Persecution and Tribulation

We are continuing with featuring the Prophetic Words of the immeasurable Jesus Christ and applying them to current events. This week we will discuss the horrific Christian persecution of our beloved Christian brothers and sisters. The Lord Jesus Christ prophesied to His bride in Matthew 24:9 that His disciples will be hurt, killed, and hated by the world. In Revelation 6, after the opening of the fifth seal, we read of the souls that were and will be martyred for Christ. Martyrdom has not yet started in the western world, but we are seeing the beginning stages, signs so to say, of what has been happening to our fellow believers around the world. God’s Word is the truth, so it should come as no surprise to believers that the Words of our Prophet, Priest, and King are coming to pass, “Christians are the most persecuted religious group throughout the world.” [1] Today we will learn about the Lord’s dear ones being persecuted in India, and two pastors who are suffering religious persecution in Canada.

Persecution

Matthew 24:9

“9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.”

With headlines that are fulfilling the prophetic words of Christ, we shockingly find out that 60 Christians are killed every hour and that,

“Over 900,000 Christians have been martyred in the last 10 years, a Christian research firm affiliated with Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts estimates. the finding that 90,000 Christians — or one Christian every six minutes — were killed in 2016.” [2]

In 2020 that Islamic violence towards Christians in Nigeria has increased by 60%,

“Open Doors’ 2021 report revealed two important persecution trends in 2020. The number of Christians killed has increased by 60% this year, mostly because of Islamic violence against Nigerian Christians. Secondly, anti-Christian governments around the world use COVID-19 restrictions to persecute Christians.” [3]

When the fifth seal was opened, John, the Apostle, saw the souls that were slain for the Word of God and their testimonies in Christ. Has the Worthy Lamb opened the fifth seal? There are likely to be more martyrs to come, will you be one of them?

Revelation 6:9-11

“9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:

10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?

11 And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.”

Persecution of the Godly

In Revelation 6, we find believers were martyred for the Word of God, Who is Jesus, and for their testimony. I often think that our testimony is more how we live and act then what is said but of course it is both. If you are a disciple of Christ and seek to live godly by the precepts of the Word of God, then according to the Holy Bible, you will be persecuted. Do not fear persecution my beloved for Christ will be all need. Remember the brave Christian who was full of the Holy Spirit, and He did not relent. Steven preached Jesus to the Jews who became an angry mob, and before he was stoned to death he saw Christ standing next to God.

Acts 7:54-60

54 When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.

55 But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,

56 And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.

57 Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,

58 And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.

59 And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.

60 And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud  voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.”

2 Timothy 3:12

“12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.”

They, the world and ungodly world system, hated Christ without cause. We who serve God follow His commandments out of our love for our King, not duty. We who serve Him will be hated because the holy life we strive to live will stir up hatred around us. The Messiah angered the religious Jews, the politicians, and the world system of His day. We who are imitators of the Christ will infuriate, stir up, and draw hatred from evil people, unrighteous systems, and the demonic around us. Remember, Christ, our Master, warned us that we will be hated because, as His servants, we keep His Words in our hearts and lives.

John 15:18-19

“18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.

19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.

21 But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.

22 If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.

23 He that hateth me hateth my Father also.

24 If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.

25 But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.”

India

The media brings us the sad news that hate crimes against Christians are on the rise in India. The news does not know that around 2,000 years ago Christ predicted this hatred against Christians which is called persecution. Unrighteousness is rising in India where hate crimes against Christians increased by 40% in 2020 (4).

Non-believers are limiting food and medical aid to Christians in India,

“COVID-19 devastates India—puts Christians in more danger. “India remains ranked at No. 10 on the 2021 World Watch List,and food and medical aid remains a powerful tool of discrimination and oppression against believers.”

 “Christians may be discriminated against in the shops and be forced to travel to other villages to obtain food,” notes Heena, another Open Doors partner, said at the time. “We’ve seen Christians being given less food aid in distribution of relief aid, if given any at all. “Often, aid distribution is pooled together for [several] villages. Christians are discriminated against in this collective.

“Rural areas tend to be more affected by discrimination as they tend to be the daily wage laborers in their areas. They also rely on communal resources for water and other utilities. Those in the cities are less affected by boycotts as they generally have access to their own water supply and have government jobs.” [5]

The Indian church has made the choice to stand for Christ. Like Joshua of old they stand for the living God. They are not relenting even in the face of discrimination and persecution. Their love for Jesus is a testimony for us all. Lord God fill them with courage and we praise Jesus that He goes with them every step through the valley of the shadow. God, we ask you to feed our starving brothers and sisters in India. We pray they will have access to medical care and be healed in the name of Jesus Christ. Tell me Christian will you stand with the Indian church when the time comes for you to choose. The clock is ticking, and the time to choose is now. Let each of us gird ourselves in Christ and stand firm in your choice before persecution knocks at your door.

