Arab, Uzbeki in Kazakhstan

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People Name: Arab, Uzbeki
Country: Kazakhstan
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 700
World Population: 28,900
Primary Language: Arabic, Uzbeki
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 4.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.50 %
Scripture: Unspecified
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: No
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Arab World, general
Affinity Bloc: Arab World
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

In the 700s and 800s, Arabs were fanning out over a large part of North Africa and Central Asia to conquer and to spread the Islamic religion. Through the next couple hundred years, more Arabs settled in what are now the Central Asian countries. Sometimes they came as nomads, other times they came as soldiers. As time went on, they became isolated from the Arab World and their language was changing. Up until the early 20th century when the USSR took over the region, Uzbeki Arabic speakers raised crops and livestock while remaining true to Islam through religious education. These people who straddle the Arabic and Turkic worlds still live in Central Asian countries like Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Uzbeki Arabs do not intermarry with the local population in an attempt to remain a separate people. They may remain separate, but they are few in numbers. Fewer people are speaking their hybrid language, and this language will probably become extinct. There is almost no information about how they live, but they most likely live similar lives as their Central Asian neighbors.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Uzbeki Arabs are Sunni Muslims who believe that the One, Supreme God, Allah, spoke through his prophet, Mohammed, and taught mankind how to live a righteous life through the Koran and the Hadith. To live a righteous life, you must utter the Shahada (a statement of faith), pray five times a day facing Mecca, fast from sunup to sundown during the month of Ramadan, give alms to the poor, and make a pilgrimage to Mecca if you have the means. Muslims are prohibited from drinking alcohol, eating pork, gambling, stealing, slandering, and making idols. They gather for corporate prayer on Friday afternoons at a mosque, their place of worship. The two main holidays for Sunni Muslims are Eid al Fitr, the breaking of the monthly fast and Eid al Adha, the celebration of Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son to Allah. In most of the Muslim world, people depend on spirits for their daily needs since they regard Allah as too distant. Allah may determine their eternal salvation, but the spirits determine how well we live in our daily lives. For that reason, they appease the spirits. The often use charms and amulets to help them with spiritual forces.

What Are Their Needs?

The Uzbeki Arabs in Kazakhstan need to put their hope and faith in Jesus Christ, the risen Savior. Without him, they can never enjoy life to the full.

Prayer Points

Pray that the Uzbeki Arabs in Kazakhstan will have a spiritual hunger that will open their hearts to the King of kings. Pray for workers who are driving by the love and boldness of the Holy Spirit to go to them. Pray that Uzbeki Arab leaders will have dreams and visions of Christ that will open them to Jesus as the way, the truth and the life. Pray for a movement to Christ among them to begin this decade.

Text Source:   Joshua Project