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Tuesday, June 14, 2005VOM Prayers for June 14, 2005
"If the heart is cleansed by the love of Jesus Christ, and if the heart loves Him, one can resist all tortures. What would a loving bride not do for a
loving bridegroom? ...God will judge us not according to how much we endured, but how much we could love. The Christians who suffered for
their faith in prisons could love. I am a witness that they could love God
and men." -Richard Wurmbrand, Tortured for Christ
This statement and many others will encourage and challenge you in your walk with Jesus Christ. In his book Tortured for Christ, Pastor Richard Wurmbrand challenges the free world to stand up and be a voice for the persecuted. Pastor Wurmbrand suffered 14 years of mental and physical torture for his fervent faith in Jesus Christ and for his bold witness. However, he left prison not a defeated man, but a man emboldened with passion and purpose-loving God, loving his enemies and serving today's persecuted church.
Send a copy of this best-selling classic to your friends and family by simply clicking here.
VOM Web Team
From The Voice of the Martyrs
Pray for CHINA
CHINA (VOM/China Aid Association)
On May 22nd, during Sunday worship time, police and Public Security Bureau (PSB) officers simultaneously raided approximately 60 house churches in Changchun, the capital city of Jilin province in northeastern China. In the days following, another 40 house-church groups were raided in other suburban cities around Changchun. More than 600 house-church believers and leaders were taken into custody. Most were released after 24 to 48 hours of interrogation, but approximately 100 leaders are still being held in different detention centers. The amount of man-power, coordination and planning involved in so many simultaneous raids shows this effort came from high levels of the Chinese government. One church pastor, Zhao Dianru, 58, was released Monday, June 6th, after 15 days of "administrative detention." (Click here)
Pray the Lord will protect and encourage these prisoners, giving them opportunities to share Christ with their persecutors. Pray the Lord will give strength, courage and hope to the families of those imprisoned. Pray God will confound the plans of the enemy regarding any further coordinated efforts to arrest house-church Christians.
Pray for INDIA
INDIA (Compass Direct)
Police in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh found the body of Pastor Isaac Raju on June 2nd. Raju went missing on May 24th. Just days earlier, on May 21st, the body of Pastor K. Daniel was found with marks suggestive of an acid attack. Both Raju and Daniel pastored churches on the outskirts of the state capital, Hyderabad. A letter sent to a local newspaper claimed the murders were the work of an organization called the "Anti-Christian Forum." After the letter was received, police questioned 150 members of Hindu nationalist organizations but at press time had no suspects. A reward has now been offered for information leading to the arrest of those responsible for the murders.
Pray Christians in Andrha Pradesh will give physical, emotional and spiritual help to the families of Pastors Raju and Daniel. Pray God will use these tragedies for His purposes, drawing many into a relationship with Jesus. Pray Christians in India will be bold in their witness.
Around 200 Hindu extremists attacked a church in Moti Chowk village, Chattisgarh, India, on June 6th, while services were underway. Police then arrested nine church members and charged them with "disturbing the peace" under Section 151 of the Indian Penal Code. The nine Christians were kept in prison for two days before being released on bail. Meanwhile, the Hindu extremists called for a social boycott against the Christian community in the village, preventing them from using the community well or buying food supplies in local markets. Three days earlier, 13 Christians in Hathod village, Durg district, Chattisgarh, were summoned to a village meeting and asked to renounce their faith. Seven Christians who refused were locked up in the district jail. Police made it difficult for the Christians to be released on bail, saying that the bail amount must be raised within the village. However, fellow villagers who sympathized with the Christians were afraid to post bail because of the social influence of the village headman and Hindu extremists.
Pray God will give these suffering Christians a comforting sense of His presence and His peace. Pray their calm and joy will attract many Hindus to the one God of glory.
Pray for INDONESIA
INDONESIA (Compass Direct)
Since the May 28th bombing in Tentena, both Muslim and Christian leaders have expressed concern about corruption and violence in Indonesia. Some Muslim leaders believe the best solution is the nationwide implementation of Shariah (Islamic) Law. Congresses held in Jakarta in 2004, and Sulawesi in March 2005, recommended that Shariah principles be introduced through a revision of Indonesia's criminal law. Meanwhile, provincial councils are including more Shariah principles in local bylaws. In some provinces, governors have restricted freedom of worship for Christians.
Pray God will stop the implementation Shariah Law. Pray Christians in Indonesia will maintain their faith and witness despite opposition. Pray Christians worldwide will join in prayer, taking on the "fellowship of sufferings" of our brethren wherever they may be (Philippians 3:10).
Pray for NIGERIA
NIGERIA (Compass Direct)
Andrew Akume, a Christian lecturer at Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) in Zaria city, Kaduna state, Northern Nigeria, has disappeared since the issuance of a death sentence against him. A militant Muslim group at ABU passed the sentence on him claiming he blasphemed Mohammed, the prophet of Islam. Akume asked a Muslim female student not to wear the hijab (head-to-toe covering) because it didn't conform to the Council for Legal Education's dress code for law students. Meanwhile in Kano state, Christians are being held to Islamic law in the way they dress. On May 16th, Governor Malam Ibrahim Shekarau ordered all Christians in the state to dress in accordance with Islamic tenets. The order was sent to Christian churches and institutions in the state and implemented immediately in schools. The Rt. Rev. Zakka Nyam, the Anglican Bishop of Kano, has accused the state government of persecuting Christians
Pray God will protect and comfort Andrew Akume. Pray Christians in Nigeria will walk in the way of the Lord. Pray the Lord will avert the implementation of the Islamic dress code in Kano.
Three students expelled for sharing the gospel in November last year say their fundamental rights as Christians were violated by the authorities of the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University in Bauchi, Northern Nigeria. The three filed a case against the university, claiming the expulsion was a gross violation of their fundamental rights as Christians. According to the student's lawyer, Emmanuel Danboyi, the university's disciplinary committee that investigated the case was biased because it had 10 Muslims and only one Christian on the committee. Danboyi asked the court to declare the recommendation of the disciplinary committee "null, void ." The Christian students are also asking the court to set aside their expulsion from the university. The court began its hearing of the suit on Monday, June 6th, with Alkali testifying. The hearing continues on July 6.
Pray these students will present their case in a way that is pleasing to God. Pray God will cause the authorities to recognize that these students have been treated unfairly. Pray all Christians in Nigeria will be salt and light to the Muslims.
Pray for TURKEY
TURKEY (Compass Direct)
The government's Religious Affairs Directorate coordinated a symposium March 15th-17th, in conjunction with a local university to present academic research on missionary activities in Turkey. Presentations at the conference included reports on Christian missionary activities within Turkey, as well as among Turks in Kyrgyzstan, Bulgaria, France, and Germany. It was clear that conference organizers viewed missionary activity at least in part as a security issue, with several professors from the police academy giving presentations. Not a word was published in the Turkish press about the Canakkale symposium. "The aim was apparently not to open it to the public, but just to academic circles," one of the visitors said.
Pray those who attended the symposium will see that missionary activity is not a security threat to Turkey. Pray God will lead each one to personally research the Christian faith and by this means draw them into a relationship with Christ. Pray Christians in Turkey will be both loving and bold in their witness.
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