A woman takes notes at a Bible study in Jordan. ‘Truth for the Youth’ events such as this are helping to reverse a trend of young people abandoning their faith

Rekindling a love for Scripture in Jordan

Esther King discovered a home from home during a trip to see what our team in Jordan is doing.

Having battled through the Wednesday evening traffic, our journey punctuated by the occasional blare of a car horn, we arrived at a church in an ancient town to the south-west of Amman in Jordan. Stepping out of the car, I marvelled at the impressive, beautifully-lit edifice with its frescoes and stained glass windows.

A ‘Truth for the Youth’ Bible study about to break into song in Jordan

I was 2,300 miles from home, but going through the gates and stepping onto the church concourse felt just like home with young people in their 20s and 30s clustered around, greeting each other with hugs, talking excitedly – catching up on each other’s news. I felt a familiar sense of warmth and fellowship.

This would be a heartening sight anywhere in the world, but it’s particularly encouraging here. Christians make up only three per cent of the population in Jordan and although there is religious freedom for Christians to practise their faith, there’s been a long-standing trend of young adults abandoning the faith.

‘Their experience of church didn’t seem to answer the questions they had; many felt they didn’t have a personal relationship with the Lord,’ explained Rama from our team in Jordan.

‘Truth for the Youth’

The ‘Truth for the Youth’ project started in 2013 and its focus is on rekindling a love for the Scriptures and providing the tools needed to understand and live by it. Thanks to your generous gifts, the project is able to resource a whole range of opportunities such as an evangelistic summer camp, follow-up discipleship events, ‘faith booster’ days and leadership training for youth leaders. 

Six years into the project, the ‘good news group’ I attended is evidence of the fruitfulness of this approach. This Bible study started out as a small Monday night gathering but grew so big that a second one now takes place on Wednesdays.

Soon we were filing into the church and getting comfortable in the pews. I was struck by the stripped-back and authentic nature of the evening, free from gimmicks attempting to tap into popular culture.

Haya, who runs this group with her husband, led us in prayer and worship alongside a guitarist.

Thousands of young Christians are growing deeper roots and maturing in their faith

Sharing the gospel

Rama translated for me, as Haya’s husband shared the gospel. He spoke of the value of the cross, the power of the crucifixion of Jesus and his resurrection. ‘These are not just historical incidents,’ he said, ‘But something that brings real transformation. Our sin was carried to the cross and crucified!’

Rama Haddadin, project co-ordinator for Bible Society of Jordan

Going back to Numbers 21 and the story of Moses lifting up the bronze snake so that the Israelites could look to it and be saved, he traced this idea through the New Testament in the Gospel of John and the letters to the Corinthians and Colossians. Jesus, the son of man, was lifted up. ‘Will we turn to him and be saved?’ came the simple appeal.

The talk was lengthy and deep. Everyone listened intently with Bibles out. Some scribbled in notebooks and there was plenty of laughter too. It’s thanks to our supporters and the dedication of our team in Jordan that thousands of young Christians are growing deeper roots and maturing in their faith.

Songs of praise

We finished with more songs which Rama explained were all about what Jesus achieved on the cross. I wished I could understand the Arabic on the projector screen and join in with the singing! But the lyrics of How deep the father’s love were swirling round in my head and I sang them in my heart.

Afterwards, chatting enthusiastically with some of the group, I asked if they knew that song and sang it. The guitarist asked if I knew How great is our God and there started an impromptu worship session in Arabic and English, segueing into Above all powers, above all kings. It was incredible!

We’re so grateful for the support, which is making this work possible. Please pray for these young people and ask God to use them as mighty witnesses in their country.

Support Bible work in the Middle East

Esther King is a Digital Communications Officer at Bible Society

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