Concealed Affliction May Soon Turn Into Open Persecution
BLANKENBURG -- Persecution is coming to the West. Under the guise of tolerance, Bible believing Christians of all confessions are subjected to suppressive intolerance, warns a declaration issued at the Ecumenical Confessional Convention in Blankenburg, East Germany.
The event, with 130 Protestant, Catholic and Orthodox representatives, was convened by the evangelical missiologist Prof. Peter Beyerhaus. The so-called Blankenburg Proclamation speaks of a dangerous anti-Christian influence on legislation, academic life and school education.
Scientists who believe in God as the creator were subjected to public defamation. Christians, not willing to compromise their faith, had to face ridicule, intolerance, stigmatization and career obstacles.
The declaration refers specifically to the plight of German homeschoolers. Approximately 150 families were subjected to fines or jail because they refused to send their children to state registered schools and thus broke the German law.
According to the proclamation this “concealed affliction” may soon turn into open persecution. The threat could come from several directions - from globalization favoring the formation of totalitarian regimes, from growing syncretism, and from Islam.
Europe could be subjected to an enforced Islamization accompanied by the introduction of Sharia law. This danger was increased by the fact that the indigenous population is shrinking.
The proclamation also makes reference to the correlation between faith and suffering. It was part of the nature of the Christian faith to endure disadvantages and persecution for Christ’s sake. The 20th century had been the bloodiest in church history.
According to estimates by human rights organizations, 200 million Christians suffer discrimination for their faith. Every year 170,000 Christians die a martyr’s death.
Wolfgang Polzer is senior news editor of the Evangelical News Agency idea, Wetzlar (Germany), which he joined in 1981. In all, he has spent 30 years in Christian media. Wolfgang can be contacted by e-mail at: [email protected].
© 2006 ASSIST News Service, used with permission