Libya is the western neighbor of Egypt on the north coast of Africa. The country has been extremely unstable since the death of their dictator in 2011. The new government, set up in 2021, is called The Government of National Unity and is led by a temporary prime minister. But there is still violence in the major cities by protesters who are not happy with the new government and the militia groups who try to gain power.
Simple Statistics (britannica.com)
Official religion: Islam
Government: Interim government
Population religion: ~97% Muslim
Media: All press is controlled by the government
Religion in Libya
Libya is an Islamic country, with only a small percentage of the population being Christians, all of whom have to live out their faith in secret. Christians are constantly under pressure, never knowing if they will be found out. If they try to share the Gospel, they will be reported and arrested or even killed.
Because of the unstable government, persecution can be very public. The Muslim community can brazenly attack believers without being worried of any repercusions. There is an alarmingly high number of kidnappings of Christians and forced conversions; this is especially true for Christians girls and women who are kidnapped and forced to marry Muslim men.
Gamal’s story from Libya
Gamal is a physics teacher in Libya. He realized that Islam has many scientific errors and contradicts physics, but even worse, he could not feel the presence of God in his life. He prayed and cried out in distress to Allah and wondered why he was not responding. As he was considering atheism, he found a Christian TV station and other Christians resources. He ended up reaching out to us with questions about the contradictions in Islam.
We got back to him with assurance that the Living God of the Bible can hear his prayers and will respond to him. Gamal asked, “How can Christians hear God and feel His presence?” We explained that God wants to be in a relationship with us and how we can enter that relationship with Him through Jesus Christ. He prayed with us over the phone, whispering, so that his Muslim family would not hear him. Gamal found peace, and he rejoiced in finding joy in Jesus Christ! We need to pray for Gamal, and many other secret Chistians in Libya, for their safety and for them to find a community that they can grow in.
How to pray for Libya
- For the government to not be established under Sharia law and for it to protect religious minorities.
- For Christian women to be safe from kidnappings and forced conversions.
- That the violence in Libya would stop and for the country to become a safer, more stable place.
- For the Church to grow and find ways to connect with other believers.
- For Muslims in Libya to hear the Gospel and come to know the love of Christ.