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Religious Hostility Escalates WORLD WIDE. :eek:

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WASHINGTON (BP) -- Practicing a religious belief in nearly one-third of the world's countries is increasingly difficult due to government restrictions and public hostilities, according to new data from the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.

The Pew study found a 32 percent increase in governmental restrictions and public hostilities from 2006-09 in the 198 countries of the world. Among its finding, the survey showed religious restrictions:

-- increased 12 percent in 23 countries.

-- decreased 6 percent in 12 countries.

-- remained unchanged in 163 countries.

"Among the world's 25 most populous countries -- which account for about 75 percent of the world's population -- restriction on religions substantially increased in eight countries and did not substantially decrease in any," according to the Pew study, which was presented at an International Religious Freedom Roundtable event on Capitol Hill in late March.

Worldwide, about 1 percent of all people live in a country where hostilities decreased.

Many governments have religious freedom wording in their constitutions, but not all provide such protections, the Pew study noted. Religious liberty language is in the constitutions of all 198 countries and in the basic laws of 143 countries. Yet, 111 countries -- or 56 percent -- have statements in their constitutions or basic laws that contradict religious freedom.

And, even though countries have these laws, "not all governments fully respect the religious rights written into their laws," the study noted.

Nigeria has become a case in point.

The Islamic extremist sect Boko Haram "started in 1995 with a stringent ideology that there is not a means for Christians to exist in the culture; you are to be targeted and killed," said Mark Lipdo, director of the Stefanos Foundation, at an April 5 event hosted by the Family Research Council (FRC). Nigeria is a key focus for the religious liberty efforts of the Stefanos Foundation.

The most recent attack by Boko Haram came Easter Sunday near a church where at least 40 people were killed, according to Reuters News Service.

In Nigeria, there are three levels of persecution: street, state and sect, Emmanuel Ogebe, a U.S.-based Nigerian human rights lawyer, said at the FRC briefing.

At the street level, average Muslims in northern Nigeria are taught that Christians are infidels, Ogebe said.

At "the state level, we have state governments who persecute Christians so they cannot get a job. If you get a job, you can't be promoted. If you're a Christian, you can't get loans to build a church," Ogebe said.

Sect violence is mostly being done by Boko Haram, which is "calling for Christians to leave, calling for jihad," said Gregory Trent, who works for the Jubilee Campaign and recently was on a fact-finding mission in Nigeria. Social hostilities in Nigeria are significantly elevated in contrast to previous studies, given the rising number of instances of bombings and rioting. The Jubilee Campaign advocates for religious and ethnic minorities living under oppressive regimes.

In the Pew study, social hostilities included individuals and groups reacting to a religion or religious person with violence, harassment and abuse.

"In November 2008, for instance, at least 300 people were killed and hundreds of others were injured during three days of religious rioting in the [Nigerian] city of Jos," according to the study.

Religious hostilities are constantly on Nigerians' minds, with Trent noting, "The violence has not abated; the violence has not stopped; there are constant barrages of attacks."

The Pew Forum study can be accessed at http://www.pewforum.org/Government/Rising-Restrictions-on-Religion(2).aspx.


Mark Norton, a student from California Baptist University, is an intern with the Washington bureau of Baptist Press.

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According to what I heard recently, this sounds like Bab. the Gr. on it's way to extinction, & the eventual start of the Gr. Trib.

This information stated that prophecies refering to the preaching work have just about been fulfilled. The only thing we have left to see is the fulfilment of Rev.17:15-17. The nations of the earth have to get so fed up with religion, that the U.N. is forced to act. Jehovah will soon put into it's heart His "one thought."

Acc. to the 6-15-2012 WT. Pge 17, Par 14,-- "John described the image of the beast as an "8th king." In what sense?

It is not depicted as an 8th head on the original W.B. It is only an image of that beast. Any power it has comes from it's member nations, esp. from it's key backer, the Anglo Amer. W.P. But it does receive authority to act as a king to carry out a specific task, one that triggers a chain of events that will change history."

Pge 18; Par. 17--"False religion,however will not just fade away. The harlot will remain a potent force, attempting to bend kings to her will until God plants an idea in the hearts of those in power.[Rev. 17:16,17] Soon Jehovah will cause the political elements of Satan's system as represented by the U.N. to attack false relig. They will destroy her influence,and devastate her riches. Such an event may have seemed unlikely just decades ago. Today the harlot teeters on the back of the scarlet-colored beast. Even so, she will not slip slowly from her seat. Her tumble will be sudden and violent. Rev. 18:7,8,15,19."

So, very shortly, we are in for a rollicking time. The nations are going bankrupt, & Babylon is loaded. According to the info posted, the nations are getting restless. It will be a very exciting time too. So these "constant barages of attacks" will soon develop into an all out confrontation, when Jehovah decides to act.

We talk about these things all of the time, and we study info related to it, but we never think of it as being so close, at our doorstep. It has always been something that was going to happen, not something that is happening. Just the fact that it is, is what brings on the excitement, & wonder, since we have never seen anything like it before.

May we all "Pray incessantly," stay strong, & "Keep in expectation" of it.

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Im just filled with anticipation and excitement just thinking about it!

There really is not much to happen before the GT now.

Destruction of Babylon The Great and the cry of 'peace and security'

Will be so interesting to see how it all plays out.

I hope we arent waiting too much longer, Jehovah willing :)

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oh man! Ewwww' date=' Babylon is just asking for it. :popcorn: I'm stocking up on popcorn.[/quote']

I have decided to get myself a Popcorn machine like you have . . I have a front porch as a viewing platform for the spectacle. :popcorn: me . . :popcorn: . .hubby . .:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:

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