THE REPORT OF THE PERSECUTED CHURCH:
Sudan is ranked #6 on the Open Doors 2015 World Watch List. July 14, 2015 was the trial of Yat Michael and Peter Yen in a Khartoum court. The defense presented two witnesses, an IT expert and a retired army general. The pastors denied allegations and have stated that some of the "incriminating" documents allegedly found on their computers are not theirs. The IT expert testified that it is easy for others to plant the documents on their computers without their knowledge. The retired general testified that the documents used as evidence against the pastors are in the public domain and are not related to military or other state secrets as had been alleged. Observers from a number of foreign embassies were present at yesterday's hearing. An official from the Sudanese Ministry of Justice told one of the pastors' lawyers that the extent of outside interest has led the government to take a very close interest in the case. The next hearing will be on July 23, 2015 but that will apparently only be for procedural purposes. The verdict is expected during a hearing on August 5, 2015. Please continue to pray for our brothers.
UPDATE: PRAISE REPORT!
“Christian Pastors Yat Michael Ruot and Peter Yein Reith have just been released by a Sudanese judge. The Christian pastors, originally from South Sudan, were on trial because of their faith, facing possible death sentences. After a major international outcry, including more than 220,000 who have signed our petition for their freedom at BeHeardProject.com, the pastors are now free. Pastors Michael and Peter are eternally grateful for the prayers and voices of all those who have taken action for their freedom. We spoke with the pastors following their release, and they asked us to share their gratefulness.
Pastor Michael said, “They released us today. We are happy. We had heard we won't be released. But praise God!” Pastor Peter echoed his friend’s joy saying, “We are very happy now we are free because of your prayers. Thank you for all that you have done for us. God heard your prayers and we are free! With the help of Mohaned [Mustafa] and his team, they do great work for us and God uses him.” This is a major victory in the fight against Christian persecution worldwide. The voices of hundreds of thousands of people demanding justice have been heard. The prayers of millions have been answered.”
While we praise God for this great victory, be reminded that there are still many persecuted Christians who are imprisoned and facing death in the Sudan. Continue to pray that they would receive similar prayer and support from their brothers and sisters in Christ and be delivered from their persecutors.
FURTHER VIDEOS & PARTNER OPPORTUNITIES:
Romans 12:5 AMP
5 So we, numerous as we are, are one body in Christ (the Messiah) and individually we are parts one of another [mutually dependent on one another].
When the Lord Jesus was asked to declare what was the greatest commandment in a powerful statement, Jesus condensed the entire law into two telling points:
“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment".
The second is like it: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."
If we Love the Lord with all we have to offer Him it is natural that we would love others as ourselves. It is interesting to note that He then says, 'On these two commands all the Law and Prophets hang!' (Matthew 22:37-40).
QUESTIONS FOR DEEPER REFLECTION:
1. If we know that we are to love our neighbor as ourselves then why do we not put their desires ahead of our own? We buy our pleasures, do we help others buy what might give them pleasure? Do we stop to meet our neighbors' needs?
Ask God to search your heart and attitudes toward others. Ask Him to reveal where you fail to consider others needs, and desires. Ask Him how you might be able to 'Bless' your neighbors, coworkers, unsaved family members.
May the Sudanese people and governmental officials see your love and experience your truth. May the two pastors who have been on trail for their faith continue to encourage the people by their stand for you. Thank you Lord for their interaction within the international community and please use this scrutiny to ensure justice for others. I continue to thank you and pray for the pastors families to experience the Lord’s provision in every need as they are now freed. I pray for the Sudanese apostasy laws to be abolished, that a halt to the closing of churches by the government would be instituted. I ask you God to keep safe the Christians around the Nuba mountains from bombings and divine provision for their daily needs. Help us to continue considering our persecuted brothers and sisters needs as our own(Insert any additional) In Jesus Name, Amen.
Open Doors, Newsroom Article Compiled by Janelle Powers. For media inquiries, contact Christine Cape at 404-545-0085 or Christy Lynn Wilson at 770-401-9842.