SCUT în jurul creștinilor persecutați din Orientul Mijlociu. Administrația Trump NU va mai da milioane de dolari către ONU, ci organizațiilor creștine

Citeste si – Pence promite ajutorul american pentru creștinii persecutați: Dumnezeu va sufla viața nouă în Orientul Mijlociu

ACTIVE NEWS: Acuzând Națiunile Unite că nu au fost eficiente în ajutorarea creștinilor persecutați din Orientul Mijlociu, vicepreședintele SUA, Mike Pence a anunțat, miercuri, că administrația Trump nu va mai da bani către organizația internațională.  În schimb, SUA vor da banii necesari pentru ajutorarea creștinilor unor organizații religioase și asociații non-profit.
„Din acest moment,  America va acorda sprijin direct comunităților persecutate prin intermediul USAID”, a declarat Pence cu ocazia cinei anuale de solidaritate din cadrul  Reuniunii Apărării Creștinilor, de la Washington. „Nu ne vom mai baza doar pe ONU pentru a ajuta creștinii și minoritățile persecutate în urma genocidului și a atrocităților comise de grupurile teroriste”.
„Creștinii din Orientul Mijlociu au fost victimele genocidului comis de Statul Islamic din Orientul Mijlociu, a spus Pence, subliniind că „realitatea tristă este aceea că ONU cheltuiește aproximativ un miliard de dolari pe an pentru ajutorul umanitar din regiune, dar nu-i ajută suficient pe creștini, scrie Washington Times.
Pence a mai spus că, în timp ce grupările religioase, cu experiență și cu rădăcini adânci în aceste comunități sunt mult mai dispuse să-i ajute pe creștini, Națiunile Unite le refuză frecvent cererile de finanțare. „Prietenii mei, acele zile au apus! Acum e momentul. Și America îi va sprijini pe acești oameni în clipele de cumpănă”, a avertizat vicepreședintele american.
Continuare – https://www.activenews.ro/externe/SCUT-in-jurul-crestinilor-persecutati-din-Orientul-Mijlociu.-Administratia-Trump-NU-va-mai-da-milioane-de-dolari-catre-ONU-ci-organizatiilor-crestine-147080
Reclame

Raport 2015-2017: Persecuţiile împotriva creştinilor sunt mai grave decât în orice moment al istoriei

Să ne rugăm pentru biserica persecutată de pretutindeni.

Aduceţi-vă aminte de cei ce sunt în lanţuri, ca şi cum aţi fi şi voi legaţi cu ei; de cei chinuiţi, ca unii care şi voi sunteţi în trup. – Evrei 13:3

Basilica.ro, 18 octombrie 2017

Persecuţiile împotriva creştinilor sunt mai grave decât în orice moment al istoriei,iar în mai multe cazuri genocidul şi alte crime împotriva umanităţii dovedesc faptul că Bisericile din anumite regiuni se află în faţa pericolului de a fi exterminate, se menţionează întru-un raport al fundaţiei catolice Aid to the Church In Need emis în data de 12 octombrie.

China, Eritreea, Irak, Nigeria, Coreea de Nord, Pakistan, Arabia Saudită, Sudan şi Siria fac parte din categoria statelor în care persecuţia împotriva creştinilor a atins cote alarmante. În Egipt, India şi Iran persecuţiile sunt considerate a avea o intensitate mare sper extremă, în timp ce în Turcia sunt moderate spre mari.

Intoleranța religioasă și persecuțiile au afectat 215 milioane de creștini în 2016

În unele ţări statul este principalul persecutor, în timp ce în altele grupurile sociale sunt culpabile.

Orientul Mijlociu este un punct central al raportului. Guvernele din Vest şi Naţiunile Unite, se precizează în raport, nu au reuşit să acorde sprijin creştinilor în ţări precum Irak şi Siria. În lipsa unor organizaţii creştine şi a altor instituţii care au oferit ajutor, prezenţa comunităţilor creştine în Irak, precum şi în alte zone ale Orientului Mijlociu ar fi fost pusă sub semnul întrebării.

Statul Islamic şi alţi militanţi au comis acte de genocid în Siria şi Iak, iar în Nigeria grupul radical islamist Boko Haram a pornit o persecuţie violentă împotriva creştinilor. Există informaţii despre cazuri în care creştini din Coreea de Nord au fost ucişi prin înfometare, răstigniţi şi incendiaţi. Acolo, creştinătatea este asociată cu influenţa americană, iar membrii comunităţilor sunt executaţi ca spioni.

În Sudan, guvernul a dispus distrugerea a numeroase biserici creştine, iar credincioşii arestaţi pentru prozelitism sau comportament indecent. 24 de creştini au murit în urma unui atentat în Pakistan desfăşurat în duminica Paştelui, în oraşul Lahore.

Persecuţia în India a înregistrat o creştere începând cu anul 2014, unii dintre creştini fiind obligaţi să se lepede de credinţa lor sub ameninţările violenţei şi să participe împotriva voinţei lor la ritualuri hinduse. În 2016, 10 persoane au fost ucise, iar peste 500 clerici hărţuiţi pentru credinţa lor.

În China autorităţile din anumite provincii au distrus biserici, iar diferite simboluri creştine au fost interzise. În Egipt au avut loc două atentate cu bombă în decembrie 2016 şi aprilie 2017 care au vizat comunităţile creştine. Atentatele revendicate de Statul Islamic s-au soldat cu numeroase victime şi pierderi materiale.

Raportul cu titlul Persecutat şi Uitat? face referire la anii 2015-2017 şi descrie creştinismul drept cea mai oprimată comunitate de credinţă din lume. Persecuţiile împotriva creştinilor au atins cote noi şi impactul acestora abia începe să fie simţit în toată oroarea lui, se mai menţionează în raport.

Sursă info: Catholic News Agency
Foto credit: Voices from Russia website

VIA – STIRI PENTRU VIATA

CITESTE si – ISIS izgonit din Raqqa, capitala grupului terorist unde crestinii au fost rastigniti si decapitati

EXOD al creștinilor în Egipt după atacuri jihadiste repetate

persecutia-religioasa-foto-activenews

Alţi creştini egipteni au fugit din Peninsula Sinai, după o serie de atacuri presupuse jihadiste în această regiune unde acţionează gruparea Stat Islamic (SI), relatează AFP şi Reuters. Potrivit unui responsabil al Bisericii Copte, multe familii creştine au sosit în oraşul Ismailya din apropierea canalului Suez (estul Egiptului, la 115 km nord-est de Cairo), unde 250 de coreligionari ai lor au găsit deja adăpost.

Presupuşi militanţi islamişti au împuşcat mortal cel puţin şase persoane în atacuri separate în ultima lună.

Foarte activă în Sinai, gruparea SI a publicat recent o înregistrare video în care promite să ia la ţintă membri ai comunităţii creştine.

Copţii, care reprezintă 10% din cei 92 de milioane de egipteni, au mai fost deja vizaţi în Sinai, o regiune cuprinsă de o insurecţie jihadistă, dar aceste atacuri au crescut după difuzarea înregistrării.

Miercuri, corpul ciuruit de gloanţe al unui creştin de şaizeci de ani şi cel al fiului său ars de viu au fost descoperite în spatele unei şcoli din Al-Arish.

