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Incidents of Persecution on the Rise in Indonesia
August 21, 2015 by Open Doors in Asia
A A Christian from a Muslim background who comes to Christ. (MBB) was brutally stabbed in the head after attending a discipleship class on August 1 with her husband in West Java. Listy* died on August 6 due to the severity of her injuries. Police said that all evidence points to her step-grandson, helped by his uncle, as the attacker.
“My grandson was driven by jealousy,” says Marno*, the grieving husband. Also a former Muslim, Marno learned about Jesus through his second wife Listy (his first wife had passed away). Though he never declared his belief in Jesus openly, the discipleship classes he regularaly attended produced many positive changes in life and behavior. His grandson from his first wife noticed the change and grew increasingly unpredictable. He stole Listy’s necklace on July 27. “I knew what he did, but turned a blind eye. Instead, I bought my wife new jewelry,” Marno explained. Marno’s reaction upset Riko even more.
Marno has asked that we pray for him to be able to endure the situation, and for justice to be served for his grandson. He also asked that we pray for him to forgive his family members and become a powerful witness to others.
In a separate incident in West Java, local police arrested a Christian man on July 24 on charges that he had committed “unpleasent deeds” and violence.
His arrest appears to be related to an incident a few weeks earlier when a Muslim extremist mob forcibly dragged his pregnant wife Dini*—a former Muslim—out of her in-laws’ house and delivered to her parents’ home. Her upset husband took out a sword to defend her, but put it down again upon the counsel of his brother.
The couple’s trouble began when Dini’s parents and uncle accused her husband of abducting and marrying her without permission—which she strongly denies. “They didn’t bless our marriage because we came from different faiths,” says Dini, who also left her parents to escape frequent abuse. Out of respect for her parents, the couple got married following the Muslim custom; later, however, Dini expressed her desire to be a Christian and requested a wedding ceremony at a local church.
Dini’s husband is now in prison awaiting the prosecution process. The village authorities and police offered to free him if he agreed to leave his faith, but he firmly refused, saying, “I’d rather stay in prison than become a Muslim!”
Please pray for the following:
- Pray for Dini and her pregnancy—may the Lord protect the mother and unborn baby despite the stressful circumstances.
- The separation from his wife and future child without any updates of their condition has caused Dini’s husband great distress. May God grant him peace that surpasses all understanding.
*Names have been changed for security reasons.
Father, we grieve for our fellow Christians in Indonesia as they suffer for their faith in Christ. We weep with Marno over the death of his wife. We pray with him that he might endure these dark times and that justice might be accomplished. And we pray for Dini that You will protect her and her unborn child from harm. We pray that You will strengthen her to endure this difficult trial, that You will increase her new faith and that the light of Christ might shine forth from her life to her family. We pray for Dini’s husband, isolated from his wife without word of how she is. Comfort him, Father, with Your peace, far beyond anything we can imagine. In his helplessness, turn his eyes toward You and Your power to sustain them all. Let justice prevail that he might be released from jail and reunited with his wife. In the name of Jesus who endured injustice on our behalf, who hears our cries and who is a ready help in our distress. Amen.