CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH
Aid Group: Coronavirus Pandemic ‘Certainly Increased Persecution for Christians Abroad’
December 25, 2020 — Breitbart.com reports: “Open Doors, an international Christian aid organization, told Breitbart News in a recent interview that the Chinese coronavirus pandemic has allowed repressive forces to more ably target vulnerable Christians, from denying them health care to offering to trade their faith for food.
While, in the West, Christians have faced legal restrictions banning them from attending church services or celebrating Christian holidays in person, persecution in other parts of the world has come in a variety of more brutal forms, from jihadists in Africa taking advantage of weak governments to expand their influence to local officials denying Christians food during lockdowns if they do not convert.
Open Doors USA Director of Communications Amy Lamb listed Malaysia, Nigeria, parts of the Middle East, Vietnam, and India as areas where the organization has witnessed particularly alarming actions towards Christian minorities directly tied to pandemic policies…” (Christians who suffer and die for Christ will receive the “Crown of Life” to place at the feet of Jesus – James 1:12; Revelation 2:10. The 24 elders represent 12 Old Testament Tribes and 12 New Testament Apostles – saved Jews and redeemed Christians. In Revelation 4: 10 & 11 they cast their earned crowns before the Lord Jesus Christ.)
2,200 Nigerian Christians ‘Hacked to Death’ in 2020; 34,400 Since 2009
December 21, 2020 — ChristianHeadlines.com reports: “According to a new report by Nigeria’s International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law, thousands of Christians are being martyred for their faith while the country’s government are stating other reasons for their deaths.
The report, which was published on Wednesday, found that 2,000 Nigerian Christians were hacked to death throughout 2020 (Jan 2020 to Dec. 13), with an estimated 34,400 since 2009.
An estimated 20,000 moderate Muslims were also murdered by radical Muslims…” (Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life – Revelation 2:10. Jesus said in the Beatitudes: Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you – Matthew 5:10 – 12. See the next two reports.)
Nigerian Christians fear a bloody holiday season at the hands of Muslim terrorists
December 14, 2020 — The New York Post reports: “Their names haunt me: Patience, Revelation and Rejoice.
Patience was 13. Revelation was 6. Rejoice was 4. They are the names of three of the youngest victims of a Christian massacre unfolding in Africa.
They weren’t the only young victims slain in the same attack in the Nigerian village of Gonan Rogo earlier this year.
The terrorists killed at least 20 that evening as they went from house to house yelling ‘Allahu Akbar’ along the way. They also put a bullet in the head of a 3-month-old and hacked a 6-year-old to death. We don’t know their names. We do know the name of a 14-year-old girl who was murdered along with her grandparents. Her name was Blessing…”
At least 11 dead and priest abducted in Christmas Eve attack on Christian village
December 26, 2020 — ChristianToday.com reports: “A predominantly Christian village in Nigeria was attacked on Christmas Eve, leaving several people dead.
At least 11 people were killed in the attack on Pemi village in Borno state, according to AFP news agency.
A church was also set on fire and the priest abducted, the news agency reports.
The attack has been blamed on Boko Haram, a militant group that has been terrorising Christian communities across the north-east of Nigeria for years.
A local leader told AFP that gunmen rode into the village on trucks and motorbikes, and started shooting indiscriminately.
‘The terrorists killed seven people, burnt 10 homes and looted food supplies that were meant to be distributed to residents to celebrate Christmas,’ militia leader Abwaku Kabu said.
Speaking to Christian Today days before the attack, Open Doors analyst Illia Djadi said that Christians across Nigeria were fearful of Christmas attacks…”
Christian woman murdered for refusing to convert to Islam
December 9, 2020 — ChristianToday.com reports: “A Pakistani Christian woman has reportedly been murdered after refusing to convert to Islam and marry a Muslim man.
Sonia Bibi, 24, was shot dead multiple times in the head at a bus stop in Rawalpindi, Pakistan on 30 November.
A police manhunt is underway for the suspect, Muhammad Shehazad, while a suspected accomplice, known only as Faizan, has been taken into custody, Aid to the Church in Need said.
Miss Bibi is reported to have refused Shehzad’s marriage proposal just days before she was killed.
ACN said there were now fears for the welfare of her family as she was a domestic cleaner and the main breadwinner…” (This was not the normal honor killing where her family carried out the murder, but it is a result of another individual feeling slighted and felt that she had dishonored him. According to the Honor Based Violence Awareness Network there are 5,000 honor killings internationally per year. 1,000 of them occur in India, 1,000 occur in Pakistan, It is estimated that between 23 – 27 honor killings occur annually in the United States. This is a result of Shariah law – all the women who bring “dishonor” upon their family by premarital sex, extramarital sex, or marrying an unapproved husband, or any other offense, such as becoming too “Westernized” are to be slaughtered.)
Government raises ‘strong concerns’ about North Korea after report into horrific persecution
December 3, 2020 — ChristianToday.com reports: “The Government has voiced ‘strong concerns’ about religious persecution in North Korea after the release of a report documenting the horrific abuse of Christians and other people of faith in the hermit communist country.
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon said reports from religious and human rights groups outside the country point to ‘severe punishment’ for people of faith, including arrests, beatings and imprisonment in political camps.
‘The UK continues to have strong concerns about the lack of freedom of religion or belief in North Korea,’ Lord Ahmad said in a letter to Lord Alton.
He added that the evidence presented by a new report from the Korea Future Initiative (KFI) contains ‘disturbing accounts’ of religious freedom violations in North Korea.
The report is based on 117 interviews with survivors, witnesses, and perpetrators of religious persecution between 1990 and 2019.
In total, 273 victims of religious freedom violations were identified by investigators, 215 of whom were Christians.
Women and girls accounted for nearly 60 per cent of documented victims. One victim was just three years old…” (Great persecution will soon overtake most Christians in a majority of the world. USA Today reported that Christianity is the most hated religion in the world. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. – Matthew 5:10 – 12. However: Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. – Revelation 2:10. See the next two reports.)
Thousands of Christian Pastors Go into Hiding in China
December 21, 2020 — ChristianHeadlines.com reports: “Droves of pastors across China have disconnected from their computers and phones, destroyed their ID cards which contain microchip trackers and are needed to do virtually anything in China, and have gone into hiding.
According to a newsletter from Asia Harvest, a church planting group working in Asia, ‘The situation for believers in China has been extremely difficult, as Xi Jinping and the Communist Party gradually prepare for what seems like a final assault to try to rid Christianity from the country once and for all.
‘To that end, the government has openly announced plans to ‘reinterpret’ the Bible and other religious texts, so they will have ‘socialist characteristics’.’
The Chinese Communist Party has been creating an altered version of the Bible that seeks to inject communist messages into the Holy Scriptures, The Christian Post reports…”
Secular Democrats urge Biden to pounce on U.S. Christianity
December 3, 2020 — WND.com reports: “A Democratic political action committee representing ‘secular values’ issued a sweeping agenda for Joe Biden to reverse many of President Trump’s advances for religious liberty and ‘restore a vision of constitutional secularism.’
The Secular Democrats of America PAC and Reps. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., and Jared Huffman, D-Calif. – members of the Congressional Freethought Caucus – were behind the 28-page document, which was issued Monday.
It would ban religious organizations from participating in government programs, support governors who want to close down churches amid the COVID pandemic, require new disclosures from churches, overturn religious-rights precedents such as the Hobby Lobby case, prevent mention of creationism in education and work for a ‘deradicalization’ of ‘white Christian nationalism.’
The document declares the ‘rise of white Christian nationalism is a national security threat.’…”