Continued prayer for the persecuted

Thursday, November 22, 2012
Chad Groening (

Although this year's International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church has already been held, a spokesman for an interdenominational Christian organization believes Thanksgiving, when Americans thank God for the blessings they enjoy, is a good day to remember suffering Christians.

Christians in many countries around the world face persecution daily, but they persevere. In fact, the church has grown in most of those situations, including the underground church in North Korea.

Nettleton, Todd (VOM)Todd Nettleton of Voice of the Martyrs recently spoke about it on a Family Research Council webcast titled "Cry of the Martyrs."

"There [are] a lot of Christians who close the last chapter of Acts and just think, well that's when persecution stopped," Nettleton poses. "They don't realize the reality that it's always cost something to follow Jesus Christ, just like He said it would. You know, he said, the world hates me. If you follow me, the world will hate you too (John 15:18)."

Though that is not something believers generally experience in the United States, it is a daily happening in the lives of Christians in other countries. Now, religious freedom is legally a part of America's foreign policy, and it has worked in reducing persecution in some countries to a limited extent.

"But overall, our government is very hesitant when push comes to shove to make religious freedom such a priority that it interferes with economic development, it interferes with people making money," the VOM spokesman relays. "When that is the priority, then religious freedom tends to fall underneath that."

But he insists that God --not the government -- is the answer, which is why it is appropriate for people of faith in America to pause at any time on any day and pray for those who are suffering because of their faith.

U.S. Christians recognized the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church this year on November 11.

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