Photo Source: Charles Roffey - Flickr Creative Commons Used with permission
Map Source: Bethany World Prayer Center
|People Name:||Arab, Saudi - Hijazi|
|Primary Language:||Arabic, Hijazi Spoken|
|Christian Adherents:||0.00 %|
|Online Audio NT:||No|
|People Cluster:||Arab, Arabian|
|Affinity Bloc:||Arab World|
Saudi Arabia is home to a number of different Arab people groups. The Hijazi Arab (more commonly known as Saudi Arabs) form the majority of the Saudi Arabian population and live predominantly along the Red Sea coast and in the major urban areas. They speak a language called Arabiya, or, as it is more commonly called, Hijazi Arabic. The Arab culture was developed by tribes of nomads and villagers who lived in the Arabian Desert. From there, Arab migrations spread throughout the Middle East and northern Africa, leading to the expansion of the Arab world.
Saudi Arabs are few and far between in the U. S., but they are most likely to be found in California, followed by Colorado, Florida, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia.
There are very few permanent Saudi residents in the U. S. Most are students who will return to their home country after they graduate. Saudis started coming to the U. S. to study in the 1940s and 1950s, but as their country developed their own universities, these numbers have dwindled. Their pride as the keepers of Islam has kept most Saudis from considering non-Muslim lands as a permanent home. It is hard for them to adjust to living in a country where Sharia is not the law. Marriage often unites a couple, but Saudis almost never marry anyone outside their people or those from other Persian Gulf nations.
Hijazi Arabs are practically all Muslim, but represent a variety of Islamic sects. The founding of Islam in the seventh century profoundly altered the course of Saudi history. In the mid-1700s, Mohammed ibn Abd al-Wahhab formed his fundamentalist sect, and today, the Saudi see themselves as the preservers of the true Islamic faith. The city of Mecca on the Red Sea coast is the holy place of pilgrimage that all Muslims must try to visit at least once in their lifetime.
At the present time, few Hijazi Arabs in Saudi Arabia have accepted Jesus as their Savior. A profession of faith in Jesus may cost a person his family, his honor, his job, or even his life. Evangelization of this group will be challenging, due to the nature of the Arabs' lifestyle and belief system. Prayer is the key to reaching them with the message of the Cross.
* Ask the Holy Spirit to call people who are willing to go and share the love of Christ with Saudi Arabs in the United States. * Ask God to raise up prayer teams who will begin breaking up the soil through worship and intercession. * Pray for the Holy Spirit to raise up a church planting movement among Saudi Arabs throughout the world.* Pray for a spiritual hunger that will take the Hijazi Saudi Arabs from depending on works-righteousness to dependence on the only Savior, Jesus Christ.