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Recovery & Extraction- India Update Part 2

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue
The Truth Network Radio
July 15, 2023 12:00 pm

Recovery & Extraction- India Update Part 2

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue

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July 15, 2023 12:00 pm

Today, Whitney speaks with John from Lantern's Recovery & Extraction Team in Part 2 of this program. Listen as he shares the heartbreaking news that has been happening in India and the persecution of Christians in regions of great tribulation and pain.

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This is Stu Epperson from the Truth Talk Podcast, connecting current events, pop culture, and theology, and we're so grateful for you that you've chosen the Truth Podcast Network. It's about to start in just a few seconds.

Enjoy it, and please share it around with all your friends. Thanks for listening, and thanks for choosing the Truth Podcast Network. Welcome to Lantern Rescue, a ministry program dedicated to bringing light into the darkness of human trafficking. It's time to light the way to freedom. This is Lantern Rescue. We tell the stories, we talk about rescues, and we empower you to do something about it.

William Wilberforce once said, let it not be said I was silent when they needed me. This is Lantern Rescue. Hi, Lantern listeners.

Thank you so much for joining us today. If you listened to last week's episode, I think you have an idea of where we're gonna be headed with this one, and you're probably still hanging on to the edge of your seats, which is why you're back this week. If you have not heard last week's episode, I encourage you, gosh, you almost have to. You're gonna want to.

Let's just put it that way. You're gonna want to when you hear what John has to say today. So just to give a brief look, glance back, John is telling us a little bit about what is going on in Manipur, India, and not just what you are going to read about on Google, but on the live in action pieces of what's actually going on there. And if you're not aware, there has really been, after our first discussion, a genocide, if you will, of Christians there with well over, I know we said 100, but I think you said it's closer probably to 1000 Christians, men, women, and children that have been killed. 40,000 plus Christians are now currently displaced, and well over 350 churches or more have been destroyed at this point, and over 2000 homes that have been just burnt to the ground. And those are numbers as of, gosh, probably two weeks ago, and this is not, this hasn't just stopped. Like we haven't, this isn't our conflict and crisis in Turkey where it was a catastrophe event or a force of nature that occurred there, and it ends, and there's still work to be done. But this is, this is still ongoing. Like this is a challenge that we're facing, and it's ongoing, and you know, I know we spoke about it on the first podcast about it, that this is, it's so much more than just what the surface confusion and political craziness is going on right now.

This is much deeper, and this is a spiritual attack, and it is, like you said, it is satanic, and it is aimed directly at Christians. So I would love for you, John, to really just kind of step back into some of the stories that we were talking about and maybe preface what some of those stories, you know, why we're talking about how good God is in the midst of what chaos is going on right now. Yes, sure, thank you, and I do want to make one clarification.

I apologize if it wasn't clear. The number of deaths that I gave would include a war, so it's not just Christians, it's also those attacking Christians. So there is, no, we don't want to hear about anyone dying, of course, but there is some hope in knowing that God is, God is defending, and as you'll hear in some of the stories that I give, it's almost with biblical miraculous, just the way that he protected his people and is protecting them. So yeah, I think the stories from last, I was just talking about how it was amazing to me that being there, being in Churchanpur, known to the local populace as Lomka, it was amazing that these people were not telling me why did God do this, why is, you know, why is this happening, and they're really relieving Christianity.

Instead, they were embracing it. They were talking about how good God was and how they were embracing Christian morals more than their enemies were. They were being kind and generous even when they received hate and cruelty, and then they were telling stories about how God had protected them. One of those stories, the one we didn't get the chance to finish last episode, a group of villagers had fled from their village. Their village was being burnt and they were running away, and they ran into the jungle, and as they came out of the jungle into the road, they ran into a group of militants, a large crowd of people with weapons, and it was horrifying. I mean, they literally had just, it was like they ran out of the frying pan into the fire, but before anyone could get shot, this heavy fog rolls in at one of those villagers was able to escape without dying, and it's just that amazing.

You can't, you can't make this up. This is not, this is not just something that, and when you hear the story from source after source, it's just, it becomes amazing to me how God really is reaching down, and he's making a, making a way for his Christians to survive. You know, as I tell these stories, I do want to clarify to our audience, there is an atrocity happening. There is a, there is a group of Metis militants that are attacking these Kuki tribals, trying to ethnically wipe them out, trying to create this genocide, if you will, but I want to clarify, they do not represent the Metis people, and it becomes very easy in war to deify one side and, and, you know, demonize another, but you really can't do that here.

Not only are there Christians facing incredible persecution on the Metis side, but also there are many, many, in fact, I would say the majority of Metis now are crying out in opposition to this government, saying, you, this has to stop. This has gone too far, despite years worth of brainwashing. These people have been subject to years worth of brainwashing that has made them feel like they're the victims to these Kuki tribals. It's really, I mean, this situation was a textbook example of what happens in a genocide, and yet these people are still there. Many of them are resisting that brainwashing.