VIDEO / Afla mai mult – http://www.stiripesurse.ro/exod-al-cre-tinilor-in-egipt-dupa-atacuri-jihadiste-repetate_1182092.html

Arabia Saudită torturează cu brutalitate 35 de creştini etiopieni care au fost arestaţi pentru că s-au rugat într-o casă privată / Saudi Arabia brutally tortures 35 Ethiopian Christians who were arrested for praying in a private home

saudi-arabia-prison-persecution-of-christians-foto-captura-cbn

Arabia Saudită torturează cu brutalitate 35 de creştini etiopieni care au fost arestaţi pentru că s-au rugat într-o casă privată

Un grup de protestatori din Washington, cer autorităţilor din Arabia Saudită, să elibereze 35 de creştini întemniţaţi. Acest protest a fost organizat de International Christian Concern (ICC), în faţa Ambasadei Arabiei Saudite, Ei cer ca guvernul să elibereze 35 de creştini etiopieni care au fost arestaţi pentru că s-au rugat într-o casa privată. Islamul este religia oficială a Arabiei Saudite şi membrilor altor credinţe le este interzis să se inchine public sau să se întâlnească în privat.

CBN news a vorbit cu  organizatorul de protest, despre scopul acestui protest. ,,Vrem ca Ambasada Arabiei Saudite să vadă că sunt oameni care sunt foarte îngrijoraţi de această situaţie. Noi vrem să ne ridicam vocile noastre cu privire la desfăşurarea acestei situaţii din Arabia Saudită,” a spus Donchan Racho, de la International Christian Concern. ICC a spus că prizonierii, printre care sunt mai multe femei, au fost maltrataţi de oficialii închisorii. Saudi Arabia 2012.

PERSECUTIA CONTINUA:

Septembrie 2014 –

Dozens of Christians ‘including women and children’ are arrested in ..

Septembrie 2016 –

Saudi Arabia: 27 Christians arrested and deported for “conducting …

Septembrie 2016 –

28 Christians arrested in Saudi Arabia – Washington Free Beacon

Noiembrie 2016 –

Nov 22, 2016 – Christians arrested at a prayer meeting in Saudi Arabia is the continuing persecution of those that follow Christ Jesus worldwide, but especially ...

Saudi Arabia brutally tortures 35 Ethiopian Christians who were arrested for praying in a private home:

Christians Arrested in Saudi Arabia Religious Cleansing 2014

Statement by the President on the Occasion of Orthodox Easter

Michelle and Barack Obama going to church on Good Friday 2016 Photo abcnews.go.com

Michelle and Barack Obama going to church on Good Friday 2016 Photo abcnews.go.com

The White House
Office of the Press Secretary:

Statement by the President on the Occasion of Orthodox Easter

Michelle and I extend our best wishes to members of the Orthodox Christian community here in America and around the world as they observe Holy Friday and the Feast of the Resurrection.

For Orthodox Christians, this is a time to remember the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, to rejoice in the victory of the Resurrection and to be transformed by the renewing of our minds in accordance with God’s will.

We lift up in prayer the members of the Orthodox community who have been persecuted for their faith and subjected to unspeakable acts of violence, and we seek the release of those who have been kidnapped.   We remember those who have been driven from their homelands and who have seen their religious institutions desecrated or destroyed.  And we stand in solidarity with Orthodox Christians and people of all faiths, and pledge to continue our work to ensure that all people are able to live in peace, justice, and freedom.

During this season of hope, we remember that the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.  We wish all who celebrate a blessed Easter.

`https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/04/29/statement-president-occasion-orthodox-easter

Update on the 80 North Koreans summarily executed in public, some may have been killed for possessing Bibles

Source Mission News Network and Daily Mail UK

I have been watching this news item for a few days, and up until yesterday there was no evidence that Christians were also targeted. Originally, the North Korean government stated that the 80 people rounded up and publicly executed had a committed the crime of possessing South Korean Movie DVD’s and for ‘prostitution’ (could it be possessing pornography?). However, in the last 2 days, several news outlets are revising the story and are also reporting that, at least some of those executed, may have been killed for possessing a Bible, and, reportedly, the families of the victims and friends have been sent to gulags (forced labor camps).

north korea gulag

Here’s the report from the Daily Mail:

Several large-scale public executions of around 80 people have taken place in North Korea, according to a South Korean newspaper.

In one, woman and children were herded into a sports stadium and forced to watch people being shot dead by machine gun fire.

The executions took place on Sunday November 3, a source told the paper.

Why the executions took place is difficult to ascertain, but the paper speculates that they may have been carried out to quell unrest and stop capitalist ideology from growing, as they took place in areas of recent economic growth.

Some of the deaths may also have been a punishment for the perceived crimes of watching South Korean movies, distributing pornography, using prostitutes and possessing Bibles.

JoongAng Ilbo reported that in Wonsan, in Kangwon Province, 10,000 people were ordered into Shinpoong Stadium, and forced to watch eight people, who were tied to stakes with sacks over their heads, being killed by machine guns.

Its source said: ‘I heard from the residents that they watched in terror as the corpses were riddled by machine-gun fire that they were hard to identify afterwards.’

Other executions took place in Chongjin in North Hamgyong Province, Sariwon in North Hwanghae Province and Pyongsong in South Pyongan.

North Koreans are forced to adhere to the Juche ideology – a doctrine which mixes Marxism with the worship of North Korea’s founder Kim Il Sung and his descendents.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

Please continue to pray for the world wide persecuted church, and for the persecutors. May God give the brave persecuted men and women, who have done no wrong, the strength to stand, and their families comfort for the losses they are experiencing.

Pastor Ugyen’s Story – IDOP 2013

persecution chainsfrom – Asian Pastor Uygen, imprisoned for 3 years. Identities concealed.

Every day throughout South Asia, believers face all kinds of opposition for their faith in Jesus. National missionaries and their families are often the ones who suffer the greatest, sharing the love of Christ with those in need.

Persecution, in some regions, takes the form of imprisonment, separating families for years. This is pastor Ugyen’s story:

‘i commit to pray’ new website launched by Voice of the Martyrs

A place to gather and pray for the persecuted church. Read prayer requests from around the world and post your own prayers specifically for your brothers and sisters who are being persecuted.

Photo credit www.persecution.com

click here for the WEBSITE –

icommittopray.com

a website of Voice of the Martyrs USA

Launched on Sunday, the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP), www.iCommitToPray.com invites Christians around the world to commit to pray for those who are persecuted simply for believing in Christ.

Todd Nettleton with Voice of the Martyrs USA says, “The first request of our persecuted family, when we go and visit them, is that we pray for them.”

This new Web site grew out of the desire to fulfill this request.

“The idea for this site really grew out of activity we already saw on the VOM Facebook page,” Nettleton said. “We often post prayer requests, and we began to see people comment on the post and type in their prayers for those currently being persecuted. And others would be encouraged by that, and add their own prayer in the next comment, and so on.

„At times we could even print out those prayers and show them to the Christians in hostile and restricted nations, and they were incredibly blessed to see very tangibly that Christians around the world hadn’t forgotten them and were lifting them up in prayer. We want iCommitToPray.com to be a site dedicated to that kind of prayer and encouragement.”

Users of the new Web site can post their written prayers and then invite friends to join with them in praying. Having this connection to other believers through social media provides awareness, information, and opportunities to encourage and uphold those who suffer for bearing the name of Christ.

„What we envision for iCommitToPray.com is a great prayer meeting for persecuted Christians. But instead of gathering in a church or someone’s living room, Christians will gather online to pray for the persecuted church,” explain Nettleton.

Pray that this Web site will motivate believers worldwide to pray for their persecuted brothers and sisters. (Source mnnonline.org)

The Privilege of Persecution: Preparing the Body of Christ for Persecution by Edgar Reich

Edgar Reich held senior management positions at a Fortune 500 Company inCanada, Germany and Switzerland. He has led a $400 Million Company in Germany and was jointly responsible for a $900 Million European Company. Rev. Edgar Reich has been called by God and his Church to preach in Revival.

