a faithful, remnant church has emerged in N. Korea that is paying the price of their love for Christ with their blood. Indeed the persecution is not punisment but God purifying for himself a bride. This is the same remnant church in N. Korea that is praying the American church wake up and be pure in Christ on these end times.
Agreed brother. I belueve there is something Paul writes in 1 Cor. that if we are judging ourselves we will not be judged by God. But if God judges us we will be disciplined so that wewill not be condemned with the rest of the world.It may take persecution to purify for God a bride in the west, particularly a bride in America.Blainel
Whether persecution, tribulation (of whatever sort) we do know that God "turning up the heat" in our lives is for our own good and because He loves us. Nothing else brings the dross to the top than a hotter flame (trying situations). And I don't want to over-generalize. There are people in the West that have gone through great tribulation of soul from various types of loss in their lives and they have come forth as pure gold. So, keeping that in mind, yes generally speaking we need some heat to separate us from the mixture (dross). We have ample opportunities each day to embrace the cross and it is best if we do.
Romans 5:3-5Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope. And hope does not out us to shame beccause God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.This sounds so counter to the blessed life of the prosperity gospel. Indeed any suffering is considered to be of the devil in that theology. Yet the persecuted, as those of N. Korea, regard persecution as a blessing. They take to heart the words of Jesus who said "Blessed are you when you are persecuted". For the N. Koreans and other persecuted believers do regard persecution as a purifying agent. And persecution will ultimately deepen God's love for them through the Holy Spirit. Thus my prayer for the N. Koreans would be that more of God's love be poured out in their hearts.But I do wonder if we in the west can rejoice in our sufferings. This should be cause for sober reflection.Blaine
I actually wonder sometimes how bad the destruction (spiritually speaking) will be in the West. Corrie Ten Boom related a story about the great falling away in Red China when Mao Tse Tung and the "Red Purge" went into action and many, many fell away because they were taught the rapture (from the West). They were caught off guard.
The story by Corrie Ten Boon should be reflected upon by believers in the west. Unfortunately we have been seduced by the false teaching of a prosperity gospel and a pretrib rapture. The cross, except for salvation, is not being taught. That is Jesus said if anyone wishes to come, after me he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. Bonhoffer best said it in this statement. When Christ bids a man to come to him, he bids him to come and die.The idea of a persecuted church, even in N. Korea, is still a fantasy to many American believers. They walk in an altered state of reality. The idea of persecution is foreign to them. Even here in America.Despite mounting evidence of a hostility toward the things of Christ in this nation, many believers are still in la la land.I am afraid many will fall away when persecution starts. Or simply stick their head in the sand and pretend it isn't happening. After all the great majority of German Christians did that when the Jews were being exterminated. Should it be any different now.But God is preparing himself a remnant bride in America. One that will be favored in heaven and feared in bell. And one that will pay the price for their love for Jesus.These are my thoughts.Blaine Scogin
I saw a picture in a VOM magazine where a group of N. Korean believers were gathered in a tight circle. By a small penlight they intently read and studied the word. Recently a video was sent to me. In this video was shown a man from N. Korea who was intently reading the word. He was so intent in his reading that he did not hear the secret police knocking loudly at his door. He quickly hid his Bible and the secret police came in and searched his house. The Bible was found. The brother knew a death camp awaited him. But the police left leaving him alone. The next day one of the officials came back and quietly gave him back the Bible. The official was a believer himself who used his position to aid the persecuted church. The official cautioned the brother to be careful when he read his Bible. He also told him he longed for the day when all if N. Korea would be free to worship Christ.In N. Korean schools young children are brain washed to play a game. This is as evil and diabolical as it gets. The young children are told to go home and look around their house and see if their parents have a black book. If they find the book they are to bring it back to the teacher. Generally when the child returns home his parents are not there and never to return. One can only guess what the book is and where the parents have been taken.The average life expectancy of a N. Korean evangelist is about 3 to 6 months. If caught with Bibles or New Testament they can readily be executed on the spot which might be more merciful than slowly dying in a death camp. Yet there are those faithful saints who will take Bibles into N. Korea because their hearts burn with a passion to see the N. Korean people set free with the word of truth. To be set free in Cbrist.The reality of this hit me when I saw pictures of people in N. Korea. They were celebrating the new leader Kim Jung Un. The thing that gripped me about these pictures was there was no expression on the faces of the people. Admidst the bright colors and pagentry there were dead spirits. The people were dead who were swearing their allegaiance to an antichrist.Saints this is ultimately a spiritual war we are in and this is why the devil hates and fears the word. He hates and fears Him who is the Word because he can truly set men free in N. Korea.True freedom for the N. Korean believers or any persecuted believer will only come through that freedom Jesus brings. And that freedom is found in his word. This is why the evil government fears the word of God in N. Korea.As I have read about the persecuted for the con call I facilitate I am struck by one thing. Aside from prayer the persecuted, particularly those of N. Korea value only one book. And they will lose even their life to own that book. That book is the Bible.What does this say to us? How much do we value the Bible? Will we give our lives to own one? Lest you think I am putting you on a guilt trip these are sobering reflective questions from someone who has turned 62 today.Some of you have extensive libraries with reference works and sermons. If I were to visit your homes I would probably be impressed by your libraies. But how many of you know your Bible? Does the word of Christ dwell in you richly?I wax once like you. I was a fiery 5 point Calvinist more interested in winning Arminians to Calvin then winning souls for Christ. Certainly knew nothing of the suffering church. And I did not know my Bible. Oh I knew Reformed theology. Even had the books. But had no love of Christ and no fruit of the Spirit.At 62 God has brought me back to a sincere and pure devotion to him. And a love for the New Testament. My prayer is God make me like those precious N. Korean believers. In the words of the Psalmist. To live and keep your word.These are my thoughts from one who is one year older. And I pray a little wiser in Jesus.Blaine Scogin