Buried alive

Last week in Zhumadian, China, the wife ofRev. Li Jiangong,Ding Cuimei,was killed by a bulldozer as she stood in front of their church, trying to stop the government from tearing it down. Instead of stopping and allowing someone to remove the Christian woman peacefully from the path of the multi-ton dirt mover, the operator of the bulldozer pushed her into the hole he was digging and buried her alive. Upon removing her from the pit, it was discovered that she had died from suffocation.

Dying for your beliefs

Dying for your faith is not a new phenomenon for Christians. Starting in the first century, those who followed Jesus Christ were often tortured and killed by the reigning Caeser; at times, using them as live bait for the lions in the public arena.

They weren't being killed because of their worship of Jesus, they were persecuted because they worshipped Jesus alone. Things haven't changed much in the last 2,000 years. Christians are still paying the ultimate price for their faith.

Christianity and China

China has not always been such a severe persecutor of the Christian faith.“There was a time where they [Christians] were being recognized as productive members of society. The government treated them fairly,” David Curry, president, and CEO of Christian advocacy group Open Doors USA told FoxNews.com. “But that has changed. China has the goal of nationalizing Christians.” Even though Christians only represent approximately5% of the population, China wants a national religion where everyonepractices the same faith.

A national religion

Early in the history of America, establishing a national religion was fiercely opposed by those men establishing the constitution but for the opposite reason that China wants to nationalize their religion. In a nation where freedom of religion is prized, as it is in America, the ability to freely exercise your faith is considered a basic individual right.

That type of freedom will cause some disagreement among different religious groups, but that is to be expected and it is a price worth paying in a free society. In China, the government's desire to control many aspects of the citizen's life (such as their one-child policy), also extends to controlling religious freedom.

The freedom of religious thought is an ever-present danger to that control and the penalty of death is not considered too extreme to exact on those who insist on exercising that freedom.

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