12So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood. 13Therefore let us go to him outside the camp and bear the reproach he endured. 14For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. 15Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.16Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
Religious persecution increases when those in government with power and those in society with social influence seek to control and dictate these matters of conscience. The rejection of religious freedom is a signal of greater dysfunction to come.
I have been praying for our Christian “extended family” in Iraq as ISIS advances. As many flee for their lives, others have not escaped. They bear the reproach of Jesus’ name. May the Lord Jesus comfort and strengthen them with grace. May the Kingdom of our Lord come. May those who bear His name offer praise and the confession of grace freely and be constrained to love in our broken world.