Wed, Dec 1: For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. – James 2:10 Tonight’s lesson (#38) is entitled Ten Holy Commandments. Each commandment is listed and explained. At the end of the lesson a basic question is asked: “Well, then, why did God give these Ten Commandments to us if none of us can keep them?” Why, indeed?! Pray that every MNK who listens to this lesson tonight will be troubled by this question.
Thu, Dec 2: Jesus gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” – Acts 1:4-5 The MNK acknowledge Jesus as a great man, a sinless man, and a man whose accomplishments have never been matched. But they believe that the promised Holy Spirit came in the person of Mohammed, the founder of Islam. Pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal Himself to the MNK, just as He did throughout the Acts of the Apostles.
Fri, Dec 3: When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.” – Acts 2:37-38 The fervent prayer of every person living and witnessing among the MNK is for them to ask this question: What shall we do? Pray for multitudes of MNK to be affected by the radio broadcasts, audio tracts, written tracts, and the living witness of resident believers.
Sat, Dec 4: Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” – Acts 3:6 One of the tenets of Islam is the giving of alms. Every Friday, the crippled, infirmed and disabled gather early at choice locations in front of the mosque, begging for alms. Small coins are the most common donation. Pray for MNK believers to be empowered in faith and prayer to give liberally the gift God has given to them...the gift of eternal life.
Sun, Dec 5: When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus. – Acts 4:13 This is probably the greatest hindrance for MNK believers. Every religious leader within the MNK Islamic community is known as a learned man, one who knows what the Qu’ran teaches, knows what Islam expects, etc. A tremendous hurdle for MNK believers will be for them to teach about God, as unschooled, ordinary men (and women). Pray for MNK believers to tell the Good News that was told to them, in spite of their lack of formal education.
Mon, Dec 6: Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.” – Acts 5:38-39 Methods of evangelizing the MNK are numerous. Some are laid-back; others are confrontational; some are overt; others are subtle; some focus on the physical; others focus solely on the spiritual, with still others somewhere in the middle! And each person believes his method is the one that will reach the MNK. Pray for those of us who work among the MNK to be unified in our ultimate goal of seeing the MNK gather together, worshipping the One True God, for in the end, God’s perfect Will will be accomplished.
Tue, Dec 7: So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables.” So the word of God spread. – Acts 6:2,7 The MNK are the guardians of Islam in this area. They place their “clerics” on a very high pedestal, and do not expect them to do anything else. Our desire is to be recognized as approachable, compassionate Bible teachers, a characteristic alien to Islam. Pray that the MNK will become dissatisfied with the Islamic clerics and look to us, as Bible teachers, for answers to spiritual problems.
Wed, Dec 8: Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin. – Romans 3:20 Tonight’s radio broadcast, Lesson 39, is entitled The Purpose of the Ten Commandments. Hopefully by the prompting of the Holy Spirit, MNKs have been asking themselves since last week, “Why did God give these Ten Commandments to the Israelites if He knew no one could keep them perfectly?” Pray for MNKs to make the connection that just as the Israelites could not save themselves, despite their efforts to keep the Law, so it is with MNKs and Islam; pray for them to see that God has a mediator between Himself and man, and that is the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thu, Dec 9: Meanwhile the witnesses laid their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. – Acts 7:58 MNK men and women tend to follow the crowd. They are not normally desirous of being in the forefront or of being different. When they hear Biblical truths, if someone in the group disagrees stating that the Qu’ran teaches something contrary, they will agree as a group, whether they agree individually or not! Pray for one MNK family in every village to have the courage and strength to stand up and say, “As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”
Fri, Dec 10: On that day a great persecution broke out against the church at Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. – Acts 8:1 Historically, the MNK were mighty warriors. They fought many different tribes, colonialists and themselves. In the late 1800s during a civil war, Islam championed the common man, and the colonialists championed the aristocracy. The common man, i.e. Islam won; hence the reason Islam dominates today. As persecution broke out against the early Christian church, believers scattered, taking with them their zeal to evangelize. Pray for MNK believers to develop that same zeal, for we know persecution will come.
Sat, Dec 11: Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your saints in Jerusalem.” The Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument.” Then Ananias went. – Acts 9:13,15,17 Learning to trust the Lord in the face of obvious danger is a daunting task. MNKs know what Islam teaches about converting to Christianity, though strict adherence to this law has not, thus far, been practiced. Listening in prayer is not a skill practiced in Islam. Pray for MNK believers to learn to listen and heed the voice of the Holy Spirit as He guides and prompts them in daily decisions.
Sun, Dec 12: Peter said, “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts men from every nation who fear him and do what is right.” – Acts 10:34 MNKs have a tribal prejudice. Historically, their desire was to marry only MNKs, speak only MNK, and interact only with MNKs. This was feasible so long as they lived in isolation. But as MNKs move into the modern age of mass communication, ethnic isolation is no longer possible. So it will be with the emerging MNK church. Pray for MNKs as they become believers to be open to worshipping with believers from every tribe and nation.