Rev. Edgar Reich is a Christian who has accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Savior in April 2004. You can read more about his ministry here- http://www.revivalusacanada.org

Photo credit www.raymondibrahim.com by Raymond Ibrahim

A young woman was washing her clothes in a North Korea river. As she gathered her clothes, a little book fell from her clothes. It fell to the ground, and another person saw it, looked at the book and reported her. It was either a christian book, or it was a Bible. After being reported to the authorities, she was incarcerated. She was investigated, and her 60 year old father was also arrested. Several months later, and we believe there was also torture involved, there was a public show trial and 7 police officers were assembled with guns. The surrounding people were invited to come and see what would happen. Near by there were a public school and a high school. The children from those schools were asked to come and watch. And, as this young woman and her father stood before them, they were accused of the capital offense of treason. And the 7 police officers raised their rifles and shot both of them 3 times. Blood and brain matter scattered all over. (Photo credit m.facebook.com)

Please turn with me to the text for „Preparing Ourselves for Persecution”: Matthew 24:9-13

“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. 10 And then many will fall away[a] and betray one another and hate one another. 11 And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. 12 And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. 13 But the one who endures to the end will be saved.

Beloved, will your love grow cold when there’s opposition? Will your love grow cold when not everyone agrees with you? Will your love grow cold for the Lord when someone hurts you? Will your love grow cold, and will you then disbelieve the promises of God? God forbid!!! The disciples had asked the Lord Jesus Christ, in this passage, „What will be the sign of Your coming?” Such signs included persecution and the great tribulation. There are over 60 countries now, today, where the cross of Jesus Christ is no longer welcome. The United States of America is in the process of joining such countries.

I would like to cover 7 points about persecution.

  1. Persecution is certain
  2. The purposes of persecution. Why does God allow it?
  3. The privilege of persecution
  4. The promises of God during persecution
  5. The presence of Christ during persecution. Praise God you’re not alone. You’re never alone!
  6. Perseverance of the saints to the end, with patience, forgiveness, and love.
  7. Preparation for persecution

Photo credit www.routleylaw.com by Vanessa Routley

1. Persecution is certain, also in America and Canada

The message we read in Matthew foretells of a world wide persecution, where true christians are persecuted, perhaps tortured, and killed. And hated for the name of Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus did not tell the disciples, His followers, in this passage: You will be exempted from such persecution. He does not even say you will be raptured so that you don’t have to face this, in this passage. He said, „You will even face the abomination of desolation, in Matthew 24:15. It refers to a coming world leader, it refers to antichrist. In America, we have these feelings that this can never happen here. „What are you talking about? God is love.” Of course God is love. He is such a loving God, and we will find out why it is even love to be persecuted.

In 2 Timothy 3:12 it says Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. You might say, „Well, I have not been persecuted yet. Praise God”. May I ask you, „May I ask you: Why not? Are you, perhaps, not living the Godly life that Scripture is speaking about?” After I got saved, I put my Bible on the side of my desk and the vice chairman walked in and said, „What is this? Are you out of your mind? You believe this kind of….” and I won’t tell you all of the words that were spoken. And the Holy Spirit said, „Be quiet. Say nothing”. And he went into a tirade against God, and the word of God, and myself. But, you know, the wonderful thing is that later on, when we asked to have a Bible study inside that corporation, he was the man that would approve or disapprove of us having christian fellowship inside that company. Do you know, the wonderful thing that happened is that God moved his heart, and we were able to have that fellowship.

I got a call from a friend that said, „Come and street preach with us in New York”. I said I would pray about it. I am called for revival, I don’t really think I’m into street ministry. And as I prayed, the Holy Spirit said, „Yes, go”. I prayed a second time, „Lord, I heard You wrong. What am I supposed to do?” „Go!” For serious decisions I always pray 3 times, „What am I supposed to do Lord?” „Go!” I went with some brothers. They had fasted for 40 days. I had fasted 1 day. We went out onto the streets of New York. We went to Ground Zero. I was standing there and passing out tracts. You know, the New Yorkers are pretty hard, and as people were walking by me, they were cussing at me, quietly. And, for the rest of the day, there were many who cursed. I asked my fellow Christians, they said no, it didn’t happen to them. Satan knew there was pride in me. At the end of the day I said, „God, they don’t want you and they don’t want me. They think I-m out of my mind. They think I’m a terrorist. I’m moved around, I’m shouted at. The police moved me around. Lord, Lord, they don’t want me.” And then, on the weekend, the Holy Spirit convicted me and the Holy Spirit came and asked me, „Do you really love people?” And I said, „Well, yes of course, God, I love people”. „Well, what about the people that oppose you a little?” And so, God convicted me mightily on that weekend. And so, I prayed, and I said, „Now, Lord, break my heart, show me your love for people, that I might know, I might understand. And, on Tuesday of the following week, I was standing at Ground Zero at 4:30, with 20,000 people rushing towards me, and all of a sudden, the sound disappeared. I couldn’t hear the people. I couldn’t hear the noise from Ground Zero, and the people were starting to walk towards me in slow motion. I was looking, and I didn’t understand. And then, I saw on their faces, I saw their need for money. I saw their need for pleasure, I saw their need to get home. I saw them wanting to be in their pools, wanting to have their drinks. I saw them wanting to have their cars, their family, their friends. But, there was no need for God in their faces. Yet, God says, „I love them”.  And, as I looked at them, I realized, I was looking at the walking dead, beloved. And my heart started to break and to weep. And then, all sound came back. The people were walking normally. And God, the Holy Spirit said in my heart, ” Their blood will I require from your hand. I love them. Why don’t you love them? You call yourself a christian?”.  Jesus said, „Why do you call me Lord, Lord, and raise holy hands, but, why don’t you do as I say?”

Another time, I went out to the Staten Island Ferry, and the night before, I had a dream that I would be stabbed by a muslim, and I would be thrown over. I said, Lord, if the dream is from you, it’s alright. I’m gonna go. I’m gonna share the Good News on the Staten Island ferry.” Nothing happened that day. Satan tried to prevent me from going. I don’t know what will happen in the future, but, it’s all right.

Photo credit & for more sermons click www.sermonindex.net

The Number 1 cause of persecution is witnessing with your mouth.

You say, „Well, I live my life.” Good. That’s great. That’s wonderful. Live it good. In John 17, Jesus prayed for them to be one, as He and the Father are one, and for those to be one, that will hear through their words. So, you’ve got to add some words, beloved. Let them know the truth. In one of the worst Iranian prisons, a leader of a Christian group was told, „If you stop witnessing, we will let you all go”. The Christian thought about it and answered, „How can we deny such great, great, great salvation? Did you know your salvation is great and incredible? We live in a country where salvation means virtually nothing. We push it aside. We don’t want to save people on the streets. Even we, as Christians, have been affected by humanism and secularism. We do not understand the greatness of God and what He has done. That divinity came to rescue humanity.

Beloved, a great, incredible God, the Son of God gave His life so that we might live. What a wonderful, wonderful truth that is. And so, much has gone wrong in our respective countries, in North America because we do not witness. Persecution has now started in the United States and Canada. Certain parts of the Bible are considered flammable. Laws have been changed to permit gross sin. Please listen to this: Committed Christians are now classified with terrorists in the United States of America. The official policy of Homeland Security and the FBI is that committed Christians are classified as a danger to this country. You are classified with terrorists in the United States. Now, we must pray for our leadership. But, I also must tell you president Obama appears to admit that he is a muslim. But, God has placed this man in charge of this country. So you pray for him. You don’t oppose him. You pray for him, that God might intercede. For in all of the prayers in the Book of Acts, in the Gospels, in the letter, all of the New Testament, there is not a single prayer against their leadership. So, as Christians, we will love unconditionally. We will do what the government says we must do. But, we will not do it if it’s against God’s word (the Bible). (18:50)

2. The purposes of persecution. Why does God allow it?

Beloved, God loves mankind so very, very much. And, guess whom He has left as witnesses. Are you a witness? You’re supposed to be. Now, if God wants to convict those that do not yet believe, even persecutors, even those that are against Christians, whom might He use as a witness? Us. You and me. It is a testimony of our faith in God and His Son Jesus Christ. The purpose of it is new growth of others receiving salvation. Here is another story from North Korea:

