Will you go to jail? Will you lose your job? What would it take for you to put you faith on the back burner?
- 322 Christians are killed for their faith.
- 214 churches and Christian properties are destroyed.
- 772 acts of violence are committed against Christians
- 75% of the world’s population lives in areas with severe religious restrictions
- Christians in more than 60 countries face persecution.(Source: Open Doors)
In the wake of the murders of 26 worshipers at Sutherland Springs First Baptist Church, church leaders are attending security conferences and hiring armed guards. Church members are wondering if it safe to attend church. Is it worth risking your family's life?
Christians in America are not accustomed to paying a price for their faith. In fact, many will allow a long list of things to prevent them from attending church on Sunday. Perhaps, the martyrdom of 26 worshipers can help each of us to clarify our relationship with Christ.
The Apostle Paul wrote a letter to the Philippian church from a Roman jail, in which he made 16 references to joy. He told the faithful that his imprisonment was helping to spread the gospel. Facing possible execution he proclaimed, “to live is Christ, to die is gain (Philippians 1:21).”
He further encouraged them saying, “I will know that you stand firm in the one Spirit, striving together as one for the faith of the gospel without being frightened in any way by those who oppose you (Philippians 1:27-28).”
How real is your faith?