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In Spite Of Intense Persecution, Christianity On The Rise In North Korea

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It’s no secret that the citizens of North Korea endure a life devoid of basic freedoms under the Communist yoke of the Kim family. As North Korean escapee-turned-human rights advocate, Yeonmi Park stated in a speech, “North Korea is the only country that will put you to death for making unauthorized international phone calls.”

It’s of little wonder then that for the last 16 years, Open Doors, a watchdog site dedicated to keeping an eye on Christian persecution, has ranked North Korea #1 as the deadliest place for Christians to live. According to the website, North Korean Christians face a brutal life that is subject to hard labor camps, imprisonment and even execution. The high level of surveillance in the country, it is nearly impossible for small groups to come together in worship, nor do they dare close their eyes to pray for fear of being spotted.

The Blaze’s Brandon Morse wrote a compelling piece regarding the treatment of North Korean Christians. In it he wrote that while North Korea possesses a constitution which asserts a non-discriminatory policy toward religion, it’s all an act. Morse states in his article:

“Foreign diplomats and tourists are wheeled past state-run churches and mosques for various faiths. Each of these churches has the appropriately dressed clergy worshiping at the appropriate alters with congregations of people passing around collection plates.

According to the Korea Risk Group, this is a show performed by hand-picked state workers. The reality is that Christianity is seen as dangerous to the state, according to Fox News. Those caught practicing it face the harshest penalties.”

The piece goes on to say:

“Christians are accused of being imperialists seeking to overthrow the government and those who are caught practicing their faith are arrested, horrendously tortured, imprisoned and [sometimes] immediately put to death,”

Reading through Morse’s piece, I was reminded of an apology (a letter making a defense of the Christian faith) that Tertullian wrote in the second century during  a time when the early Christian church was facing horrific persecution. First and second century Christians were also accused of trying to “overthrow the government” by refusing to sacrifice to the Roman gods who were believed to help hold the empire together.

Tertullian wrote:

“We all pray without ceasing for all emperors, beseeching for
them a long life, a secure reign; that their families may be preserved in safety, their armies brave, the senate faithful, the people honest, the
whole world peaceful, and whatever other things either the people or the emperor can desire and yet the Christians are treated as public
enemies, because they refuse to ascribe vain, and lying, and unauthorised honours to the empe­rors; because, in the spirit of true religion, their services are seated in the heart, rather than displayed in wanton excess.’

He goes on to say:

“If, then, we are commanded to love our enemies, whom have we to hate ? If, when injured, we are forbidden to return evil for evil, lest we should be like our adversaries, whom can we hurt ? And on this point do ye yourselves be judges. For how frequently do ye use violence against the Christians, sometimes at the instigation of private malice, and sometimes according to the forms of law.”

It’s sad to see how, with all our supposed progress, in many cases around the world, not just in North Korea, the character of human beings has changed very little since the second century.

The Blaze’s article concludes by saying, “Despite efforts to eradicate Christians, we have found the church is North Korea is actually growing,”. It’s estimated that currently in North Korea, there are around 9 million Christians and that number continues to grow.

Perhaps there is something to be said about what Tertullian wrote, “The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church.”

Watch Yeonmi Park retell her story of escaping North Korea:

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Conspiracy Theory

Unicorns are everywhere

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Unicorns are everywhere

Have you noticed a sharp rise in the quantity and diversity of unicorn products? The mythical beasts seem to be popping up pretty much everywhere from cereal to bubble bath. There’s now unicorn “duck tape.”

It isn’t just products for kids. Many adult items like alcohol , adult costumes, and Starbucks flavors are popping up with unicorn symbolism. It’s even getting into the Christmas business with holiday decorations featuring unicorns. When did unicorns become a Christmas symbol to hang from the tree?

It’s freaky.

Next time you go out shopping at the mall, Walmart, or pretty much any department store, take a look and see if you notice unicorn symbolism.

According to Truthstream Media, the unicorn is a symbol used by the occult to represent transformation, fertility, sexuality, and androgyny. Much of the symbolism can be traced back to everyone’s favorite conspiracy theory targets, the Illuminati. Some believe the unicorn contains antichrist symbolism.

When a mythical creature is supposed to represent uniqueness and it seems to be present everywhere, doesn’t that run counter to its own message? As conspiracy theories go, this one is as magical as it gets. Much like unicorns themselves.

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Culture and Religion

The truth about Thanksgiving

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The truth about Thanksfiving

Thanksgiving for many of us has been presented as a time when diversity worked. When a group of people who came seeking refuge from religious persecution was saved by another group of people. A time when different cultures could come together and share what they had to offer one another, culminating in a feast consisting of corn and turkey that was made to honor that moment.

Sadly, the most recent depiction of this pivotal moment in our history has been turned into an American horror story. A story that depicts white Europeans who came to wipe out all the innocent natives by disease and war. The evil white man brought with them more evil white men who only wanted to destroy and kill, to take land that didn’t belong to them and annihilate anyone who wasn’t white. Because that’s all white people want.

Neither of these versions are remotely true.

The Pilgrims were not fleeing from persecution. Nor did they spread disease or kill an entire village of Native Americans. They simply came to a new world filled with the hope of freedom – freedom to live by the values and principles as defined by the word of God. They came to the new world to give their families that chance rather than being overtaken by a society they felt did not reflect those values. It was so important to them that they risked their lives and the lives of their children to make the voyage. A voyage that landed them far from where they were expecting.

After arriving to the new world it was clear that God had a plan. The circumstances which led up to the first thanksgiving – for both the Europeans and the Native American that helped them – could only be explained by divine providence.

Despite being told this is a time to apologize or to be shameful for our history as a nation, the truth is Thanksgiving should be the most important and revered time for all Americans. A time of remembrance of God’s grace and divine providence for a group of people that risked everything to honor Him, including a Native American by the name of Squanto.

The diversity of God’s grace is what we, Americans, should be celebrating. Not multiculturalism.

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Culture and Religion

Marco Rubio whips out Bible verse that goes after the Florida recount debacle

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Marco Rubio whips out Bible verse that goes after the Florida recount debacle

There are two prevailing opinions pertaining to the Florida election and subsequent recounts. Democrats generally feel like it’s good to “count every ballot” until they win, even if that means “finding” more ballots to add to their candidates’ tallies. Republicans have been fighting against the recounts despite that play coming across ingenuously to voters on both sides.

We should want every valid vote counted. The operative word there is “valid.”

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), a Catholic, Tweeted a Bible verse that seemed apropos to the current debacle in Florida.

One might even say this draws in one of the favorite punching bags for Republicans, former presidential candidate “Crooked” Hillary Clinton. That wasn’t the intent, I’m sure, but it’s always fun to laugh at Hillary.

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