VOM’s Courageous Series books highlight the lives of faithful Christians throughout history, including the stories of biblical heroes Stephen, Thomas and Paul as well as three additional stories of well-known Christians Nicholas, Patrick and Valentine, whose faith informed their actions. Learn more here.
Published on April 7th, 2021
A school teacher in Iran was a strong Muslim. One of the teacher’s 15-year-old Christian students was praying for her salvation.
The teacher found herself thinking about God. She prayed, “God, I want to be closer to you. What do I need to do?” Then she had a dream. She dreamed she saw a big rock. A voice in her dream said, “Go there to pray.”
The teacher’s Christian student had an idea. He wrapped up a Bible and a Christian DVD, and gave it to the teacher as a gift. She read the Bible, and decided to follow Christ!
When Muslims in Iran become Christians, their families sometimes treat them harshly. What would she tell her husband?
To her surprise, when her husband found out she was a Christian, he said, “I have always loved Christ. But since you were so religious, I did not dare talk about my feelings.”
“Now she teaches Christian values in her classes,” said the Christian student. “She teaches how we need to do good to those who do us harm, and how to love those who hate us. She shares Christ with students who are ready to hear.”
In what ways did the student help the teacher come to the truth about Christ? In what ways can you help people come to Christ? Christian workers in Muslim lands say that many Muslims are coming to Christ after having dreams. What do you think the rock in the teacher’s dreams meant to her? (Read Psalm 18:2.)
Published on April 6th, 2021
(Source: Kids of Courage archives)
In Tehran, Iran, a 6-year-old boy watched a Christian television program about Jesus. The Muslim government does not allow Christian TV programs to be produced in Iran. But they cannot control what is broadcast into Iran from other countries by satellite.
As the boy listened to the followers of Jesus on his TV, he sang along with them and prayed when they prayed. One morning before school, he said to his mother, “I want to tell my teacher about Jesus. What can I do?”
Published on April 5th, 2021
Parents and Teachers
As we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, we remember his last words to the disciples before his ascension into heaven. “You will be my witness … to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8). Jesus also promised in John 15:20 that his true followers will be persecuted. The growth of the church and the spread of God’s Word have been accompanied by struggle and opposition.
The stories in the April 2021 The Voice of the Martyrs magazine can help you introduce children to the difficulties Christians encounter when sharing God’s Word in places where it is not welcome. You can share stories from the magazine and this site about Bible distribution and Bible smuggling with your children. Then pray together for the people in the stories.
Note: To subscribe to the free monthly The Voice of the Martyrs magazine, visit the subscription signup page.
*Read “Comparing Ideas About Bible Smuggling” in the Beliefs section
* Watch the Torchlighters DVD “The William Tyndale Story,” and find related coloring pages and activities at Torchlighters.org or in The Torchlighters Ultimate Activity Book.
*Find ways to pray for Bibles in the “Access to Bibles” sections of VOM’s Global Prayer Guide as a guide.
Published on April 2nd, 2021
Needed: Paper; a 2-inch jar lid or other circular object; scissors; pencils; a small, sturdy craft bag with handles
- Fold a 4-inch by 4-inch piece of paper in half lengthwise and crease it. Open it and fold it in half widthwise. Open it again.
- Center a 2-inch jar lid or other circular object on the square. Draw a circle around the lid with a pencil.
- Fold the paper corner to corner. Join the corners on the long edge together and fold it in half again.
- Draw two lines from the circle to the long edge of the paper. Make sure the lines are the same distance from the fold line in the center — about 1/8 inch.
- Draw small triangles and rectangles around the edge and outside the two lines you drew in the previous step. Make your decorations symmetrical — if you draw a triangle or rectangle on one side, draw one just like it on the opposite side.
- Cut out the shapes and open the paper to form a Coptic cross like those seen in Egypt . Cut out a 3 1/2-inch square from the front of the craft bag. Cover the opening with the cross, gluing the four points to the bag. Put an electric tea light in the bag.
Note: Some Coptic Christians in Egypt tattoo a cross on the inside of their wrist as a reminder of their Christian faith. Gangs that kidnap Christians remove the cross tattoos of their victims. But they can’t remove Jesus from the Christians’ hearts.
Published on April 1st, 2021
Richard Wurmbrand started The Voice of the Martyrs after spending 14 years in Romanian prisons for his faith. From the beginning, VOM workers helped persecuted Christians and smuggled Bibles into countries where Christian work was illegal.
Pastor Wurmbrand wrote, “Is it right for Christians to sometimes do illegal things [like smuggling Bibles]?”
Here is how he answered the question:
“One night, the Light of the world ‘smuggled’ Himself into Bethlehem as a baby. Then He was crucified and buried. A seal was put on His grave by the authorities. Everyone knew that no one was supposed to break a government seal.
“But angels are not bound by earthly laws. An angel rolled away the stone, not caring about the seal.
“Would we have advised Jesus to abide by the law and remain in the grave after the authorities had sealed the tomb? Jesus ‘smuggled’ Himself out of the grave and into life again.
“Some people think we should not break the laws of rulers [who don’t all allow Bibles to be brought into their country]. Jesus broke the law of gravity and ascended into heaven [Acts 1:9].”
(Source: Reaching Toward the Heights by Richard Wurmbrand. Edited and paraphrased for length, clarity, and age appropriateness.)
To Talk About
*Read 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 and Acts 1:9. Then tell what the verses say in your own words.
*Read the chart about Bible smuggling here. Do you think Christians should obey the laws of anti-Christian countries that forbid handing out Bibles?