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Iraq Then and Now


Sumeria, called Shinar in the Old Testament, was the lower part of Mesopotamia, the area between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. The southern part of Mesopotamia was later called Babylonia. Daniel and his friends were taken to Babylon, the capital of Babylonia. (See Daniel 3.) Babylonia was in the region that is now called Iraq.


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Teacher Becomes a “Bold Believer”

The Bold Believers’ class Colombia “shelter”

The Voice of the Martyrs received the following email:

“Hi. I’m trying to find some recipes for Colombian desserts to use in a drama. If you have some, or know where I could get some, that would help. Thank you. Anne M.”

Note: Most of the Bold Believers activity books in the Downloads section of this site include recipes from the featured countries. Read an edited excerpt below from another recent email to find out how a teacher in Michigan used the recipes, activities, and information in the Bold Believers books — and what she learned.

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Singing in the Cold


Pastor Richard Wurmbrand, the founder of The Voice of the Martyrs, told the following story about a man who was imprisoned for his faith in a country where Christians were persecuted:

“I met a Christian who had been in jail for 22 years. He was alone in a cell for 18 of those years. No books, no Bible, no anything. Just sitting in his cell. No letters from his family were allowed, no one ever coming to see him.

“For seven hours a day, they gave him a mattress to sleep on. Then they took the mattress out. For the other 17 hours of the day, he was not allowed to sleep even a little bit. He was not allowed to lie down on the cold concrete floor, to sit down, or to stand still. For 17 hours a day, he had to walk around the cell. The guards watched him through a peephole in the door. If he stopped walking, they entered the cell and pushed him so he would start walking again.

“After 18 years, they sent the man to work in north Siberia where the ice never melts. I asked the man, ‘After 18 years of suffering in your cell, then in the cold, how could you stand it?’

“The man did not reply in words. Instead, he sang a song that said, ‘The flames of the fire of love which Jesus kindled in my heart made the ice of Siberia melt. Hallelujah!’

“Later I was a welcomed guest in the home of a rich Christian in America. He told me, ‘I had such a bad day today. I lost a million and a half dollars in business deals.’

“’How much money do you have left?’” I asked.

“’I don’t know exactly,’ he answered. ‘Ten or 11 million.’ He was very unhappy.

“We get so attached to money and things, thinking that they are so important.

“But I had met the man who had spent 18 years in a cell and four more where the ice never melts, and he was not unhappy. He sang.

“All men stand before a narrow gate. One day we will have to pass through this gate. But on the other side is paradise. So let us prepare ourselves for it, beginning a life of joy and love now. May we live life with a shining face, a smile, and a song, as people who have an eternity of paradise before us.”

(Edited for clarity and reading level)

Note: Reports say that in some parts of Siberia, it is so cold that the moisture in people’s breath freezes solid and falls to the ground.

What did Pastor Wurmbrand mean when he said, “All men stand before a narrow gate”?

Sunday School Students Get Bibles

VOM supporters provide Bibles to people in several countries where Bibles are often hard to get. Those who receive the Bibles are often very grateful. Read some notes from a few of them below.

*“Thank you, aunts and uncles, who contributed the Bibles. I am a Sunday school student. I am 6 years old. I am not a good child in the Lord. I don’t know how to pray. Please pray for me so that I may be a good child. I appreciate your contribution in love. The Lord bless you.”

[Note: The student is using “aunts and uncles” as terms of respect.]

*“Respectful spiritual fathers, I greet you in the Lord. I am an orphan. No parents love me. I thought I wouldn’t get love anymore. Until one day, one of my friends preached the gospel to me. He told me there was a father in heaven. At once I received him. I longed for love and I have it. I felt so warm.

“I know, in the world, there are many people like me who need love. I am willing to be a person to pass God’s love. But now I still need to equip myself more. I was given the Bible in my church. It is new. I like it. I will read and study the word of God. I express my appreciation to you. God bless you.”

*“I give thanks to the Lord for his great love. I also thank you for your contribution. May you do more work for the Lord!

*I am a Sunday school teacher. In our church, there are 17 children attending Sunday school. They are cute and behave well. I am glad that they may know Jesus when they are young. Jesus loves children, and they have some strong points that I need to learn. Thank you for giving them the Bible.

(Some of the quotes and stories on this website have been edited and paraphrased from the original sources for clarity.)

Miss N

A Khmu girl

Miss N
“Miss N” is a 15-year-old Khmu girl. The Khmu are a tribe of people in Laos. Many Khmu are very poor.

Miss N finished ninth grade, but her family was too poor to send her to school anymore after that. Her parents also had to support her brothers and sisters.

So Miss N decided to leave her village to go to Vientiane, the capital of Laos, to look for work. She did not know that the city could be a dangerous place for youth who are alone. Some Khmu girls are kidnapped and taken to other countries to work as slaves.

Miss N rode a bus to Vientiane. But when she got to the bus station in the city, she didn’t know where to go. It was too late at night to take another bus back home. She sat down on her old suitcase and began to cry. A taxi driver and several other people surrounded her.

Pastor Paul
Just then, Pastor Paul, a Khmu Christian leader from Vientiane, arrived at the bus station to pick up a package. He saw the people around the girl, walked toward the group, and began talking to her in the Khmu language. She was happy to hear someone talk in her language.

Pastor Paul took Miss N to a place where other Khmu Christians were staying. She was excited to make new friends. On Sundays, she went to a Khmu church, learned about Jesus, and accepted him as Savior! Some church members helped her find a job.

Do you think her family was happy to hear that she was safe, had friends, and was working at a good job? Actually, they were not happy. They were upset that she had become a Christian. (Many Khmu people are spirit worshipers who fear spirits that they believe are in rocks, trees, and other places.)

Christians in Laos are thankful that they found Miss N before dangerous people found her. They ask that we pray about her problems with her family.

(To protect their identities, the names of some of the people on this website and some identifying details have been changed.)