Persecuted: The Global Assault on Christians by Paul Marshall, Lela Gilbert and Nina Shea is written about many of the different types of persecution aimed at Christianity all around the world. I knew persecution of Christians still existed, but I really did not understand how many people around the world suffer from it on a daily basis, or to what extremity. I was not aware that some of the worst countries guilty of the persecution of Christians were China, Vietnam, North Korea or Cuba. Of course I expected Afghanistan, Iran and Saudi Arabia to top the list with all of the terrorism occurring in the last couple of years, and they made the list as well. All of these accounts are backed up with notes at the end of this book listing where the information came from, whether it was a magazine, book, or website. 62 pages worth! It also includes an index of topics at the end of the book which includes names of political leaders, countries, religions and names of those persecuted.
These authors share hundreds of stories of Christians being persecuted for their faith. Here are just a few examples of what they share:
In 2011 in India, when Graham Staines and his two sons were burned to death by an armed mob, the Indian Supreme Court justified a reduced sentence for the criminals involved saying that the murder was an act of passion against "proselytization". (Meaning: To convert someone from one religious faith to another.) Graham's sons were only 9 and 6. There is so much more to this story I could share with you. In so many cases similar to this one, the police and judiciary system do next to nothing to help the persecuted or to punish the criminals involved.
Things may not be perfect for us here in the United States but I am so thankful that we are able to share our faith and shout it from the rooftop if we so wish. So many of these people who live in these countries are not allowed the same liberties. For many of these people, they are not allowed to go to a public church and must do all of their worship in homes. (Which is often still illegal.) So many of these people are not allowed to own a Bible, have Christian cd's or cassettes, or own any type of Christian literature. And if they do, they may get thrown into prison, labor camps, house arrest or are sometimes beaten and tortured.
Read this book. To be honest, I found so many of these stories to be disturbing and sometimes even hard for me to read. But the reality is that they happen every single day around the world. I will always think of them now, and I will continue to pray for them.
I give this book 5 stars and would highly recommend it.
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