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April 15, 2023

Those of us that live in the United States have the freedom to worship without fear of persecution. At the same time, many cannot say the same. Unfortunately, many of us are unaware of the suffering of others and mistakenly think that most nations allow their citizens religious freedom, but that is not so. Throughout the world, numerous nations do not permit its citizen to worship God as we do. These nations can fall into two categories: hostile or restricted.

Hostile nations can be defined as a place where Christians, because of their witness, often suffer persecution from political groups, community persons where they reside, friends, and family. This happens despite their governments’ attempts to keep them safe.

In restricted nations, the government, by their laws, encourages harsh treatment, denial of possessions, imprisonment, and death for Christians. Known Christians can be persecuted by any of these groupings: the government, extremist groups, family, friends, and community members.

Bibles are usually hard to obtain in hostile and restricted nations, and those fortunate to have one must keep it a secret. Additionally, small groups of believers must gather in secret in these nations.

I have over sixty hardcover Bibles in my possession, besides Bibles on audio tapes and mobile devices. I attend church services without fear, and  I can evangelize the lost without reprisal.

Over time religious freedom in America may change, but for now, I am thankful to God that I was born in a nation that allows me to serve Him. With this privilege comes a responsibility to pray for and support those less fortunate than me. If you were unaware of the persecutions that Christians experienced in hostile and restricted nations and have been enlightened, I encourage you to pray for our fellow believers. Also, thank God continually for living in a country where you have the freedom to worship.


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