May 28, 2019
Several million Bedouins still live in the Levant states of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian territories which form the original Arabia. The name “Bedouin” is derived from the Arabic word “badija”, which means desert. Most Bedouin no longer live as animal breeders and nomads but have integrated themselves into the villages and cities. Their traditional hospitality, which was of the highest importance, has been preserved even until today and is still very widespread.
A guest is under the protection of the Bedouins until the moment he leaves the tribe. Guests are always taken care of in a generous way, with the best food available. Before eating, tea or coffee is served. The coffee – usually the bitter, Arabic style – is of great importance. Offering and accepting a cup of coffee marks the beginning of peace negotiations and trade. Certain movements with hand and cup indicate whether one wants more or is already satisfied.
The Bedouins are mostly Muslims who have never heard of Jesus and his love for them. As a proud and freedom-loving people, they are struggling with the gospel. Individual Bedouins may have found Jesus, but there have not yet been major movements. The Sheikh, as the tribal leader, is very influential in how his people will respond to Jesus and his followers.
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