Smugglers – From a Middle East pastor and Bible smuggler

A sunset over a desert with a man leading a camel

Smugglers – From a Middle East pastor and Bible smuggler

748 words – reading time 4 minutes

Islam teaches good deeds will allow you to enter into Paradise because every good deed erases ten sins. Still, despite all your good deeds, there’s no guarantee of eternity. Having a Bible in our hands that we can give away gives our witness credibility. Culturally, when we see a book (Bible), regardless of whether we believe in it, it carries the weight of credibility. Our words or witness may lack credibility, but a book is not our opinion; it is a factual document. This is the story of a recent convert impacted by the authority of the physical Book we placed in his hands.

This 38-year-old man grew up in a very devoted Muslim family, his father was married to three wives, and he was the only son of the third wife. When he was five years old, his father took him to the mosque with his brothers from the other wives. His father began to teach him that the Quran is a sacred book of Islam and is their final authority, along with the Hadiths. If necessary, they must die defending it. He taught him to pray, fast during Ramadan, and obey the religious men without questions. As he matured, he noticed contradictions between what was taught in the mosque and school compared with the behavior of his brothers and father. When he asked his father about that, his father told him, “No one could obey all Allah’s commands; therefore, we ransom our souls with good works. For this reason, every good deed we do erases ten sins, no matter what those sins are.” Then his father said, “Look how many workers come from poor Islamic countries to work for us so they can feed their families and spread Islam in their countries; these are good deeds!”

So, he took this belief and started walking by it. Sometimes he would be asked, “Why do you claim that you are a Muslim yet live worse than infidels?” He would tell them, “It is because Islam is a religion of ease and not hardship, and my good deeds are more than enough to cover all my sins.”

One day his mother woke him to the news that his father had died, and he grieved because there was no certainty about where he was going after death. This was a shock to him. So he began to rethink his life and returned to speak to the Imam of the mosque where he grew up. He asked the Imam how he could please Allah. The answer was the same as always. Outwardly, one must perform acts of obedience to religious traditions. Still there was no answer on the inside, only a deep void of any concept of God.

When I met him, he started complaining about his loss, emptiness, and sadness after losing his father. I began to talk to him about God and how He desires to become our eternal Father and is always available to us if we believe in Him. I told him how we could trust Him in our lives no matter what’s happening. I then started to tell how we can have a relationship with God. He interrupted, saying he had tried to please Allah with many good deeds, and I told him good deeds don’t produce faith, and without faith, you can’t please God! This was another big shock for him that he needed time to consider.

After we had met several times, he asked how he could trust what I was telling him. He needed to hear more than my witness. It was then that I risked offering him a Bible to read. (Doing this could put me in prison under great torture and even death.) He took it and started reading it nonstop, and then after a week, we met again. He said, “According to your Bible, I have nothing to do with God, and every Muslim person is going in the wrong direction!” He confessed that they worship a Black Stone in Mecca, but they do not worship the True God. Then I explained to him how he can have faith in the true God and how this faith transforms him into a new creation and lead him to walk in that faith. After I explained, he looked into my eyes and said, “That’s what I have been missing all my life.” It was then he came to the knowledge of salvation and accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as his savior.


  • Jon Nelms

    The Rev. Jon Nelms is the founder of Final Frontiers. Called to missions at the age of eleven, he has been winning souls since he was twelve. Jon was a street preacher, pastor, church planter, and missionary before founding Final Frontiers in 1986 at the age of 30.

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