Zeem in Nigeria

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People Name: Zeem
Country: Nigeria
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 600
World Population: 600
Primary Language: Zeem
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.35 %
Evangelicals: 0.15 %
Scripture: Unspecified
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: No
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Chadic
Affinity Bloc: Sub-Saharan Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

In Nigeria the Hausas and Fulanis have merged to become the most powerful people in northern Nigeria. Smaller people groups like the Zeem are merging with them. As that process continues, the Zeem people are in danger of losing their culture and adopting folk Islam like the Hausa-Fulani. Gospel recordings are available in the Zeem language. The Zeem language is in danger of disappearing as young people prefer to speak Hausa or English.

Where Are they Located?

The Zeem people are very small in number but found in Toro LGA of Bauchi State in the northeastern region of Nigeria.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The people still maintain their rural villages and are largely Muslims. Most people groups in rural Nigeria like the Zeem enjoy music, story-telling and dance as a form of entertainment and communication. These art forms are very meaningful in rural Nigeria. Those who want to take the gospel to the Zeem people would do well to use these art forms when presenting the gospel.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Zeem people are Sunni, the largest branch of Islam. They believe that the One, Supreme God, Allah, revealed through his prophet, Mohammed, and taught mankind how to live a righteous life through the Koran and the Hadith. To live a righteous life, you must utter the Shahada (a statement of faith), pray five times a day facing Mecca, fast from sunup to sundown during the month of Ramadan, give alms to the poor, and make a pilgrimage to Mecca if you have the means. Muslims are prohibited from drinking alcohol, eating pork, gambling, stealing, slandering, and making idols. They gather for corporate prayer on Friday afternoons at a mosque, their place of worship.

The two main holidays for Sunni Muslims are Eid al Fitr, the breaking of the monthly fast and Eid al Adha, the celebration of Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son to Allah.

In most of the Muslim world, peoples like the Zeem depend on the spirit world for their daily needs since they regard Allah as too distant. Allah may determine their eternal salvation, but the spirits determine how well we live in our daily lives. For that reason, they must appease the spirits. The often use charms and amulets to help them deal with spiritual forces.

According to PeopleGroups.org the Zeem are no longer an unreached people group. Five percent of the Zeem are evangelical Christians. We should continue to pray for them.

What Are Their Needs?

The Zeem people need abundant rain for their crops and their livestock so they can live lives free of want and poverty. They need medical care and good schools that will help the next generation to thrive in a rapidly changing world.

The Zeem people need the blessings of the Risen Christ, who has conquered death, and will give them abundant life if they are willing to accept His guidance. They need the gift of faith in Jesus Christ, who alone is the judge of all mankind, and will separate the sheep from the goats on Judgment Day.

Prayer Points

* Pray that each Zeem person has the opportunity to hear the gospel.
* Pray y for the Lord to raise up a strong disciple making movement to saturate the hearts and minds of the Zeem people.
* Pray for God's blessing, strengthening and healing of Zeem families and communities within this people group through the abundant life Jesus offers to all who call on His name.
* Pray for God's blessing on the leaders in this people group, along with their families, and for their communities to welcome and enjoy God's blessing.
* Pray for the Lord to multiply the reception and influence of His Word among this people group, leading them to love Him with their whole being.

Text Source:   Keith Carey