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May we be in Thanksgiving, every day

Happy Thanksgiving

Inspiring Bible Verses for Thanksgiving

1 Thessalonians 5:18

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Philippians 4:6

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Psalm 107:1

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!

Psalm 7:17

I will give to the Lord the thanks due to his righteousness, and I will sing praise to the name of the Lord, the Most High.

Ephesians 5:20

Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

James 1:17

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

Psalm 50:14

Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High,

Colossians 3:15

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.

Hebrews 13:15

Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.

Psalm 100:4

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!

Scripture Quotes on Being Thankful

2 Corinthians 2:14

But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere.

Psalm 116:12

What shall I render to the Lord for all his benefits to me?

Lamentations 3:23

They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

Colossians 4:2

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.

Colossians 3:17

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Psalm 31:19

Oh, how abundant is your goodness, which you have stored up for those who fear you and worked for those who take refuge in you, in the sight of the children of mankind!

Psalm 103:2

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits,

2 Corinthians 4:15

For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.

What the Bible Says About Giving Thanks

Psalm 95:2

Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!

1 Chronicles 16:34

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!

Luke 6:38

Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”

Psalm 69:30

I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving.

2 Corinthians 9:15

Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!

1 Timothy 2:1

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people,

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

What is your favorite Bible verse for Thanksgiving? Share it in the comments below and encourage others in our community!

Crosswalk

To all our brothers and sisters, we thank God for you! May the Lord provide all your needs, strengthen, bless and keep you.

The Voice of the Persecuted (VOP) and Persecution Watch Teams

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Persecution: Why is the Western Church silent

(Voice of the Persecuted) Recently I received an invitation to go on a conference call and pray for repentance concerning the wildfires in California. One of the prayer points concerning repentance is that America has not stood with Israel. I find this interesting since according to PM Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu and many Israelis, President Trump is the best friend Israel ever had.

In my experience of praying on conference calls, I’ve found that Israel has more intercessors than tortured, imprisoned and endangered believers in Christ. I facilitate Persecution Watch, one of the few, likely the only conference call in North American that specifically prays for the persecuted church. By God’s grace we have labored for over 8 years in his mandate to intercede for those in the shadow of the cross, and that with a faithful, few intercessors.

I continually hear and am told that we must pray for Israel, the apple of God’s eye. At the risk of being construed as Anti-Semitic, I must ask what about the persecuted bride of Christ? Who intercedes for them as He intercedes for us? Given their experience of persecution, even Jewish people wonder why the West doesn’t have more concern for Christians facing extreme abuses, even death.

I do believe that Israel will play a prophetic role in the end times, but I leave that for the experts to work out. I must ask again who stands with persecuted believers, our own family in faith?

The writer of Hebrews tells us, Remember those in prison, as though you were in prison with them, and they mistreated, as though you yourselves were suffering bodily. Hebrews 13:3

We are to remember our persecuted family, at least in our prayers, because we are members of one body. Indeed Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 12 that if one member of the body suffers we all suffer. So how is it that we can easily ignore the wounded part of the Body in Christ?

I find the passages in Matthew 25 regarding the sheep and the goats to be quite sobering. Many of us know these passages found in chapter 25 verses 31-46. Let’s look at how is He’s judging the sheep and the goats. He’s not assessing them on the doctrine they held or their performance of signs and wonders, but if they fed the hungry, gave drink to the thirsty, showed hospitality to the stranger, clothed the naked, took care of the sick, and visited those in prison. He’s judging the sheep and the goats as to whether they practiced the second great commandment, or what is called the royal law. Love your neighbor as yourself. I believe the persecuted bride of Christ is being considered here.

Many cry out for Israel and I respect those who do. Countless churches are active in meaningful outreach programs which I believe demonstrate goodwill and the love expected in our faith. But how often do we hear our pastors leading even a short prayer for the critical numbers suffering for their faith, today? Once a week, once a month, a year, never? To encourage all pastors, we have not met one believer who hasn’t confirmed they would like to hear more about the persecuted in church and to pray with the congregation for them. We thank those of you who are engaging their congregations and lifting up the suffering. We pray more consider to join you.

