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President's Perspective: An Unprecedented Harvest

President's Perspective: An Unprecedented Harvest

Shocking! Unfathomable! In every direction I looked, there were signs of significant deterioration. I was standing in the heart of Cairo, Egypt. This once thriving city now reeled under economic devastation. This devastation has arisen partly from the Arab Spring uprisings, partly from the loss of tourism purposefully orchestrated by Islamic terrorists, partly from the spiritual darkness that holds the majority of its citizens captive, and partly from the constant tensions among the various factions of Islam.

These economic challenges affect the very fabric of Egyptian society. They leave people struggling to make ends meet, communities suffering from high levels of unemployment, and a whole society questioning whether there is any real hope for the future.

Matthew 9:36 (NASB) captures a similar scene: “Seeing the people, He [Jesus] felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd.” But Jesus saw more than just their mental and spiritual devastation; He also saw the openness to the gospel that their difficult circumstances had produced—a plentiful harvest.

As I stood there in Cairo, I realized that the men, women, and children I saw represented millions upon millions of Muslims who are living in distress across the Middle East and Northern Africa. Unable to find hope in their religion to survive these difficult days, they have lost their spirit; Satan has stolen it from them. That’s the bad news. The good news is that this has made them a plentiful harvest field.

But before you rejoice, there is more bad news: “the workers are few” (Luke 10:2). In fact, many Christian workers have pulled out of these areas of the world because of the increased danger. The workers are decreasing at a time when the harvest is ripening. In fact, there are more Muslims—and not just a few more, exponentially more—coming to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ right now than there have ever been in the history of Islam.

Several factors have brought about this unprecedented harvest, not the least of which is the peoples’ disillusionment with Islam, partially brought about by groups like ISIS. Another attributing factor is that the governments of many Muslim majority countries are so occupied with bringing stability back to their countries that they are too busy to suppress the evangelistic efforts of Christians.

This opportunity will likely be short-lived, so we must act now before the door closes again!
Jesus gave us the strategy we need for this abundant harvest. Pray to “the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest” (Luke 10:2 NET). At WGM, we’ve been praying; and God is, of course, answering those prayers. He is raising up workers for His harvest field. He also instructed us to act: “Go therefore and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19 NKJV). The story of John Raad in this issue of The Call is the story of one worker God has raised up for this harvest.

The Call (December 2017)

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