While Christian persecution may not be dire in Buddhist Thailand—less than 2 percent believe in Jesus—the country has become a refuge for Christians who are fleeing persecution in Pakistan. Voice of the Persecuted reports that thousands of Christians from Pakistan have escaped violence and persecution and moved to Thailand. Pakistan is No. 5 on this year’s World Watch List from Open Doors USA for “extreme” Christian persecution. But these Christians face hardship in Thailand as well, with families living in cramped quarters with not much food and barely making ends meet.
The Tide® recently began distributing audio Gospel recordings in Thailand in the Isaan language, spoken by 19 million people in Thailand. After much planning and recording of programs, the word of God is now available to the Isaan people online and through media players.
“The initial release of Gospel recordings to a limited number of people in Thailand has been eye-opening and uplifting,” said Director Don Shenk. “The production process was significant, and the recording of programs took several months, but the Isaan people now have access to the hope of Jesus. As we continue to move forward with this project, we pray that God will direct us to the most effective method of making these programs publicly available to even more Isaan listeners. The widespread broadcast of the Gospel will greatly assist the efforts of our partner agency in Thailand that is working to make disciples and plant house churches among the Isaan people.”
Buddhism is the most widespread religion in Thailand, and Theravada Buddhism, the oldest surviving branch of Buddhism, is especially strong among the Isaan people of northeastern Thailand. With the introduction of this newest language for Gospel radio programming, The Tide ministry hopes to reach this group with the truth of the Bible and the grace of God.