Arab, Omani in Saudi Arabia

Map Source:  Bethany World Prayer Center
People Name: Arab, Omani
Country: Saudi Arabia
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 143,000
World Population: 2,782,200
Primary Language: Arabic, Omani Spoken
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.30 %
Evangelicals: 0.10 %
Scripture: Translation Needed
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: No
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Arab, Arabian
Affinity Bloc: Arab World
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

Saudi Arabia is a large Middle Eastern nation covering three-fourths of the Arabian Peninsula. Most of it is a vast desert where few people live and little or nothing grows. However, lying beneath its surface is half of the world's petroleum reserves. Today, Saudi Arabia exports more oil than any other nation. Wealth from these exports has made it a leading economic power in the Middle East as well as a land of contrasts. For example, one can still find camel caravans and mud houses next to newly constructed highways and apartment buildings. Omani Arabs in Saudi Arabia make up only a small percentage of the country's total population. They live in the scattered oases of Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province (or Eastern lowlands), located along the Persian Gulf and the border with Oman. The Omanis are set apart from other Saudi Arabians by their unique Arabic dialect and by their slightly different form of Islam.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Most of the Omani Arabs living in Saudi Arabia are farmers. They live in rural farm villages or oasis settlements where they lead simple lives. A typical village consists of a cluster of homes made of stones or sun-dried mud. The farmers grow dates, melons, tomatoes, and wheat. The Omani often gather in the marketplaces to buy and sell goods and also to socialize. They love to tell stories, recite poems or verses from the Koran, and visit with their friends and neighbors.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Omanis were among the first people to embrace Islam. They are overwhelmingly Ibadi Muslims, a branch that is similar to Sunni Islam. The Ibadis favor the selection of their imams through consensus not heritage. In that way they differ from the dominant Sunni sector of Islam. Some would describe the Ibadi sector of Islam as moderately conservative. As far as we know there are almost no followers of Christ among the Omani Arabs and no fellowships of believers.

What Are Their Needs?

Omani Arabs need the chance to flourish economically so they don't have to migrate to other countries like Saudi Arabia. They also need the chance to hear and respond to the claims of Jesus Christ so they can experience the abundant life He offers those who follow Him.

Prayer Points

Pray for persons of peace among Omani Arabs to open the door to the gospel among their communities and family members.
Pray for Omani Arabs in Saudi Arabia to have open hearts to the One who offers life to the full.
Pray for a massive movement to Christ among the Omani Arabs no matter where they live.
Pray for Christ's ambassadors to go to them.

Text Source:   Joshua Project