VOTV Persecuted Church
WAKE UP CHURCH
Matthew 25:35 “When I was hungry, you gave me something to eat, and when I was thirsty, you gave me something to drink. When I was a stranger, you welcomed me, and when I was naked, you gave me clothes to wear. When I was sick, you took care of me, and when I was in jail, you visited me.”
WHAT IS CHRISTIAN PERSECUTION?
Christian Persecution is any hostility, experienced from all over the world, as a result of one’s identification with Christ. From verbal harassment to hostile feelings, attitudes and actions, believers in areas with severe religious restrictions pay a heavy price for their faith. Beatings, physical torture, confinement, isolation, rape, severe punishment, imprisonment, slavery, discrimination in education and in employment, and even death are just a few examples of what they experience on the daily basis.
According to The Pew Research Center, over 75% of the world’s population live in areas with severe religious restrictions. Many of these people are Christians. According to the United States Department of State, Christians in more than 60 countries face persecution from their governments or surrounding neighbours simply because of their belief in the person of Jesus Christ.
WHERE IT OCCURS?
In the United States, it’s easy for believers to take for granted the rights they so regularly enjoy. From praying and worshiping in public to attending Sunday worship services, practice of one’s faith is generally accepted in America.
But this isn’t the case in many nations such as North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Mali, and Syria, etc. in which religion, itself, is banned or where one faith system is permitted and touted, with all others being continually denigrated. The persecution is so severe in many localities; Christians are systematically targeted and mistreated because of their religious beliefs. According to The Pew Research Center, The Economist, Christians today are the most persecuted religious group in the world.
INDEX OF CHRISTIAN PERSECUTION IN THE MOST UNFRIENDLY COUNTRIES
According to this graph, the statistic shows the index of the persecution of Christians in the top unfriendly countries around the world 2013. North Korea is the country with the strongest suppression of Christians with an index value of 87. The survey for the World Watch List included various aspects of religious freedom: the legal and official status of Christians, the actual situation of Christians living in the country, regulations from the state as well as factors that can undermine the freedom of religion in a country.
WHY WE SERVE PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS?
As Christians in the free world, we are to take stand for our persecuted brothers and sisters in Christ. It is a simple matter of compassion and justice to speak up for the suffering (Zechariah 7:9, Luke 11:42, Matthew 25:35-36). In following Christ’s example, we are to show mercy to those who are suffering, especially those in the household of faith (I Corinthians 12:26-27).