Pray for the Persecuted Church

Pray for the Persecuted Church


Pakistan’s Christian parents carefully teach their kids not to violate blasphemy laws

Pakistani Christian kids at a candlelight vigil for earthquake victims

Pakistan’s notorious “blasphemy” laws are putting Christian children at risk.

Christians say they are having to carefully teach their kids diplomatic answers to protect them from accusations of blaspheming Islam, the Koran or Mohammed.

“If they write anything or misspell anything to do with the prophet Muhammad, they can be in serious danger,” one parent told International Christian Concern. “In fact, the other side of this is that they are made to answer questions saying what a wonderful man he was.”

Another sad side effect is that Christian kids in predominantly Muslim areas don’t have many friends to play with. Even a cricket game can be risky, she said — particularly since the blasphemy laws are being used to settle grudges.

Adults are equally fearful. Increasingly in property disputes, the matter of deeds and bills of sale are not brought before the court. Instead, landowners — particularly Christians — are accused of burning pages of the Koran or remarking flippantly about Mohammed.

“People in offices are silenced into submission,” said the parent, who asked not to be named because of the possibility of retribution. “The fear is creating aggression.”

Pakistani Christian girls wear scarves to avoid offending Muslims

A 30-year-old Pakistani woman who grew up in Lahore said her Christian parents taught her ”safe” answers to keep from falling prey to accusations under the blasphemy statutes. As a child, when challenged to debate whether Mohammed is a prophet, she was taught to answer quietly “I am a Christian, I can only tell you about Him.”

Even back then, she said, before radical Islamists began influencing Pakistani society as they have in recent years, Christian schoolchildren were taught not to discuss religion.

Exuberant Christian kids at a Sunday school in Pakistan

“We knew never to get into religious discussions with others,” she said. “We had them at home – our parents would put us through the drill of asking us tough questions to see how we answered. Only now I realize that was practice for school.”

In this way, she was imbued with the fundamentals of the Christian faith and at the same time learned that she should discuss it only with her parents.

CLICK HERE to read how Brother Andrew’s Open Doors says 1 million Christian children are living under persecution

Although Christians must obey the Great Commission and proclaim their faith, Pakistani Christians are having to do by example — taking the Apostle Paul literally to witness “in word and in deed” — with an emphasis on deeds instead of words.

“Christians constantly face questions like, ‘What do you think of the Koran? Do you like it?’” she said. Another question used to bait Christians is ”What do you think of Muhammad?”

One answer Christian children are taught is “As a Christian I have only read the Bible, I can’t read Arabic.”

“These questions used to be easier to answer,” she said. “We had formulas. But those are not working any more. We just tell children ‘Don’t talk about religion in school.’ This is shaky ground now.”

A Pakistani mob reacts to proposals that blasphemy laws be repealed

Conviction under Pakistan’s Section 295-C of the blasphemy law for derogatory comments about Muhammad is punishable by death, though life imprisonment is also possible. Curiously, accusers in blasphemy cases cannot repeat the alleged derogatory comments without risk of being accused of blasphemy themselves. Section 295-B makes willful desecration of the Quran or use of an extract in a derogatory manner punishable with life imprisonment. Section 295-A prohibits injuring or defiling places of worship and “acts intended to outrage religious feelings.” It is punishable by life imprisonment, which in Pakistan is interpreted as 25 years.



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David Alston

posted August 27, 2011 at 3:05 pm


Sadly, this is all too common in Pakistan, and getting worse.

I was there in 1993, but as recently as 2008-2009 Swat Valley was the scene of brutal fighting (2 million refugees displaced) between the Pakistani Army and powerful Taliban forces which had completely overrun the entire valley. They installed their own harsh brand of sharia law and beheading, hangings, public floggings and vicious summary justice quickly became the norm.

Here is a disturbing BBC video of what Swat was like June 2009—no wonder we’d felt ‘uneasy’ while we were there (though we were sharing the Gospel, and getting through check points ladened with Gospel tracts and tapes certainly increased your prayer life!).

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/8112202.stm

In fact, just recently the only Christian in Pakistan’s Cabinet, Shahbaz Bhatti was riddled with bullets and died instantly.

His crime?

Speaking out against the notorious blasphemy laws some Muslim countries uphold and on behalf of oppressed minorities.

The assassins who shot him almost thirty times left leaflets scattered at the scene, signed in the name of Al-Qaeda and the Punjabi Taliban. They also promised a death sentence to anyone following in the minister’s footsteps.

It said…

“With the blessing of Allah, the mujahideen will send each of you to hell.”

Today Pakistan is an extremely dangerous place for Christians.

All our Christian brothers and sisters living there need our prayers for protection every single day to escape this sort of persecution which is coming upon them as we speak.

There is a war for the soul of this nation—please pray for the persecuted Church there.

Sadly, all too frequently it is the children that suffer—may God give them grace to feel safe.

David



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Abambagibus

posted May 17, 2011 at 2:08 pm


By Muslims I’ve been given to believe that the MUSLIM PATH IS THE ONE and ONLY WAY or else, … which, thru the alley of empirical reason, has arrived in my heart with the feeling that to this I should append the prepositional phrase TO THE HATRED OF ALL NON-MUSLIMS. Nevertheless, is there a Muslim out there who can straighten me out and convince me of the Compassionate Power of Islam? Fortasse ab Abambagibus.



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Jonathan N Gardiner

posted May 17, 2011 at 8:43 am


Not only pray for the kids and their parents,but for their government and their peoples that God will open their eyes and heart to the TRUTH.

They must have regards for human lives and freedom.



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