The blogging world places high value on immediacy and originality. Your content must be the first and fastest in order to be relevant. Sounds great in practice, doesn’t it? As long as you’re the first to come up with something unique and interesting, you’ll matter to someone? Well, with this particular post, I’m not sharing anything that hasn’t already been shared by someone. In fact, it would be presumptuous of me to think that most of my posts share something totally unique, but I digress. Sometimes, things need to be repeated, even if they’ve come from someone else.
The ongoing persecution of Christians and Christianity throughout the world, but particularly in the Middle East and Northern Africa is one of those things that needs to be repeated again and again. I’m not talking about the sort of “light persecution” we hear about from time to time like a family getting a large fine for having a bible study that violated some ordinances or a junior high student receiving disciplinary action for reading a bible during school hours. I’m talking about Christians being physically assaulted or killed for their faith. Furthermore, it’s not happening in the context of a few thousand living in persecution either. This human rights crisis is happening on one of the largest scales the world has ever seen. The Hudson Institute reports that roughly 100-200 million Christians are living under persecution at any one time. That makes it the largest religious human rights crisis in the world and comparable to other issues like hunger or access to clean drinking water, that don’t isolate groups of people based on faith or race.
Here are just a few statistics:
- 100-200 million Christians are living under persecution at any given point of time
- In 2011, 350 churches were burned down and 510 Christians were killed in Nigeria by Boko Haram, a radical Islamic group
- Between 2003 and 2011, over 900 Christians were murdered by terrorists in Baghdad, Iraq alone
- Violent acts against Christians in Indonesia nearly doubled between 2010 and 2011
I learned of this issue through a trailer I saw for the documentary “Love Costs Everything,” which looks at the persecution of Christians around the world more in depth. I’d encourage you to check out the trailer below. Of course there are plenty of naysayers that would react to statistics like the one I just shared with a “yeah, but” and I’ll be the first to acknowledge that there have certainly been times throughout history where Christians have been the ones to persecute other groups (i.e. the witch hunts of colonial America). However, there is nothing I or anyone else can do to erase the past; only the present and future can be changed. The fact of the matter is that in some parts of the world, Christians are being slaughtered for their commitment to Jesus Christ.
At this point in time, I’m merely sharing this information as a means to help shed light on what I think is something serious. I hope that one day I can see a world where this sort of thing is just a distant memory, but even if I won’t or can’t, at least I can say that I told someone. Hopefully you’ll feel the same way and pass along the trailer for “Love Costs Everything” to someone else, someone who has the power to do much more than I ever could. With that being said, there’s a lot to pray for.
To learn more about Love Costs Everything, visit: http://www.lovecostseverything.com/
Recommended reading: The Global War On Christians In The Muslim World by Ayaan Hirsi Ali