Mon, Dec 13: The disciples, each according to his ability, decided to provide help for the brothers living in Judea. – Acts 11:29 MNKs are poor, subsistence farmers who barely have enough to feed their families throughout the year. Yet at every Islamic holiday, they somehow manage to buy the obligatory sacrificial sheep, goat or chicken, and provide new clothes for their children. A characteristic of God’s family, especially in the book of Acts, is their willingness to care for one another. Pray for MNK believers to hold on to one another as family and, when necessary, sacrifice for fellow believers.
Tue, Dec 14: It was about this time that King Herod arrested some who belonged to the church, intending to persecute them. But the word of God continued to increase and spread. – Acts 12:1,24 Since the beginning of church history, persecution has been a distinct part of church growth. This is not something we like to discuss or even to acknowledge. Around the world today, believers are being beaten, imprisoned, even murdered for their faith in Jesus Christ. Pray for MNKs as they listen to the Truth of the Gospel to grasp the hope that is ours through Jesus Christ.
Wed, Dec 15: You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol. – Exodus 20:3-4 Tonight’s lesson (#40) is entitled Broken Commandments. This lesson teaches clearly and powerfully that anything that replaces God and His truth is an idol. Westerners have many idols: money, power, fame. MNKs have many idols: money, power, fame! Satan uses whatever is important to us to keep us distant from God. Pray for the Holy Spirit to open the eyes of those MNKs listening to this lesson to see the things they depend on which are not of God; pray for men and women to turn away from fear and to the Truth.
Thu, Dec 16: The word of the Lord spread through the whole region. But the Jews...stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them from their region. So they shook the dust from their feet in protest against them and went to Iconium. – Acts 13:49-51 The mandate to share the Gospel is relevant to every believer and must be carried out wherever the Truth has not been proclaimed, whether it is welcomed or not. The MNK are culturally extremely hospitable; yet there are times when they are just barely so. Pray for those who share the Gospel among the MNK to have insight and the filling of the Holy Spirit to know where and when to stay...and when to shake the dust from their feet.
Fri, Dec 17: Paul and Barnabas returned, strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,” they said. – Acts 14:21-22 MNKs understand physical hardships. They endure a long, dry season; they endure an extremely wet rainy season, during which their physical labor is phenomenal; they keep a month-long fast from sun-up to sun-down; they regularly contract malaria and upper respiratory infections. The most injurious hardships, however, will be the ostracism which will result as they identify themselves as followers of Jesus. Pray for MNK believers to stand in their newfound faith; pray that their times of discipleship will be strengthening and encouraging.
Sat, Dec 18: “Why do you try to test God by putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear? No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved.” – Acts 15:10-11 Much like Judaism, Islam has many requirements, none of which guarantee salvation. MNK Muslims must keep the annual fast, they must make a pilgrimage to Mecca if they are able, they must give alms, they must pray five times daily, and they must repeat the witness of faith – there is no god but God and Mohammed is his prophet. When MNKs become followers of Christ, their new-found freedom is both a blessing and a curse. Pray for new MNK believers who desire to be free from the burdens of a work-based religion; pray that their faith will truly rest in the grace of our Lord Jesus.
Sun, Dec 19: The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They responded, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved – you and your household.” The jailer was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God – he and his whole family. – Acts 16:29-31,34 The jailer was the head of his household. He led his family. There is an MNK man who is the head of every MNK household; he protects, cares for, and leads his family. If he were to accept Jesus Christ as his Savior, he would have influence over his wife (or wives), his children, and everyone else who resides within his compound. Pray for MNK men to hear and receive the Good News of Jesus Christ!
Mon, Dec 20: When the Jews in Thessalonica learned that Paul was preaching the word of God at Berea, they went there too, agitating the crowds and stirring them up. – Acts 17:13 Two things stand out in Chapter 17 of the book of Acts. First, Paul went from place to place, constantly on the move, constantly sharing the Good News. Second, everywhere he went, people knew he had been there and he was either welcomed or run out of town! As the Gospel spreads among the MNK, no doubt Muslim “missionaries” will be sent from other places to find out what is going on, to try to curtail the movement of God’s spirit. Pray for courage and determination in those who share the Gospel with the MNK; pray for receptive ears and hearts.
Tue, Dec 21: One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision: “Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent. For I am with you, and no one is going to attack and harm you, because I have many people in this city.” – Acts 18:9-10 Ah, the joys of communion with God! Paul’s encouragement came not only from God’s assurance that He was with him, but also that God had many people in this city. As MNKs share the Gospel among themselves, they will discover those who are struggling to know God in the midst of darkness. God is at work in the hearts of MNKs. Pray for MNK believers to develop their relationship with Christ so they can hear His voice when He speaks.
