Malay in Singapore

Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The Singapore Malay constitute fifteen percent of Singapore's multi-racial population. They are widely dispersed all over the country of Singapore. They immigrated centuries ago, mostly coming from Peninsular Malaysia and parts of the Indonesian archipelago such as Java and Sumatra. Despite being the first inhabitants of the country, they are not the largest group due to the arrival of Chinese and Indian immigrants in later years.
The Singapore Malay speak Bahasa Malaysia which is considered one of the major languages of Singapore.

What Are Their Lives Like?

More than half of Singapore Malay depend on employment in the public sector. There are few who are in high-level political or civil service positions and in the armed forces. Some are employed in foreign-owned factories. The Singapore government's drive to break up racial communities and resettle village dwellers in urban housing and apartment complexes had a great effect on the Malay and their ways of living. Evidence of the unification of Malay patterns of living with those of the rest of the population of Singapore shows the Malay birth and death rates are now declining, which originally was high. Malay women are working outside their homes more than ever before. Some women are marrying later, bearing fewer children and divorcing less frequently.
Despite being a minority in Singapore, the Malay are a vital force. Among the qualities of the Singapore Malay are their strong sense of community, their superb spicy cuisine, and their Islamic religious values.
The Singapore Malay culture is a combination of the culture of Malaysia and Indonesia. They allow for ethnic intermarriage if both parties share the same religion. Most common intermarriages are between Malay and the Mamak.
In the past several decades, Singapore has experienced significant economic growth. Such economic growth and success has affected Singapore Malay. Families once held together with strong community ties are now experiencing troubled marriages and rebellious teenagers.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Malay in Singapore are Sunni Muslims. Islam is the major influence in everyday life and is the medicine of the Malay society. The Malay are devoted to prayer and study the Koran (Islamic Book) and observe the Islamic festivals such as Hari Raya Aidiladha (pilgrimage performed by the Muslims to the holy city of Mecca), Hari Raya Aidilfitri (the end of fasting month), and Prophet Mohammad's birthday (Muslims began celebrating his birthday after his death to remind them of the Prophet's fight to spread and uphold Islam).

What Are Their Needs?

In recent years in Singapore many have had economic hardship but among the hardest hit have been the Malay people. The Singapore Malay have often been in the majority of those unemployed.

Prayer Points

Pray that more believers would help their fellow Singaporean Malay who are struggling economically and find creative ways to bless them.
Pray that the good news could help the broken families among the Singapore Malay.
Pray for the Muslim Malay people in Singapore to have the spiritual hunger it takes to embrace Christ no matter what the cost.
Pray for a soon coming movement to Christ among Singapore’s Malay population.

Scripture Prayers for the Malay in Singapore.


Southeast Asia Link - SEALINK Copyrighted © Used with permission

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Malay
People Name in Country Malay
Pronunciation muh-LAY
Alternate Names Javar; Malao-Polynesian; Melaju; Melayu; माले
Population this Country 563,000
Population all Countries 18,568,000
Total Countries 24
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 1  (per
Pioneer Workers Needed 11
People ID 13437
ROP3 Code 106144
ROP25 Code 305027
ROP25 Name Malay
Country Singapore
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Country Singapore
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent
7.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.20 %)
0.60 %
Ethnic Religions
14.00 %
6.00 %
71.40 %
1.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Primary Language Malay (563,000 speakers)
Language Code zlm   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Malay (563,000 speakers)
Language Code zlm   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Malay

Primary Language:  Malay

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1629-1932)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1668-1974)
Bible-Complete Yes  (2015)
FCBH NT ( Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Audio Recordings Love letter to you from scripture Father's Love Letter
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Video / Animation Create International
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Malay Jesus Film Project
Film / Video My Last Day video, anime Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children Jesus Film Project
Film / Video World Christian Videos World Christian Videos
General Bible for Children Bible for Children
General Biblical answers to your questions Got Questions Ministry
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Four Spiritual Laws Campus Crusade for Christ
General Scripture Earth Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
Mobile App Android Bible app direct APK download SIL
Mobile App Download audio Bible app as APK file Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App Download audio Bible app as APK file Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App Download audio Bible app from Google Play Store Faith Comes by Hearing
Text / Printed Matter Download scripture in this language
Text / Printed Matter Jesus Messiah comic book General / Other
Text / Printed Matter Literacy primer for Malay Literacy & Evangelism International
Text / Printed Matter Tools for faith conversations Campus Crusade for Christ
Text / Printed Matter Topical Scripture booklets and Bible studies World Missionary Press
Photo Source Copyrighted © 2024  Faiz Zaki - Shutterstock  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source Southeast Asia Link - SEALINK   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Profile Source Joshua Project 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.

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