Pastor Paul Ciniraj is the director of Bibles for Mideast, which delivers Bibles, preaches the Gospel and plants house churches in the strife-torn region. He says, while Islam remains dominant, “thousands upon thousands of people now secretly believe in Jesus Christ as their Savior.”
House churches the group establishes are under the banner of the nondenominational Assembly of Loving God Church. A convert from Islam, pastor Paul founded the work some four decades ago and has survived a battle with leukemia. A nine member board of directors governs the ministry.
Paul Marshall, Lela Gilbert and Nina Shea have collaborated to create “Persecuted: The Global Assault on Christians,” which confirms that groups like Pew Research, Newsweek and The Economist also identify Christians as “the world’s most widely
persecuted religious group.”
In a new report he delivered this week to WND, he says he was recovering from injuries he received in an attack by Islamic jihadists when the rescue occurred.
It was Easter Sunday, and he was recovering in the home of friends in a forested area near where his group has been working.
“Suddenly, a group of militants reached the house, armed with steel bars and other weapons,” he reported to WND.
In the home with him were others, including a woman aged 80, several children under the age of 4 and a woman seven months pregnant.
“Losing all hope, we thought for sure this was our last day,” he said.
But while the group was praying, he reported a strange occurrence.
“Completely unexpectedly, a lion ran from the forest, leapt toward the militants, and seized one by the neck. When other combatants tried to attack the lion, two other lions bounded toward them. The terrified militants fled the site, and the lions left us completely alone,” he said.
“Equally astonishing, records show no lions are supposed to live in that forest,” he said.
He reported he had been approaching the closing of a 21-day period of fasting and prayer.
“As that drew to a close, more than 3,000 former Muslims were baptized in many of our churches in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. The Lord enabled me to baptize many people during this time,” he said.
But while he was at one of the church locations, “militants began stoning me and our group."
“My head was severely injured and bloodied, and a number of others sustained injuries as well,” he said.
He was hospitalized, but he feared for his health and life there, so he went to the forest home of a local pastor, he said.
WND reported in February on another unusual development the Christians in the ministry reported.
Bibles for Mideast at that time said Muslims who carried out forced female genital mutilation on a Christian teen in Northern Africa were reporting being tormented by visions of blood after the near-fatal attack.
WND reported a 14-year-old girl in the undisclosed country had been left in a coma after being attacked and mutilated by Muslims upset with her conversion to Christianity.
After at least two physicians had declared her dead, she stunned doctors and hospital workers by getting up from her bed and going home.
Paul Marshall, Lela Gilbert and Nina Shea have collaborated to create “Persecuted: The Global Assault on Christians,” which confirms that groups like Pew Research, Newsweek and The Economist also identify Christians as “the world’s most widely persecuted religious group.”
After local physicians had given up and declared her dead, she suddenly sat up.
The girl said her soul “left my body and I was dead.”
“Angels came to receive me to heaven. But Jesus appeared before me and said, ‘I cannot turn back from the prayers of my children. My eyes are upon my children and ears are open to their prayer. So I give you your life back, for the issues of death belong to me. You go, and be my witness.’ Then he put his face right against and right into mine. He breathed into my nostrils, and my soul went in. Then he moved his nail-scarred hands over my body and healed me completely!”
The ministry reported Muslims who carried out the attack were frantic.
The ministry learned of the circumstances when the attackers visited Lydia and her father, pleading for help.
“The visitors explained that for the last three days and nights, all of the women who had been involved in the procedure seemed to have gone mad. Some shrieked that they saw blood every where, even when sitting alone. Attempting to prepare meals, they would scream, again seeing blood, and throw the food out. Given water, they would do the same. Knives in hand, some were approaching children, explaining the youngsters’ need for circumcision, and promising to do it carefully this time,” the ministry reported.