Some have said that while there are parts of the world where Christians are most definitely persecuted, here in North America (or in the West generally) what we’re seeing is more of a loss of cultural privilege than persecution. Certainly the Christian worldview is no longer the dominant narrative of wider western society. Yet even if that’s true, what we need to keep in mind is that full-blown persecution is not necessarily going to be a sudden development. More likely is a gradual marginalization, the slow peeling away of rights and freedoms. It may not happen everywhere in the same way or to the same degree. With the profound loss of moral and philosophical foundations and standards in our culture, and the normalization of all sorts of sexual deviancy, I suspect Christians (and other traditional religious people) will become more and more criticized, ostracized, and perhaps even vilified.
Followers of Jesus, of course, are told by Jesus to anticipate persecution and being hated by the world. We’re called to be faithful and to trust that Christ by his Spirit will give us the spiritual strength we need when we need it.
In any case, here are some stories about recent events that pertain to these matters.
Policing thought crime, including silent prayer, in the U.K.
Calgary city council approves bylaw to limit drag queen story hour protests.
Baptist pastor’s son killed, wife and 3 others abducted.
Chinese province’s new ‘Smart Religion’ app makes Christians register to attend worship services
You might also be aware of the recent move by the Church of England to “bless” same-sex unions but not authorize same-sex marriage. This attempt to thread an impossible needle is no doubt making both sides of the debate unhappy. Rev. Calvin Robinson, a prominent voice in this debate, recently gave a speech about this at the Oxford Union in the UK. He was one of many who spoke on this matter. Here is the video of his remarks: