God’s Word Reigns Despite Religious Persecution

by | Jul 1, 2011 | Charisma Archive

flagbibleWhen our Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776, they considered religious freedom one of Americans’ most fundamental rights.

Thomas Jefferson, who wrote the Declaration of Independence, also wrote the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom. He considered these two of his most important accomplishments, along with founding the University of Virginia, and left instructions for them to be inscribed on his tombstone.

Today, our commitment to religious freedom has gone global, and it has become part of the fabric of our diplomacy. In 1998, Congress passed the International Religious Freedom Act, and now the State Department issues an annual report on religious freedom.

The U.S. even has an Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom—Dr. Suzan Johnson Cook.

This commitment reflects the scope of the problem. At Bible League International, we have found that religious persecution has left its mark on many areas of the world:

•   In Albania, where communist purges “destroyed the human soul,” according to a government official, leaving the Church with many years of work to restore it

•   In China, where the government raids underground churches, arrests their leaders and destroys their property

•  In India, where Hindu Nationalists force Christians to convert to Hinduism and burn churches to the ground

•   In Laos, where Christian women have been raped and murdered in front of their families

•   In Nigeria, where an Islamic sect that believes Western ways are evil has killed pastors and church members and destroyed churches

•  In Pakistan, where Muslim radicals murdered a Christian government official for opposing the government’s blasphemy law.

Religious persecution is most common against Christians. A Vatican spokesman indicated this spring that 75 out of every 100 people killed because of religious hatred are Christian. Open Doors, a ministry that serves persecuted Christians, says that there are more than 100 million of them around the world.

News of extremists persecuting Christians floods our inbox at Bible League. In general, the Middle East is the least evangelized area of the world because of religious persecution. In the Muslim world, Christian worship takes place behind a veil of secrecy and fear.

But even where persecution takes place, God’s Word has a way of getting through. It would be easy for persecuted Christians in these nations to lose heart. But at Bible League, we have found that no heart is beyond God’s reach.

Witness a miracle that has taken place in Vietnam this year. In one of communism’s last strongholds, all activities are tightly controlled by the government, including religious practices. Most Christians choose to worship in underground house churches due to mandatory church registration.

Late last year, a Bible school in Ho Chi Minh City was bulldozed. Five hundred police, soldiers and firemen showed up at 7 a.m. and began demolishing the property. The pastor was beaten unconscious, and several members of his congregation were detained.

But 2011 has brought new hope—this year marks the 100th anniversary of the first Protestant church in Vietnam. To commemorate the occasion, the Vietnamese government, which tightly controls the printing and distribution of Bibles, has authorized the publication and distribution of up to 100,000 Bibles in 2011 by groups such as Bible League and the World Bible Translation Center.

This spring, as part of the anniversary, evangelist Luis Palau preached in a soccer stadium in Ho Chi Minh City, and thousands accepted Christ. The government later forced the cancellation of Easter events scheduled in Hanoi, but church leaders said they were encouraged by Palau’s visit.

Stories like this one are echoed everyday around the globe. Despite trials and persecution, millions of people have found that God’s Word brings peace and promotes freedom. This Fourth of July, that’s a good thing to remember.

Robert T. Frank is the CEO of Bible League International, a non-profit evangelical Christian ministry dedicated to making disciples and training Bible study leaders and church planters using the Word of God.


Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

In 1971, I was invited to spend one month in Singapore at a new institute that had been started by John Haggai. It was still in the formative stages then—a place where Asian church leaders would be trained and challenged to witness for Christ. Today, more than 40...

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

It was a Pentecost bloodbath and most Christians never heard about it. More than 50 Christians were killed in one of the deadliest terror attacks on Nigerians this year. Scores of gunmen rushed in to kill Christians in the midst of worship. All told, over 360 million...

The Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: The People I Saw in Hell

The Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: The People I Saw in Hell

In 1998, God gave me a life-changing vision of hell. I receive many questions about my experience from people all over the world, but one question I'm often asked is, "Who did you see in hell?" There are others who say they've had an experience like mine, and they...

The United States: Birthed in Prophetic Symbolism

The United States: Birthed in Prophetic Symbolism

One of the most amazing facts about the Founding Fathers of our nation is this: The one referred to as the "voice" of the revolution (John Adams) and the one referred to as the "pen" of the revolution (Thomas Jefferson) both died on the same day—July 4, 1826—exactly...


Why Did God Give ‘This’ to Me?

It’s a question I frequently hear. It’s one I’ve asked. And maybe it’s one you’ve asked, too. The question is, “God, why did You give this to me?” This can be any number of issues, from emotional or...
No Evil Can Stop What God Has Planned

No Evil Can Stop What God Has Planned

I sense it. And I perceive a growing number of people in massive proportions sense the increasing momentum of power and might worldwide. Something is on the horizon—something more eerie and ominous than what the people of the world have ever before experienced. Even...

Curt Landry: 6 Ways to Open Your Heart and Mind to God’s Voice

Curt Landry: 6 Ways to Open Your Heart and Mind to God’s Voice

We are told that we must listen to God’s voice when we need to make important decisions. What does the Bible say about hearing God’s voice? How do we apply this to our everyday lives? 7 Bible Verses About Hearing God’s Voice “So then faith comes by hearing, and...

Pin It on Pinterest