Group That Has Been Persecuted The Longest, the Waldensians would win it. Their story begins in 1173 when Peter Waldo, a wealthy merchant in Lyons, France, began to take his faith seriously. He sold his estate and gave the money to the poor then had two priests translate the Bible from Latin into French and began to memorize passages. He began to attract followers who wanted to know the Bible, preach it, and put it into practice. His followers called themselves the Poor in Spirit, and they went about in pairs, preaching in the marketplaces. Their lives of poverty and service were an obvious contrast with the wealth and immorality of the [Catholic] church’s officials. Despite the fact that they were doing nothing wrong, they were branded as heretics and excommunicated. In the Middle Ages, thinking outside the box was dangerous.
The Poor in Spirit —- or, to use the more familiar name, the Waldensians —- were active in the Piedmont, the region where France, Italy, and Switzerland meet. In this isolated, mountainous area they found shelter from persecution —- but never for long because now and then, a ruler, with the approval of the [Catholic] pope, would launch a crusade against these Bible-centered people. In 1487 the [Catholic] pope decreed that anyone killing a Waldensian could receive pardon for all sins and confiscate the dead man’s property.
In the 1500s the Waldensians joined forces with the Protestants —- after all, Waldo and followers had been ahead of the curve in emphasizing the Bible as a guide to life. But since they lived in a area that was technically Catholic, persecution continued. King Louis XIV of France detested the Waldensians and in 1685 ordered his cousin who ruled the region to exterminate them.
(A side note on King Louis XIV: from another book on the Waldensians, I learned that toward the end of the Kings life, he asked his priest what he could do to atone for the horrible acts he had done in his life. The priest’s answer was: exterminate the Protestants. )
Finally, on February 17, 1848, came the Edict of Toleration, issued by Charles Albert, king of Piedmont. The Waldensians could finally live and worship in peace
The Christian History Devotional — J. Stephen Lang
Reader, Revelation 6: 9-11 says “And when He broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained; and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, wilt thou refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth? And there was given to each of them a white robe; and they were told that they should rest for a little while longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brethren who were to be killed even as they had been, should be completed also.”
A terrible day of Judgement is coming when the Lord Jesus moves off the throne of grace onto His throne of Judgement. Those who have slaughtered God’s children will be Judged for eternity and placed in the lake of fire, which is the second death.
Is Jesus Christ, and Jesus Christ alone, your Shelter from this horrible day? I pray so. Thank you for your time. Carl
“It was on October 31, 1517 that Martin Luther, a Roman Catholic priest and professor of theology, nailed his thesis protesting the Catholic Churches sale of indulgences. It was a single day and single act of bravery that forever changed the history of the world. The celebration of Reformation Day has been the yearly practice of Bible Christians starting as early as 1567. Today this great Christian celebration has been completely overshadowed by the overtly pagan Roman Catholic practice of All Saints Day or better known as Halloween.”
From Berean Beacon – a ministry of former Catholic priests “whose sole purpose is the promotion of biblical Christianity.”
When Martin Luther nailed his thesis to the Wittenberg church door, he had no idea what these questions would precipitate. The resultant Reformation changed the western world for the better. As Luther and the other Reformation leaders read the Bible in the original languages in which it was written and put aside the traditions of men, the Light of the true gospel enlightened their understanding of God and His ways. As they communicated what they learned from the Bible, multitudes of people were set free from the bondage of the dominant church of their day.
May the Reformation continue for another 501 years or until Christ returns.
May the Light of the Bible continue to light your path!
“The Bible is the most priceless possession of the human race.”
Halley’s Bible Handbook (1965)
For the most part, prior to the time of the Reformation, lay people were not allowed to read the Bible and, in most cases, were not even allowed to have a Bible. The Popes of the Roman Catholic Church of that day decided who could read and have the Bible.
Pope “Hildebrand ordered Bohemians not to read the Bible. Innocent III forbade the people reading the Bible in their own language. Gregory IX forbade laymen possessing the Bible and suppressed translations. Paul IV prohibited the possession of translations without permission of the Inquisition. The Jesuits induced Clement XI to condemn the reading of the Bible by the laity. Leo XII, Pius VIII, Gregory XVI, and Pius IX all condemned Bible Societies.” Halley’s Bible Handbook
Some groups, such as the Albigenses (1208 AD) and Waldenses, who were fortunate enough to have the Bible, believed it, lived it, and preached it. For this, the Albigenses people group was murdered by the order of Pope Innocent III and the Waldenses were murdered and severely persecuted by the Catholic Inquisition, surviving only in the alpine valleys southwest of Turin, Italy. The authorities burned their Bibles and the people who had them.
With the advent of the printing press, it was impossible for the Popes and civil authorities to suppress the Bible. Men read it and their eyes were opened.
“There was study of the Scriptures in their original languages. Renewed knowledge of the sources of Christian doctrine revealed the vast difference between the native simplicity of the Gospel and the ecclesiastical fabric that professed to be founded on it. The Reformation owed its being to the direct contact of the mind with the Scriptures, and it resulted in the emancipation of the human mind from priestly and Papal authority. ” (Halley’s Bible Handbook)
Out of this revelation of Biblical Truth, men like Luther, a Catholic priest, and millions more threw off the traditions and commandments of men that had kept them enslaved and, for the first time in probably 1100 years, a multitude of people begin to walk in biblical truth as the Savior intended. As a result, the Western nations were changed forever.
Some may say “Why are you writing about something that happened 500 years ago?” It is because I find among the Protestant Church today, especially among the young, an almost total ignorance about the Reformation. If the Protestant Church is to remain free, it must understand the issues that brought about the Reformation. Issues that made millions of people endure being tortured and burned at the stake or drowned instead of expressing loyalty to the Pope and his church.
May you find your Priceless Possession today and begin to let its Light overcome any darkness in your life. May its Truth set you free from the enslaving teachings and commandments of men.