They're resisting what their government's telling them, and they're calling for it for stuff. But the problem is this whole state, the internet's been shut down. So information is just getting linked, leaked out bits and pieces here and there as people leave the state and do whatever. So I didn't want to, before I continue with these stories, I did want to clarify that, because I don't want anyone walking away, you know, thinking that, you know, Metis are bad, Kukis are good. And that's just a simple matter, you know. Thank you for that clarity. I think that is an important place, important point to make, you know, especially in situations like this, because you're right, we can very easily put an entire group in a set idea that they are, they're all bad, right?

And that is not the case here. But yes, but it is, you know, it is important to recognize that there are good and bad in each and every side of this. So we are, you know, we're in a fight of good and evil, right? And so there are people that are willing to take a stand. But unfortunately, in this situation, there's a hierarchy of evil at play, you know?

Yes, yeah. Yeah, that's so true. And in our aid, we even have gone to help Metis pastors, Metis churches that are facing a lot of persecution. Their situation is, they're, you know, sometimes they're being cut off, they're not allowed to work, they're not allowed to do anything.

And so we have to go give them maybe a little bit of money so they can go buy food or, you know, organ buys, you know, supplies a shop that they can go pick up things like that. Whereas in the Truchampore area, it's a war zone, there's, you know, villages are building these barricades, and women are standing in the guards of their villages. And I say villages, because even though this is a town, the Kuki tribes are very tribal, they're very tribal mindset. So what will happen is a town is actually made up of a bunch of villages that live next to each other. So you'll have a village chief that owns all this land. And then inside of that land, you've got all these tribes, people have a house. And so all these tribes are working together to defend their little plot of property. But everyone's working, everyone's cooking for the shelters, they're going, you know, to the front lines to supply food and medical medicine to the, you know, the boys and teenagers and young men, old men that are there just trying to make sure that no one comes through, you know, with a bomb or something. Or, you know, crowds of people don't come through and try to burn down their homes. So yeah, it's interesting, there's two very different aspects of persecution happening right now in this one state.

And we're definitely trying to help and support both sides where it's needed. There is a one very interesting story. And I think this will go to show why the idea of only 100 people dying is so ludicrous. There's one particular village that had been defending an attack from these militants, militants that had stolen police uniforms, police weapons, vehicles, military weapons and things, bombs, whatever, and were attacking this village. And this village had been defending for two days. During that time, it is my understanding that not a single Kuki tribal Christian died in that defense. And just to back up for a second, can you tell people really quickly what they had to defend themselves with? Because I know that was on the first part of this, but for the people coming into this second part too, they have no idea.

Yes, yeah, thank you for reminding me. So the majority, if not all, of the defenders are defending with a single barrel shotgun that has to be breech loaded every single time it is shot. And many of them are being attacked by groups of at least 300, sometimes 1000 people. And this is, I mean, most villages have 20 or 30 able bodied men, and these include teenagers to defend with.

So then the odds are just astronomical. Like it literally makes zero sense that the Kuki tribes haven't been completely wiped off the face of the planet. Like, it is only God that they're still there. And this one example is really, I would say, of the biblical proportion and how God defended them. And so these handful of villagers were defending, they didn't even have as many bullets as people were attacking them with.

So I'm not even sure how they lasted two days. But it got to a point where a local police came and said, hey, stop, let's stop attacking. You guys pull back just so that we can clear out our death. And the villagers agreed to that because they said they didn't even know how they were going to clear out that many bodies. There have been so many people killed in this attack. And just to give you an idea of what's happening, some of these young people, they're being radicalized by this militant group.

They're given alcohol and drugs to just charge at these evil Christians that they were trying to kill. And these people literally, they said, I heard the term zombies. It was like defending a zombie apocalypse in some ways because hordes of people, some with machetes, boards, some with guns, would literally just charge at these people. And it was horrifying.

So there's a lot of people that died in these two days' worth of attacks. And so the villagers pulled back. They pulled about 1,000 meters or so into the cliff area, the higher area of the mountain, because this whole village is on all these small villages are all in the mountains. And so the police came in, they cleared all the dead. And then before they could give back the area for the villagers to come back to their homes, they let in the mob. And the mob came in and burnt the houses. And they started partying. Before they burnt the church, they started desecrating the church.

They had alcohol. Hey, Dan, I'm going to have to stop you for just a second. I know. We always get into the best parts of the story and I'm like, oh, I'm so sorry. I'm going to have to stop you here. But we do have to take a quick break. So listeners, just hang on.

We're coming back. And until then, take an opportunity to visit the Lantern Rescue website or any of our social media. We actually have a story up about what's going on in India right now on our website under their stories. So check that out. And if you are feeling led to give, I just want to encourage you right now is a great time to do that. We have a donor that has come in and under Operation Freedom to the Fullness has been willing to match gifts up to $100,000.

