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Christian massacres in Nigeria a best subject at international non secular freedom summit – Washington Occasions

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Protective non secular liberty all over the world has turn into tougher within the final yr, advocates mentioned this week forward of Tuesday’s convening of the second one Global Non secular Freedom Summit in Washington.
The hot massacres of Christians in Nigeria, China’s genocide in opposition to Uyghur Muslims coupled with Burma’s crimes in opposition to its Rohingya Muslim minority, and the continued risk of antisemitism in Europe are simply among the international demanding situations at the schedule for the collection of non secular leaders.
Organizers and key contributors within the impartial match say the local weather for shielding believers globally is at all over again tough and extra hopeful than lately.
The 3-day convention will function dozens of audio system within the human rights enviornment together with Space Speaker Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat; U.S. Ambassador-at-Massive for Global Non secular Freedom Rashad Hussain; and Enes Kanter Freedom, the NBA veteran whose criticisms of China’s Uyghur oppression seem to have value him profession alternatives.
Additionally slated to talk is Päivi Räsänen, a Finnish evangelical Christian and a member of parliament who continues to stand fees in spite of successful an ordeal in Helsinki previous this yr. The state prosecutor appealed the no longer responsible verdict — one thing accredited in that nation — and Ms. Räsänen fears the case would possibly drag on for years.
In keeping with Ambassador Sam Brownback, the previous U.S. envoy for global non secular freedom, the significance of non secular liberty is “extra out within the open now” because the summit convenes.
“I feel, for years, the combat was once most commonly not noted or miscategorized,” Mr. Brownback mentioned in a phone interview. 
He mentioned the worldwide neighborhood has come to understand that China’s persecution of its Uyghur minority isn’t simply Beijing’s try to “put down a restive inhabitants,” however reasonably the non secular persecution of a Muslim workforce, “as a result of communists don’t get in conjunction with faith.”
He added, “I feel the placement in Ukraine has a large number of non secular freedom implications, a few of which get identified, [although] so much don’t.”
The worldwide battle for non secular freedom, Mr. Brownback mentioned, “continues, and it’s simply extra out within the open and other people have extra correctly known it.”
Nury Turkel, lately voted in as chair of the U.S. Fee on Global Non secular Freedom, informed The Washington Occasions the IRF Summit is “extraordinarily necessary.” He mentioned he hopes the assembly will view non secular liberty “within the context of nationwide safety.”
Mr. Turkel mentioned, “The global neighborhood has been many times making the error — in particular policymakers and liberal democracies — to attend till the non secular persecution, human rights abuses achieve the extent of a humanitarian disaster to behave. I feel that’s a improper means; it’s an excessively expensive means.”
As a substitute, he mentioned the sector must take motion earlier than abuses flip “right into a genocidal marketing campaign with crimes in opposition to humanity.”
On the convention, he mentioned, “I am hoping to make use of this platform in my reputable capability to name at the policymakers to concentrate on one of the vital worst human rights abuses, non secular persecution, specifically in Nigeria and in India that are supposed to fear us and likewise the upward push of antisemitism and  Islamophobia in Europe, each [of which] had been not noted via Ecu leaders.”
Mr. Turkel, an Uyghur who discovered shelter in america, mentioned he’s additionally considering using high-tech units as a device of oppression.
“I feel that the global neighborhood is coping with a brand new form of non secular persecution and genocide that has been quietly examined, evolved and now’s promoted via communist China, which is using era for non secular persecution,” he mentioned. “Nowadays, greater than 80 nations have both already followed or are within the strategy of adopting Chinese language surveillance era tactics which might be a risk to civil liberty, non secular liberty, even democratic norms.”
Katrina Lantos Swett, a human-rights recommend and previous USCIRF chair, has joined Mr. Brownback as a co-convener of the development. In an e-mail, she mentioned a purpose of the convention is to attract consideration to the persecuted.
She mentioned she hopes the summit will “no longer simplest elevate the profile of the ones communities that want our give a boost to however will assist supply a roadmap for lawmakers and activists as to the best way to absolute best mobilize their energies in protection of our maximum profound shared proper — specifically freedom of faith, judgment of right and wrong, and trust.”
“Above all, we wish to lift ahead the message that non secular freedom is a power for excellent in our international and it’s price protecting for everybody, far and wide, at all times,” she mentioned.
Getting the general public to consider non secular liberty problems globally will likely be a problem, mentioned USCIRF Commissioner Frank Wolf, a veteran Republican member of Congress who occupied with human rights all over his years on Capitol Hill.
“I feel we’re in a worse state of affairs than we’ve been for a protracted, very long time,” Mr. Wolf mentioned in an interview. “There may be much less task, fewer and less persons are excited about or excited by non secular freedom problems the world over,” he added.
Mr. Wolf known as for a go back via congregations to conserving an annual “Non secular Freedom Sunday” or identical weekly observances via faiths that practice a Saturday Sabbath to name consideration to spiritual freedom problems.
• Mark A. Kellner will also be reached at mkellner@washingtontimes.com.
Copyright &reproduction; 2022 The Washington Occasions, LLC. Click on right here for reprint permission.
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The Friend Who Sticks Closer than a Brother

