Of the 200 million people in Pakistan, approximately 99% of the population is Muslim and unreached. Sadly, Christians are marginalized in society and the blasphemy law is a tool used to persecute believers by the Muslim population. Furthermore, the church is small in number and suffers spiritual malnourishment as a result of shallow doctrine, a misunderstanding of the gospel, unbiblical practices, untrained leaders, and heretical teaching.
In light of the discouraging statistics and the unhealthy nature of the church, we must pray unceasingly for the honor of Christ in Pakistan through the heralding of the glorious gospel, the establishment of biblical churches, and the training of godly pastors. Let us respond obediently to Christ’s words and “beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”
Thankfully, HeartCry Missionary Society is assisting a Pakistani church planter to receive biblical training in the context of a healthy church in the Greater Middle East. As you read the update, we plead with you to pray for the partnership and for more opportunities to proclaim the light of the glorious gospel in this area of the world where spiritual darkness pervades.
Behroze was converted in Pakistan out of cultural Christianity and developed a great zeal to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ. Afterwards, he began a church but for financial reasons he moved to a country in the Greater Middle East for employment to care for his family. After he moved he became a member of a solid church and leaned more about biblical ecclesiology. Behroze is now an intern in that healthy church, training for the ministry for the purpose of planting churches among Pakistanis where he is now living and in Pakistan in the future.
Testimony of Conversion
Behroze is from a traditional Christian family in Pakistan. Among the Christians in
Pakistan, there is little evangelical witness and most “Christians” are not believers, but only Christian in name and heritage. He came to faith in 2010 at the age of 24 in Pakistan.
Call To Ministry
God grew in him a zeal for Christ and desire to know God. Behroze attended a seminary part time in Pakistan over the course of 3 years. During his time in seminary, he became very active in evangelism by sharing the gospel with friends and traveling to different small Christian villages where no evangelical churches existed. In these locations, Behroze would participate in open air preaching. Behroze continued serving the Lord and planted and pastored a church of about 50 people in a village for a little over a year. The church was unable to support Behroze and his family of 4 children and against his wishes, he left the church and moved to the Greater Middle East (GME) in 2016 to get a job to support his family.
Upon arriving in the GME, he heard about a healthy church through his brother and immediately began attending, and later joined. Attending the church for Behroze is a difficult task considering his work and living situation. His accommodation is very far from the church so it’s a considerable sacrifice to take taxis to church every week on his low income.
Behroze became a member of the church and began attending the home group in the church where he naturally cared for the people, had an eager and humble attitude to learn from the word of God, and a zeal to share the gospel. One of the elders in the church recognized Behroze was faithful, available, and teachable and began meeting with him one to one on a weekly basis in 2017.
Over the past year and a half, Behroze has grown tremendously in the Lord. He’s been co-leading the home group with an elder, and has also started an evangelistic bible study at his accommodation through which two Pakistanis have to come to faith and have been baptized and joined the church.
Behroze comes from a Pentecostal church background in Pakistan that was weak on sound doctrine. However, through sitting under the preaching of the word and spending long hours in Bible study with his elder, he has been converted to a biblical understanding of conversion, doctrines of grace, sound doctrine on gifts of the Spirit, and an understanding of healthy church. Behroze has learned so much about a healthy, gospel-centered church as he has been able to see it first hand at the local church where he is a member. He recognizes many things that he did wrong while in the ministry in Pakistan, and he now sees healthy churches as God’s plan to grow his kingdom rather than relying on quick evangelistic programs.
While Behroze has the long-term desire to pastor a healthy church in Pakistan, he also recognizes the great need where he is living. The vision is to see Behroze plant a Hindi speaking church in the GME. The church plant will be under the close oversight of the elders and church staff so they could help provide guidance. This is an ideal church planting situation concerning Behroze’s development as he would be able to do it in close partnership of the church where he can sit with the elders as they prepare sermons, come to elders meetings, develop church documents, help prepare and teach church membership classes, see how they care for members and guard the doctrine of the church and much more all in the context of close, long-term relationships.
The Long Term Vision
The long term vision is for the Hindi speaking church to become a healthy church. At that point the church will send Behroze back to Pakistan to plant or reform a church, depending on the local connections at that time. To prepare Behroze for the ministry the elders have determined to train him through an internship through the local church. The senior and associate pastors, along with two pastoral assistants, will direct the internship. The pastors have run intern programs for years and have a wealth of experience and resources for this. The internship could likely extend longer than 1 year depending on language issues. Behroze has workable English, but is not fluent enough to quickly read theological books in English. Behroze will be sent to language lessons during the internship. The elders plan to invest long-term in him even past the completion of the internship for the required time to see a Hindi speaking church if God so chooses to work in that way.
Timothy began working for HeartCry in 2015 and assists with the work in Asia. He is married, has eight children, two sons-in-law, one daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren.More By Timothy Jotham