Dominique and his Muslim friend Rahman* had known each other since boyhood. So as young adults, they decided to go into business together.
As plans for the business progressed, a friend of Dominique’s invited him to a Bibles for Mideast prayer meeting. A nominal Christian, Dominique figured some prayer for the business certainly couldn’t hurt and may even help, so went along. As the meeting drew to a close he approached the leader, Pastor Paul, for prayer. He was hardly prepared for what he heard.
“Your Muslim friend Rahman will cheat you in business, and try to get you out of the partnership,” the pastor told Dominique he felt the Lord saying. “Your life is also in danger. Be careful, and look to Jesus before you do anything!” He then prayed for him.
Dominique walked away incredulous. He could not believe such nonsense about Rahman, he told the Christian friend who had brought him.
“All these praying Christian people of whatever denomination are just frauds—trying to brainwash poor people and take advantage of them!” he proclaimed. Refusing to believe the warning, he chose to believe and trust Rahman instead. “He is a true Muslim,” he explained. “He prays Muslim prayers five times a day. He won’t cheat me.”
So the two friends started their company and, for the first two years, all went well. When profits began to decline and they had to borrow from a private bank at high interest rates, the business still languished. As debts grew, the bank took legal action against them. Soon, all and everyone seemed against them.
Hopelessly discouraged, the men devised a suicide pact. They would lie on a railway track face down, and wait until the train came to end their lives and their misery. They’d put stoppers in their ears and cover their eyes with pieces of cloth to block out the sounds and sight of death coming.
All seemed to be going according to plan. But before the train arrived, Dominique felt himself forcefully dragged off and away from the railway tracks.
“You have no authority to take your own soul and spirit!” a voice boomed. “That is my gift to you! I, Jesus your savior, am saving you from hell and from debt!”
Dominique pulled the stoppers from his ears and the cloth from his eyes and leapt to his feet. Glancing around he saw no one … not even Rahman. He watched the train roar by. His friend must have been killed, he figured, but where was he? Not finding the body on or near the tracks he decided the train likely dragged his body further along the track. He ran along the line, but could see nothing.
Suddenly, out of the corner of his eye, he spied Rahman, mostly hidden behind a tree, watching him. He tried not to show he had noticed the so-called friend, and Rahman remained unaware he'd been seen.
Obviously, after the two had lain down on the tracks, Rahman had removed the ear and eye coverings and run to safety. Dominique immediately connected the dots, realizing the man had been a traitor in business as well, stealing money and creating false accounts.
He headed straight from the railway tracks to where he knew he could find some Bibles for Mideast pastors. Telling them what happened, he openly and willingly confessed his sins and accepted Jesus as his personal savior and Lord.
As the pastors prayed for him, Dominique again heard the voice of Jesus . .. no longer thunderous, but now full of gentle love.
“You are not a man of debt,” Jesus assured him. “I forgive your debts, for you are my son and I am the richest man in all the world. You, and all my children, are my hidden treasures before my Father.”
Dominique progressed quickly in his walk with the Lord. He has been diligent in prayer and study and now serves with Bibles for Mideast as a pastor in North India. He married a young Christian woman, and they have one child. Please pray for him and his family.
Unfortunately, Rahman learned nothing from his mistakes. He went into another business partnership, with a Jain man this time, and the enterprise followed the same pattern: a year or two of profit, then rapid decline and increasing debt. Rahman’s underhanded thievery again drove both the business and the friendship into the ground. The partner by then had heard about the earlier business failure, and the two became sworn enemies.
A few months ago, Rahman died when a truck rammed into his motorcycle, crushing his head. Some reports are that the Jain man hired the truck driver to ‘cause’ the accident, but this cannot be confirmed.
UPDATE: Pastor Peter Haneef, President of the Assembly of Loving God Church (ALG) Church of Bibles for Mideast, has just returned from ministering at a three-day gospel convention at Dominique's church in North India. He reports that several Muslims and Hindus have joined the Kingdom of Jesus!
*Name changed for security reasons