Daily Topic for October 13, 2009
The first step is to acknowledge that God is our Creator. The next step is to thank Him for His provisions. The Jat people have control over some of the world’s most fertile lands in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh. They are among the world’s best farmers, and their labor is crucial in keeping the hundreds of millions in this region from starving. It would be very easy for them to become prideful, instead of thankful.
Pray that the Jat peoples will humbly praise the God who has given to them so generously.
About 4,000 Jats live in Bangladesh, though the majority of them live in India. Historically, most Jats have been farmers and members of the military. Over the years, they have sent a very large percentage of their eligible young men to the army. Over half their population is under age 16.
Jats are known as brave and ready fighters. They are fiercely independent and have offered heavy resistance to any armed invasion. The Jats retreated to the countryside if they lost a battle. They became landed barons; landlords with swords strapped to their waists. At the village level, they elect their own headmen. All Jats enjoy equal social status. Only the aged receive special respect and esteem above others. Jats marry within their own communities or clans.
Though most are Hindu in India, 99 percent of Jats in Bangladesh claim to be Muslims according to the Joshua Project. Many of them practice “folk” Islam, a combination of traditional religion, Hinduism and Islam. The vast majority of the Jats have never heard the gospel. Only a small number of missionaries are allowed to enter Bangladesh. Technically, freedom of religion exists in Bangladesh, but in reality, non-Muslims face pressure and discrimination in all areas of life.Learn more at joshuaproject.net
Pray for openness to the gospel, especially among young Jats. Pray for the few missionaries who are in the country to be effective at evangelizing and building groups of believers into active churches led by national citizens.-JWS