Will we continue to be silent, or will we speak out and pray for the persecuted? Below is a song written a few years ago at the height of the ISIS persecution of the believers in Iraq. It challenges us to not be silent for our persecuted family.

We stand with our persecuted brothers and sisters who are in the shadow of the cross. I must continue to cry out even though at times I feel as a lone voice in the wilderness.

Your brother at the foot of the cross,

Blaine and the VOP team

Blaine Scogin serves as Prayer Director of Persecution Watch and Voice of the Persecuted.

The Persecution Watch conference call meets 3 times a week, Tuesday, Thursday and Sundays. If you are interested in joining the Prayer Team on the call, we invite and welcome your presence to intercede for our brothers and sisters with us. It means more to the persecuted than you can imagine. MEET YOU ON THE CALL!
(Please check your time zones)
9 p.m. Eastern
8 p.m. Central
7 p.m. Mountain
6 p.m. Pacific

Call number: 712.775.7035
Access code: 281207#

Muslim lawyer on Asia Bibi: “I’ve never seen a stronger woman in my life”

Aasia Bibi with her children before blasphemy charges

(Voice of the Persecuted) Speaking at a church during a prayer service for Asia Bibi in the Netherlands, her lawyer, Saif-ul-Mulook, described his last visit with her at the Multan women’s prison on Oct. 10th, 2018. Pakistan’s Supreme Court had just heard her death sentence appeal but the judges delayed the announcement of ruling in Bibi’s case. Saif-ul-Malook said he was amazed by her wonderful mood, how happy she was and that she showed no signs of depression. Asia shared with him about a dream she had two days earlier (Oct. 8th), the same day the court hearing was taking place.

She said,

“Sir, I saw in the dream that all the prison doors were opened and I worried the if the jail superintendent comes, then she’ll be very furious. Sir from my dream, I’m very, very certain that my appeal is going to be accepted and I’m going to be free. I have such a firm faith in God that I have strong feeling that nobody can hurt me.”

Then she told him not to worry for he too would be provided the same protection.

He announced at the church service, “I have never seen a stronger woman in my life, or read in any book story. Who is behind the bars for more than 9 nine years leaving behind two daughters, one [with mental disabilities] and still, to be so strong. I tell her many times, if I was in prison in your place, I could have broken in 6 months and might have decided to commit suicide.”

Mulook, who is also a Muslim, could also be called one of the bravest of Pakistani men. Prior to taking Asia’s case, Mulook’s was targeted when he was the special prosecutor in the high-profile murder case of Punjab governor Salman Taseer. The governor was shot and killed by his own bodyguard, Mumtaz Qadri, in 2011. Qadri killed Taseer over his call for blasphemy law reform and his support of Asia Bibi. Islamists called Qadri a hero. Mulook was the only lawyer willing to prosecute the former police bodyguard who was convicted and sentenced to death by execution. Tens of thousands called for Bibi’s death when Qadri was sentenced, then again after his execution. Many were to fearful to take Asia as their client. When Mulook chose to defend her, other attorney’s told him, “You have hammered the last nail into your coffin”. His colleagues and even friends shunned him. “We don’t go out to meet relatives or friends. They don’t come here to meet us.”he told the AFP.

Already condemned when he successfully prosecuted Qadri, he thought it cowardly to give up on Asia. “I said to myself, look, you have already done the damage. It is time to stand up for this poor woman.”

Due to recent death threats, Saif-ul-Malook fled to the Netherlands. The Dutch Foreign Ministry made an official offer to him to join a special program for the human rights activists under pressure in their home countries. Reports claim the Pakistani attorney has not yet filed an asylum application to stay permanently in the country.

Asia and her family were taken to an undisclosed location and under the protection of police and Pakistan’s military. Multiple countries have offered asylum to Asia. However, her husband had requested for asylum in Canada, the U.K. or the USA.

Today, the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed to the AFP that his government was in discussions with Pakistan about granting her asylum and bringing her to Canada.

“There is a delicate domestic context that we respect which is why I don’t want to say any more about that, but I will remind people Canada is a welcoming country,” Trudeau said.

