Think about this….
Public gatherings to burn bibles: Okay
Public gatherings to read bibles: Banned in some states
It is believed that modern persecution of Christians is currently at the highest levels in world history. It’s estimated that around 160,000 Christians are murdered for simply being a Christian each year. In the US this week a BLM protest in Portland that included virtually no people of color started burning bibles. What does protesting police brutality and racism have to do with burning bibles?
What realities might we soon be looking forward to in this “new normal”? We can look elsewhere on the globe where trends with the same ideas led to severe persecution. Voice of the Martyrs identifies 52 countries where bibles are (1) difficult/dangerous to obtain, (2) illegal or highly restricted, and (3) strictly illegal and only available through covert smuggling.
In North Korea owning a bible or professing to be a Christian is a death sentence. It’s estimated that at any one time there are 70,000 Christians in concentration camps for the sole reason of being a suspected Christian or a family member of a Christian. In North Korea documented incidents against Christians include being hung on a cross over a fire, crushed under a steamroller, and herded off bridges.
In Somalia you can be executed for just being suspected of being a Christian. Persecution can’t stop Christianity from spreading-in fact it has always led to it’s spread. Could it really get that bad in America? History has shown that once communist, socialist, dictatorships, or islamic oppression takes control of a nation and their government things spiral very rapidly. These true stories depict what Christians often face in these hostile countries.
North Korean Christians
How are we to respond to persecution should it come to our doorstep?
2 Thessalonians 2:15 – So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter.
Revelation 13:10 – If anyone is to be taken captive, to captivity he goes; if anyone is to be slain with the sword, with the sword must he be slain. Here is a call for the endurance and faith of the saints.
1 Timothy 6:12 – Fight the good Fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.