Introduction / History
In the late 1880s the Ahmadi Muslim sect was established in the city of Qadian in the Punjab. It is founded on the teachings of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who claimed to appear in fulfillment of prophesies regarding end times. Followers of this movement call themselves the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. They are now in over 200 countries worldwide. They were among the first Muslims to go to Western nations like England, and they immediately began to try to win converts. Their theological beliefs are far different than other Muslims. They are about as far from mainline Islam as Mormonism is from biblically-based Christianity.
Where Are they Located?
Because they are a strong missionary movement, Ahmadis are located all over the world, including Pakistan. There are more Ahmadis in Pakistan than any other country, and they are not centered in any particular part of this country.
What Are Their Lives Like?
The Ahmadis eagerly evangelize others, including other Muslims. This comes with a heavy price in Pakistan, a nation that regularly persecutes religious minorities. There have been regular waves of anti Ahmadi riots in Pakistan, and some Ahmadis have paid for their beliefs with their lives. In 1974 and 1984, the government of Pakistan amended their constitution in such a way that has, for all practical purposes, sanctioned persecution of members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. Ahmadis are considered to be people who "pose as Muslims" but are actually kafirs, or infidels. The headquarters for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community has since been moved to London, but Pakistan still has a large number of Ahmadi adherents. In Pakistan their lives are defined by persecution.
What Are Their Beliefs?
Mirza Ghulam Ahmadi said that he would bring about the triumph of Islam through peaceful means. He claimed to be the promised messiah and Mahdi, for whom Muslims have waited. His followers believe that Ahmad appeared in the likeness of Jesus. The Ahmadis believe that Islam is the final dispensation for humanity as revealed to the Prophet Mohammed, but it's true path has been lost through the centuries. They think that they are leading people to the true way of Islam. The Ahmadis sincerely believe that if others followed the teachings of Ahmad, and accepted him as a messiah, the world would be a better place. Orthodox Muslims hate the Ahmadis, but they appreciate their ability to debate Christians and publically bring doubt on the teachings of the Bible.
What Are Their Needs?
The Ahmadis need a safe home where they can live in peace. But even more than that, they need the humility to accept Jesus Christ as the victorious, resurrected King of kings.
* Pray that the Holy Spirit will bring a holy humility to Ahmadi members.
* Pray for Ahmadis to be willing to learn from Jesus, and study His Word with open hearts.
* Pray for a disciple-making movement among Ahmadi members that will spread to all countries where they now try to turn people away from the Truth.