A missionary in Saudi Arabia who was caught, brought to court and could be beheaded was saved by God
Updated: Jul 18, 2022
“IF I'M BEHEADED, I SURRENDER MY LIFE TO YOU, LORD!” (2nd part of “I HAD A DREAM”)
When we go on missions, we would think of the difficulty of being in a different country because of the culture, food, language, and sometimes the unfamiliar weather. But what if your life is at stake and you could be beheaded? Would you continue to trust God? Or would you give up the fight? Let me tell you how God showed His power through the life of a remarkable woman of faith. This is the continuation of Pastor J’s story. With the Holy Spirit’s guidance and power, the church ministry was growing so fast though Pastor J and her church members faced huge opposition. It was just another ordinary day when the Arab police raided the church where they usually have their fellowship. Favorably, God spoke to Pastor J to change the schedule of their fellowship and they had it at night instead of the usual time. When the Arab police came to the place of worship, there were no other church members except for the caretakers who are also church members. Because the caretakers were suspected to be Christians, they were imprisoned, and it was hard to find where the police brought them. There was no way to find out what happened to the caretakers and where they were held captive. Pastor J cried to the Lord and the Holy Spirit told her to fast for 14 days. She was constantly pleading with God to protect the caretakers and comfort the other members. Some of them were terrified but Pastor J kept on fasting. After nine days of fasting, the caretakers were released. God answered Pastor J’s prayers, yet she kept on praying and fasting. On the 12th day of her fasting, she received a phone call in the morning from one of the members, living in another city, asking if she was okay because she heard that a certain ‘Pastor J’ will be imprisoned on that day. While she was working at the hospital around 10 a.m., without any explanation, she was taken by the religious police known as the Mabahith or the Mutawa. While she was escorted out of the hospital, she prayed for the people not to be scattered, to have peace in their hearts as well as with hers, and that God would comfort the church members just in case she might be beheaded. She knew that she was in big trouble for sharing the Gospel. Criminal law punishments in Saudi Arabia include public beheading, stoning, amputation, and lashing. As she finished her prayer, she felt peace in her heart. “It was hard to explain, it felt very cool on my chest, and I couldn’t think of any problem at that time” she commented. “I finally understood how the disciples must have felt when they were persecuted,” Pastor J thought while she was detained. “If I’m beheaded, I surrender my life to you, Lord” she added. She couldn’t feel any discomfort and it was like being under anesthesia. The Sharia court system constitutes the basic judiciary of Saudi Arabia, so she was brought to the court and an Arab man who was the judge was yelling and scolding her for sharing the Gospel. Pastor J held her silence although she was praying in the Spirit. She remembered that God warned her through her church member before she was caught at the hospital, so she changed her prayer before the pronouncement. “Change my circumstance so this man won’t mock Your Name, God” she stared at the judge in front of her while she was praying in Spirit. When the trial was over, the judge closed the book in front of her and said “I’m closing this case”. Pastor J was set free! Yes! she was not charged! God saved her! The legal system of Saudi Arabia is based on Sharia, in which Islamic law is derived from the Qur’an. There was no way she would be set free when she shared the Gospel with others in Saudi Arabia. She immediately left the place before the judge changed his mind, but she was called back by the judge again. The judge gave her an expensive pen as a gift. He said it was a remembrance of their meeting. She was so surprised by his gesture. After she was released, the Muslim priest in the hospital she has worked in, interrogated her; but to her amazement, the Holy Spirit even enabled her to share the Gospel with him. It was surely God who touched the Muslim priest because instead of reprimanding her, his remarks were “no one should be forced to be a Muslim, you are so kind J”. Pastor J almost cried in front of him because she was full of thanksgiving to what God has done for her and to the people around her. Things became stricter but it didn’t stop Pastor J. She was just more careful, and she continued to do God’s work. The people who accepted Jesus Christ in their lives grew in number. In every revival meeting they had, they saw the mighty acts of the Holy Spirit. Many were baptized in the Holy Spirit, spoke in unknown tongues, saw visions, and received healing. God has touched their lives through extraordinary miracles and lives were transformed. Different nationalities were drawn to their ministry. Some were South African, Nigerian, Turkish, and Filipino. For nine years that she stayed there, God gave her disciples, and two churches are flourishing. Even until now, the church buildings are still standing but of course under a pretense of just an ordinary building. God’s power and faithfulness couldn’t be stopped and even with her work back then she got promoted. There was a great harvest of souls of different nationalities and 12 leaders were working with her side by side. As Pastor J left Saudi Arabia, the 12 leaders and an associate pastor who is an African nurse continued to do God’s work until now. In 2015, Pastor J went back to the Philippines and saw Pastor Gani’s heart for missions. She decided to be a part of ITP and did her Access 1 Training and after that, she has been to different countries in 2016. She shared the gospel with different countries such as Malaysia, Thailand, Japan, South Korea, and Indonesia. She has gone to ten nations and she’s praying for long-term missions through ITP. Pastor J saw God’s goodness in her life and that nothing can stop her from going on mission trips. God is truly awesome, and nothing can beat the amazing things He has done in Pastor J’s life. Glory to the Highest and Almighty God! The God who can turn your enemy into an alliance! Nothing and no one can compare how powerful He is!! He is the One and only God. He is Supreme, the true God in a world that promotes many false gods and religions. He is the one on whom we can fully rely, He is Sovereign, and He is the one we can completely trust. He is the Mighty One over all of nature, this world, and the heavens above, our creative God who has worked wonders by His hands. God reminds us that He is Elohim every single day. His amazing power is at work in every sunrise, every sunset, in the way He holds the stars in the sky and carries His people through difficult times. You can be assured that you are held by an Almighty God, you never have to fear, and God’s hands are strong and secure. Mark 17:16 These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak in new languages.
(Written by: Venus Jablo)