“Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering” (Hebrews 13:3 NIV). According to recent statistics from Open Doors USA, in the last year, over 260 million Christians lived in places where they experienced high levels of persecution. More than 2,983 Christians were killed for their faith in 2019. In this same period, 9,488 churches and other Christian buildings were attacked. Sadly, 3,711 believers were also detained without trial, arrested, sentenced, or imprisoned. Christian persecution is on the rise globally. The same report found that one in nine Christians worldwide are now experiencing high levels of persecution, a six percent rise from the previous years record. In seven of the 10 worst countries for Christian persecution, the primary cause of persecution is Islamic oppression. Eleven countries now rate in the “extreme” level for their persecution of Christians. Six years ago, North Korea was the only one.1 Corinthians 12:26 reminds us that as believers, we are one body. When one member of our body suffers, we all suffer. When one rejoices, we all rejoice. As one body with the persecuted believers, we must be mindful to prayerfully support our brothers and sisters who are suffering today because of their faith.
Pray for strength from the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 3:16).
Pray that they will remember God’s love for them (Ephesians 3:17).
Pray that they would know how to fearlessly share the Gospel (Ephesians 6:19, 20; Colossians 4:2–4).
Pray for their protection and deliverance (Matthew 26:39; Philippians 1:19).