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Aiming for 'Effective Anger': The Top 50 Countries Where It's Hardest To Be a Christian

(UPDATED) Christian martyrdoms doubled in 2013, reports World Watch List in revealing its methodology for the first time.
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Update (Jan. 14): Today the Pew Research Center updated its groundbreaking research on religious freedom worldwide. CT offers two charts examining how the World Watch List compares with Pew's findings.

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Twice as many Christians were killed ...

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Displaying 1–6 of 6 comments

audrey ruth

January 15, 2014  11:36pm

It is shocking and incredibly sad to read that Christian martyrdoms doubled in 2013. This, after the news not very long ago that there were MANY more such martyrdoms in the 20th century than all former centuries combined. Hostility toward Christians is definitely multiplying exponentially around the globe. This is true in the USA, as well. Right now it's 'just' manifested in hateful inflammatory rhetoric and judicial rulings abridging freedom of religion, but we must keep in mind that this is how persecution begins - by demonizing and marginalizing. We know that Jesus prophesied this would happen in His teachings about the last days, and the Holy Spirit speaking through the apostles gave further insight. We all need to keep our brothers and sisters around the world in prayer. We can also take further action through several fine ministries which minister to the persecuted church, like Open Doors International and Voice of the Martyrs. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. Maranatha!

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Elizabeth Affsprung

January 11, 2014  11:20am

Gosh I thought the point might be to motivate us to help them, not to focus on whether we're real enough Christians. Before we give up our life for our faith maybe can start giving time & money first . . . .

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Tariq Waris

January 11, 2014  11:17am

I am very surprised at the first three comments. You guys have almost expressed no sympathy with Christians who live their daily lives under in the face of social discrimination and physical violence. Yes, it requires commitment and obedience to be a Christian in every country and culture of the world but your life is not in danger in the US for being a Christian. Did any church in the US have suicide bombers entering the church and taking lives of 130 believers as it happened in Peshawar, Pakistan? 37 Christians were killed on the Christmas day 2013 in Iraq when a church was attacked. Did any church in the US face that? Was there any Christian town in the US that came under attack in 2013 by non-Christian fanatics and had 200 houses burned down? It happened in Lahore, Pakistan. Guys, stand with your persecuted Christian brothers and sisters around the world in prayer and practical action. Yes, being a Christian is hard in the US but PLEASE show compassion towards the persecuted.

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JACK-ANN WALD

January 11, 2014  3:13am

I have lived in Morocco for the past fourteen years, and I would say it is much more difficult to be a Christian in the US than in Morocco. My identity as a follower of Jesus is much more clear in this country whose culture does not support my choice. In a country that is 99% Muslim I am constantly reminded I am not a Muslim. The culture of the US is far more insidious and dangerous.

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Laura Bentz

January 11, 2014  3:01am

I agree with this other comment that Christianity is "too easy" in the "civilized" countries of the world and it causes me more concern than the persecution in these other countries. I see a lot of Christians divorcing, committing adultery and being covetous as a normal part of life and not as sins. Also, plenty of immodesty, lack of commitment to the church and worldliness, too. I could go on, but you get the idea. I've been guilty of sins myself and struggled with living the Christian faith out myself. It is not easy no matter what country you are in to be a true Christian. However, there is great reward in heaven for those who do die as a martyr and those who are persecuted for their faith. And I believe the number is a great many more than 2000 who died worldwide for their faith as listed here. I think that's just the tip of the iceberg...

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MATTHEW PITRUCHA

January 10, 2014  6:11pm

I appreciate the article, but it would be better named, "The top 50 countries where Christians are more likely to be persecuted and killed for their faith." Being persecution and killed do not necessarily make it harder to be a Christian. Sometimes comfort is the culprit. Jesus said in Matthew 16:24, “…If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. This at least means that a person is ready to die for being a disciple of Jesus, not to mention what may lead up to this, things such as suffering, shame, persecution, etc. I would propose that the USA ranks high on the list for being one of the hardest places in the world to be a (real) Christian because most people who call themselves Christians in the USA do not see themselves as having already signed a death warrant when they signed on with Jesus. I don’t know of anyone, including myself, who truly lives as if they’ve taken up their cross and are following Jesus. Did you write your goodbye letter, pick out your casket, and purchase your grave plot when you became a Christian?

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