Christian Persecution

Pastor%20Yucef.jpgThe recent news of Pastor Yucef in Iran and the Damocles’ sword of death hanging over his head in this day and age is very troubling indeed. We think of his family and loved ones and his ardent love for Christ, our Lord and Master and pray the Lord that this and other Christian families be protected by the Mighty hand of God. And where is it happening? In a theocratic state where the religious majority is thrusting its dictates down the throats of its people and choking everyone’s free speech. The Voice of the Martyrs will tell the untold sufferings of Christians across the globe and their daring witness to their faith in Christ.

It’s not uncommon that Christianity suffers at the hands of the majority whose religious belief views others as infidels to be conquered or annihilated. When fundamentalism is backed by state run command it does apparently and literally threaten the minority’s existence and belief.
Martyrdom or dying for the faith is not strange to Christianity. The Blood of Martyrs is the seed of the Church – wrote Tertullian, one of the early fathers of the Church. The zeal to preach Christ crucified was aglow in the mind of every believer. Most of the Apostles endured this and so did the early Christians. While humanly we empathize with the Christian pastor in Iran and see that such an attitude is unthinkable in this day and age in God’s name, and wish that such a heinous crime will not take place, in His name, Christ did not rule out these sufferings for his followers: “Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake..” Matthew 5:11
Thanks be to God in USA, we do not have such a threat to religious following as Pastor Yusuf and other Christians that are persecuted elsewhere. This great nation of ours was founded on Judeo- Christian principles and acknowledges that all men are “… endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This is enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, “We the people”. While it is a declaration of Independence it was also a declaration of dependence on God, the Creator. The very same constitutions reassure every citizen the freedom of religion in the First Amendment of Bill of Rights.
That being said, we also have been witnessing subtle war against Christianity even within this great nation of ours. We have been seeing great accommodations and benevolence towards all other religions in our country, while Christianity is under attack. Look around you and you will find persecutions and road blocks to Christian expression of faith: replacing the word “Christmas” with “Holiday” under the pretext of political correctness, barring prayer in school, removal of crosses at the memorials or shrine’s erected, disallowing chaplains to pray in the name of Jesus, threatening the traditional concept of marriage, coercing the conscience of people to go contrary to their religious beliefs in the name of right. We have been seeing a lot of it for some years now.
When our nation gives a red carpet welcome to other faiths, it is perceived as decency. When people mess with our faith, and we Christians stand up for our religious rights, it is bigotry. How long can we be silent and witness the subtle war against Christianity?
It’s time that we Christians stood up and defend our fundamental rights, not because we are subscribing to any party or ideology, but because we don’t want anyone to mess with our faith and practice. We say, don’t mess with God and our deep religious convictions. It is the duty of the church to be the guardian of faith and morals, whether you like it or not.
I commend this football team for their unabashed moment of thanksgiving prayer after their game: