This is Whyte House Report podcast. Here are the top stories you need to know about today.
According to Mission Network News, After seizing control of Myanmar in February 2021, the military continues to attack civilians. Brian Dennett with AMG International says the junta has also arrested many pastors across the country. Some have been released, but others have been killed. “One of our network pastors from Homalin City particularly asked for prayers. His church members are now in hiding after being bothered by the army.” “Their homes and property have been taken over and sealed off. I just can’t imagine being kept out of my home.” Many thousands of refugees have crossed the border to Thailand. Human rights experts say around 590,000 people have fled their homes since the coup. Artillery shelling, aerial attacks, and land mines mean constant danger. Many people are avoiding the main roads, fearing arrests or detention. Dennett says, “We heard this week that the military has formed a task force or a special group of loyal followers to go out and assassinate those who are supporting the National League for Democracy and their families. [They would also target] anyone found to be protesting the military government at all.” Pray for an end to the violence in Myanmar.
According to Mission Network News, It’s official; Hezbollah lost its majority power in Lebanon’s Parliament. With strong backing from Iran, Hezbollah operates as both a Shi’ite Muslim political party and a militant group in Lebanon. Forecasts leading up to the May 15 election predicted Hezbollah’s current grip on power would grow. People worried their country would become another Iran. “We were under the impression, or the threat that Iran is taking over and [Lebanon] is going to become an Islamic nation,” Nuna of Triumphant Mercy Lebanon says. “I think this (election result) is a miracle, really; we have been praying hard for this.” According to BBC News, Hezbollah and its allies came three seats short of a majority. “They’re still in the Parliament, but they don’t have the power of the number. We couldn’t do anything while they were in power. Now, they don’t have that (majority power) anymore, and the new ones (leaders) have a strong opposition to Hezbollah,” Nuna says. “We have been praying hard for this election, and I’m so thankful for what God did.” Dislodging Hezbollah’s grip on Parliament is a critical but small victory in the battle for Lebanon’s future. “The fight isn’t over. We have to keep praying,” Nuna says. Triumphant Mercy Lebanon provides physical help for today and hope for a better tomorrow. More about that here. “God is changing things in this whole area (region), and I can see it. Those who don’t live here cannot feel it or sense it, but we feel the change,” Nuna says. “Change is coming to Lebanon. We don’t know how big the change will be or where things will go, but we see it and feel it.” Pray for a spirit of unity among Lebanon’s newly-elected leaders.
According to Mission Network News, In Northern Nigeria, a Christian student named Deborah Samuel was accused of blasphemy and killed by a mob. Then, they burned her body. The college was shut down after videos of the incident appeared on social media. Police arrested two suspects, sparking protests among Muslims throughout the city of Sokoto. A large crowd besieged a government building and later tried to loot shops owned by Christians. Greg Kelley with World Mission says, “Boko Haram in the native language, Hausa (spoken by millions of Nigerians in the north) literally translates into, ‘Western education is forbidden,’ or ‘Western education is evil.’ It’s just a very radical interpretation of Islam.” “Anything that allows tolerance or acceptance of Western education is attacked, and that includes moderate Muslims.” And as Kelley points out, “blasphemy” is up to the mob to interpret. “Someone could just simply say, ‘Hey, Jesus was a greater teacher than Mohammed, or bring up the deity of Jesus in comparison to Muhammad.’” Kelley says many Muslims are grieved by what radical groups are doing to Nigeria. In fact, many Muslims condemned the killing, including the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammed Sa’ad Abubakar, a leading spiritual authority among Muslims in Nigeria. The mob later protested outside his house. World Mission sends audio Bibles to the region and also provides humanitarian aid. Pray also for God to change hearts.
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In closing, remember, God loves you. He always has and He always will. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you don’t know Jesus as your Saviour, today is a good day to get to know Him. Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead for you. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Thanks so much for listening and may God bless you.