Imagine peacefully worshiping God in your church – when all of a sudden police officers storm in and lock you inside.
What sounds like an unthinkable scenario is a reality for many of our Christian brothers and sisters around the world who are persecuted for their faith.
And once you hear how these believers were treated in China – you’re bound to be outraged – and compelled to pray.
To start – one can’t imagine what it’s like to constantly be under surveillance and moments away from being detained, arrested, or even killed for being a Christian.
Yet sadly – this is just another day for believers around the world – especially those living in Communist China.
While China claims Christianity is “allowed” – there are all kinds of stipulations – forcing true believers to go underground to gather and worship Christ.
Chinese officials force Christians to register with the government – and even alter the Holy Bible by inserting communist propaganda.
They’ve even gone so far as to demand Christian pastors teach that Jesus was a sinner.
Of course, Christian preachers refuse to comply – so the church has no other choice but to go underground in order to preserve the integrity of the Gospel.
The truth is, Communist China hates the lack of control they have over home churches – so they torment Christians each chance they get.
And in their latest move, officials dressed in plain clothes and raided a peaceful church service being hosted by Early Rain Covenant Church (ERCC). They held worshipers hostage and even arrested those who resisted.
International Christian Concern reported:
“The Chengdu-based house church was holding its in-person service at a tea shop when more than 20 police officers from Wuhou district in uniform and plainclothes raided the venue. The police announced that ERCC was disbanded and the gathering illegal. They locked the doors and refused to let members leave until they supplied identification.
Xing Hongwei was reluctant to give his personal information and resisted police as they forced him toward the registration. Due to his resistance, Hongwei was arrested, handcuffed, and led away along with his wife, Zhao Qing.”
Sadly, this isn’t the first time Early Rain Covenant Church has been targeted by Chinese officials.
ERCC members who homeschool their children have also had their homes raided and personal belongings tossed around – and even removed.
During an online Easter service – officials barged in and arrested members who were simply trying to praise Jesus.
Those who pastor and shepherd at ERCC church have continued to ask for prayer as church members are persecuted by Chinese officials.
We must continue to lift up our brothers and sisters at Early Rain Covenant Church – pray for their protection – and that they may be emboldened to meet and gather and not fall prey to despair.
Will you commit to pray for the underground church this week?
If you could give an encouraging message to the believers at Early Rain Covenant Church, what would you tell them?
You can post your answers to our Facebook page and join in the conversation with other believers from all around the world.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” – John 3:16-17
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