"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32 . . . . .


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Friday, April 5, 2019

Christian Persecution: Perilous Times Ahead

Bobservations Column
by Pastor Bob Lawrenz

Several of the Apostles write in their Epistles about hardships that lay ahead for Jesus’ Church.  They have spoken about tribulations, perilous times, and even being hated for our faith in Jesus Christ.

OPEN DOORS USA reports 1 in 12 Christians face threats and persecution in their homelands.  VOICE OF THE MARTYRS claims it’s 1 in 9, with numbers reaching as high as 245 million Christians world wide who face danger every day, just because of Jesus Christ!  OPEN DOORS USA compiled a list of the top ten worst counties where Christian persecution prevails:

1. North Korea, 2. Afghanistan, 3. Somalia, 4. Libya, 5. Pakistan, 6. Sudan, 7. Eritrea, 8. Yemen, 9. Iran, 10. India

. . . and they monitor 40 more nations.  These “Top Ten” countries are not even among the African nations of Radical Islam, where more than 100 Christians have been burned alive, executed, or killed in their own homes or churches just this month by radical Islamic sect, Boko Haram.  OPEN DOORS USA is a watch-dog ministry, and PERSECUTION.ORG is sponsored by The Moody Bible Institute.

Both outreach organizations included prayer requests for Christians in Myanmar, where we support Pastor Roger Oakland (Founder of Understand the Times, International, and Bryce Homes International). Christians there are kept impoverished by being turned away from gainful employment opportunities, and they are relegated to living in the poverty stricken region of southern Myanmar. An email from Pastor Roger this past week informs us of a Mission Trip he embarks upon this coming Wednesday, reaching out into the jungle areas of the country.

While we see an increase in negative attitudes in the USA against Christians, many brothers and sisters in far away places face danger walking out of their front doors.  Radical Islam is the cause of a lot of it, but also Militant Hinduism and Fundamentalist Buddhism also plays an important role in Christian persecution.

Pray for our missionaries around the world.  Pray for Christian believers everywhere.

"Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”  -- Hebrews 10:25

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