How many Christians are there in Jordan?
There are 180,000 Christians in Jordan – just 1.7% of Jordan’s population.
How are Christians persecuted in Jordan?
Despite many being able to enjoy relatively high levels of religious freedom compared to other Middle Eastern countries, persecution remains a very real possibility for Christians in Jordan.
Christians from Muslim backgrounds in particular can encounter opposition. Publicly declaring their faith can lead to beatings, arrest or even death.
The state exerts pressure on all Christian communities, especially through monitoring. Non-traditional churches can face harassment by public authorities, particularly churches that actively evangelise. Christians who actively share their faith, or help converts, can face hostility.
The presence of Islamic extremists, including returning jihadists from Syria and Iraq, continues to pose a threat to the Christian community.
“I used to be a bully, a troublemaker. I am a new creation now in Jesus Christ. I look more and more like Him.” Tareq, a Christian in Jordan
What’s life like for Christians in Jordan?
If their faith becomes known, Christian men from a Muslim background can be denied security clearances and jobs, or face extortion through fines. At home, these converts are also susceptible to rejection, attack or expulsion.
Christian men can also encounter pressure from the authorities to inform on other Christians, especially those involved in helping converts.
Christian women who convert from Islam could face include house arrest, beatings, sexual harassment, travel restrictions, separation from children, forced marriage and even death. On a wider level, all Christian women face pressure to follow a specified dress code.
Under Sharia (Islamic law), marriages between a Christian and a Muslim are not allowed.
Is it getting harder to be a Christian in Jordan?
Despite dropping a place in the World Watch List, hostility towards Christians in Jordan has marginally increased. There has been a rise in reported incidents of violence and less acceptance of public expressions of Christian faith, such as openly displaying Bible verses.
How can I help Christians in Jordan?
Please keep praying for your brothers and sisters in Jordan. Your gifts and prayers make an enormous difference to those following Jesus no matter the cost.
Open Doors works with local partners in Jordan to support Christians through training, relief aid and rehabilitation projects and raising prayer support.
Lord Jesus, may all those who have experienced suffering because of their faith in You know the depths of Your love, and Your power at work in them. Provide them with fellowship to help them grow in their faith. Give wisdom to our brothers and sisters facing pressure from the authorities. May the powerful witness of Your people soften hearts towards You and Your church. Stifle the threat of extremism in the country and continue to build Your church in Jordan. Amen.