The Pashtun are the majority people of Afghanistan. The Taliban are Pashtun but it is important to note that not all Pashtun are Taliban. The Pashtun often simply call themselves Afghani. The Pashtun are a diverse people with multiple tribes. Their own oral history includes stories and songs called Bani Israel, linking their origins to the lost tribes of Israel, carried off by the Assyrians in the first exile never to return. Other ethnicities in Afghanistan are known to disparagingly refer to the Pashtun as “Jews”.
The Pashtun are Muslims, almost without exception. But their own moral code called Pashtunwali is more sacred and more binding for most Pashtun than even the laws of Islam. This is why many opposed the Taliban attempt to install Sharia Law above the Pashtunwali. The Pashtunwali bears much resemblance to the Old Testament law. One notable difference is the dominance in Pashtunwali of nanawatal meaning vengeance/vendetta. The Pashtunwali define what it means to be Pashtun. Other Pashtunwali values include; asylum, forgiveness, hospitality, loyalty, bravery, and righteousness.
The Pashtuns have a shame and honour culture. They live to uphold this way of life closely. Any violation of any of the principles of Pashtunwali is taken seriously.
Bringing the gospel of Jesus into the centre of the Pashtun people will almost certainly come through a redemption of the code of Pashtunwali. There is much hope that this can be accomplished as much of the code is based in the old covenant that Jesus came to fulfil! When that happens we might see a return of the Pashtun people to their God through Jesus at the miraculous pace of the Jews in the book of Acts!