Category Archives: Persucution and trials

International Day of Prayer for Persecuted Churches

Can you set aside some time to pray for those who live among the enemies of God’s Love?

Noverber 14, 2010 is set aside to pray for those who live under the constant fear of those who seek to destroy Christianity. We who liv ein nations that offer the freedom to worship and believe in an Awesome God who redeems by the grace of forgiveness and mercy need to offer up our prayers in thankgiving and give aid to those who are not so fortunate. Pray for their safty and release from torment at the hands of the enemies of Christ.

Psalm 119:121-128: Ayin

Don’t leave me to the mercies of my enemies,
for I have done what is just and right.
Please guarantee a blessing for me.
Don’t let those who are arrogant oppress me!
My eyes strain to see Your deliverance,
to see the truth of your promise fulfilled.
I am your servant;
deal with me in unfailing love,
and teach me your principles.
Give discernment to me, your servant;
then I will understand Your decrees,
LORD, it is time to act,
for these evil people have broken Your Law.
Truly, each of your commandments is right.
That is why I hate every false way.

As Ezra and Nehemiah struggle to rebuild the temple walls and to restore the sanctuary, the returning exiles are constantly harassed and attacked by the people living in Judea. The sad thing is that these people who were assailing them were those who were left behind and by blood the same as those building the temple. Their faith had been diluted and twisted by the Assyrians, Babylonians and Persians. They no longer relied on the God of their fathers. Those people who should have welcomed the rebuilding of the Temple had rejected it and despised His People. Today we see the same twisted logic entering the churches. As the sins of the flesh are welcomed into the congregations we see a weakening of the Word of God. Fornication is O.K., Adultery is acceptable, Divorce is encouraged, homosexuality is ordained as right. “Don’t let those who are arrogant oppress me!”

Not to long ago, I was under attack by those who do not claim the Divine Nature of Jesus and who would use the Word of God as a weapon to destroy rather than to build up, encourage and edify Christ. In 2 Samuel 8:15 we read that David administered justice to all, that none were dealt unfairly. We know that David had a heart after God. As was Job, he was clothed in righteousness, yet he also failed sometimes. The psalmist knows of the heart of David and the righteousness of Job. He asks that he also do what is right and just with the Children of Israel. He asks that God pledge to him goodness and to protect him from his enemies. Do we seek what is right and just among the Children of Redemption? Are we judgemental and seek after unwise council? Or do we come to God with petition and contrition to do what is just before the Lord.

The psalmist cries out, “My eyes long for Your salvation and the fulfillment of Your righteous Promise.”(Psalm 119:123). But we live in the age that the Promise is made real. Jesus has come to redeem and to make right the ways of man. As we are the New Temple, restored by Grace, we are proof of the Promise given to David, Moses and to Isaiah. God has shown us His everlasting Kindness (Psalm 51:1), He has remembered His Covenant (Psalm 106:45), He has saved us with His unfailing Love (Psalm 109:26). By Christ, His Son, He has given to us everlasting Joy.

God’s Grace of the Spirit of Hope, the Divine Breath that breathed eternal life into our weariness, has fulfilled His Promise. Now we can truly be good and faithful servants to His Perfect will. Now we can have understanding that escaped the grasp of the ancients. Filled with the Holy Spirit, we can see the wisdom of God that eluded the sons of Adam.

“Now is the time for the LORD to act.”(Psalm 119:126). Not in the ways of Man but in His strength. And God acts not with a vengeance, even though it is in His Power, but with love. He turns away the sins of man and offers his love, forgiveness and His compassion. He did this on the Cross for you and for me who were once counted as enemies. And as was in the day of Nehemiah and Ezra, we still sin. We still take the Word of God and use it to justify our faults and our shortcomings. Can we not see that? Therefore work in us O LORD, Your righteous fire to burn away the dross, the things that separate ourselves from your love. We have continually broken Your Law of Mercy and Grace to continue living as enemies of righteousness while still claiming to be your faithful. We lie to you O God with our lives, untrue to your Grace.

And although we say that we love His commandment better than fine gold, we, in truth, love ourselves more than we love His Word. Repeatedly the Psalmist says in the Psalm, I love Your Precepts, Your Commandments, Your Law! But we still rebuke them, disregard them and ignore His Way. We say that we consider all the ways of the LORD to be fair, just and right but still we do not follow in them. We say that we hate every false and evil way but still we persist in living in the ways of the flesh without regard to His Holiness and His Judgement. We say the “magic words”, I am saved and live as do the unsaved.

Not only is this the time for God to act. It is the time for us to react to the will of Salvation, to live holy and blameless lives before God and man. It is time to live in the righteousness of Christ Jesus. Now is the Day of the Lord to be walking straight and steady on the narrow Path of the Lord. Do not waver, do not lean right or left, but keep your eyes upon the Way of the Lord. Be as directed by Paul to the fellowship in Corinth; “…do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers,nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the Kingdom of God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10 ESV). To live in such is it deny God’s Word and the Redemption of Jesus. You will be counted as the “evil people who have broken the Law of God.

When Should We Stop Supporting The Enemies of Christ

Pakistan Secret service supplies Taliban.
Afghanistan want to execute Christian converts.
Egypt allows forced conversions to Islam by rape and torture.
Israel uses white phosphorus on Muslim and Christians in Gaza.
India continues to free the masterminds of 2009 riots against Christian diats.

The government of the United States of America still finds it right and just to continue to support these nations that have little regard for the well being of Christian minorities. I don’t lay the blame on the Administration but on the continued policies of the last forty years of the rule of the Industrial Military Complex that Eisenhower warned us of while he was president. We are so entrenched in the fears of the “Cold War” mentality that it has clouded our Christian sensibilities. While I do support the need of a strong defense, our constant assertions that the world is against us is precisely because of our arrogance, intrusions and the “need to wave the big guns at everybody and at the same time call them friends.

We sold our souls to the Chinese, Indians, Arabs and Global corporations. We have become a nation that sells out our fellow man because of the “new god”, money. Because we have become dependant on the Chinese trade, Arab oil and the International Banks, we walk in fear of everyone. We support Dictators and Despots. We buy fuel from companies that supply and train racketeer militias in Burma. The Christian principles that this nation was founded on have been lost to the “best interests” of worldly concerns. It is well past time to condemn the actions of those countries that seem fit to attack our Faith, our LORD and our spiritual freedom.

When nations deem it right and even sacred to kill our brothers and sisters in Christ, then we as a nation should condemn them instead of supplying them with the means to continue atrocities against God. We have boycotted North Korea but continue to support the terrorist regime of Burma. We condemn Palestine and Iran yet continue to support Iraq, Pakistan and Egypt who have killed more Christians or supported genocide against free people within their own borders.


God has commanded us to live with peace and to condemn those who seek war. We are to brush the dust from our sandals from those who reject His teachings, His Salvation and His Mercy. As a nation “under God”, we should open our doors to all people who suffer persecution in their homelands and offer up our homes, schools and freedoms to them. We should not continue to support the governments that defile God’s Word. Our troops would be better served if they defended the natural borders of our land rather than the financial institutions and special interests of foreign enterprises.

We would do better to spend more time in churches praying for the well being of our persecuted brethren than singing praises to God that we are blessed because we are not like them. The next time you look at your daughters, think of the Egyptian Christians girls forced into marriage against their will by Islamic radicals at the age of twelve. Think of the small Christian Children forced to work as slaves in Islamic household to pay off falsified debts in Pakistan. When you get out of your warm beds in the morning, think of the families of the Karen Christians of Burma and the Diat Indians who were burned out of their homes by Buddhist and Hindu radicals while the government stood by and did nothing. And add to this the fact that in Mexico, local government have the right to expel from thier comunities Chirstians because the local leaders are pagans.

