May 5, 2021
The Fulani people emerged in Cameroon and Nigeria in the 1800s after African scholar and holy man Modibo Adama led a jihad and founded a small empire that he called Adamawa.
Now, you can find communities of Fulani people in the cities of Chicago, Detroit, and New York City and the states of Georgia, California, Texas, Maryland, and New Jersey.
They are known for studying the Qur’an in Arabic, and for their fidelity to Adama’s teaching on marriage, as one missionary couple learned from a Fulani woman named Awa.
“Awa, our Fulani friend from the United States, let us stay in her home in Senegal while we studied Pulaar, a language spoken by the Fulani people.
“We learned during our stay that Awa did not tell her husband about our stay at the home because she feared his disapproval. Awa’s friend Nana also stayed with us, and together, the two women expressed their frustrations with traditional Islamic beliefs about marriage.”
As the Fulani believe, the Qur’an teaches that a Muslim man can marry up to four wives, but he must provide equally for each wife. For example, if one wife has a house, then the other wives must have a house as well.
In reality, though, wives are seldom treated equally, which creates tension and resentment.
Nana’s husband of 30 years recently married a younger second wife, and he has begun showing favoritism to his new wife and family, angering Nana’s adult children, who are upset with how she is being treated.
Nana and Awa clearly described the problems of polygamy but felt powerless to change anything.
“What can we do?” asked Awa despondently.
Psalm 33:18 says “The eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love.”
These women fear God but don’t experience the unfailing love of Christ because they follow their husband’s will according to the Qur’an.
- Pray that Christian women will reach out to the Fulani women of North America and Africa and show them how to receive Jesus’s unfailing love through their daily struggles.
- Pray that Christian families can introduce these women to a biblical approach to family based on one husband and one wife.
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