Expanded Text source: provided by NCRP
Introduction / History
In the fourth century BC, 26 tribes speaking a Lezgic language united to form a united state. They were initially influenced by the Persians, and later they were influenced by the Parthians, who had a powerful empire. They have been pressured or conquered by many peoples since that time; the Greeks, Romans, and the Alans. Islamic armies swept into the Caspian seacoast region of the Lezgin people as early as the 7th and 8th Centuries, and has carried huge influence into Lezgin society over the past 1000 years. By the end of the 18th Century, the Lezgin people were considered 100 percent Muslim. Before that time, they retained their animistic religion.
Where are they located?
Most of the Lezgin people live in the mountains near the Caspian Sea of southwestern Russia, but some have migrated to Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan or Kazakhstan.
What are their lives like?
Traditionally the Lezgin people have been an agrarian and pastoral people. They are well known for the textiles that their women weave. Some Lezgins work in food processing while others work seasonally making jewelry or weapons. Nonetheless, unemployment among them is as high as 60 percent!
What are their beliefs?
Spiritism and animistic practices are still widespread in Lezgin culture along with Sunni Islam. Rags are tied on holy trees or near holy graves to seek spiritual assistance for health or marriage or economic good fortune. They often consult soothsayers.
What are their needs?
It is exceptionally difficult to reach this Muslim people group in their original homeland, but if someone were dedicated to reaching them for Christ, they could do it in one of the Central Asian nations like Kazakhstan where some of them live.
* Pray for spiritual hunger that will lead the Lezgin people to seek and find Jesus Christ.
* Pray that God will send courageous workers to them and faithful intercessors to pray until they have been discipled in the ways of Jesus.
* Pray for a Disciple-Making movement to flourish among the Lezgin people that will transform their communities in such a way that other people groups will desire the same spiritual transformation.
* Pray for completion of Bible translation in this people group's primary language.
Expanded Text source: provided by NCRPView Lezgin in all countries.