Persecution of Christians

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BWA General Council Resolution 1996.1

The General Council meeting in Hong Kong, July 3-9, 1996:

AFFIRMS religious liberty is a God-given human right, not a privilege to be granted or denied by the State; and

OBSERVES that in the twentieth century vast numbers of Christians have experienced persecution, imprisonment and martyrdom and that in some places the Christian faith is restricted or banned; and

LAMENTS that Christian minorities — especially evangelicals — too often face persecution and discrimination as targets of popular hatred; and

DENOUNCES the denial of basic human rights and all religious persecution anywhere in the world; and

URGES governments and churches around the world to uphold the fundamental freedom of religious liberty within their countries as a universal international standard; and

CALLS Christians worldwide to fervent prayer for the constant protection and power of the Holy Spirit in the daily lives of all believers everywhere who may be vulnerable to persecution; and

RECOMMENDS that individually and collectively Christians observe the second Sunday of December as an International Day of Prayer for persecuted Christians in connection with the BWA Human Rights Day.


Original Source Bibliography: Lotz, Denton, editor. Baptist World Alliance 1996 Yearbook: Minutes of the General Council Meeting and Directory. McLean, VA: Baptist World Alliance, 1996.

Original Source Footnote/Endnote: Denton Lotz, ed., Baptist World Alliance 1996 Yearbook: Minutes of the General Council Meeting and Directory (McLean, VA: Baptist World Alliance, 1996), p. 101.

Online Document Full Citation: BWA General Council Resolution 1996.1 Persecution of Christians;

In-text Online Document Citation: (BWA General Council Resolution 1996.1).

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Since its formation in 1905, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the global Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to strengthen worship, fellowship and unity; lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need through aid, relief, and community development; defend religious freedom, human rights, and justice; and advance theological reflection and leadership development.