Christian persecution is raging across the globe, with a new report finding an estimated 200 to 300 million Christians worldwide face some form of rebuke for their beliefs. Jeff King, president of International Christian Concern (ICC) and one of the world’s most knowledgeable experts on religious freedom and persecution, said his organization’s recent “2023 Persecutors of the Year” report paints a bleak picture of what believer’s experience. In particular, he underscored the staggering nature of the 200 to 300 million under duress. “I’ve been doing this for 20-some years, and … that’s bigger than the populace of Christians in the United States,” he said of the startling estimate. “It ranges from light [persecution] to the decimation of the church, which is the murder and assassination, and torture.” While some of this persecution raging across the world is intense and deadly, King warned that Christians in many Western countries too, face much lighter forms of denunciation — but that the rebuke is necessary to mention and explore.
“You see the job discrimination, that exclusion from the public square, the silencing, the firing, the court cases,” he said. “All that stuff is persecution.” And while King said he doesn’t want to be an alarmist, he cautioned the “storm clouds are gathering,” describing the current dynamic in America as “persecution light.” “But people need to wake up, because we are the frog in the kettle,” he said. “And, if you just follow the trajectory, we need to do something. … We need to raise our voice. We need to shout, and we need to cry foul when a foul is being perpetrated against us.”
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