As long as this nationcontinues to support, evil or uncaring governments throughout the world, we are slaves to the same sins. We can not serve God and the Devil at the same time. We must stand up for Christ! We must comdemn the corperations, political leaders and businesses that keep us in bongage to evilness.

Heed the words of peter, “Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human instution. …” (1Peter 2:13) Be subject to the fact that this nation is ruled by the voice of the people and as such, in condoning the actions of evil, we are not being subject for the Lord’s sake. In supporting persecution, we are ourselves subject to God’s wrath.

Open Letter to President Obama and Congress About Persecution

Dear President Obama,

For the last several years we read the reports of persecution against Christians in countries that we call our friends. Yet I see little action or response to these horrific actions. India still has not addressed the riots on 2008. Egypt has not changed the policies that led to the Little Christmas massacre of Jan 6, 2010 and Pakistan has done little to stem the constant abduction, rape, forced conversions and marriages of minor Christian girls.

And now I am getting reports form Open Doors Ministry and International Christian Concerns that the Afghanistan Parliament is considering the expulsion of Christian Aid groups and planning the execution of converts to Christianity. If we are to be a nation that supports Human Rights, Freedom of Religious beliefs and the Free Speech, then why are we continuing to provide aid, military support and free trade without limits to nations that hold our values in contempt? Why are American jobs lost to nations that repress their own people? Why do we offer favored status to China, India and other nations that think nothing of persecuting, murdering and torturing those who only what to worship God in their own way?

In the strongest language and backed up with action, this Nation should condemn, stop aid and restrict traffic to ALL nations that continue to persecute people of faith. Let this nation, with the strongest economy, military and voice, stop being the whipping post and whimpering giant and stand for its principles before God and the world.

Thank you and may God have mercy on our souls,

Paul Shiras
Wholly for Christ

World Explosion of Christianity (Except in Europe and America)

Each day more and more people the world over are coming to Christ in waves and waves. On Resurrection Sunday 3,000 were Baptized in the city of Hong Kong. As India and Burma still resist the Evangelical advance, hundreds come to accept the Blessings of the Lord Jesus daily. In Egypt, Coptic Christian numbers grow in spite of Government condoned violence toward them. Iran has seen an increase of Muslims converting to Christianity.

At the turn of the Twentieth Century, Christians in Africa, Asia and the Middle East numbered in the thousands, today they number into the Millions. Approximately 45% of Africa is Christian and this includes counting North Africa which is predominantly Muslin. The South Pacific nations show that the numbers between Asian Religions, Muslim and Animism traditions combined barely outnumber the combined Catholic and Evangelical faiths. In China, there are at best guess, 30 million Christians ( about 9% of the population). From China, the “Back to Jerusalem Movement” has begun and the Silk Road Ministry has sent out over a thousand missionaries from China to spread the gospel back west toward Israel. South Korea Christians are the most enthusiastic evangelists and there are more Korean Evangelical communities outside Korea than in and still the number of churches exceeds 1,600 in Korea.

In Latin America there are more pentacostal churches than in North America. I quote from Bruce Shelly’s book “Church History in Pain Language,” in stating that there are more Baptist Churches in the Democratic Republic of Congo than in America. The African Anglican Church is sending missionaries to the U.S.A. And the most shocking of all, there are more people in the underground churches every Sunday than in all the churches in America combined.

The question then rises; why is the Gospel on the rise everywhere but in America and Europe? The answer is in the current trend of agnosticism and anti-god approach of the science community, the “politically correct” secularist governments and the media’s fascination with “scandals” that flood our airways. “Bad News” is good press, always. So this is the “bad news” for today,…. God is Real and He is getting fed up with us! As I read the Old Testament I see that every time the Israelites wandered from the Truth and took on the ways of the “World” they faced disaster and war. As the West is turning toward a godless society, Christians the world over face persecutions, the governments in Germany, Sweden, UK, USA and Russia pass laws that restrict free expression of Christian Faith. If the trend does not turn back toward Godliness instead of godlessness, Christians, Jews and and other faiths will be hounded down and ridiculed in America as they are in the Middle East, North Africa, India and Burma.

