Can you imagine living as a Christian without a Bible? Think about it. When you want to know more about Jesus, or want to grow spiritually in your walk with Him, what book would you go to? The Bible of course!
Timothy, a Gospel for Asia-supported national missionary, met Mahabala and his wife, Nitara, during an outreach.
They recently had received Christ as their Savior, but they were not able to get a Bible in their own language and had no one to help them grow spiritually. They were even more discouraged when Mahabala's parents kicked them out of the family home because of their new faith.
To encourage them, Timothy gave them a Bible published by GFA Bible Society. They were so delighted to receive the Word of God that they faithfully read it every day. They also began to attend worship services. As a result, their fellowship with Him increased day by day, and they became strong in their faith.
Then their commitment to Christ was severely tested. After kicking them out of his home, Mahabala's father used his influence to get his son fired. With the loss of Mahabala's salary, the couple began selling their jewelry to pay the rent. In their culture, this was the last step before turning to begging.
But Mahabala's father made an offer: If they would reject Jesus and return to their old religion, he would give them 400,000 rupees-the equivalent of 18 months of Mahabala's previous salary. When Mahabala didn't respond, his father increased his offer to 1 million and later to 2 million rupees. Yet Mahabala and Nitara decided to hold firm in their faith, even if it meant living in poverty.
You see, they had learned from their new Bible that their true riches were stored up in heaven and that following Christ was worth more than gaining the whole world.
Only God's Word has that kind of power. And there is nothing closer to the heart of God than giving His Word to new believers like Mahabala and Nitara—and to those who do not yet know of the God who loves them so much that He sent His Son to die in their place.
Many in Asia do not have a Bible; therefore, they have no guide in their spiritual walks with the Lord and no way of sharing His word with others.