Samuel Zwemer

Friday, May 12, 2023

Samuel M. Zwemer (1867–1952) was an American missionary to Muslims. He ministered in Egypt, Iraq, Bahrain, Yemen, Lebanon, and various parts of Arabia. He was called an “Apostle to Islam” and the “blazing herald of the Gospel” among Muslims.[1] As a missionary to Muslims, he accomplished incredible feats in his work, research, and writings. After years of experience, he declared: “The strength of Islam is to sit still, to forbid thought, to gag reformers, to abominate progress.” His motto was, “He who loves not, lives not; he who lives by the Life [of Christ] cannot die.”[2]


Our Father in heaven, we thank you for people like Samuel Zwemer. You called him and equipped him. Thank you for his courage, sacrifice and perseverance. I pray that you will call many young people and prepare them for the great task of spreading your Word among Muslims. Give them the courage to encounter opposition and hostility with perseverance and humility. As you fired Zwemer with zeal, equip these new messengers with an unshakable commitment and unswerving love for the lost.

Help them realize that the road of obedience is not always smooth. There is often a high price to pay. Samuel Zwemer and his wife buried their 4-year-old daughter and 7-year-old daughter within a week of each other in Bahrain. On the graves they wrote, “Worthy is the Lamb to receive riches.” Help new missionaries be ready to pay the price of obedience.

Lord God Almighty, it is daybreak for the Gospel in the Muslim world. Manifest your glory among Muslims. In Jesus’ precious name. Amen.


Those who trust in the Lord are like the mountain of Jerusalem, steady and can never be shaken. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so God surrounds his people both now and forevermore (Psalm 125:1-2, SAB).


[1] J. Christy Wilson, Apostle to Islam, p. 4.
[2] Samuel Zwemer, Raymund Lull, p. 45.

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