As churches around the world prepare for Persecution Sunday this month, Afghan Christian Sayed Musa tells how he survived government-led imprisonment and abuse.
As a case study, there are several issues here worth considering:
- People can be persecuted for Christ, or they can be persecuted for Western Christianity by calling themselves “Christians.” Of course the difference between the two is really difficult to discern, and I don’t pretend to know in Musa’s case here. But some persecution is unnecessary and more a result of association with the immoral West than with the glorious Jesus. I do wonder about Sayed Musa and this Somali MBB- what if they chose not to call themselves “Christians”?
- The language of “conversion” is politically loaded, and whenever persecution hits international headlines there are always other factors involved, as the article clearly shows. The NT language is really rich and diverse in describing the concept of conversion. Is there a better English word?
- Public advocacy for the persecuted usually puts governments in very awkward situations with the end result usually ending in deportation. How should we stand for religious freedom without shaming Muslim governments into overreacting?
(These are not rhetorical questions.)