A soldier was watching as a construction crew, also composed of soldiers, they demolished a building and they found a Bible in it. With the Bible, there  was also a list of 25 names. As they followed up with this list of 25 names, they rounded up a pastor, 2 assistant pastors, 2 elders,  and 20 Christians. They assembled them at the construction site, they brought in steam rollers. They told the leaders, „If you do not worship Kim Ilsung and Kim Jong-il, you will die.  And beloved, that is also a picture of the antichrist in the future. That is what he will say, „If you don’t worship me, you will die”. But beloved, this „you will die”, is only in a temporal sense. It’s not for eternity. We do not put our faith in our circumstances. But, we put our faith in a loving, incredible God. And so, God permitted, as a testimony that some of these Christians should be killed. And 5 of them , the leaders, had to lie on the pavement, and then the steamrollers came and rolled over them. As their heads popped, and made a popping sound, many of the Christians fainted and fell to the ground. But, you know, there was new growth. There was new growth, because that soldier who watched, he became a Christian. The blood of the martyrs drenched the ground, but there was new growth. (SEE the actual NEWS ARTICLE on this story below the video)

Christian Bishop Polycarp (lived 69 – 155 A.D.), was a second century Christian of Smyrna. If you remember, Christ had talked to the church of Smyrna and had told them, „Do not fear any of those things that you are about to suffer”. This is Christ, speaking through the apostle John. ANd He’s saying, „Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested. And you will have tribulation 10 days. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. Life, forevermore, and a great reward. It is not the temporal, but the eternal. It is not the ‘now’, but, the ‘forever’. And so, we need not worry because Christ is with us, Christ is for us, Christ is in us. He says, „I’ll never leave you, or forsake you, whatever you have to go through. And so, this Christian bishop, Polycarp, he died as a martyr. He was bound and burned at the stake, but the fire would not touch him, the fire wouldn’t burn him. So, finally, the went over and they stabbed him to death. In Smyrna, the execution of Christians became so great, that hundreds of them are martyred at the same time. Yet, when the people saw the martyrdom of the Christians, and how they behaved in their faith, others became saved. Praise God! And those who had not believed (and were saved) outnumbered those that were being martyred. You give your life, for someone else to have life. You can start that now. You can put the old flesh to death.

The second reason God allows persecution: It refines us and tests us. You see, when we are in prison, we no longer have time to sin. And, when you’re all alone, you look to ‘from where cometh my help’. My help comes from the world. And, you have time alone with Him, with nobody to disturb you. It also tests your faith: Are you true in the faith? When you ask yourself, „Am I true in the faith?” Two Russian soldiers came to a little church in the middle of winter in Russia. And inside the church were about 12 people worshipping God. The door burst open and they saw 2 soldiers standing there with submachine guns. They walked in and said, „Now you Christians, we’re going to kill you if you don’t leave.” They stood in the middle with their submachine guns. Slowly, 6 people got up and walked out of the church. One of the soldiers went and closed the door behind them. He returned into the auditorium and both soldiers lay down their weapons. They said to the remaining 6, „Beloved brothers and sisters, we both are Christians too. We wanted to worship with true Christians”. Are you a true Christian? Would you give your life for someone else, that he might live?

Thirdly, persecution helps us to witness. Acts 8:1-4, in verse 1 ‘they were all scattered’, In verse 4 it says, „Those who were scattered went everywhere, preaching the word.A very surprising outcome. They were scattered. Do you know what scattered means? You lose all of your stuff. You lose all of your possessions, your job, your familyall of your surrounding friends. You can no longer stay there. You must leave. Be gone. You don’t know what you’re gonna eat the next day. And here they start to witness about the greatness of God. Does God have to scatter us first, before we share the truth of this great salvation? Perhaps, because we’re so stubborn, and we’re so selfish. And we say, „Why should I do what others don’t do?” There is only 1% that have read the Bible, and there is 1% only who witness faithfully and regularly. Perhaps it’s more here, but I believe a large majority of you are not witnessing regularly. (29:50)

3. The privilege of persecution

It is a cause of rejoicing when we are persecutedGod gives us eternal blessings. He gives us great rewards in heaven. He gives us a crown for eternity and He makes us shine like the stars forever. The Christians in North Korea pray, „Our persecution and suffering are our joy and honor. We want to accept ridicule, scorn and disadvantages with joy in Jesus’ name. We want to wipe others’ tears away and comfort the suffering. We want to be ready to risk our lives because of our love for our neighbor, so that they also become Christians. We want to live our lives according to the standards set in God’s Word”.

4. The promises of God during persecution

  1. Matthew 5:10-12  Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
  2. Revelation 2:10  Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful,even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown.
  3. Daniel 12:3 Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.
  4. Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for theLord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
  5. Matthew 10:28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
  6. Matthew 6:25-26 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?
  7. Luke 12:7 Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. I love you so much that I even count the hairs on your head. But, I also love the unbelieving and I might ask you to give your life, that others might live. (34:00)

5. The presence of Christ during persecution. 

Pastor Wurmbrand spent 14 years in prison, and had 18 pieces of flesh cut out of him. He relates that during torture he forgot all. He could not remember Scripture, he could not remember sermons, he couldn’t remember anything. But, he said what he remembered was the presence of the indwelling Christ who comforted him. He said. „It was Christ, the Son of God, who got me through this time. He sustained me. He helped me through.” And in 2 Corinthians 12:9 „But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” Matthew 28:20 „and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” And, nothing can separate you from His love, even if you’re experiencing great, great persecution.

6. Perseverance of the saints to the end

1 Peter 4:12-13 „Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.” Romans 8:18 „I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” It is not the temporal, it is the eternal. It is not the ‘now’, it is your future, beloved Christians. The glory of the future cannot be compared with what we might have to go through now.

7. Preparation for persecution

  • (a) We must repent of all sin and fear. Some of you here are still afraid. And the reason you’re afraid is because you believe Satan, not God. He puts this fear into you. It is not God, and so, you must repent. You must cry out to God and say to Him, Lord, Lord, this fear is overcoming me, I reject it in Christ’s name. I will believe you, that you will sustain me in my hour of need. I believe that you will not tempt me beyond that which I’m able to bear. Praise God.
  • (b) We must examine ourselves and see that we are in the faith. Beloved, if you’re not in the faith, you’re not able to withstand what is coming. So, if you are a nominal Christian, you should give your life to Christ. Repent of those ways, and do what the word of God says. So, examine yourself.
  • (c) There should be evidenced a personal relationship with Jesus. Do you walk with Him, do you talk with Him? Does He tell you you’re His own? There ought to be a personal relationship between you and your Savior.
  • (d) Practice forgiveness for those that hurt you. And you know there’s more hurt coming in the future, forgive everyone who has hurt you now. Forgive those in church that you cannot stand- someone who has a funny laugh, people in your family that get on your nerves, people at your job, at your office, at your school, at your university. Before you can love them, you need to forgive them.
  • (e) Practice love through the Holy Spirit. Apply Matthew 5:44 „But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” Love them after forgiving them. Bless them. Do good for them. You know what the evidence is, when you have forgiven? When you do something good for them, the person that hurt you. That’s the evidence.
  • (f) Practice joy and humbleness. I wanna send all Christians to smile school. You’re so miserable. you’re so judgmental. You’re so sour. Why would I want to be a Christian like you? I don’t wanna be like you. But, give me a heavenly smile. Go to smile school with God. Ask for gladness, ask for joy to come back into your heart because you lost it. You see, when you fill up your life with the joys of this world,- football games, TV, internet, people out there, Broadway shows-. I know, when I fill up with the joys of this world, there’s no space left for the joys of the Lord. So talk in psalms and hymns. Fill up with the word of God.
  • (g) Practice witnessing. You need the Holy Spirit, you need love from the Holy Spirit. Be ready. Write a short testimony, with a verse, a Scripture in it, because, even if your testimony fails, the verse built into your testimony can never fail. Praise God because the Word of God shall not return void.
  • (h) Practice denying the flesh. Get along with less. Can you eat less? Can you get along without TV, without the internet? Can you do with less possessions? Would you lay down your life?
  • (i) Practice living the cross. The top of the cross is prayer. The bottom of the cross is the Bible. One arm is for witnessing, the other arm is for fellowship. And to learn to love your fellow Christian in church, love people at the office, at school. If you don’t love them, if you judge them even before you love them, they will never listen to you. So, use that part of the cross to have fellowship. And then, in the center of it is my relationship with God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. And, it is also my place of sacrifice and surrender, where I lay down before God. The flesh profits nothing, the Spirit is life. So, let God the Holy Spirit work through you and things will change.