Canada’s opposition Conservative Party supports this decision and has urged Mr Trudeau to “use every mechanism at his disposal to offer the Bibi family asylum”.

It was a joy to hear this news as we prayed for Trudeau and his government on yesterday’s Prayer Conference Call event. We also prayed for the continuation of persecuted Christians to be granted asylum in the country. We’d like to recognize Canada for welcoming many of these Christians in the last decade, and to acknowledge the Canadian churches along with their members who have stepped up to sponsor these families. May the Lord continue to bless them.

Video of Saif-ul-Malook at prayer service shared on the social media service Facebook.

This Sunday! Prayer Conference Call Event for IDOP 2018

IDOP2018-flyer-banner

Our second IDOP 2018 Prayer Conference call is scheduled on Sunday, November 11, 2018. Mark your calendars. View call information, call in number, access code and free app details at this link.

Meet you on the call!

 

Reminder: IDOP Prayer Conference Calls on Nov. 4th & Nov. 11th 3-10p.m. EST)

Special Event (Voice of the Persecuted) This first and second Sundays in November have been designated as the International Day of Prayer  for the Persecuted Church (IDOP). Tomorrow, global prayers will be going up for our persecuted brothers and sisters uniting with many living in restricted nations who suffer in the shadow of the cross
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The number one and often only request of our persecuted family is, “Pray for us!” How will we respond?
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The Apostle Paul shared, “Who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is the one who died, but even more, has been raised; he is also at the right hand of God and intercedes for us. (Romans 8:34)  Jesus is also interceding for those who lay down their lives for his sake.  Will we join him in prayerful intercession and answer the requests of our persecuted brothers and sisters?
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Persecution Watch, in partnership with Voice of the Persecuted, will host a seven-hour prayer call tomorrow afternoon beginning at 3p.m. (EST). We will also host another IDOP call next Sunday. Hear their cries and don’t remain silent. Join us, prayer changes everything!
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Please share the event invitation with your churches, pastors, prayer groups, family and friends, and all others who will pray.
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Please view the Call Event details and download the flyer at this link. You will also find international call number and free call app at the link.

SC accepts Asia Bibi’s appeal against execution, orders immediate release!

The Supreme Court on Wednesday acquitted Asia Bibi, a Christian woman condemned to death on blasphemy charges after accepting her 2015 appeal against her sentence.

“The judgement of the high court and that of the trial court is reversed,” Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar said, reading out the verdict. He added that Asia Bibi should be set free if she is not wanted in any other case.

“Her conviction is set aside and she is to be relieved forthwith if not required in other charges,” the judgement read. (Dawn)

All glory to GOD in the Highest!

We congratulate to Pakistan for their courage!

Survey reveals Bible is the most widely read book in the Philippines

Christian News – Be encouraged! The Bible was by far the most read book in 2017 in the Philippines. This is stated in a recent survey by the National Book Development Board, a government body. According to the results of the survey, examined by Agenzia Fides, despite the growing secularization in the country with a large Catholic majority, 72% of the population still reads the Sacred Scripture.

Bishop Arturo Bastes of Sorsogon, who for years presided over the Episcopal Commission for the biblical apostolate, welcomed the results of the survey and told Fides that “it is good news that the Bible remains a very read book in our country”. The Bishop reports that “in the last 10 years 10 million copies of the Bible have been distributed to the Filipino families”.

“Despite the frequent use of social media and modern means, Filipinos do not forget to read the Bible as a source of comfort and inspiration to face the challenges of the present: not only Catholics, but also the faithful of other Christian denominations read the Bible to start their day”, says to Fides Jayson Marco Caesar Leones, assistant at the Centro Escolar of Manila University.

“I remember a song that speaks of the importance of reading the Bible and says: take the Bible, open it, read it, understand it, it is the source of our hope, the Filipinos, known to be resilient in times of calamity and disaster, by reading and listening to the Word of God in the Holy Scriptures, gain strength and courage to be ready to face the storms of life”, says Leones, a Catholic layman.