Wed, Dec 22: The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. – John 1:14 Tonight’s radio broadcast is entitled The Tent of Meeting (Lesson 41). In this lesson “God tells Moses and the Israelites to make a very special tent so that He might teach them how to approach Him, meet with Him and worship Him.” And this lesson concludes, “the Redeemer Himself is the true Tent of Meeting.” As Christmas approaches, pray for the MNK to see that God’s gift to mankind, Jesus Christ, is the Redeemer who fulfilled all the prophecies.
Thu, Dec 23: About that time there arose a great disturbance about the Way. Demetrius, a silversmith, said, “This fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people. He says that man-made gods are no gods at all. There is danger that our trade will lose its good name.” – Acts 19:23,26-27 Every Muslim MNK wears protective amulets of one sort or another. Either they are leather pouches, or small bottles with seeds, or small bottles filled with special liquid, or leather cords. And the men who produce these amulets earn a very good living, for they know everyone will buy at least one in their lifetime. When Christianity takes hold of MNK hearts and lives, those who make a living in Satan’s territory will object. Pray for those men who create these amulets to come to know Christ; pray for their protection from evil spirits, as they have called on the very power of Satan to give these amulets their power.
Fri, Dec 24: Paul said, “I have declared to both the Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus.” – Acts 20:21 MNKs know about Christmas; they know about Christmas Eve; they know about the Christian Christmas traditions. On this Christmas Eve, pray for the Good News to be spread that Jesus Christ was born to bring salvation to the Mandinka, the Jola, the Wolof, the Sereer, the Balanta, the Manjack, and every other ethnicity throughout the world.
Sat, Dec 25: All the disciples and their wives and children accompanied us out of the city, and there on the beach we knelt to pray. – Acts 21:5 Paul was surrounded by families! Families are foundational to MNK society, but unimportant in their Islamic faith. Every man must have at least one wife and children are highly regarded. Pray for MNK families to come to know Christ and to work together in sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ with their friends and neighbors.
Sun, Dec 26: Then Paul said, “About noon as I came near Damascus, suddenly a bright light from heaven flashed around me. I fell to the ground and heard a voice say to me, ‘Saul! Saul! Why do you persecute me?’” – Acts 22:6-7 In witnessing to MNKs, common objections arise. How do you know Jesus is the Son of God? Did God take a wife? The Bible is corrupted and unreliable! But the one answer which cannot be argued with is the personal testimony of what God has done in the life of a believer. Pray for MNK believers to freely share what God has done for them and how He has had mercy on them (Mark 5:19).
Mon, Dec 27: The following night the Lord stood near Paul and said, “Take courage! As you have testified about me in Jerusalem, so you must also testify in Rome.” – Acts 23:11 This is another instance where Paul heard the voice of God and was blessed and comforted by Him. As MNK men come to Christ, their wives may be taken away from them. As MNK women come to Christ, their children may be taken away from them and they may be put out by their husbands. The only comfort in these situations will come from the presence and peace of God. Pray for MNKs to come to know the peace that only a relationship with God affords; pray for them as they accept God’s direction in their lives, even into difficult situations.
Tue, Dec 28: Paul testified: I admit that I worship the God of our fathers as a follower of the Way. I believe everything that agrees with the Law and that is written in the Prophets. – Acts 24:14 When an MNK examines Scripture, he finds many of the same people and stories he is familiar with in Islam. But often the stories are incomplete, or have been changed to accommodate the teachings of Mohammed. Teaching the Truth of Scripture is of paramount importance to the evangelization of the MNK. Pray for the Holy Spirit to work in the lives of MNKs, so that when they hear Biblical stories, they will be able to discern Truth from falsehood.
Wed, Dec 29: See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. – Hebrews 3:12 The Israelites’ Unbelief is tonight’s radio broadcast, Lesson 42. The lesson focuses on Numbers 13 and 14, God’s faithfulness in bringing the Israelites to the border of the land of Canaan, which He had promised to do! Yet, they did not believe God was able to defeat the inhabitants of Canaan. Tonight’s broadcast ends with, “to refuse to believe the Word of God is a terrible tragedy. God must punish everyone who refuses to believe Him.” Pray for MNK men and women to believe the Word of God and thereby have a place in His eternal kingdom.
Thu, Dec 30: In trying to understand Paul’s situation, Festus said, “They did not charge him (Paul) with any of the crimes I had expected. Instead, they had some points of dispute with him about their own religion and about a dead man named Jesus who Paul claimed was alive.” – Acts 25:18-19 In a nutshell, Festus summed up the whole of Paul’s preaching...Jesus was alive! The MNK believe that Jesus will return to judge the world, but they do not believe He died on the cross at Calvary, nor do they believe He rose from the dead. Pray for MNK minds to be open to new thoughts and ideas about Jesus, things contrary to traditional Islamic teachings.
Fri, Dec 31: Then Agrippa said to Paul, “Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?” Paul said, “Short time or long – I pray God that not only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains.” – Acts 26:28-29 Pray for MNK men, women, and children to come to know Christ in 2005! Thank God for those who have already acknowledged Him as Lord and Savior.