As you know, one major aspect of my ministry is to develop resources for ministry in Islamic context. I praise the Lord for the opportunity that I have at the moment to be involved in a writing project titled Reading the Bible in the Context of Islam with The Centre for Muslim-Christian Studies, Oxford. The goal of this project is to develop a new series of biblical commentaries from and for Islamic contexts.
The purpose is “to uncover and publish how the Bible speaks into Islamic contexts so as to provide Christians and churches who function in Islamic contexts with a basis for a biblical and Christ-like way of understanding and living out their faith.”
My involvement in this project has been threefold:
- At the academic level, our hope is that my doctoral dissertation will grow into a monograph that can be published in the new Rutledge Biblical Interpretation in Islamic Context series
- At popular level, we aim to produce an accessible commentary on Jonah
- At the moment, we are laying the foundation for this series, and I am acting as facilitator for the team writing the Genesis 1-11 commentary over the next 2 years.
As a family we attend The Resurrection Baptist Church. The church has four main services: two for Syrian refuges, one for Iraqi’s refugees, and one for everyone else (including us). We have around 800 attendees in all these services. One of our main focuses in the church is Life Groups. My main ministry at the church at the moment is to help other church members to develop discipleship materials for the groups. We have launched our first program: training the leaders of these groups on the new curriculum. As you know the number of refugees in Lebanon is massive. Please pray that God will raise more leaders among the refugees themselves to lead these groups.
One of the major challenges we face in ministering to refugees is how to meet their physical needs: food, clothes, education…etc. Pray for wisdom in dealing with these situations, and that our ministry to them demonstrate the love of God and our faithfulness to them regardless of their response to the Gospel.
Trip to Bangladesh
I will be traveling to Bangladesh during the first week of April to work with the team writing the Genesis commentary. We really need your prayers for this project in general, but specifically for this coming trip. Pray that this would be a fruitful time of writing, and that the Holy Spirit will guide and lead our thoughts throughout this writing process. Let us also pray for those who would read these commentaries. May God transform their hearts and minds through His word.
In the coming few months, I will be working on three comprehensive exams, learning French, and preparing a proposal for my dissertation. As you can see, the coming months will be very busy and I need your prayers for wisdom and strength during this time.
Sudan: Our Sudanese students have asked for prayers for pastors detained in Sudan for many months, and other pastors just recently detained, including some of our graduates. Some information is available at this link. Pray for the safety of ministry leaders in Sudan as they seek to serve His Church in a hostile context.
Syrian and Iraqi Refugees: Keep praying for peace to return to Syria, for the bloodshed to stop, for the Church to become an agent of reconciliation, healing, and hope in Syria and among the Syrian refugees all over the world. Please pray for our upcoming Middle East Consultation (20-24 June 2016) where we will explore Christ-centered responses to the growing refugee crisis in the Middle East, Europe, and beyond.
Future Ministries: Keep Almess in prayers as she will be sharing this coming Monday among Iraqi women refugees. Keep praying for me (Emad) as I will be preaching at the Iraqi and Syrians ministries at my church, as well as my involvement in developing discipleship materials for small groups.
About Emad & Almess Botros
Emad and Almess were appointed by CBM in January 2015 to serve at the Arab Baptist Theological Seminary (ABTS) in Lebanon, where they first met and studied. Emad serves as a lecturer in the areas of Old Testament and Islamic studies at ABTS and developing resources and models for ministry. While both Emad and Almess are involved in mentoring students in ministry and leadership skills, Almess also explores opportunities to work with Iraqi and Syrian refugees.