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CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH

‘At least 100’ Christians incinerated in ‘well-targeted attack’

July 9, 2019 — WND.com reports: “At least 100 men, women and children have been incinerated in a ‘well-targeted attack’ on Christians by jihadists in central Mali, according to reports.

The exact number of victims who died in Sobame Da, a mainly Christian village, isn’t known because many of the bodies were burned beyond recognition.

The Barnabas Fund, a global ministry to the persecuted Christian church, said the heavily armed Muslim attackers struck at night.

A source said it was the ‘worst massacre in Mali since 1946 and happened when jihadists encircled a village that was home to ethnic Dogon people.’

The Muslims then set fire to ‘everything that moved’ in their ‘well-targeted attack.’

The death toll is estimated to be between 100 and 135…” (“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.  If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.  He that hateth me hateth my Father also.  If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my FatherThese things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended.  They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service. And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me” – John 15:18 – 24; 16:1 – 3.  See the next two reports.)

4 Christians executed for wearing crosses

July 21, 2019 — WND.com reports: “Four Christians singled out for wearing crosses were executed in their village in the African nation of Burkina Faso.

The murders bring the death toll of Christians killed in attacks since February to 27, reported Faith Wire.

In several attacks, including the latest, the armed terrorists challenged Christians to convert or die.

‘Unidentified armed men’ entered the village June 27, according to Open Doors USA field workers, and ‘told everyone to lie down,’

The attackers then ‘proceeded to look for Christians by asking for first names or looking for anyone wearing Christian insignia,’ the field workers said…”

Radicals Burn Three Christian Churches in Ethiopia

July 24, 2019 — Breitbart.com reports: “Radical ethno-nationalist youth from the Sidama Liberation Movement (SLM) have torched three Christian churches in southern Ethiopia, bringing their death toll in the last five days to 60 victims.

The rebel youth, known as Ejeto, burned Ethiopian churches in the dioceses of Sidama, Amaro, and Burji, according to local church authorities. The names of the churches are Doya Michael, Gesaba-Gebrekristos, and Chiro Amanuel, all of which were in the Sidama region of the country.

The SLM is a separatist group that is fighting for the establishment of an independent state of Sidama. Militants from the group have clashed recently with government security forces trying to maintain order in the area.

Those belonging to the Sidama ethnicity in Ethiopia are believed to number some 3.5 million, which represents about three percent of Ethiopia’s population of 105 million. Recent violence by those demanding ethnic statehood for the Sidama people has targeted non-Sidama ethnic communities, such as the Ethiopian Orthodox Church…”

Jihadists rape, stone Christian woman to death in Syria

July 18, 2019 — The Jerusalem Post reports: “Islamic terrorists from the Jihadist organization Jabhat al-Nusra stoned to death an Armenian Christian woman living in the Syrian province of Idlib.

Christian and human rights groups reported over the last week that the 60-year-old Suzan Der Kirkour was found dead outside of her village, al-Yaqoubiyeh.

According to the website of International Christian Concern (ICC), ‘An autopsy revealed that Suzan was tortured and repeatedly raped over an estimated period of nine hours. She was then stoned to death.’

The French Christian humanitarian organization SOS Chrétien’s d’Orient, wrote that ‘cruel was her ordeal. The reality is just as much… (a) virgin at sixty, she died under the repeated assaults of the jihadists of al-Nusra.’

‘The autopsy reveals that Suzan had been subjected to repeated rape since the afternoon of Monday (the 8th) until early Tuesday morning, only hours before her discovery. As a martyr, she is joined in heaven by thousands of Christian brothers, who died in the arena of barbarism,’ SOS Chrétien’s d’Orient added…” (“Mercy unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied. Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves. And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him” – Jude 1:2, 3, 4, 10, 14, and 15.)

Persecution of Christians intensifying across the Sahel

July 19, 2019 — ChristianToday.com reports: “Christians across the Sahel in northern Africa have been left ‘shocked’ by the speed with which violent extremism has spread across the region.

Homes and livelihoods are being wiped out at the hands of Islamic extremists operating in the region, a ‘faultline’ between the largely Muslim north of the continent and the more Christian south, says Open Doors.

The charity, which supports persecuted Christians, said that poverty, unemployment, corruption and a ‘lack of governance’ are creating a ‘toxic mix’ that is combining with rising Islamic extremism to cause havoc for Christians.

Close to 30 violent Islamist groups are active in the area, with some of the extremists having links to international terrorist networks like the so-called Islamic State and al-Qaeda.

Salafi and Wahhabi Islam are also gaining in prominence with the help of missionaries and NGOs funded by countries like Saudi Arabia, the organisation reports.

Members of the Islamic State pushed out of the Middle East are finding a new home in the Sahel region and are infiltrating splinter groups with their ideology…”(Jesus, as was noted in the Scriptures following the first report stated the reason for the persecution of Christians worldwide.  It is because the world hates Him.  Why? “If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin… If I had not done among them the works that none other man did, they had not had sin…” – John 15:22, 24.  Before Jesus came to the earth, mankind could look at each other and say “I’m not as bad as that person is, I’ve never murdered, I’ve never stolen, much like the Pharisee did in Luke 18:10 – 14 – “I thank thee that I am not as other men...” Once Jesus came to the earth, those rationalizations were no longer valid.  As a result, the world strikes out against God, and against Christians.  Jesus also stated in Matthew 5:10 – 12: “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.”)     

Number of Christians in Britain in ‘dramatic decline’

July 15, 2019 — ChristianToday.com reports: “The number of people in Britain identifying as Christian is in ‘dramatic decline’, according to the latest figures from the British Social Attitudes Survey.

The proportion identifying as Christian stands at 38%, down from half in 2008 and nearly two-thirds in 1983. It is the first time that the figure has fallen below 40%.

At the same time, there has been a continued rise in the percentage of Brits identifying as Muslim, from 1% in 1983 to 3% in 2008 and 6% in 2018.

There has also been a substantial increase in those who do not identify with any religion, up from 31% in 1983 to over half of those polled in 2018 (52%).

The survey of 3,879 people revealed that people were more likely to ‘feel positive’ towards Christians (51%) than towards Muslims (30%).

Only 4% said they had negative perceptions of Christians, compared with 17% for Muslims.

But nearly two thirds of those surveyed (63%) agreed that religions brought more conflict than peace…”  (I John 2:19: “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.”  This Holy text describes the sad situation of 21st Century Christianity just before Christ’s return.  Our days on earth are now limited.  Get ready for the Rapture as described in I Thessalonians 4:13 – 18: “…I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.  For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent [precede] them which are asleep.  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”)

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