VIDEO by sermonindex

This was published in the New York Sun Newspaper in 2005

Korean Reds Targeting Christians

WASHINGTON – A woman in her 20s executed by a firing squad after being caught with a Bible. Five Christian church leaders punished by being run over by a steamroller before a crowd of spectators who „cried, screamed out, or fainted when the skulls made a popping sound as they were crushed.”

These and other „horrifying” violations of human rights and religious freedom in North Korea are reported in a new study by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, titled „‘Thank You, Father Kim Il Sung’: Eyewitness Accounts of Severe Violations of Freedom of Thought, Conscience, and Religion in North Korea.”

The report, released yesterday, comes as President Bush is touring Asia, calling for increased political freedom. In remarks prepared for delivery early this morning in Japan, the president called on Red China to extend more freedom to its population of 1.3 billion. In an advance text of the speech, President Bush also extolled Taiwan, which Beijing considers a renegade province, as „a free and democratic Chinese society.” And the president noted North Korean human rights abuses while reassuring the Hermit Kingdom’s people.

„Satellite maps of North Korea show prison camps the size of whole cities,” Mr. Bush said. „We will not forget the people of North Korea.”

Yesterday on Capitol Hill the chairman of the Commission on International Religious Freedom, Michael Cromartie, and two members of Congress who helped establish the commission, Reps. Frank Wolf of Virginia and Chris Smith of New Jersey, called on Mr. Bush to include the specific findings of the North Korean report in his diplomatic discussions with Chinese and South Korean officials this week, and to urge leaders of both Asian nations to take a firmer stand against their communist neighbor.

Mr. Cromartie told The New York Sun after the event that senior administration officials at the National Security Council had been provided with an advance copy of the report so that Mr. Bush could raise particular human rights abuses with his Chinese and South Korean interlocutors.

Mr. Cromartie said yesterday during the study’s unveiling on Capitol Hill that the report was unique in its depth and breadth, and in the quantity of first-hand accounts, since it is notoriously difficult to obtain reliable information from inside North Korea, owing to the country’s complete isolation under the Kim dictatorship.

Among the first-hand reports are eyewitness accounts of Christians’ being executed for the underground practice of their faith.

Photo credit creative.sulekha.com

The study recounts, for example, how in November 1996 in North Korea’s South Pyongan province, a unit of the North Korean army was tasked with widening a highway connecting Pyongyang to a nearby port city. While demolishing a vacant house, soldiers found in the basement, hidden between two bricks, a Bible and a list of 25 names. Among the list were individuals identified as a Christian pastor, two assistant pastors, two elders, and 20 parishioners who were identified by their occupations.

Hunted down at their workplaces by military police, the 25 Christians were rounded up and detained without any formal judicial procedure. Later that month, the parishioners and their clergy were brought to the road construction site, where spectators had been arranged in neat rows to observe the public execution of the pastor, assistant pastors, and elders. According to a report based on an eyewitness account, the five church leaders „were bound hand and foot and made to lie down in front of a steamroller,” accused of subversion and of being Kiddokyo, or Protestant Christian, spies.

The 20 parishioners were detained near their clergy, and watched, along with the assembled audience, as the five Christian leaders were told they could escape death if they denied their faith and pledged to serve only Kim Jong Il and his father, the first dictator of communist Korea, Kim Il Sung. According to the eyewitness, the clergy remained silent.

For their steadfast belief, the Christians were executed. According to the report, „Some of the fellow parishioners assembled to watch the execution cried, screamed out, or fainted when the skulls made a popping sound as they were crushed beneath the steamroller.”

Another account contained in the report says that on a summer day in North Korea in 1997, a young woman was washing clothes in a tributary of the Tumen River when she dropped a small Bible she had hidden amid the laundry. Spotted by a fellow washerwoman, the girl was reported to North Korean authorities on the suspicion that she was engaging in an exercise of thought or religion condemned by the state. The girl, believed to be in her 20s, and her father, estimated to be around 60, were arrested by local national security police and imprisoned for three months.

One morning, they were taken to a public market area, where, after a brief show trial, the father and daughter were condemned as traitors to the North Korean nation and its communist dictator, Kim Jong Il. The father and daughter were then tied to stakes a few meters from where they had been „tried,” and, before an assembly of schoolchildren, were riddled with bullets by seven policemen who fired three shots each into the pair. According to a report drawn from eyewitness accounts, „The force of the rifle shots, fired from fifteen meters away, caused blood and brain matter to be blown out of their heads.”

The study was compiled by the author of „Hidden Gulag: Exposing North Korea’s Prison Camps,” David Hawk, who was assisted by two South Korean researchers, Jae Chunwon and Philo Kim. Together they interviewed 40 re cent North Korean defectors to gain insight into the religious lives of average North Koreans.

From the interviews, according to Mr. Cromartie, the Commission had obtained a „horrifying picture” of the abuses suffered by Christians and other believers in North Korea.

All of the interviewees had fled to South Korea through China, which has become something of a „safety valve” for North Koreans fleeing religious persecution, Mr. Smith told the Sun yesterday. According to the study, China has received a flood of refugees fleeing the Kim dictatorship, and between 50,000 and 100,000 North Korean exiles remain in China, the commission reported.

China, however, considers dissident North Koreans „economic migrants” subject to repatriation, and the study presents a dismal account of those forced to return to North Korea. According to one defector who was grilled by North Korean border guards, the Kim regime fears that „Juche will be toppled by Christianity,” referring to the state ideology, and exercises brutal control over North Koreans who have been exposed to Chinese or South Korean Christian churches.

According to the study, in order to preserve the complete control Kim Jong Il exercises over his subjects’ minds, repatriated North Koreans are harshly interrogated to determine whether they will infect their countrymen with ideas and information obtained abroad, and Christian believers are often slapped with long prison sentences and hard labor, punishments sometimes passed on to their families and descendants.

The documented fear of Christianity is accompanied by an extensive account of the pervasiveness of the Kims’ cult of personality, and the title of the study, „Thank you, Father Kim Il-Sung,” refers to the phrase North Korean parents are required to first teach their children.

SOURCE – The New York Sun

Eritrea – persecution and death for non state approved Christian denominations

Photo credit gatewaynews.co.za see also this story from March of this year – Eritrea jails 125 Christians in campaign against ‘illegal’ worship

For us, this is reminiscent of Communist Romania, where the only recognized religion during the communist regime which ended in 1989, was the Orthodox Church. All others were persecuted, economically deprived, not allowed to attend universities and not considered for good, high paying jobs.

Open Doors USA is reporting the death of a 41 year old man who recently converted to Christianity, died in a Medefera prison after being held there since December. Curiously, of the Protestant denominations, Eritrea only approves of the Catholic Church and Lutherans. Here is the story from Mission Network News:

Eritrea, which ranks #10 on the Open Doors World Watch List of countries with the worst persecution of believers. Yosief is the 24th reported death connected to punishment for religious activities outside of the government-sanctioned Catholic Church, Orthodox Church, Lutheran Church, and Islam.

