Hiding in the Shadows
As a Christian do you consider yourself a child or an adult in your faith? If you’re a Christian do you use your bible or does it gather dust during the week between services? If you’re a Christian do you stand up against injustices? If you’re a Christian do your fellow coworkers and neighbors know? If we became persecuted how many would stand out on that faith and take whatever punishment fit the crime? Now that I’m sure most of you just lied, we’re going to get into the persecuted church today. Christ says “You will be persecuted, but I will be with you always.” North Korea, India, Africa, Iraq, and many, many more countries are not just persecuting Christians around the world, they are committing genocide. A man named Father Douglas a priest in Iraq has been shot, kidnapped for 9 days, his church was blown up, and during his captivity he was tortured. Even after all his troubles Father Douglas still fights the fight for Christ. He still serves in Iraq for Christians despite the dangers to his life.
Franklin Graham “We as Christians we need to wake up, if we don’t do it now, it’ll be too late.” As the attack on Christianity has been on the rise over the years as Father Douglas stated, America needs to say the truth, the truth is Genocide. What would you do if the men with the Kolishnakov’s come lookin for the man with the Bible? Do you throw the Bible out the window, or do you hide under the bed? Do you continue to fight the fight despite the risk, or do you deny Christ? Grace Wesley:” I would rather stand with God and be judged by the world, than stand with the world and be judged by God.” In so many places in the world now, the Christian church has gone underground. Much like Christianity in the early days of the church meeting in the Catacombs of Rome to continue preaching and teaching, but doing so in secret. You can’t preach and teach if you’re dead. It’s easy to grow hatred in your heart, it’s harder to love, but to follow the Jesus way, we know that when we are facing trials, and facing persecuted God is with us, heart breaking with us in prison. As I heard recently, It’s better to be in prison and be tortured, then being in two prisons, when we hate we not only have our prison of our bodies, but a prison for your mind. Loving our enemy is not easy. As I have experienced war as a Christian I was fighting those who hated us just because of our religion. Watching my friends die at the hands of radical Muslims I struggled to find peace in forgiveness. I struggled to pray for my enemy. I struggled not to hate.
Christianity is under attack in our great nation and sadly people don’t realize the truth. As we hide behind the lies of tolerance, we are not truly living in a world of tolerance. Christians are not aloud to pray, we aren’t aloud to even utter the name Christ in school. We have found many loose their lives, their jobs, their friends, and as time continues we find that even TV shows that have a spiritual basis are challenged and eventually removed. Remember Rachel Scott the first victim in Columbine High School. She was shot because of her faith in Christ and she refused to step aside from that faith. We’ve seen around the world these attacks by radical factions grow in strength and in courage as they find inspiration upon each attack. When we can no longer say Merry Christmas, have Christmas parties, or even have religious holidays off such as Easter, we know we are moving in a particular direction. There have been several states or cities that have made it a requirement that the Church preachers hand over their sermons for review. Why are we allowing the government to dictate terms for the church? How many court cases has their been about religious freedoms in these many years? The 10 commandments case that went in front of the Supreme Court and lost. The attacks on schools for saying the pledge of allegiance all because it references God. Even within the military there is supposed to be no open prayer anymore.
Where do you stand, what line are you on? Do you stand with Christ and shout to the world that you will not be bullied and convinced to stay quiet, or do you conform to the world and stay silent and allow your God given rights to be trampled on and taken away? How many college commencement ceremonies have gotten rid of the benedictions? Stand up and fight back. Fight to educate those around about the persecuted church. Fight back for the rights to pray when and where we want. Fight back to preach how we want without having to answer to a faceless government, and never forget that what God gives us, God can also take away.