Sunday, November 11, 2012

TODAY - SUNDAY NOVEMBER 11, 2012

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER FOR THE PERSECUTED CHURCH (IDOP)
JESUS SAID THIS: “Remember the words I spoke to you: ‘No servant is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also” (John 15:20).

Today is the International Day of Prayer for the worldwide persecuted church. No matter where you are - church, basement, living room or driving on the interstate on the way to grandma's, please pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world, who are suffering most of their lives for the Gospel of Christ. They are tortured, jailed, killed and maimed for just believing in the Gospel of all Love, Truth and Righteousness. Their humble huts; homes and houses of worship are burned down and destroyed by hordes of extremists atheists, moslems, hindus and other dictators as in Myanmar (Burma), Viet Nam, Cuba and Venezuela.  

But it is not just the usual persecutors of the people of God and Christ, specifically. In the "civilized" Western world, persecution has come to the Body of Christ....and not just from the hands of atheists and those who want no accountability for their personal actions in public or private, but even, in a sense, by the mostly wealthy North American churches, who ignore these persecuted saints around the world, because it is easier to do that. That way, we can pretend all is well, as long as it is well with my own soul. Apart from the Catholic church hierarchy, Billy Graham and a few others, no one is speaking out about the fact that BIBLE PUBLISHERS, TYNDALE - are being forced to pay for contraceptive and abortion pills, which is against the principles of Jesus Christ and the Law of God (fornication, taking of a human life etc), but against the United States Constitution!

First of all, it SHOULD BE well with your own soul BEFORE you pray for anyone else, because God only hears the pray of a "righteous man" - or those who are born again ("We know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is God-fearing and does His will, He hears him - John 9:31). But come on, fellow believers, the minute you think what is happening in Eygpt (where Coptic Christians are literally nailed to crosses) or Eritrea, Africa, (where Christian are stuffed in containers in the heated to live in filthy conditions); or Pakistan or India or Saudi Arabia or Iraq (where 1 million Chaldean Christians have been persecuted and chased from their 2000 year old homes because the United States "liberated" Babylon and removed Saddam Hussain) ...that is when we step out of line with God's thinking. We put our heads in the sand, while all of this is happening around the world. The US government is not any better as the only lawmaker in Washington DC who speaks out is Congressman Frank Wolf (R-Virginia). CLICK HERE....and HERE to see the status of official slighting of the Persecuted by US politicians. None of the presidential or other candidates for national office paid any attention to the matters of God, no matter what their campaign literature said. It is up to us, the regular folks, and us alone!


So what are we to do, when church and government leaders only pay lip service to Religious and literal human dignity? We turn to God. We turn to Him Who is the only True Judge of the Universe and will deal with all of these people in time. However we must do our part and pray for the persecuted - not only today, but as much as we can. We must have our small groups prayer. Teach our children to pray. Challenge our Sunday School and even our pastors and deacons - ask them to prayer. Network in the church halls during donuts and coffee, and show them the imperative here, if need be. Get your church, small group or ministry involved in any whatever capacity. Whenever one part of the Body of Christ is persecuted, the entire Body hurts.

Click HERE to find out FOR WHOM we could pray today and the hot spots around the world, where the worst forms of human degradation is occurring. Pray and pray hard, because America is next in line.


"Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil things against you because of Me" Matthew 5:11
HERE IS HOW WE START:
The following is an example from Mission Resources of HOW we can set our minds in the proper frame and our inner man, in sync with the Holy Spirit, to pray for the persecuted church:

Millions of contemporary believers in Jesus Christ are currently “following his steps” as they endure persecution. According to scripture, as our family they belong to us and we belong to them.  Therefore, we must pray for those suffering persecution. 

How shall we pray for the suffering in our global church family? The basic prayer guidelines that follow, along with Bible studies, sermons, and resources, are available in a free online ebook resource at www.Globalbeliever.com  (see pages 214-215).   ere are some practical ways that you, and those you mobilize and gather for prayer, can effectively pray for persecuted believers around the world. 

1. Pray Sensitively - Hebrews 13.3 teaches us to, “Remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.” Here, in no uncertain terms, God is reminding us to sensitively put ourselves in the place of others. With Christian compassion and empathy, we are to identify with our brothers and sisters in persecution as if we were there with them, enduring the same hardships together. 
2. Pray Scripturally – As we follow key word searches throughout the Bible, using words like “persecution,” “suffering,” “tribulation,” multiple stories and incidents of individuals and the collective people of God in their suffering will begin to emerge. These were real people suffering real persecution.  Their stories, filled with their responses to suffering, form a pattern for our personal prayer time and also for group Bible studies and intercessory prayer. 

For example, some intercessors pray through the Psalms, using the models of David’s prayers as he cries out for refuge, rescue, deliverance, and preservation. Here are just a few of his cries for help: 
“Deliver me, O my God, from the hand of the wicked, from the grasp of evil and cruel men” (Psalm 71.4)
“Be not far from me, O God; come quickly, O my God, to help me” (Psalm 71.12) 
“Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need; rescue me from those who 
pursue me, for they are too strong for me. Set me free from my prison, that I may praise your name” (Psalm 142. 6-7)
“O Lord, hear my prayer, listen to my cry for mercy; in your faithfulness and righteousness come to my relief” (Psalm 143.3).   

We can pray and plead those same phrases – and hundreds like them in scripture and on behalf of our suffering family around the world. In scripture, God gives us words, thoughts, models, directions in our intercessory praying on behalf of our family in trouble. An elderly Methodist lay preacher named “Uncle Am” always had assurance his prayers would be answered. A young preacher asked for his secret.  “Young man,” he said, “learn to plead the promises of God.”  

Praying scripturally includes not only praying for the persecuted but also praying for the persecutor (that they too, will be saved). Therefore, let us now pray....

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