The National Book Development Board had already promoted a similar survey in 2012 and at the time 58% of those interviewed said that the Bible was the most read book. The Philippines has a population of 110 million, 80% Catholics, divided into 86 dioceses.  (Agenzia Fides)

 

Encouragement in the Midst of Suffering

(Voice of the Persecuted) What does it mean to tell a 15 year old Nigerian girl that she is a slave for life. Particularly when she sees or hears that another young woman has been executed.

We were deeply saddened to hear the Boko Haram had executed Hauwa Limon.  She was a 24 year old midwife who worked for the International Red Cross.  Hauwa wanted to help displaced mothers deliver their babies. She was a Muslim yet executed by the Islamic militant group, Boko Haram. Their defense for executing her, she became an apostate when she went to work for the Red Cross. The first local chapter of the Red Cross was established in 1881 at the English Evangelical Lutheran Church of Dansville in New York.

How can our hearts not be saddened over this senseless killing. One can only hope that in her final moments she cried out to the Lord Jesus for salvation as the thief on the cross did. Let us pray comfort for her family. That they too would experience the peace of Christ.  Let us also pray that the Boko Haram will have an experience with Jesus. That they would be brought out of darkness Into the light of Christ.

But what of Leah Sharibu? Being told that she will never be released and a slave nor allowed to achieve her dreams and aspirations. As we try to wrap our mind around this, we are hard pressed to imagine what is going through this young woman’s mind.  One does not want to conceive  the violations that may be inflicted upon this precious daughter of Christ.  Believing it more merciful, many girls in her situation hope for martyrdom than enduring atrocities as a slave for Islamists. At least they would be absent from the body and at home in the arms of Jesus.

But perhaps God is sparing Leah to be a witness to her captors. I would certainly agree with this as we cry out for the salvation of unbelievers. But in the sadness of my heart I found this to be small consolation. Yes. God has used those who have suffered many years in prison such as Richard Wurmbrand and Watchman Nee to reach their captors for Christ. We certainly see that in the writings of our brother, the Apostle Paul.

As I walked to the park, yesterday, lamenting this before the Lord. The Holy Spirit reminded me of these verses out of 2nd Corinthians 4:16-18,

Therefore we do not give up. Even though our outer person is being destroyed, our inner person is being renewed day by day. For our momentary light affliction is producing for us an absolutely incomparable eternal weight of glory. So we do not focus on what is seen, but what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

As I meditated on these verses I felt an encouragement in continuing to pray for those, such as Leah, who suffer for months, even years in captivity.  That each day of their temporal sufferings will bring more eternal glory for them in the presence of Christ.  For this temporal realm is not their home.  What awaits our persecuted brothers and sisters is far more glorious than the sufferings of this present world.

This is also our inheritance in our sufferings in this broken world. The eternal glories of Christ will far outweigh whatever we may experience in our temporal sufferings.

This too is the encouragement of Leah Sharibu and the persecuted Church. the glory of Christ, which is eternal.

Let us pray this for our dear sister in Nigeria, the persecuted church in Nigeria and around the world. Let us also pray that in the midst of our own sufferings, we may see the encouragement of Christ in his glory. For sure this is truly the eternal encouragement of Christ.

Tonight on the Persecution Watch prayer conference call, we have the opportunity to hear from a pastor who works in a restricted nation in Asia.  Please join us on the call to unite with and lift up this dear brother.

Time:

9 p.m. Eastern
8 p.m. Central
7 p.m. Mountain
6 p.m. Pacific

Call number and access code are…….

712.775.7035…….281207#

MOBILE APP: Free Conference Call HD also provides a quick and easy way for you to dial into conference calls without having to remember the dial-in credentials. Save all of your conference call dial-in numbers and access codes using this free app. With the Free Conference Call HD you can instantly dial into a conference call via 3G/4G data network and or regular mobile carrier. Google Play link  or App Store – iTunes

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(Note: If you will be using one of the call numbers below, you may experience issues in your country. If you are unable to connect, try using the VoIP dialer available at this link. Click on VoIP dialer, go to this number 712-775-7035 in the drop down menu—enter access code 281207 (do not add the # symbol)—enter your name and click on the ‘Place Call’ button.

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