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CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH

A quarter of British Christians ‘do not believe in the resurrection,’ BBC survey suggests

April 10, 2017 — ChristianToday.com reports: “A quarter of people who describe themselves as Christians in Britain do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus, a survey commissioned by the BBC for Palm Sunday suggests.

However, almost one in 10 people of no religion say they do believe the Easter story, while claiming that it has ‘some content that should not be taken literally’.

And a fifth of non-religious people believe in life after death, according to the poll.

ComRes surveyed 2,010 British adults by telephone, between February 2 and 12, 2017. The research was commissioned by BBC local radio.

The survey suggested that 17 per cent of all people believe the Bible version ‘word-for-word’, while 31 per cent of Christians believe the literal Bible version, rising to 57 per cent among ‘active’ Christians (those who go to a service at least once a month). (The bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the Fundamentals of the Faith, proving that Jesus is who He claimed to be – the Son of God.  “Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?  But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:  And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.  For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.  But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.  For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.  For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” – I Corinthians 15:12 – 22.  Without the Resurrection, we have no hope.  But Now IS Christ Risen – Amen!)

 

Easter 2017, Christians ‘Most Persecuted Group in the World’

April 16, 2017 Breitbart.com reports: “In many parts of the world, Christians gathering to celebrate Christ’s resurrection do so with the knowledge that any day their faith could cost them their lives as it has for thousands of their brothers and sisters.

On Palm Sunday, twin bombings by jihadists at two Egyptian churches killed at least 45 worshippers and wounded more than 100 others in the latest of a long string of deadly attacks targeting Christians throughout the world.

The attacks were directed specifically to Christian in their houses of worship to avoid any ambiguity regarding the intent. As has been noted, this was ‘an attack on Christians simply because they are Christians.’

On Saturday, the Pakistan military said it has thwarted a ‘major terrorist attack’ against Christians planned for Easter Sunday after a successful overnight raid just hours after Christians celebrated Good Friday services.

On Easter Sunday 2016, an Islamist militant took the lives of more than 70 people and injured over 320 more after detonating his suicide vest in a park in Lahore that was full of Christian families celebrating the feast. Among the victims are more than 30 small children, who at the time of the blast were playing sports and outdoor games in the Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park.

During the last calendar year, some 90,000 Christians were killed for their faith across the globe, making Christians by far the most persecuted group in the world, according to a study from the Turin-based Center for Studies on New Religions (CESNUR)…” (“If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.  If ye were of the world, the world would love his own; but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.  Remember the word that I have said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord.  If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep your also.  But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me” John 15:18 – 21.)


 Spectator: Egypt’s Palm Sunday Massacre Was ‘Attack on Christianity’

April 11, 2017 — Breitbart.com reports: “Writing for the Spectator magazine on Sunday, Damian Thompson pointed out that the twin bombings of churches in Egypt on Palm Sunday constituted a religiously motivated attack on Christianity that must be recognized and dealt with as such.

Thompson took issue with a tweet by a spokesman for the Egyptian ministry of foreign affairs that the Palm Sunday massacres were ‘another obnoxious but failed attempts against all Egyptians.’

The attacks, which killed 49 and left more than 100 injured, were not ‘against all Egyptians,’ Thompson notes, but directed specifically to Christian in their houses of worship, precisely to avoid any ambiguity regarding the intent. This was rather ‘an attack on Christians simply because they are Christians,’ he noted…”  (“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.  “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; “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him” – James 1:12.  The Apostle Paul knew firsthand of persecution.  He was imprisoned, beaten, stoned, shipwrecked, hungry, cold, destitute [II Corinthians 11:23 – 28], yet in spite of all of that and more, he “fought a good fight…finished my course…kept the faith” – II Timothy 4:7.  Jesus stated: “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” – John 16:33.  See the next four reports on the bombings in Egypt and the continuing violence in Nigeria against Christians, and continue to pray for our Brothers and Sisters around the world.)

 

 

ISIS claims responsibility for Egyptian church bombings

April 9, 2017 — Israel National News reports: “The death toll in a pair of church bombings targeting Egypt’s Coptic Christian community rose to 43 Sunday evening, with more than 100 people injured.

At least 27 people were killed and 78 wounded in the first bombing Sunday, which targeted the St. George Church in Tanta, outside of Cairo.

Later, a second bombing hit the St. Mark’s Cathedral in Alexandria, killing 16 and wounding 41.

Egypt’s Interior Minister confirmed that the second attack was carried out by a lone suicide bomber who attempted to break into the church, but ultimately detonated his bomb at the entrance. Three police officers were among the dead.

