Thursday, July 24, 2014

Christian Persecution in Ukraine and Around the World

- Somalian Persecution Photo -   

My heart is bleeding for the believers in the Ukraine, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. I am sending out a request for Men and Women of Christ all over the world to pray for these genuine believers who have stood for Christ in the midst of hate and demonically driven hostility. The senseless targeting of Jesus' children is plain nonsense! The families left behind are hurting along with our Lord who will one day avenge all the deaths of His sons and daughters throughout the ages (see Rev. 6:9-11). I must interject that when one dies to the Lord it is always in keeping with  2 Tim. 3:12, "Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution." David Guzik writes: "It is the way that you live that makes you a martyr, not the way that you die." These men who died in Ukraine did so because they first trusted Christ and were living on mission for Him. Please read the following from Christian Aid Mission:

Christian Aid Mission has received word from ministry sources inside Ukraine that church leaders are being targeted by terrorists in the volatile Donetsk region.

A pastor, his two adult sons, and an elder have been missing since June 8, when they were kidnapped from an evangelical church in the city of Slovyansk. Some six weeks later, the ministry finally learned what happened to the four men. The following report came from a Ukrainian ministry leader who is a long-time friend of Christian Aid:

These four brothers in Christ were kidnapped a month ago by terrorists. All the while their families prayed for them, not having any information about their whereabouts.
Only a week ago, witnesses revealed that on the night of June 8, terrorists abused and tortured them, and in the morning they let the men go. The elder deacon was driving the car. Once they left the city, the terrorists reappeared, chasing after them in a vehicle. They started shooting at the deacon’s car.
The pastor and his sons jumped out of the car to try to escape. They were shot to death immediately. The driver was also killed and his body was burned when they set the car on fire.
On the second day fighters took the bodies and buried them with other victims in the same grave. Just now the families of the four men received this information. All this time they have been waiting for their husbands, fathers, and sons to come back home.
The oldest of the pastor’s sons leaves behind a wife and two young children. The other son had three children. The elder deacon had eight children, and his wife is due to give birth to their ninth child in August.1

Yes there are stories like this all over the world; Christians being persecuted right and left; churches being burnt to the ground with believers inside. Just this week it was announced that Mosul Iraq has been purged of all believers. Mosul's Christian heritage goes back to the days of the Apostles when the word of God spread eastward into the regions of ancient Mesopotamia.2 The Mosul believers who have survived the torture and murder are now refugees wearing and carrying only the clothes on their backs.

Please Pray earnestly for these and all tortured believers around the world; and remember this passage of Scripture:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (Galatians 2:20 NKJV)

Christ was crucified for us and because we believe we also are crucified with Him in the putting to death of the Old man that we live unto the New man in Christ. Paul could also say:

I now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ, for the sake of His body, which is the church, (Colossians 1:24 NKJV)

Christians know there is nothing lacking in the afflictions of Christ for us but there is this element of taking up our Cross daily to follow Him. Paul was miserably afflicted by many in order to reach many with the gospel; it was a calling he could not run from. The same goes for all believers. We who trust in Christ will stand for Him just as He stood and still is standing for us. Make it your aim as well to be an active follower of Christ. Actively stand-Actively Pray-Actively Thrust your life out into the world to herald the message of freedom and eternal peace and forgiveness that comes through Christ Jesus alone. "Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12 NKJV)

The world needs Jesus and Jesus depends on you and your faithfulness and obedience to get His message out. Be faithful! Pray!


1 - http://www.christianaid.org/News/2014/mir20140724.aspx?SC=MIR
2 - http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/mosul_christians_first_time_1900_years_radical_fundamentalists_20140721

0 comments: