“ARE YOU PERSECUTED?”
What’s the first thing you think about in answer to the above question? Don’t you think of some type of physical punishment, torture, or imprisonment? Besides physical persecution, there are other ways to be persecuted. In short, I feel persecuted! Allow me to present my case and tell you what I mean.
First let me just remind you how history is replete with many, many extreme examples of physical suppression, torture, and death enacted in the name of religion. All these are still going on in various parts of our world as I am writing. I have a book entitled, “On This Day In Christian History” by Robert Morgan. It has 365 short summaries of various Christian martyrs over the years. [Just a few examples]
- In 1536 William Tyndale was burned at the stake for his working on the first translation of the Bible into English.
- Thomas Bilney preached and spread Tyndale’s Bible all over
. He was arrested for heresy and tortured in
the England .
His friends encouraged him to recant his beliefs, so that he could
continue to lead and preach when released.
Bilney did recant but always regretted it. Later he was again arrested, but this time he
did not recant and adamantly expressed his faith. He was tortured and burned at the stake. Tower of London
- Anne Askew became a Christian; and as a result, her husband cast her out and would not let her see her two children. She was arrested for heresy and tortured on the ‘rack’ [she was so injured that she never walked again]. Still she refused to recant her Christian belief and was burned at the stake. .
- The Crusades from Europe to the “
brought about suffering and death to countless people – in the name of
- Just yesterday [Sunday - October 28, 2012] a bomb was detonated in a church in
– causing injuries and deaths. Kaduna, Nigeria
I’d be remiss if I didn’t first quickly remind you of Jesus’ punishment and killing by religious people of His day. And also the fact that historically [or traditionally] all Jesus’ apostles, except John, were killed because of their Christian teaching.
Of course there are many current examples of people being tortured and killed because of their Christian beliefs. What would you do if you were tortured and threatened with your life? Would you confirm or deny your Faith? What would I do? Have you ever thought about it? In truth, in our
, this is not going to
happen. I can’t say the same about some
other parts of the world. USA
Okay, so why and how am I persecuted? I am definitely persecuted spiritually and psychologically! What do I mean? I mean that it is emotionally painful to see anti-Christian behavior, laws, and changes in our country – a country that was absolutely founded on Christian principles. You might still be thinking, “What are you talking about?” I’ll list several specific areas that cause me spiritual and psychological pain. [You can add areas that cause you pain].
· Christianity being excluded from many universities, most public places and public life [Christian speech and representation in public as being not “politically correct”]
· The very essence of our being a Christian nation being questioned and abandoned
· Basically all religions being deemed as ‘acceptable’ [“As long as it ‘works’ for you”]
· Christians being branded as intolerant bigots and called by many “names” because of our Biblical stance on issues
· The national push [by the minority] to accept homosexuality and same sex marriage as “normal”
· The high percentage of single parent homes
· The horrors of HIV/AIDS [especially in the
because of not adhering to God’s laws of sexual behavior
· ** My list could continue. Also add your areas of persecution. **
Am I totally surprised by this persecution? No! Why is that? We are promised [yes, promised] persecution in the Bible. [Jesus tells us this in John 15:18ff - Paul tells us the same in 2 Timothy 3:12]. Of course they are referring to physical persecution [but are they referring to the physical only?]. My contention in this article is that our persecution is also severe and comes in the realm of spiritual and psychological persecution. What do you think? I’ll deal with this further in a future article. I’ll deal with the “What now”? – “What can I do”? - Etc. -- Frank Black, Oct. 2012