The ISIS terror group has claimed responsibility for the attacks, following recent threats by the organization to target Christians.

In December of last year a Muslim suicide bomber blew himself up inside a Cairo church, killing 28 and wounding dozens.

In late February, ISIS issued a video message vowing to target Christians, particularly in Egypt, saying Christians were their ‘favorite prey’, while showing footage of the December 2016 church bombing…”


 ISIS Threatens More Attacks Against Egypt’s Christians

April 10, 2017 — Haaretz reports: “ISIS threatened Sunday that more attacks against Egyptian Christians are coming after claiming responsiblity for two bombings that killed dozens in Alexandria and the Nile Delta hours before.

‘Let the crusaders and apostates know that they will pay a huge bill with their son’s blood,’ read an online statement carried by the group’s semi-official Amaq news agency.

The statement said the two attacks on the churches, in the cities of Tanta and Alexandria, were carried out by two Egyptians wearing suicide vests.

DPA could not independently verify the authenticity of the statement, but it appeared consistent with previous claims by the group.

The attacks were the latest in a series of assaults on Egypt’s Christian minority, which makes up around 10 percent of the population of 92 million and has been repeatedly targeted by Islamic extremists. It comes just weeks before Pope Francis is due to visit Egypt…”

 

Coptic churches in Egypt cancel Easter celebrations, mourning Palm Sunday bombings

April 12, 2017ChristianToday.com reports: “Coptic churches in the south of Egypt said they would not hold Easter celebrations this year, in mourning of the 45 Coptic Christians killed in the two Palm Sunday bomb attacks.

The Minya Coptic Orthodox Diocese said it would be commemorating Easter ‘without any festive manifestations’.

‘The Easter mass will be limited to prayers only,’ a Facebook statement by Bishop Makarious of Minya and Abu Korkas said, according to Ahram Online.

The Minya diocese, located in Upper Egypt, south of Cairo, hosts the highest Coptic Christian population in the country.

It said the cancellation of services would take effect across all its churches, ‘due to the current circumstances the country and the Church are witnessing’.

At least 45 people were killed and more than 100 injured in Palm Sunday bombings on two Coptic churches in Egypt. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attacks…”


Nigerian Archbishop Calls on Govt to Protect Christians from ‘Wanton Destruction’ from Muslims

April 4, 2017 — Breitbart.com reports: “The President of the Nigerian Catholic bishops’ conference has appealed to the government to be ‘more proactive’ in defending Christians from the atrocities being wrought by the Muslim population in north-central Nigeria.

During December, more than 800 people—mostly Christians—died in inter-religious violence in the south of Kaduna state, which forms part of Nigeria’s so-called middle belt, where the chiefly Muslim north of the country meets the mainly Christian south.

According to Vatican Radio, the Muslim Fulani Cattle herdsmen in the area have recently committed ‘atrocities’ resulting in the deaths of ‘thousands of Christians and the destruction of property worth millions of Naira.’

The Nigerian government claims that the death toll is actually lower than the one given by the Catholic Church…”


 Londonistan: 500 closed churches, 423 new mosques

April 2, 2017 — Israel National News reports: “‘London is more Islamic than many Muslim countries put together,’ says London Islamic preacher Maulana Syed Raza Rizvi.

The city of London – dubbed ‘Londonistan’ by outspoken journalist Melanie Phillips – now has 423 new mosques, which are ‘built on the sad ruins of English Christianity.’ So writes Italian journalist and writer, Arutz Sheva columniist Giulio Meotti in an article written for Gatestone Institute reported here.

The Hyatt United Church, for instance, on Hamilton Road, was purchased by the Egyptian community and is being converted into a mosque. St Peter’s Church is now the Madina Mosque, and the Brick Lane Mosque used to be a Methodist church. Not only buildings are converted, writes Meotti, but also people: ‘The number of converts to Islam [in London] has doubled; often they embrace radical Islam, as with Khalid Masood, the terrorist who struck Westminster.’

‘Given the current trends,’ he predicts, ‘Christianity in England is becoming a relic, while Islam will be the religion of the future.’

It is estimated that by 2020, the number of Muslims attending prayers will top the number of Christians attending weekly Mass, 683,000 to 679,000. Within a generation, the number of churchgoers will be three times lower than that of Muslims who go regularly to mosque on Friday…”  (Two recent Pew Research Center studies state that babies born to Muslims will begin to outnumber Christian births by 2035, and by 2070 they will be the world’s largest religious group.   In 2015 there were 1.8 billion Muslims in the world, by 2060 that number is expected to grow to nearly 3 billion.) 

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