How to Pray for the Persecuted Church | June 21, 2023
In light of what we have been learning about the persecuted church in Revelation, let’s take this week to pray for the persecuted church in our world today. The following devotional is from cru.org, How to Pray for the Persecuted Church*:
Around the world, many Christians are persecuted — imprisoned, even killed — for their faith.
Currently, there are over 300 million people facing persecution daily.
Sara (not her real name) knows firsthand what it is like to be persecuted. The week before Sara and her husband planned to open a Bible School, four men attacked their family with metal hatchets.
Because of the attacks, Sara had three skull fractures, a punctured eardrum, internal bleeding and the need for stitches.
"Before the attacks, I considered myself sensitive to the persecuted church," Sara said. "But then I woke up one night and I was one." The experience strengthened Sara's resolve to support those suffering for their faith.
Christian persecution comes in the forms of martyrdom, arrests, abductions and abuse, just to name a few. Every day, 13 Christians worldwide are killed because of their faith, 12 churches or Christian buildings are attacked, 12 Christians are unjustly arrested or imprisoned and another five are abducted. And these numbers are growing. According to the Open Doors Annual World Watch List, one in eight Christians worldwide experience high levels of persecution.
As Christians, we need to remember the brothers and sisters in Christ who face persecution.
Prayers You Can Pray
You should never think of prayer as being the least you can do. Prayer for the persecuted church is a powerful way to stand with those in harm's way. Here are four prayers that you can pray daily for persecuted Christians.
A prayer for protection for those experiencing active persecution
Lord, You have warned me through your Son Jesus Christ that those who follow Him may be oppressed and abused because of their faith. I pray for all those that are experiencing this type of persecution. You are a protector and provider for all those that follow you. Please be present for those that are in danger. Please protect and uphold them by your righteous hand.
A prayer for provision of resources
Father, I know that you have the ability and authority to give whatever I ask for in Jesus name. I intercede for my brothers and sisters that are prevented from accessing food, money, Bibles and other resources. May they see you as the God who provides. Show them an increase of your grace and supply for all their needs so that they may be strengthened to endure.
A prayer for those in prison
God, you are near to the lonely and to those being imprisoned for their faith. Thank you for their strength and their courage. As Paul knew, may they know that despite their current reality, you are using all things to advance Your kingdom and are leading them into an inheritance that will never spoil or fade. Lord, have mercy. Give them the courage to remain faithful to you and be ever present in their times of trouble.
A prayer for those that are alone
Father, you are the God of all comfort. You promise that you will never leave or forsake anyone that knows you. I pray now for my brothers and sisters that have been separated from their friends and family, for your name's sake. Please be near to them and help them experience your powerful comfort and compassion.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.