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The Friend Who Sticks Closer than a Brother

Embracing True Friendship: The Friend Who Sticks Closer Than a Brother

Friendship is a valuable asset that enriches our lives by providing companionship, support, and a shoulder to cry on. But have you ever had a buddy who goes above and beyond—someone who remains closer than a brother? In a world where relationships can be fickle, a friend who sticks by us through thick and thin is a rare and priceless gift.

More Than Just Blood Ties

Consider the tie between siblings, which is based on blood and shared history. Consider a buddy who is more than just a family member. “One who has untrustworthy friends soon comes to ruin,” says Proverbs 18:24 (NIV), “but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”

This verse describes a friendship that goes beyond basic conditions. It’s a bond founded on trust, loyalty, and real concern for one another.

Continuous Support

Consider a buddy who is present not only during happy times but also during difficult times. This type of friend is unconcerned about changing circumstances or personal gain. They provide their presence, encouragement, and steadfast support.

Jesus expresses the core of such friendship in John 15:13 (NIV): “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. This selfless affection serves as the foundation for a lasting connection.

Journeys Together

Consider a friend you’ve shared many stages of life with—the highs, the lows, and everything in between. This shared experience forges a link that extends beyond surface-level exchanges. The value of companionship is brilliantly captured in Ecclesiastes 4:9–10 (NIV): “Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.”

A friend who sticks closer than a brother is someone who goes beside us through life’s ups and downs, lending a solid hand and an ear to listen.

A Mirror of God’s Love

As a symbol of God’s love for us, consider the buddy who sticks closer than a brother. God Himself offers an unbroken, unchanging, and everlasting companionship. “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord,” says the Bible in Romans 8:38–39.

God’s love is the ultimate paradigm of true friendship—a love that is not conditional but remains faithful regardless of what happens.

Conclusion: Value true friendship.

A friend who sticks closer to you than a sibling is a treasure to be treasured. This type of friendship is founded on love, trust, and mutual care rather than convenience or shared interests. May we seek to be that sort of friend to others in our lives, just as God offers us His unfailing love.

In a world where relationships can be fleeting, let us create friendships that will endure. Let us be the sort of friends who are present in both joy and sadness, who offer unconditional support, and who mirror God’s unfailing love. We are reminded of the beauty of true friendship, which clings closer than a brother, as we welcome and cherish these unique and valuable ties.

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The Just God

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The Just God

The Just God: The Divine Balance of Justice and Mercy

The concept of justice is intertwined with the fabric of human society. We seek justice, responsibility, and reparation for wrongs done. But have you ever pondered a God who is not only just but also perfectly just? The Just God is a lighthouse of truth and righteousness, providing a profound awareness of justice and kindness that transcends human comprehension.

Justice in Pursuit

Consider a world where wrongdoers go unpunished and the disadvantaged have no recourse. The pursuit of justice is a natural human goal that reflects a feeling of rightness and order. And if we as humans value justice, how much more should the Creator of the universe, who is completely just?

According to Deuteronomy 32:4 (NIV), “He is the rock; his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. He is a loyal God who does no wrong, who is straight and just. This verse reveals God’s character, which is characterized by unwavering justice.

Justice and Mercy in Balance

Consider yourself in front of a judge who holds you accountable for every action and decision you make. Imagine that same judge showing mercy and giving you a second opportunity despite the evidence against you. The just God is kind as well as just.

This delicate balance is captured in Psalm 103:10–11 (NIV): “He does not treat us as our sins deserve, nor does He repay us according to our iniquities. For his love for people who fear him is as high as the skies are above the earth. God’s justice is balanced by his unending love and kindness.

