Central Africa is facing so much unrest right now, with so many lost souls in need of a savior.
Through these uncertain times, Africa is getting a glimpse of hope with peace efforts from an unlikely source.
War is no stranger to the natives of Central Africa, leaving violence woven within the culture, but there is a charity that sees a cure for the hate they have been accustomed to.
And their plan is to get 30,000 copies of the New Testament to people struggling in the Central African Republic.
The prints would be in a local dialect that the Word of God has yet to be translated in, making the promise of peace and salvation in the Lord Jesus Christ available to a land that could really use it at this time.
The Christian Post reports on how the “way toward a conversion of hearts” is going to begin:
“Aid to the Church in Need is spending $56,000 for the printing of the New Testament in the Sango dialect so that the people of this Christian-majority country can have “hope in a seemingly hopeless situation” where clashes between the predominantly Muslim Seleka rebel group and the Christian-dominated Anti-Balaka militia have left numerous people dead, according to Crux Now.”
Outcomes seem dire as two ancient enemies come to a head on African soil, leaving heartbreaking casualties in their wake. Just recently, more than 16 people’s lives were taken and 200 more injured by civil conflict in Bangui.
Edward Clancy is the director of Outreach and hopes that the “message of self-sacrificial love” will reach the hearts and minds of the individuals caught up in the cycle of violence between the Muslim rebel groups and the Christian militia.
“It is on this intimate level that the Bible has impact. It provides a way toward conversion of hearts. A slow tireless campaign of affecting one person at a time, but the change happens”, Clancy told Crux.
The Pew Research Center has found that almost 90% of all of Central African inhabitants are likely Christian, of which are 60% Protestant and 28% Catholic. And, shockingly, Muslims make up only about 10% of the population, many of which have taken up arms.
However, as a display of unconditional love, the church in the region has allowed many Muslims to find solace within their building, attempting to make it one of the rare places that fighting ceases.
Years of battling for power within the Central African Republic (CAR) was brought to a head in 2013 with the Muslim Seleka rebels gaining control. The Christian Anti-Balaka militia did not receive this takeover quietly, and fought back every chance they had.
This constant discourse resulted in international power houses negotiating a forced surrender a year later from the Seleka to a transitional government, that was never truly accepted by either parties.
To this day the ravaged country region is in a state of uncertainty, as the transitional government struggles to maintain control over the rebel fighting.
Following the 2014 conflict, Cameron Thomas, International Christian Concern’s Regional Manager for Africa, labeled it a “culture of reprisal”, according to the Christian Post.
“As anti-balaka militias continue to commit attacks against both militants and civilians, with Seleka remnants returning such attacks in kind, innocent civilians, including Christians seeking refuge behind church walls, continue to suffer the consequences of growing sectarian violence. The future of the Central African Republic will continue to darken so long as the international community does not take decisive action to stem the ongoing violence and bring about the necessary resolution to prevent future attacks.”
It is clear that Thomas does not see resolution through the country’s own volition. Supporters have been urging for international support.
But what Central Africa really needs is a change from the inside out. It is a heart condition that the violent sects suffer from, one that only God can heal. Clancy speaks on this in saying, “The Holy Bible opens the door to forgiveness and mercy while presenting that all people are created by God and have hope of conversion.”
A shocking 1.5 billion people are without the Word of God in their native tongue, according to Wycliffe Global Alliance. While Bible projects have begun for many of these people, having a personal copy of the Scriptures is a blessing that thousands will never know.
Wycliffe Global Alliance reports there is an amazing 2,659 languages that are in active development. However, as more people groups are discovered around the world, the need for more Bibles are desired.
What the Aid to the Church in Need is doing for the Central African people speaking the Sango dialect is nothing short of wonderful. Getting one step closer to the world having the Bible to read and study, brings suffering individuals a step farther from peril.
As Psalms 119:105 tells us “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” The CAR people are trying to forge their own way to peace, apart from the peace that “transcends all understanding” (Philippians 4:7).
The conflicted individuals will learn from their new Bibles that we must ready ourselves with the armor of God to fight the true enemy. This will, hopefully, cause them to put down their weapons of war for weapons of peace.
“Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
War and violence will not stop overnight, unless the Lord wills it, but every life won for the Lord through the efforts of the Bible aid to CAR will be a praise worth singing about.
Please let us know in the comments section if you have a praise about someone you know reading the Word of God and being changed.