This Easter, Rejoice Because Your Bonds Have Been Broken, but Remember the Victims of Human Trafficking and Persecution Around the World
‘It shall come about on that day,’ declares the Lord of hosts, ‘that I will break his yoke from off their neck and will tear off their bonds; and strangers will no longer make them their slaves.’ – Jeremiah 30:8
Like many others, this weekend I will be gathering with my family once again to celebrate Easter and our risen Savior, Jesus Christ.
While many will be watching children running through the grass in search of hidden Easter eggs and discovering baskets loaded with candy and surprises on Sunday morning, we know that Easter has nothing to do with chocolates or bunnies. As Christians, we rejoice knowing it is the day we were given the greatest gift of all: eternal salvation through the death and resurrection of Jesus. We have been freed.
At the same time, I am celebrating the Passover, the season of freedom for the Israelites.
But while both Easter and Passover are celebrations of life and freedom from bondage, we must remember the countless victims around the globe currently held captive – the victims of human trafficking and global persecution.
In America, as illegal border crossings are at an all-time high at our southern border with Mexico, so are instances of human trafficking. Desperate migrants who want to come to the U.S. in search of a better life are easily misled by these heartless traffickers and finding themselves forced into dangerous situations with ghoulish ends waiting on the other side.
As recently reported:
In recent years, however, the number of women, children and family units being smuggled has increased dramatically. They often find themselves at risk for assault and abuse.
Many helpless women and girls will be trafficked into sexual slavery. Many others will simply be robbed and left for dead, or simply killed. It’s an understatement to say that little has been done to stop the flood of migrants crossing the border or save innocent victims from human traffickers. But we’re taking action. As we’ve reported, the ACLJ filed a FOIA lawsuit demanding answers from our government over the humanitarian crisis at the border.
And the scourge of human trafficking extends far beyond U.S. borders. It is a plague affecting the entire world.
We told you the ACLJ just filed written reports with the U.N. for the latest session of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). Of the 14 countries up for review this session, four had significant issues involving human trafficking. In our submissions, we detailed how the scourge of human trafficking is currently plaguing the Netherlands, Ecuador, Brazil, and South Africa – all of which are U.N. member states. Again, women and even children are being forced into horrific situations, being used against their will as prostitutes. As a husband and a father, it makes my blood boil. We urged immediate action to make these countries work to put a stop to human trafficking and provide aid and rehabilitation for the victims.
As Easter marks the day our Savior defeated death and rose again, freeing us, we must remember that it is only by HIS grace that we have been saved (Ephesians 2:8). Now it is up to us to be the voice of the voiceless held in literal bonds and prisons, being forced to endure unspeakable hardships. We must work tirelessly to save our brothers and sisters in Christ from unimaginable circumstances.
And we must also remember the countless persecuted Christians around the world, oppressed and in danger for their faith in Jesus Christ. In Afghanistan, which we told you was recently ranked the “most dangerous” place for Christians, we’re working to protect the Christians and unmarried women who are hiding in their darkened houses, afraid of what the vicious Taliban will do to them. We’re continually working to defend Nigeria’s persecuted Christians who are being hunted down and slaughtered. We’re working with our legal contacts on the ground to save Christians in countries such as Pakistan and India, where believers are treated as less than human and are beaten, imprisoned, and even sentenced to death through archaic blasphemy laws.
This Easter, we must unite in prayer for the persecuted Church, maybe more so than ever before.
Our resurrected Savior commands us to seek justice for the oppressed, care for the widows and orphans, and love this fallen world. But we can also rejoice because of the great hope He has given us all through His Resurrection.
Indeed, He is risen! Happy Easter.