What are you doing to protect your right of Faith? If you were charged with “crimes against the State” for being a Christian would you be convicted? Are you “guilty” of loving and “Serving the KING”? Slowly we are returning to the days of the early Church, the witnesses of Faith, the Way and the Cross are shunned by society. We are mocked by people like Stephen Hawking, Carl Sagan and others because we accept that God is real. But what are we doing about it? Very little it seems. We can start by inviting our unbelieving friends to church, we can speak openly about our faith. We can reach out toward others of Faith (outside our own small group of believers) and work together to share the Mercy, Love and Grace of Christ.

Not only are we to be better attenders of Church, we are to be better retainers of God’s Good News! “Count as JOY, my brothers, when you meet trails of various kinds, for you KNOW that the testing of your FAITH produces STEADFASTNESS.” (James 1:2 ESV). “But the one who looks into the PERFECT LAW, the Law of LIBERTY, and preserves, being no hearer of the WORD but a DOER WHO ACTS, he will be blessed in his doing.” (James 1:25 ESV).”As a fellow elder, this is my appeal to you: CARE of the flock of God entrusted to you. WATCH over it willingly, not grudgingly – not for what you will get out of it, but because you are EAGER to SERVE GOD. Don’t lord over the people assigned to your care but LEAD THEM by your GOOD EXAMPLE.” (1 Peter 5:2-4 NLT) [Caps mine]. When Jesus gave the Great Commission to spread the Good News to all Nations, it wasn’t to stop until all who were willing to come to His Saving Grace were reached. Christians in America and Europe must rise up and take their place in society as leaders, examples and participants of their Faith.

Open Doors Ministry sent me a list of Remarkable Remarks made by those who live in persecuted areas. Among those were; “Christians are like nails; the harder you hit them, the deeper they go.” “All my suffering is worthwhile, even if I were to reach only one person for Christ.” “We are soldiers under the banner of Jesus Christ in a spiritual battle. We can only advance and never retreat.” Are we game enough to defend our Faith with the actions worthy of Jesus? Let us begin with a prayerful attitude and commune with Our Father in heaven to open our hearts, voices and our wills to serve the Lord of Creation and His Beloved son, Jesus with the Spirit of the Most High to guide us.

Chevron’s Deal with the “Devil”

Asia News International reports that two energy giants, Trout Industries (France) and Chevron Corp (USA). have been helping Myanmar (Burma) train its forces to kill, imprison and abuse its citizens to the tune of US$ 5 billion!

This report has been confirmed by many other news sources including Yahoo News, The Himalayan Times, Sydney Morning News, the Seattle P.I. and the Daily News(Bangladesh). I have reported in the past the need for prayer for the people of Burma, especially the children, but to find out that an American Icon, Chevron is financing the slaughter of these children for the expectation of Natural gas purchases is “Making a deal with the Devil.”

To all Americans, I say it is vital that we express our outrage at these actions by condemning Chevron with our pocketbooks, not only boycotting them and their products but writing to the company, emailing them and publicly proclaiming out disdain. That a company that proudly proclaims that it is a true American Symbol and quietly pay off a violent government and hide the money in banks in Singapore, is equal to murder for hire. The money are used to “train” Myanmar to protect the gas fields, but in reality, they are used to commit forced labor, murder, and bribery. As a Free People and a People of God, our voices should be heard and we are to be the voice of the tormented and oppressed. Say no to chevron and to any enterprise that profit from the death of chirldren and tha manipulation of human rights.

