Jail inmates in Mali stand with their hands gripping the metal bars of their cell while a Christian missionary stands on the other side preaching the gospel

Gospel Melts Inmates and Prison Official in Mali

A crowd of murderers, thieves and other violent men, women and minors in Mali were incarcerated uneasily in the same prison when guards called them into the courtyard.

An officer told the inmates that Christians had come from hundreds of kilometers away to give them advice, and to please listen to them.

The hardened faces softened as the native Christian worker spoke of disobedience, sin and salvation. The worker knew this might be the only chance the criminals from different tribes had of hearing the gospel, the ministry leader said.

Within minutes, a voice cried out, “I am guilty – this man is telling the truth. God help me.”

“You could see each of them whispering similar things to themselves; others had reddened eyes and tears,” the leader said. “As if a light had just burst forth in the midst of darkness, we saw some faces unravelling – certainly the power of God was there.”

As a spirit of repentance dissolved the prior atmosphere of misery, the prison officer also confessed to the inmates: “This word concerns me – I am guilty towards God. May God help me.”

“As he spoke, tears could be seen rolling down the cheeks of many,” the leader said, adding that the officer and inmates pleaded for the workers to pray for them.

After prayer, each of the inmates thanked the workers, he said.

“Listening to such words, one was reassured that the Holy Spirit had just completed His work of salvation perfectly in every life standing before us,” the leader said. “It was as if a heavy burden had just been unloaded from each shoulder, because joy was on everyone’s lips.”

The workers gave Bibles to each inmate. Normally when they arrive back at their base they call the prison warden to let him know of safe return, but vehicle breakdowns prevented the leader from phoning him until the following afternoon.

“When he picked up the phone, he screamed for joy,” the leader said. “He told us that the atmosphere had been completely transformed – peace, happiness and joy now reign supreme in the prison. He said fights, tantrums, violence, insults, nastiness had completely disappeared.”

Some prisoners were engaged in discussing the previous day’s message, while others were reading their Bibles, he said.

Such workers are sharing the gospel in various parts of the country. Please consider a donation today to help them proclaim Christ and disciple new believers.

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