Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Pray for the Persecuted Church

Today's chapel focused on the freedom we enjoy to practice our faith and on prayer for those Christians in the world who do not have the same freedom.

Bible teacher Neale Robb shared some facts and stories about Christians around the world, showing video and audio clips from Christians in places like North Korea, Kazakhstan, Africa, India or Pakistan, who had been persecuted, beaten and tortured for their faith.

Robb said persecution is the mistreatment of an individual or group because of their faith. He said it is estimated that there are more than 250 million Christians in 130 different countries who are persecuted. Persecution includes acts of hatred, second-class citizenship, job discrimination, forced conversion, imprisonment, torture, rape and death.
Visit the Voice of the Martyrs website to view some of the videos we watched.

Voice of the Martyrs

Robb also shared scripture passages about persecution.
Matthew 24:9 Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me.
Mathew 5:10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

John 15:20 Remember what I told you: If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also.
Matthew 5: 43-44 You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.

Romans 8:35, 37 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?  No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.

After chapel, students prayed for persecuted Christians in their homeroom classes, with prayer suggestions for Christians in Burma, India, Bangladesh and Nigeria.
Some of the prayer requests include:
Pray for Christians living as religious minorities, that they would not be overcome by a spirit of fear, and that they would be encouraged and affirmed.
Pray for those who choose to lead the persecuted church.
Pray for children who are persecuted for their faith, that the Holy Spirit comforts them in their time of need.
Pray for the freedom of young girls who are trafficked into the sex trade and for the abolition of sex trafficking around the world.
Pray for believers who are challenged to compromise their faith.

We also listened to "City on a Hill" by City Harmonic. Watch the video here: City On A Hill
And Mr. Robb also told a few jokes.

He said that over the Christmas holidays he spent some time reading the Bible, and one of the stories he read was about Boaz. That got him wondering about the character of Boaz, especially about his character when he was a young man, before he married the widow, Ruth.
"Do you know about his character?" Robb asked. "He was ruthless."

Robb also said that when he was a young pastor he once went to pay a visit to the home of a member of his congregation. He knocked several times on the door, and although he was pretty sure someone was home, no one ever answered. Finally, before leaving, Robb left his business card in the mailbox with a Scripture reference noted on the back: Revelation 3:20.
Robb said the following Sunday, the parishioner left his business card in the offering plate, also with a Scripture reference on the back: Genesis 3:10.
Revelation 3:20  Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in.
Genesis 3:10 I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.