Answered Prayer and Requests for More

Our dear friend Vonnie is recovering from her brain surgery and soon will be in rehab (Physical therapy). We thought my daughter, Sheryl, had found employment but it turns out that it was a scam with empty promises. She still needs prayer. Her appeal hearing for unemployment may turn to her favor, (she was denied benifits earlier) and we hold fast to the reversal of prior rulings. she has been without income for five months and every door to new employment has been a bust. The job we thought was a sure thing turned out to be a false hope. The promised position was just a gimmick to hire suckers to due hard work with no guaranteed pay.

Cure International asks for prayer in their efforts to provide health services and further training in Afghanistan. They have been the leaders in establishing heath services in Kabul since the establishment of the new government in 2005.

Many Protestant churches are listed as “Terrorist Organizations” in Kyrgyzstan. The Religious Counsel is controlled by government officials and secret service with representation from only the Russian Orthodox Church and the Muslim Board. No other religion or Christian Faith is given any voice and most are not permitted to hold services or open churches. Pray for religious tolerance.

India and Egypt are both on the USCIF “watch list” for tolerance of religious persecution against Christian churches and other minority religions. Pray for the enforcement of laws guaranteeing freedom of religion.

Christian Solidarity Worldwide asks for prayers for the safe release of two christian women, Islamic converts, form Iranian Prison. Their “crime” is nothing more than converting to Christ. Pray also for the the protection of Christian converts throughout all Islamic Nations.

Four Square, Assemblies of God and Vineyard churches have been damaged and the pastors threaten or beaten during the past few months in Sri Lanka by Buddhist extremists according to the National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka. Pray in needed for the protection of Christian Churches in that Nation.

Someone asked me, “How do I pray for these concerns?” I simply answer, imagine if it was your church that was under attack. What would you ask God? If someone you knew was thrown in to prison because they professed Jesus, How would you react? What would your heart cry out to pray to God? So in praying for those under attack, make the prayer personal. Imagine if it was happening to you and you will have no qualms about what to ask God.

“So you see,the Lord knows how to rescue godly people from their trials, even while punishing the wicked right up until the day of Judgement. He is especially hard on those who follow their own evil, lustful desires and who despise authority.” 2 Peter 2:9-10

Islamic Terror Still Rages Against Christians

As always, the insanity of Islamic hatred rages against the workers of Christ. Even in America those who convert from Islam are in danger from the rhetoric of Hate. In Ohio a young woman who will be called “Mary”, has fled her home because her parents and Inman wish her dead. she fears that she will be sent back to her homeland where she will be killed for her “apostasy” and is now under protection of the courts in Orlando Florida.

While the violence against Catholics continue in Vietnam, local pastors and priests seek dialogue with State officials. Local officials still abuse Christians and shut down home churches and even threaten registered churches with closures. Permits to repair and build Churches are repeatedly denied.

Al-Qaeda linked terrorist called Al-Shabab, beheaded four Christian workers of a NGO staffed orphanage in Somalia last week in an attempt to get them to renounce Christ and convert to Islam. An other report claims four pastors were beheaded but no confirmation has been made. It is possible that they are referring to the same four men.

I ask for continued prayers for my daughter, Sheryl who has been out of work since February with no prospects in sight. Soon she will be homeless as her resources have been completely depleted. Also pray for my dear friend, Vonnie. Doctors discovered an aneurysm Saturday and she underwent emergency surgery. The last report I received was that she was not doing well and is still in ICU.

Praise God that the Mauritanian Authorities have arrested three men for the murder of Christopher Leggett. Among their charges is aiding terrorists as they are linked to al-Qaeda.

While Christ is the provider of an eternal peace that can not be brought down by the evil of men, we will still live in teh world of contention. In every corner of the Globe, those who fear the perfect Peace of Jesus rise up against us. While Islam is the most dangerous it is not the only ones who strike out. Hindu, Buddhist and secular tyrants also fear the peace of Christ. Pray each and every day for the Grace of God to reach out to those who persecute and torment the Faithful.