Sources told Open Doors that Yosief, 41, had been sick for a long time, but that the harsh treatment at a secret Medefera incarceration center aggravated the effects of the unknown disease.

However, because of the government’s secrecy surrounding prisoners and denied access to watchdog organizations, there may be many more deaths and burials that have not been reported.

Yosief was originally from Asmara. He went to Mendefera to teach at a primary school some time prior to his arrest. Six months after his arrival, Yosief came to faith in Christ. His devotion to Bible study and prayer caught the attention of representatives of the ruling Eritrean People’s Front for Democracy and Justice (EPRDF) at the school.

Authorities arrested him in December and took him to the secret incarceration center in Mendefera where he was kept incommunicado. Sources told Open Doors the center holds many other religious prisoners whose whereabouts were previously unknown to family members and churches.

„Christians should be hugely encouraged to see how God through His Holy Spirit enables His children even new–and isolated ones like Yosief–to remain firm in their devotion to Christ no matter the circumstances,” commented an Open Doors team member.

Please pray for other Christians incarcerated in Eritrean prisons. Pray for the Holy Spirit to give believers strength and peace.

Boko Haram kills an influential Christian leader in Nigeria

On the same day that Nigerian president President Goodluck Jonathan declared a state of emergency, Boko Haram, the group responsible for the deaths of at least 250 people in the past month alone have killed Reverend Faye Pama Musa, Secretary of the Christian Association of Nigeria in Borno state. Photo to the left is – Secretary of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Borno State: Rev. Faye Pama Musa was assassinated by the Boko Haram. (Image courtesy Open Doors)

Mission Network News reports:

Location of Borno State in Nigeria

Nigeria (MNN) ― Nigeria’s downward spiral continues as the Boko Haram kills an influential Christian leader.

„Reverend Faye Pama Musa was killed on Tuesday. He’s Secretary of the Christian Association of Nigeria in Borno state,” says Open Doors USA spokesman Jerry Dykstra.

That same day, President Goodluck Jonathan declared a state of emergency in Borno state and two others. According to reports, Boko Haram violence has claimed over 250 lives in the past month alone.

According to Dystra, Musa’s assassination is a bad sign coming from the Boko Haram.

„In the past they’ve targeted Christian churches, but now they’re targeting individual pastors,” Dykstra explains. „It’s…something that’s really troublesome, and certainly Christians in the West need to keep on praying.”

An Open Doors report says Musa, who was also the presiding pastor of REME Assembly, Maiduguri, was trailed to his house Tuesday evening by two gunmen.

„He attempted to run away, but his assailants closed in on him. They [gunmen] shot him at close range,” a source said.

Ask the Lord to comfort Reverend Musa’s family. Open Doors’ Nigeria team leader knew Musa personally and says the victim was a friend of their ministry.

„I remember a time I asked him a question, whether he would consider leaving Maiduguri if it became necessary for his safety, and he said to me, ‘Where am I going to run to? I will stay here and die,'” the Open Doors leader shared.

Before declaring a state of emergency in Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa states, Nigeria’s president spoke words of reassurance.

„While the efforts at persuasion and dialogue will continue, let me reiterate that we have a sacred duty to ensure the security and well-being of all our people,” President Goodluck Jonathan stated on Tuesday.

„Therefore, we shall on no account shy away from doing whatever becomes necessary to provide the fullest possible security for the citizens of this country in any part of the country they choose to reside.”

Some aren’t buying it, Dykstra says.

„President Goodluck Jonathan has said they will go after them and said they’re terrorists and they’ll really get after them. But the problem is that he’s said that before,” Dykstra explains.

„There are a lot of conflicting thoughts about his sincerity.”

Pray that peace would come to Nigeria. Pray also for Nigeria’s president.

„He is a Christian, and we need to pray that he’ll have wisdom. As things just seem like they’re snowballing and snowballing, he really needs our prayer.”

 Related articles

Paul Washer on the future suffering of America and on The False Christianity of North America

Paul Washer heartcry.com

thanks to Gabi Bogdan for referring this video yesterday, it couldn’t come at a better time with everything that is going on as it pertains to the hostility displayed towards Christian beliefs and the struggle to push orthodox Christian beliefs totally out of the public square. Paul Washer (as Gabi says) is prophetic in what he says about the suffering that will come, even here in what used to be the most democratic country in the world for a time. Paul Washer makes a great point in saying that Satan means persecution for evil, yet God uses it for good, and for more people to come to faith in Jesus Christ.

Matthew 5:10-11 10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven 11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

VIDEO by Imbeffie

The False Christianity of North America

Here is another video, Paul Washer: I am concerned with only one thing, that one day you will stand … in front of a Holy God and you will be judged. This is not a game, this is not something that has to do with culture. This has to do with the word of the living God, the Gospel of Jesus Christ: Life and death; heaven and hell. And it is an amazing burden for a preacher to stand in front of a group of people, knowing that some of you will hear my voice and go to heaven when you die, and others of you  will hear warning after warning, after warning, and you will not listen, and you will die under the wrath of God and spend eternity in hell. Christians, how do you know that if you die right now you are saved? (24 minutes)

VIDEO by joshoua00

Alistair Begg – Proclaiming the Exclusivity of Jesus Will Result in Persecution

photo via truthendures.com

via truthendures.comby LigonierMinistries

Alistair Begg speaks on the exclusivity of Jesus and how in church history, and today, proclaiming it results in persecution.

Recorded at the Ligonier Ministries 2010 National Conference, „Tough Questions Christians Face” http://www.ligonier.org/learn/conferences/tough-questions-christians-face-2010-national/

If the early Christians had been prepared to have Jesus simply included in the Roman pantheon of the time, then they would have managed to avoid persecution. But they didn’t, and they couldn’t. The common greetings of the Roman world which affirmed the essential deity of Caesar as their leader and sovereign meant that as they walked in the thoroughfares with each other they would affirm on a daily basis that Caesar is Lord. And as Christians they took the opportunity to say, ‘No,’ that actually ‘Jesus is Lord.’ They were beginning to understand that every knee would finally bow to Jesus. And therefore there was a radical difference in the way in which they viewed the culture at their time.

All they had to do was simply allow Jesus to be included amongst the other deities of the time.

‘Just don’t make a fuss; just find a place for him; why do you have to be these kind of people; why do you have to make such a fuss and bother about Jesus of Nazareth? We’re perfectly happy to have a place for Jesus. Look, we already have a plinth for him, and you can put a bust of Jesus there just with the rest.’

‘No,’ they said, ‘we won’t do that.’ Then they said, ‘Well if you don’t do that, we’ll turn you upside down, we’ll stick you in the ground and we’ll set fire to you. If you don’t do that we will force you to capitulate, or you will die.’ And you’ve read enough church history to know that the context in which the affirmation of the exclusive claims of Jesus was made was one which resulted in the death of those who held most forcefully to it.

But we’re a long way away from there and today is a different day, is it not? Here we are in America. Persecution may not be physical for most of us, but it certainly is intellectual. It is social in the every day events of life. And the prevailing mood which allows us to even face this question is a mood which sets itself apart from certainties. That is, apart from every certainty except the certainty that there are no certainties. The notion that somehow or another there is truth to be discovered and to be defined is increasingly missing at every point in our society.

Also from Paul Washer

Persecution or Great Awakening?

Persecution is coming to America – Paul Washer

Thanks to Gabi Bogdan for yet another important video.