Persecution in Canada

The global system is rising, and it is using Covid to control the people by excessive mandates and regulations targeting freedom of speech or religion. The Bible tells us that we will be tested and suffer with Christ. Up until this time, it has been in countries away from the USA and Canada. However, Covid has brought the ramping up of religious discrimination while scaling down freedoms, particularly in those who are Biblical or patriots.

James Coates

Pastor Coates was imprisoned in a maximum-security prison in Edmonton for refusing to stop Church services and was in solitary confinement. Coates was,

“quarantined in a maximum-security prison. Coates is the first religious leader to be arrested for preaching in Canada in nearly 200 years.

After Coates was arrested he was given the opportunity to be released, despite the wishes of the prosecution. With no criminal record and health violations rarely if ever accompanied by jail time, the Judge was primed to set him free, but then put a condition on him that he not step foot on church property, and especially not call his church to worship again from the pulpit.

Refusing to abide by those conditions due to deep religious and personal conviction, Coates was remanded. [6]

We thank God Coates was freed about a month after his arrest and seek prayers for Pastor Coates, who goes to trial on June 7, 2021. [7]

Police fence off GraceLife Church in Alberta.

Newly freed from prison, Pastor James Coates spoke from an unknown location on April 13, 2021. Pastor Coates could not speak from GraceLife Church, where he is the pastor, because it has been cordoned off with three layers of fencing and is inaccessible.

“They can take our facility but we’ll just find another one,” GraceLife Church’s pastor James Coates.” [8]

Evil Tries To Suppresses Good

The Bible tells us that in the latter day’s evil will increase, and Christians will be hated. The Canadian government, or should we say the evil powers behind them, are challenging the right of Christians freedom to worship God. So shall we then say that they, the powers that be known and those that be unseen, are ultimately challenging God and will be judged accordingly.

In a quote from Pastor Coates lawyer,

“The best explanation for why that ticket was issued that particular Sunday after the sermon was preached because it’s meant to impose a chilling effect on pastor Coates. It was to send a message …’You better stop criticizing the government for what they’re doing.”’ [9]

While Coates lawyer points out that criticizing the Canadian regime is what ultimately led to the arrest of Pastor Coates, we also know it has to do with his refusal to limit the number of parishioners. Pastor Coates was a good shepherd who followed God’s word over the rulers of the day. He understood that while he may stand before an earthly judge in his lifetime, it is the precepts of the Judge of the universe that he followed. May God bless you Pastor Coates.

Pastor Pawlowski

Artur Pawlowski was jailed for following precepts of the Bible. As a good leader, he opened the church doors because we are instructed to not forsake the assembling of ourselves he opened his church to worshippers (Hebrews 10:25).

As Daniel of old Pawlowski followed the Word of the Lord, and for his illegal church service Pastor Pawlowski was arrested by armed swat members, he had his arms restrained, and he was dragged to the vehicle. [10]

Video of Arrest

The video of Pawlowski’s arrest is at this reference. [11]

The following are excerpts from his story,

“I was taken into custody, I was manhandled – they really wanted me to be hurt – they threw me into a cell, they deprived me of sleep for two days.”

“I spent three days in jail for my crime of opening the church in a free and democratic society,” he added.

Pawlowski, a Polish immigrant to fled the Soviet bloc of communism, described the parallels between the Soviet authoritarianism and the oppression unfolding in Canada.

“I escaped tyranny. I escaped communist socialism,” he said. “I came to Canada only because Canada was offering me freedom. Here we are again in a repetition of history, and I decided I’m going to stand up and fight to the death.” [12]

https://www.infowars.com/posts/persecuted-anti-lockdown-pastor-warns-medical-tyranny-is-already-here/

House Fire Set

Evil does not rest, and on May 16, firefighters were called to a fire at Pawlowski’s home,

“Someone tried to burn my house down! Price of fighting for Freedom,” wrote Pawlowski. “Please, pray for our enemies!” Pawlowski uploaded video showing at least five firefighters outside what appears to be a residence. [13]

What Then Are We to Do?

Pray for All

Saints let us stand arm and arm united to pray for our oppressed family. Let us pray steadfastly for all the saints because they are our allies, our friends in this evil world. We need to pray for their safety, the protection of God to cover them, and to pray for God to provide all they need.

Ephesian 6:18

18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.”

Never Forget the Captives

Christians in the West have been blessed that they do not face the martyrdom and persecution that our brothers and sisters endure in other parts of the world. God wants us to pray and remember those who are persecuted, oppressed, and imprisoned. The Bible teaches that we, children of God, are one body, and we are to “weep with those who weep” (Romans 12:15).

Hebrews 13:3

“3 Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them; and them which suffer adversity, as being yourselves also in the body.”

To bring it closer to heart, we will break down this important verse.

