“Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.” (Heb. 13:3)
What has happened since yesterday at this time? Undoubtedly many different things have occurred around our nation and around the world, many significant and many others not. But one of the most egregious things that has happened, and occurs every day of every month of the year – is the persecution of Christians around the world. And almost all of it goes unreported. And if the media talks about it at all it is grossly under-reported.
What has happened since yesterday at this time?
11 Christians were killed for their faith
7 Christians were detained without trials, arrested, sentenced and imprisoned
3 to 4 churches or Christian buildings were attacked and/or burned down
In all, an estimated 4,136 Christians were martyred last year for their faith in Jesus. 2,625 were imprisoned. 1,266 churches and Christian buildings were attacked.
There is a worldwide genocide against Christians going on – and where is the moral outrage and indignation? Where is the least bit of concern voiced? Since the church began there have been 70 million martyrs – and 45.5 million of them (or 65%) died in the 20th century. Overall 245 million Christians live in the 10/40 Window of Persecution – about 1 out of every 9 Christians in the world.
What Can We Do? Yes, the numbers are staggering – and we may wonder if there is anything we can do about this. Yes, there is. First and foremost, we must call the church to prayer! Do we really believe that God answers the prayers of His people? Then let’s pray, let’s pray like we’ve never prayed before! Let’s battle for the persecuted church on our knees, daily bringing them before God’s throne! “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” (James 5:16)
And secondly, let’s spread this news to every Christian and to every church that we know. Once God’s people know what is happening they will begin interceding for the persecuted, and largely forgotten, church. And after we begin praying God will reveal to us in what other ways we can help them.
Rev. Dr. Joseph P. Gudel