Having been born in Romania and living my first 9 years under communism, I have seen some form of religious persecution. But, it wasn’t until I read about another Romanian – RIchard Wurmbrand and listened to dozens of testimonies from Romanian torturers and army personnel recount their tales of torture and persecution at their own hands that I realized how badly some had suffered (even unto death) under persecution. And, as I read the daily emails from my persecution watch sites and see how many christians are suffering, even unto death, across the globe that it seems almost arrogant for us in America to think that we will or that we even should escape persecution. Jesus told us we would count the cost when we follow Him and that we would have tribulation just as He did. May God strengthen us to be faithful and prepare and trust in Him as our world slips into it’s own brand of morality and intolerance of anything other than their way.

PAUL WASHER:

The church in America is going to suffer so terribly… and we laugh now, but, they will come after us, they will come after our children, they will close the net around us while we are playing soccer mom and soccer dad, while we argue over so many little things and are mesmerized by so many trinkets. The net, even now is closing around you, your children and your grandchildren and it does not cause you to fear.

You will be isolated from society, as has already happened. Anyone who tries to run for office, who actually believes the Bible will be considered a lunatic until finally we are silenced. We will be called things that are not and persecuted not for being followers of Christ, but, for being radical fundamentalist who do not know the truth of Christ which of course is love and tolerance. You’ll go down as the greatest bigots and haters of mankind in history.

They’ve already come after your children, and for most of you they got them. They got them through the public schools and indoctrination in the university and you wonder why your children come out not serving the Lord. It’s because you fed them right into the devil’s mouth. So, little by little the net is closing and then it’s not so little by little. Look how fast things are going down just in a matter of weeks., a matter of weeks.

But, at the same time know this: Persecution is always meant for evil; God always means it for good. And, is it not better to suffer n this life, to have an extra weight of glory in heaven?

You must settle this in your mind; this is the one thing I want to say over and over. Do not believe… down through history you have a wrong idea of martyrdom and persecution. You think that these men were persecuted and martyred for their sincere faith in Jesus Christ. That was the real reason, but no one heard that publicly. They were martyred and they were persecuted as enemies of the state, as child molesters, as bigots, as narrow minded, stupid people who had fallen for a ruse and can contribute nothing to society.

Your suffering will not be noble. So your mind must be filled with the word of God when all people persecute you and turn on you. And when the Spirit of God and common grace pull back and you see even your children and your grandchildren tossing in the lop you should die. This is no game. You want revival and awakening, but know this: For the most part, great awakenings have come only preceding great national catastrophes or the persecution of the church.

I believe God is bringing a great awakening, but, I believe that He is raising up young men who are strong and trust in the providence of God, to be able to wade through the hell that’s going to break loose on us. And, it will be on us before we even recognize it, unless, unless in God’s providence He is not done… He is not done. Note, this is not silly talk. Aside from great awakening, these things are going to come upon you. Be ready to lose your homes, your cars, everything.

Pastor and family executed in Syria

source – http://www.mnnonline.org

Syria (MNN) ― The civil war in Syria continues to claim lives. More than 30,000 have already died in the conflict. Now, with the rule of law unbridled, innocent Christians are becoming victims as radicals take advantage of the situation.

The Middle East Director of Christian Aid Mission says marauding bands of militants are responsible. „They’re not necessarily Syrians, but they’re very radical Muslims, and their goal is to eradicate Christians. They believe it’s an abomination to have Christians within Syria.”

We are not identifying this director for security reasons, but he tells us a Christian Aid-supported worker was a victim. „There was a band of militia that came through and told all of the people to get out; then, they went ahead and killed the pastor and his family. So there [are] quite a few now–I think there are 11 [Christians]–who have been killed in that one area from that ministry that we help.”

Why has the rule of law disappeared from Syria? The director says, „All of the typical security that you would have in the country is trying to protect the country. They’re not worried about providing police protection for the little communities around, and so the people are all vulnerable.”

That’s forcing many Syrians to flee into Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey. The ministry directory is particularly concerned about 32 Christian families who escaped this recent violence, who are frightened for their lives. „The goal is to try to get them out. Once they get into Lebanon, because they’re close to the border of Lebanon, then they need to be taken care of.” Funding is need to help these believers.

The ministry director says non-Christians are also in need. Christian Aid-supported churches are reaching out with food, shelter, clothing, and the Gospel. „They’ve had many, many Muslims who have become Christians and there’s still an opportunity to give out Gospel DVDs and New Testaments to the refugees. There’s great openness among those people.”

Support is also needed for to support Christian schools that have been established for the children of refugee families.

Prayer is also important: not just for the victims, but for those responsible. „You look at the Apostle Paul: he was the worst of sinners and was a persecutor of the church. And God reached his heart! We need to be praying for these radicals that God would touch their hearts and that they would come to know Christ.”

To support Christian Aid Mission’s refugee outreach program or their refugee school ministry, click here.

International Day of Prayer (IDOP) for the Persecuted November 11, 2012

1 Corinthians 12:26

If one part (of the body of Christ) suffers, every part suffers with it;

if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

Hebrews 13:3  

Remember those who are imprisoned,

as if you are imprisoned with them. Call those to mind who are afflicted,

as if you are the people who wear their bodies.

via The Voice of the Martyrs’ Persecution Blog:

International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church 2012

by Stacy L. Harp

Screen shot 2012-09-13 at 4.01.57 PMIt’s hard to believe that it’s that time of year again, but it is.  We’re two months out from observing the 2012 International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church, which will take place this year on November 11th.

As a way to help you get ready for the event, we have created a special webpage that has details about this years IDOP.

Please visit www.persecution.com/idop in order to get your order in early for our IDOP resource kit.  The cost of our kit is only $9 and it includes everything you need to help put on an event in your church, home or school.

also visit Open Doors website – http://www.onewiththem.com/resources-for-the-international-day-of-prayer/ for free resources, including church bulletin inserts and read some amazing stories of the faith and courage of 25 men and women (and their families) who are in the midst of persecution right now across the world- http://www.onewiththem.com/stories/

One With Them

Published on Jul 31, 2012 by 

For those who share our faith but not our freedom.

Nearly 70% of the world’s population live in areas of severe religious restriction. Many of these people are Christians.

One With Them™ is an Open Doors initiative designed to bring awareness to the reality of Christian persecution to the Western Church. Through One With Them we seek to inspire Christians in the United States to stand as ONE with those who share our faith in Christ, but who don’t share our religious freedom.

Learn more here http://www.onewiththem.com/

from The Barnabas Fund

When we read of the suffering which our brothers and sisters in Christ endure for the sake of His Name, our hearts are moved and we long to bring them before the throne of grace. But sometimes it is difficult to know exactly how to pray, especially if we have never experienced such injustice or persecution ourselves. The Bible tells us that the Church will be persecuted. So if the Lord will continue to allow persecution, what exactly should we ask Him for when we pray about these situations? We hope that the ten points below will be helpful suggestions, under the guidance and prompting of the Holy Spirit.

  1. God that He is all-knowing that in Christ He himself experienced shame, pain and agonising death, as well as the glorious resurrection. Thank Him for His promise: “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Josh 1:5).
  2. Pray that all governments will work for justice and righteousness. While Jesus says that in this world we will have trouble, (John 16.33) He does not say that it will always be present in every place.
  3. Pray that leaders of liberal democracies will use their influence to find ways to reduce, if not end, persecution in countries where it occurs. Just as Paul appealed to Caesar to seek justice (Acts 25), so Christians can appeal to secular governments.
  4. Pray for the growth of the Church where persecution flourishes, remembering that “the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.”
  5. Pray for strength and courage for those undergoing persecution, and for peace that only God can bring. Thank Him that His grace is sufficient for their needs (2 Cor 12:9). Pray that their faith will not fail, but that their suffering will draw them closer to Him and increase their faith.
  6. Pray that the Holy Spirit will enable persecuted Christians to forgive and love their persecutors (Matt 5:44) and that their Christ-like reactions will have an impact on their persecutors.
  7. Pray that the Lord will be at work in the hearts of those who currently persecute our sisters and brothers to bring them to a saving knowledge of Himself, as He did with Saul of Tarsus (Acts 9).
  8. Thank the Lord for the privilege of entering into the sufferings of our sisters and brothers, remembering that “if one part [of the body] suffers, every part suffers with it” (1 Cor 12:26).
  9. Pray that Christians who are experiencing persecution will not lose the ability to accept or trust genuine approaches from those who have formerly persecuted them, as when the believers in Jerusalem had to learn to accept the reality of Saul’s conversion (Acts 9). Pray that the Lord will give discernment, and relief from unnecessary fears.
  10. Pray for yourself and for persecuted Christians to be spiritually ready for whatever tomorrow brings, be that persecution, respite from suffering or Christ’s return (Matt 24.42).