Remember-According to Vine’s, remember is “in the present tense,” which signifies that we keep them in our here and now. [14]

Bonds- Strong’s explains Hebrew 13 as “bound, in bonds, a captive, a prisoner” [15]

Bound-“to tie together, to bind together”-as bound with them or to be a fellow prisoner. [16]

Suffer adversity-those “who suffer maltreatment or our tormented.” [17]

Body-“bodily, slave.” [18]

Another way to understand this verse is that we are to daily remind ourselves of those who are captive or oppressed as if we were there bodily with them and we are undergoing the maltreatment and torment right beside them. The Holy Spirit uses our togetherness with the bound, as an example of the precepts His Majesty taught. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you and love one another as yourself (Matthew 7:12 and John 13:34-35).

God does not forget the prayers and love we bestow on the saints. All our deeds will be remembered at Judgement Seat of Christ.

Hebrews 6:10

“10 For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.”

Believers bear the troubles of the persecuted, and pray for them as though they were your family because they are your family, the family of God.

Galatians 6:2

“2 Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.”

God holds us Accountable

As Christians, we are exhorted to remember those in prison. The Scripture encourages us to provide for them. Christ uses this as a criterion to judge Christians. So, in accordance with the guidance of our Lord Jesus, pray for the needy, give them food and drink, and clothing. Visit them in jail or where they are oppressed or held in captivity. Send mail to them or provide for ministries that support the imprisoned or persecuted. Do not forget them keep them close to your heart, and in your prayers.God will always make way for us to take action upon His Word.

Matthew 25:35-40

“35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:

36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.

37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?

38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?

39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?

40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”

The Bible declares that we will have many afflictions, and all who live righteous lives will be persecuted (Psalm 34:19). All is an inclusive word, and includes you and me. It is in these trials that we join in the fellowship of suffering with Christ Jesus and our fellow believers (Philippians 3:10). Hardships squeeze us until we call to our Father and King Jesus, and it is in the harsh depths of this fellowship that we become more than we were and move towards who Christ made us to be. Selah.

Fiery Trials

Praise be to God our Father who sent His beloved son so we could be adopted into His Kingdom of Righteousness. The blessed Holy Spirit writing through the Apostle Peter clearly understood that trials purify and purge the sin from our lives, for this is why He tells us to rejoice. Rejoice, our old self is being cleansed, and the beautiful holiness of Abba is manifesting itself in our lives.   

1 Peter 4:12-14

“12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:

13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.”

Take Action

The picture taken of the Coptic Christians before they were beheaded brought sorrow to my heart and tears to my face. My friend this should touch your heart, those men who were martyred for their refusal to deny Christ are our brothers, our Christian family.

Show you care and take action. Pray for the persecuted church, or give of your time, or money.

God Bless you all.

Until next time.

Armourbearer

To learn more about the persecuted church please use these links.

opendoorsusa

the Voice of the Martyrs

Gordon Conwell

  1. https://www.christianpost.com/news/over-900000-christians-martyred-for-their-faith-in-last-10-years-report.html
  2. https://www.christianpost.com/news/over-900000-christians-martyred-for-their-faith-in-last-10-years-report.html
  3. https://www.christianpost.com/news/open-doors-finds-60-rise-in-christians-killed-worldwide-in-2020.html
  4. https://www.catholic-sf.org/news/report-finds-hate-crimes-rising-against-indian-christians-despite-lockdown
  5. https://www.chvnradio.com/articles/covid-19-devastates-indiaputs-christians-in-more-danger
  6. https://welovetrump.com/2021/02/27/canadian-pastor-is-put-in-maximum-security-prison-for-covid-violations/
  7. https://edmonton.ctvnews.ca/jailed-alberta-pastor-expected-to-be-released-i
  8. https://edmonton.ctvnews.ca/alta-church-moves-service-to-unknown-location-after-authorities-fence-off-property-1.5385819
  9. https://edmonton.citynews.ca/2021/05/04/a-chilling-effect-lawyer-argues-alberta-government-wanted-to-censor-church-pastor/
  10. https://www.infowars.com/posts/shock-video-canadian-church-attacked-by-police-pastor-arrested-under-covid-tyranny/
  11. https://youtu.be/Zz5zGm3gJKg
  12. https://www.infowars.com/posts/persecuted-anti-lockdown-pastor-warns-medical-tyranny-is-already-here/
  13. https://www.infowars.com/posts/persecuted-anti-lockdown-pastor-warns-medical-tyranny-is-already-here/
  14. https://www.blueletterbible.org/search/dictionary/viewtopic.cfm?topic=VT0002355
  15. https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G1198&t=KJV
  16. https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G4887&t=KJV 
  17. https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/Lexicon/Lexicon.cfm?strongs=G2558&t=KJV
  18. https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/Lexicon/Lexicon.cfm?strongs=G4983&t=KJV

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