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Praying for the Persecuted Church in Len...

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Praying for the Persecuted Church in Lent - From Suffering to Glory

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Praying for the Persecuted Church in Lent - From Suffering to Glory

“These are the words of him who is the First and the Last, who died and came to life again. I know your afflictions and your poverty – yet you are rich! ... Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life.”(Revelation 2:8-10)

Two days ago we reflected on the martyrdom of such faithful Christians as George Orjih and Danil Sysoyev. For some, martyrdom speaks of pain, anguish and suffering, but for the early Church, martyrdom spoke primarily of glory. To die well demonstrates courage, commitment and certain knowledge of Christ’s promise of eternal life. Those who endure pain and suffering for Him, who overcome the world and are faithful even to death, receive from Him the reward of the martyrs’ crown.

Easter-Day
In the midst of persecution by the government and army, Burma’s Christians hold on to their faith. In one church a text from Revelation 2:10 was hung: “Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life”

Thousands of Christians around the world suffer attacks against themselves and their property and many are martyred for their loyalty to Christ; yet they are commended by the Lord Jesus for their riches. The perseverance under pressure of persecuted Christians tells a moving story of their faith, hope and love for Christ. We thank God for the strong and devoted witness of the two men described above and for the many others like them who, through the proclamation of their faith in Jesus Christ, have earned the martyrs’ crown.

We have moved from Good Friday to the joyous experience of Easter and the resurrection hope that awaits all Christians. In Him we have a hope that cannot be taken away.

Please Pray:
Today, let us thank God for the witness and inspiration of those who are taking a stand for Christ in the face of opposition to their faith. Pray for our persecuted brothers and sisters, that even though they may face death, they will hold on to the promise they have in Jesus Christ, and may be assured that the Lord will raise them up as He Himself was raised. Pray that they may find encouragement and strength in the words of Revelation 21:4 “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away”.
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    • “We had this feeling that jihadists wanted to wipe out any trace of Christianity in the north of Mali. But God in His goodness has not allowed such an eventuality,” said Dr Yattara, the president of the Baptist Church in northern Mali, to World Watch Monitor in September. He was describing how most of the Christians who had fled the region when Islamist radicals took control in 2012 have now returned to their homes after French troops ousted the Islamists. Many church buildings were desecrated, looted or severely damaged, but the Christians are determined to resume their ministries. Praise God for the continued Christian presence in northern Mali, for the courage of the Christians and for the religious liberty that they have under the law. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed 2 hours ago

    • Pray for the friends and family of Beatrice Mukashaka, an 18-year-old Christian woman, who was hacked to death in a savage attack by Muslims during an overnight prayer meeting at a church in Uganda. A group of around 20 Christians had gathered at the church in Kyegegwa district for their regular Friday night prayer session when armed Muslims burst into the building at around 2am. Please pray for all who mourn for Beatrice and that the assailants will be brought to justice. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Oct 2014 00:00

    • Churches in Christian-majority Burundi are facing the unfamiliar situation of political restriction by their own government because of a new law passed in August that requires each church to have at least 500 members and a proper building. Congregations have a year in which to comply with the new regulations. Although intended to reduce some scandalous practices, the law is strangely reminiscent of the strict regimes of Central Asia. Pray that religious liberty will be maintained in Burundi, both for Christians and for the small minorities who follow other religions. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Fri, Oct 2014 00:00

    • Pray for eight Cameroonian missionaries who have been harshly reminded of the cost of sharing the Gospel in their country during a training seminar to equip them for ministry. Barnabas had helped to fund a series of seminars, and on the final day of the last seminar they heard that Jean-Marcel Kesvere, another Cameroonian missionary, who had been planning to attend the seminar with his wife, had been kidnapped by Boko Haram and that his body had been found earlier that day. Give thanks for the response of the missionaries, who expressed their willingness to suffer similarly for Christ, and pray that their work will bear much fruit (John 12:24). Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Thu, Oct 2014 00:00

    • Please pray for Christians in northern Cameroon, where Boko Haram is terrorising people, especially Christians and security forces, just as in neighbouring Nigeria. The Islamist militants openly declare themselves to be Boko Haram, and issue threats by letter, including to pastors telling them they must leave. Two pastors were killed in the village of Assigashia on the night of 25-26 August, hich has caused great distress and consternation. The Cameroonian Christians ask for prayer that God will bring peace and security, that the kidnapped will be released, that believers will stand firm despite being targeted, that God will comfort the traumatised, and that church leaders will know how to prepare their people for persecution. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Wed, Oct 2014 00:00

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