David Platt, President of International Mission Board at Southern Baptist Convention, recounted a story of a man believed to be dead raised again through prayers in a previously unreached people group in Southeast Asia.
He was speaking at a meeting in Nashville on September 19.
According to Platt, the villagers who had not been previously reached with the Gospel, responded positively to the Bible studies. They also parted ways with their idols, necklaces and amulets and brought all these to the center of the village with an intent to burn them. But after a few days, they started taking back their occult items.
The IMB workers came to know that the people were taking the occult items back because their village leader had died, and they thought that the spirits were unhappy at their parting away of the occult items.
The missionaries were saddened, but they went to the house of the village head where he lay dead. They prayed over his body and asked God to "show His mercy to the people in the village, that God would show His glory and His love to that people who were so close," Platt said at the meeting.
After a while, the dead man coughed which made all the people in the house to express bewilderment.
"As they were praying there over the man, all of the sudden the man coughed. Everybody in the house got really still. And the man coughed again. People came rushing over, and the village leader started breathing. People started helping him up. Everybody's looking at these Asian believers like, 'What happened?'" Platt continued.
"They decided this was as good a time as any to share the Gospel," he said. "So they shared the Gospel, and in the days to come, people started coming to faith in Christ and that village started burning their idols."
Platt said that though they do not have medical evidence to verify the account of the man's death and resurrection, he said, "I do know at villages like this, they know how to recognize death."
He jokingly said that if the man was not dead, God made him cough at quite an opportune moment.
"Here's what I do know: We have the Good News of a God who has conquered death, who has power to say to the dead, 'Come to life.'"