Persecution and Christianity

“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for, in the same way, they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” ~ Matthew 15:11-12

If you’ve looked around you in the past few months, you will know that our communities of color are being persecuted for their race, color, and even their religion.

So how, as Christians, do we advocate for and support these people who are being persecuted? First and foremost, let us remember what the bible says in the book of Luke, which is part of the focus of this month’s issue.

“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” ~ Luke 12:6-7

The point of putting this in here is for one reason alone — just as God does not forget about us, we must not forget about our brothers and sisters who are suffering. As we continue on this article, keep this thought in the back of your mind.

To start, the first thing we can do is pray. Let’s remember what it says in Ephesians:
“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” ~ Ephesians 6:18

To pray for the safety of our brothers and sisters of color falls under praying for all the Lord’s people. After all, we are all created in His image, so we all fall under that “umbrella”. We can also pray that God can intervene, to help change people’s hearts so that these vicious crimes we see on the news stop. Just remember though, as discussed before in this publication, despite what the Lord’s Word says in Philippians that “by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”, that it is not going to come immediately. It will take time.

One thing we must not do in this is focus on what the world is saying. We must instead focus on what God is saying. The Book of Leviticus says it best:

“‘Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.” ~ Leviticus 19:18

If the world is saying to trust no one, do not listen to them. Instead follow what the Lord says, to love your neighbor as yourself. Remember to forgive. Do not judge. These are things that God has taught us on our journey.

I am and have always been under the belief that God never created us to hate one another. Mark 12:31 says it best when it says:

“’Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

Providing support, whether it be monetary or by simply praying for these communities is loving our neighbor. Also remember once again, that as God has not forgotten about us, we must not forget about our fellow brothers and sisters. They are made in God’s image too.