“Merry Christmas.” Those two words composed the first text message ever sent. On December 3rd, 1992 Neil Papworth sent the world’s first short message service (SMS) or text message. That single message revolutionized the cellular world, and 20 years later text messaging has become part of daily life for many of us. In fact, a recent study by Time shows that a person between the ages of 18-29 sends an average of 88 text messages a day! Of the 88+ text messages we send on a daily basis, it is hard to imagine that one of those text messages could drastically change our lives… A Christian in Pakistan has felt the weight of a single text message that he was accused of sending. According to World Watch Monitor on July 13, the Gojra Additional Sessions Court convicted Masih of committing blasphemy under Section 295-C of the Pakistan Penal Code; for insulting Muhammad, which carries the death penalty. Masih had been accused of sending blasphemous text messages in a case first lodged in December 2011. Despite an absence of evidence, the court sentenced Masih to life imprisonment (25 years in Pakistan). In Nigeria, a man was sent a text message warning him that his life was in danger for being a Christian (see picture above). These simple messages, which we send multiple times on a daily basis, are proving to be a new way that Christians are facing persecution. In Matthew, Jesus tells us to be as wise a serpent, but gentle as a dove. Christians who face persecution need God’s discernment when dealing with all forms of persecution, including text messages and the potential persecution that their words and faith can bring. Would you join us in praying for these Christians and others around the world who are facing persecution? Pray For Persecuted Christians Around The World!
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