When you think of the worst time in history for Christian persecution, perhaps you think of the Roman Coliseum or the Middle Ages and Reformation when Christians were burned at the stake for translating the Bible into the common language.
There are countless time periods in history when Christians have faced persecution for their faith. Jesus warned that persecution would come (John 15:20). We know this as Christians.
What may surprise you, however, (especially if you are a Christian living in the West), is that a new report has shown that Christian persecution is actually worse today than ever before in history.
According to Relevant Magazine, this report comes from Aid to the Church in Need, a Catholic persecution charity that “provides pastoral and humanitarian assistance to the persecuted Church around the world.”
This increase in Christian persecution is in large part due to terrorist groups like ISIS in the Middle East and Boko Haram in Nigeria. These groups particularly target Christians.
Of the 13 countries where Christian persecution has been most severe, none of them have shown improvement in the past year except Saudi Arabia, where, the report says, “the situation was already so bad, it could scarcely get worse.”
Persecuted Christians from Iran to Indonesia to North Korea often feel forgotten by those in the West, especially because Western governments are not doing enough to provide them with aid.
David Curry, the CEO of Open Doors, another Christian persecution charity that releases an annual World Watch List of countries where Christian persecution is most severe, offered some hope in this situation: “One of the reasons we call ourselves Open Doors is we fundamentally think there are no doors closed to Jesus, and we know that the Church is everywhere. The body of Christ is everywhere. So we’re going to tackle them. There are no off-limits places to us.”
Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstockphotos.com
Publication date: February 12, 2018