The Redemption of Justice

Consider a debt that you will never be able to repay—a debt of mistakes and wrongs that weigh heavy on your soul. In His perfect justice, the just God provides a solution. God provides a mechanism for justice to be served and redemption to be offered through the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ.

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” says Romans 3:23–24 (NIV), “and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. This is an example of justice being met via the redemptive act of Christ’s sacrifice.

A Call to Justice

Consider a society in which justice is not simply a notion but a way of life. In our interactions with others, the just God calls us to exemplify justice. Micah 6:8 (NIV) states unequivocally, “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. What does the Lord expect of you? Act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God.”

Living justly entails treating people with fairness, compassion, and respect, as the character of the just God requires.

Finishing: Adoring the Just God

The Just God asks us to comprehend the breadth of His justice—a justice that supports truth, requires accountability, and strikes a balance between mercy and justice. God’s justice and mercy merge in the person of Jesus Christ, offering us redemption and restoration.

May we turn to the just God as our ultimate standard as we traverse a world that frequently grapples with issues of fairness. May we seek His wisdom and counsel in order to live justly and treat others with love and justice. We find not only a paradigm of perfect justice but also an invitation to experience the transformative power of His kindness when we embrace the Just God.

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The Pleasure of Serving Others: A Pathway to Achievement

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The Joy of Serving Others: A Pathway to Fulfillment

The Pleasure of Serving Others: A Highway to Contentment

Have you ever ever felt the nice and cozy glow that effects from lending a serving to hand to a stranger, the enjoyment that lasts for days after the act of kindness? That emotion offers a way of the pride of serving to others. The straightforward act of serving to can give us a sense of function and pleasure in contrast to the rest in a society that incessantly pushes us to place our consideration on ourselves.

The Want to Serve

Believe a society the place everybody labored to fortify the lives of people of their instant neighborhood. The need to lend a serving to hand, proportion a load, and supply comfort is on the core of carrier. The instance used to be established through Jesus Himself when he stated, “For even the Son of Guy didn’t come to be served, however to serve, and to provide his lifestyles as a ransom for plenty of.” (NIV, Mark 10:45)

Serving others is extra than just a nice deed; it is a way to emulate the compassion and love that Christ proven for us.

Discovering Pleasure in Selfless Giving

Believe spending time with the aged or going to a neighborhood refuge to hear their stories and cause them to really feel essential. Those tiny acts of kindness won’t appear to be a lot, however they be capable to make any person’s day higher, create relationships, and toughen a sense of group.

A better feeling of pleasure emerges after we set aside our personal issues and be aware of the wishes of others. The Bible admonishes us, “Every of you can use no matter present you’ve gotten won to serve others, as trustworthy stewards of God’s grace in its more than a few paperwork.” (NIV) 1 Peter 4:10 We specific the particular talents God has given us through serving others, and it’s in those deeds of carrier that we discover authentic pleasure.

Have an effect on Unmeasurable

Take into consideration the impact if all of us realized to experience serving to others. If we take a bit spoil from our tense schedules to lend a hand a neighbor, supply a sympathetic ear, or donate cash to a reason we reinforce. Small acts of kindness have the facility to unfold, sparking a sequence response of generosity and optimistic exchange.

In step with the NIV translation of Matthew 25:40, Jesus stated, “Actually I inform you, no matter you probably did for this sort of least of those brothers and sisters of mine, you probably did for me.” No longer simplest can we fortify the lives of other folks we serve, however we additionally perform Jesus’ command to like and deal with the ones round us.

Development Relationships and Connections

Believe the sensation of camaraderie that comes from cooperating with others to reach a shared purpose. Folks come in combination via carrier, growing ties and friendships that differently won’t have took place. It serves as a reminder that we’re all part of a broader group, and that group would possibly take pleasure in the acts we do.

Serving others permits us to peer the arena from many angles and to realize the demanding situations and victories of other folks round us. Our lives are enriched and {our relationships} are deepened through this sensitivity.

Conclusion: Discovering Contentment Via Carrier

Every people has a skill that is able to be opened: the pleasure of serving to others. It serves as a reminder that our lives are meant to be about extra than just our personal pursuits; they’re an opportunity to fortify the lives of others.

Let’s thus embody the pride of serving to others, if it is by means of deeds of kindness, volunteering, or simply being conscious about their wishes. The easy act of serving would possibly supply mild and hope in a global that every so often turns out overwhelming. As we emulate Christ and prolong ourselves in love, we no longer simplest exchange the lives of others but additionally revel in a deep feeling of success and enjoyment that overflows into our personal hearts.

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