Daily Topic for February 11, 2012
Daniel and his friends did not serve in Babylon on missionary visas, but as trainees for civil service positions. They were among the first “tentmakers” working in positions of useful service among foreign nations, but also serving as representatives of the Most High God. Today, when many countries have closed their doors to career missionaries, God is using other job titles to place His chosen vessels in strategic places. The Dyula people were instrumental in spreading Islam throughout West Africa. They acted as “tentmakers” for Islam, but they can also be “tentmakers” for the gospel.
Pray that the Holy Spirit will grant faith to the Dyula people so that they will joyfully take His Word to the peoples of Africa.
Here is your one-minute Malinke language lesson for today. The Malinke word for “merchant” is “dyula,” pronounced, JOO-la. You can call them Dyula or Jula, but either way you are talking about a people group that has some of West Africa’s best merchants.
As far back as the 14th century, the Dyulas were engaging in business throughout West Africa. A century before that Dyulas encountered the Soninke people who convinced them to practice Islam. At that time they were part of the Malian Empire that ruled West Africa. When the Malian rulers began asking the merchants to establish colonies, the Dyulas went. As they engaged in trade, they also spread Islam.
Like many of their neighbors, the Dyulas mix animistic religion with their practice of Islam. Many believe spirits inhabit inanimate objects. They also use amulets for ensuring good luck, healings, and blessings.
Although the New Testament has been translated into their primary language, the Dyulas are still waiting for the full Bible. However, they have good audio materials from Global Recordings Network and others.
Pray for the Dyulas to have the opportunity to hear and respond to the good news. Pray that audio gospel materials will be embraced by Dyula merchants. Pray that materials from Global Recordings, MegaVoice, and Faith Comes by Hearing will become widely available throughout Africa. Pray that the JESUS Film will be shown in many Dyula communities.