April 4, 2013
On April 13, I will be leaving for Turkey. This is one of the more moderate Muslim nations. Since it straddles both Europe and Asia, it is more secular. Yet there is a fault line between Islamists and secularists. Constitutional guarantee of religious freedom has not been fully upheld. Recent death threats and murders of Christians highlight the present reality and severity of persecution and the likelihood of more to come. Almost 97 percent of the population is considered Muslim, 3 percent non-religious. So you can see how few Christians there are among the Turkish people. The good news is that growth, albeit slow, is being seen of Turkish evangelical Christianity.
I’ll be speaking and teaching some seminars at an international pastor’s conference. The hotel where the pastors are staying overlooks the harbor of ancient Attalia, out of which Paul & Barnabas sailed at the end of their First Journey (Acts 14:25-26). We will have some great speakers who are New Testament scholars and will share so much about this biblical area. (I’m staying at a smaller hotel not on the coast!) One of my friends is coming along who will be providing many of the meals for the conference. It should be a great conference.
Then I will go on to Ethiopia for a week. Please pray for safe travel and opportunities to be a good witness for Jesus. Check back as I will blog along the journey.