“We know that we have come to know Him if we obey His commands. …. Whoever claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did.” 1 John 2:3,6. And we must be willing to walk to the cross just as He did, for the sins of the world. as these martyrs in the persecuted nations die for Christ, they die for those who do not yet know the Peace and Grace of Christ, Jesus.

Priest killed, Pastor Tortured!

As unrest continues in the Sub Continent, Christians are facing the fear for their lives. As reported by many news agencies, Pakistani Christians are victims of mob violence and the local police are unable to cope with the onslaught of hate.

But that is not the only violence that is happening in Asia. Fr. James Mukalel was murdered while retuning from a funeral in Karnatka India and A pastor of an evangelical church, Habibur Rahan, was seized by police and beaten, burned and tortured in Banlidesh. Authorities claim that nothing happened. Photos of the dead priest were posted by media and interviews with witnesses to the beating ignored.

In Alexandria Egypt, another teen girl was kidnapped and efforts to find her are thwarted by Muslin Police failing to aid in her recovery. Islamic man claims to have her at an undisclosed location and will return her if she converts to Islam. The last girl who was kidnapped, was never returned. The names of the two girls are: Amira Morgan (age 17), and Ingy Basta (age 18).

In another area of concern, UN Food and Agriculture Organization released new figures on hunger. Most severe hunger and poverty in Asia, Sub Sahara Africa and Pacific result in political and religious unrest. Sixty-eight nations have pledged $20 Billion to ease the suffering. But that is not enough.

Pray for relief and support those agencies that provide food and medical aid for those who have the most need. Pray for the return of reason to the nations of unrest.

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. John 3:17

The LORD will give strength to His people;
The LORD will bless His people with peace.
Psalm 29:11

One bit of good news for my family, My son Luke and his wonderful and funny wife, Julia are expecting another child in Spring! We are wonderfully surprised and overjoyed at the thought of another grandchild. Pray for a comfortable pregnancy

Pakistan Villiages Under Mob Violence

Islamic villagers are outraged because they believe that the Q’uran was cut up and stewed about at a Christian wedding in the village of Korian, Pakistan. Participants of the wedding deny the charges. As a result they grew into a mob numbering thousands and burned sixty homes of Christians in Korian and burned two churches.

The next day the mob ransacked two churches in Gojra and burned fifty more homes and fourteen Christians died as a result. Police tried to stop them but where illequipted to stem the tide of violence. Six Muslims died in conflict with the police.

All this was a result of people not respecting the religious rights of others. But regardless of the fact that Christians may have cut up the Q’uran or not, the reaction of the Muslims was far worse. Their wrong far exceeds the wrong of the Christians. Be that as it may, Christians have a responsibility to ALWAYS respect others. Christians must at all costs, take the higher road. Paul tells us, “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep aloof from every every brother who leads an unruly life, and not from the traditions which you received from us.” 2 Thess. 3:6. If we are to be a light unto the world, we must use sensible and reasonable actions among those who are not believers. we are required to temper our actions with love and gentleness.

We are to encourage each other to act in accordance to the service of Christ, to never allow ourselves to be drawn into disrespectful behavior while we live among non-believers. It is only by showing the loving heart that we will win souls for Christ. To the shame of the Muslims, lives were lost because they chose to listen to unruly men and spiritual leaders and chose violence instead of finding another avenue to resolve the insult they had received.
It will be hard for the Christians of these villages to rebuild their lives, homes and return to normal lives now that the hatred has been raised to this level. Because of this, we must pray for the Church to survive and the True Message of Jesus to grow in Pakistan.

Pray that the pastors of the effected churches are able to make peace with the mosques and mend the rift cause by both sides. Pray that they will be able to worship in peace with their neighbors and that the police can restore calm quickly. Pray all these things in the Name of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit from whom all grace is given.