An estimated 40,000 to 70,000 Christians housed in internment camps in North Korea

See accompanying post – North Korea’s Hidden Gulag – Google earth satellite imagery proves the internment camps exist and imprison tens of thousands of Christians

NORTH KOREA Government: Communist dictatorship Main Religion: Atheism/traditional beliefs Population: 20 Million (400,000 Christians)- According to Open Doors International:

Still the most hostile country in which to live and practice the Christian faith, there are reports of many Christians arrested, with at least 25 percent of Christians believed to be languishing in labor camps for their refusal to worship founder Kim Il-Sung’s cult. Half the population lives in the north, close to China, where family-based networks of house churches exist in significant numbers. Roughly ten million inhabitants are malnourished, with thousands eating only grass and bark.

According to Mission News Network:

North Korea ranks #1 on the Open Doors 2012 World Watch List: a compilation of 50 countries where believers face the most religious persecution. An estimated 40,000 to 70,000 Christians suffer in total control zone internment camps, where people labeled as „wrong thinkers” are sent to die.

A new book has just been published by an American journalist  who details life from some of the insiders of these torture camps:

Shin Dong-hyuk was born in this same type of camp in 1982. In his book, Shin admits reporting his mother and brother to prison guards because they were going to escape without him. As a result, they were hung in front of Shin and other prisoners, and he was also tortured as punishment for their „crime.”

Shin told American journalist Blaine Harden, author of Escape from Camp 14, „I wanted people to know this is the kind of children they are raising right now in these camps: people whose loyalty is to the guards and who will do anything to get more food.”

Conditions in North Korean prison camps are similar to camps under the unforgettable regime of Hitler, Stalin and Mao. „Political prisoners” essentially work themselves to death while being subjected to severe physical and psychological torture. Open Doors reported they work 18-20 hours each day, with little to no food. To supplement their rations, prisoners consume anything edible, including snakes, rats, insects, roots, and grass.

In April, the U.S.-based Committee for Human Rights in North Korea released a report based on interviews with 60 former prisoners and guards. The 200-page report describes prison camps located mainly in northern mountainous regions behind barbed wire and electric fences – fences Shin climbed through to escape, using his best friend’s body as insulation against the deadly current.

In 2009, North Korea told the UN Human Rights Council, „The term ‘political prisoner’ does not exist in the [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] DPRK’s vocabulary…the so-called political prisoners’ camps do not exist.” According to the April report, former prisoners were able to identify their work sites, execution grounds, and other landmarks using satellite imagery available through Google Earth.

Pray for imprisoned believers in North Korea. Ask God to sustain them, and pray that they might be released. Pray for changes that can only be brought about by the Gospel.

Read the entire article here and subscribe to get daily emails about persecuted christians- http://www.MNNonline.org/

North Korea’s Hidden Gulag – Google earth satellite imagery proves the internment camps exist and imprison tens of thousands of Christians + the Hidden Gulag Report (Online Book)

See accompanying post – Christians housed in internment camps in North Korea

Photo via Google satellite via stormfront.org – the rear of a secret Gulag (internment camp for Christians)

6 camps via Google satellite – form http://gizmodo.com/5842124/north-korean-death-camps-shown-in-unprecedented-detail-by-google-earth

The stories to come out of the camps are horrifying. Inmates regularly die from torture, and are executed by firing squad and public stoning. The ones who survive that are malnourished and diseased, but still forced into slave labor seven days a week, while subsisting on a diet of „rats, snakes, frogs, insects,” and even feces, according to former prisoners.

Yet North Korea continues to deny the existence of the camps. But these new satellite images are identified by the South Korean Unification Ministry as sites of these concentration camps, including the infamous Camp 22 and Yodok, which holds as many as 50,000 prisoners, and make non-existence an increasingly difficult sell. Previous satellite images have been blurry and harder to decipher, but these new images are far more detailed. And according to Amnesty International, they appear to be growing when compared to images taken 10 years ago.

There’s no reason to think that near-incontrovertible evidence will do anything to deter the North Korean government from kidnapping and interring its citizens. They’ve shown time and again that they’re willing to shout down plainly apparent facts. But the public being able to look in with such clarity and definition on the camps where hundreds of thousands of innocent people and political prisoners are being held might—just might—move the needle a bit to the side of humanity. [Daily MailGuardianWashington Post]

Here are a few excerpts from the  CONCLUSIONS in the Hidden Gulag Report. You can read the entire report here – http://www.hrnk.org/uploads/pdfs/HRNK_HiddenGulag2_Web_5-18.pdf

The Hidden Gulag

Second Edition

The Lives and Voices of
“Those Who are Sent to the Mountains”

David Hawk

Description: Based on extensive interviews with over 60 defectors and more than 40 satellite photos of North Korean political prisoner camps, the report calls for the dismantlement of the vast North Korean gulag system in which 150,000 to 200,000 are incarcerated.

From Page 158: In the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, crimes against humanity are committed against persons sent to the political penal labor colonies. Evidence shows that:

1. Perceived or suspected “wrong-doers” or “wrong-thinkers,” or in some instances, persons with“wrong-knowledge,”123 and/or their family from the DPRK State Security Agency,124 which refuses to acknowledge the deprivation of freedom and refuses to provide information on the fate or whereabouts of those persons with the intent of removing those persons from the “protection of law” for a prolonged period of time.

2. The abducted persons are subjected to deportation or forcible transfer from the area in which they were lawfully present without grounds permitted under international law.

3. The abducted and deported persons are deposited at distant, remote, penal labor colonies or encampments, where they are subjected to “imprisonment or severe deprivation of physi- cal liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law.”129 These abductions, deporta- tions and the subsequent imprisonments all take place without any judicial process. There is no arrest, charge, trial, conviction or sentence, as provided in the DPRK Criminal Code and the DPRK Criminal Procedures Code.

4.The prolonged, indefinite detention of family members is a violation of Article 26 of the ICCPR, “…the law shall prohibit any discrimi- nation and guarantee to all persons equal and effective protection against discrimination on any ground such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.” The imprisonment of family members amounts to what the ICC Statute terms as “persecu- tion.” Most family members of suspected wrong-doers or wrong-thinkers are detained for the rest of their lives in sections of the prison camps termed “total control zones.”

5. Once cut off from any contact with the coun- try or world outside of the prison camp, including former family and friends, the imprisoned persons are subjected, usually for a lifetime, to arduous forced labor under extremely severe circumstances. This begins with the provision of below subsistence level food rations.

7. Prisoners are regularly subjected to beatings and sometimes more systematic torture for infractions of prison camp regulations and during interrogations.

8.On numerous occasions, prisoners compelled to observe executions (which are carried out publicly to demonstrate to other prisoners the severe consequences of escape attempts and/or non-compliance with camp regulations) …

9. Prison camp officials and guards are regularly able to exact sexual relations with female prison- ers under circumstances that have been judged to constitute rape or sexual violence …

These are just a few excerpts from the  CONCLUSIONS in the Hidden Gulag Report. You can read the entire report here – http://www.hrnk.org/uploads/pdfs/HRNK_HiddenGulag2_Web_5-18.pdf

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