So you're doubling your impact in situations just like this. So thank you so much. And John, we'll be right back.

Transcribed by Welcome back, guys. I know the edge of your seat is worn out at this point with part one and part two of what is going on in India. But there is just such a reality check that has to happen here. And honestly, a heart check for us as believers in what we should be doing for those that are being persecuted for their faith around the world.

I am not going to chat much. I'm going to let John take it back away because we're on the edge of our seats of this story about how God is showing up in just absolutely miraculous ways. So John, please continue your story. At this point, I know that families had fled to the mountains and a mob had come into the village.

Yes, yeah. So at this point, they're watching their homes being burnt and they're watching their church be desecrated. And I want to point out something here for our listeners. I think any one of us would be gripped with emotion if we ever saw our homes being burnt.

And definitely, it would be just touch a weird place for us, I think, mentally, emotionally to see our church being desecrated. But this holds an even deeper role with these tribal. And I want to explain that here for a moment because when it comes to civilization, these tribal people have, they built their identity in the church, in their faith. Civilization tells these tribal people that they're primitive, that they're not as good as well-developed society. Even their own people, their own ethnic circles look down upon them. But where they find this collective hope and identity is in Christ, we're all equal. In fact, they're his children, they're special. And they build a lot of their identity in their church. And I noticed that very quickly, we would drive through these villages, and I'm telling you, they're the poor of the poor.

Many of these villages are made from bamboo. They're just tiny. They're single roomed.

They're very poorly made when it comes to longevity. But in every single situation, the nicest building by far was the church. Many of these churches were brick or stone buildings that exceeded by far any other building in the village.

So I just want to point out. It's that reverence almost to it. It might have 50 houses, but its church is going to be the central pinnacle of who they are and what they believe. So the mob comes in, and a large group of them begin partying in the church. They're drinking, they're doing illicit things inside the church. And the villagers were just shocked, you know, because they come under a banner of truce. They had agreed to allow, you know, the people to come through and yet their trust not only had been destroyed, but also, you know, this atrocity that was happening in their own church. So they moved down to attack the people in their church. And as they drew closer, it was nighttime, they fired a few shots into that church.

I don't even know if they killed anyone. But that commotion caused a panic inside of that village that was full of mobs. And the people inside of the church came out shooting. And the people in the village started shooting at the people in the church in the confusion. And they killed each other.

They started shooting each other. In fact, in the confusion, people started running and they, a bunch of people, I heard the number was around 60 people. The villagers later counted the next day had fallen off the cliff and died in the confusion of running around. So this, and they ended up, those who survived this chaos ran away. And then the villagers had their town was burnt.

They couldn't live there anymore. So they had to leave, but God saved their life and protected these people. And it's just amazing to me, like, again, this story reminds me of something out of the Bible where they're here to kill and to destroy, but all they do is they hurt themselves.

They dug a trap and they fell into it. You know, I think it's, that is, I mean, that's just one of their stories. Like it's unreal, you know, and it shouldn't be, right? It shouldn't be because this is the same God, you know, like the same God exists, you know, and sometimes I think we do not, it's not that these miracles aren't performed and done, you know, it's that we don't step out in a place that would require them, you know, and, and to some of that is, is just, you know, thank you, thank God that that's the case for us. But, but also how much we, we miss out by not taking that step out and only having him to fall on truly like only having, it could only be God moments, you know, and how incredible is it that he would, that these people are able to experience that in the midst of just such turmoil, you know? Yes. It really does speak to the goodness of, of God truly. So that's incredible.

I like, there should be a book, there needs to be a book just to remind us of the faithfulness and goodness of God that we do serve the same God. Wow. Yes. Well, yeah. Yeah. I do want to, sorry, go ahead.

No, no, no, go right ahead. I do want to point out that there is right now, I would say the Kuki troubles are being painted as aggressors as the ones that are, you know, killing all these people. And, and I think even this situation, when it was reported, it was reported, I think the article online says that Kuki militants attacked this group of Métis while they were in their village, which of course raises the question, you know, why were these, you know, Métis people in the middle of this village while all these villages are being burned? You know, I think there's some kind of logical fallacies here, but that's not to say, not, not every Kuki is a Christian and not every Kuki has not, like there, there are organizations, militant groups that have tried to prosper off the situation and things. So I'm not saying that everything, again, you can't deify one side and demonize the other side. But what I have seen is the vast majority are Christians and they're acting like Christians in a way that shocks me.

I would hope that I have that level of faith and love for human life and for God, fear of God to do the right thing. Something that I don't see a lot of people talking about is right now, the majority of the power and water that go into the city of Imphal, which is the valley city where the Métis are attacking from, the more of that, the majority of that comes from dams and power generators that are on Kuki land, are controlled by the Kuki tribals. And there was talks brought up of what if we shut off the water and power to them? But they, because right now it's war. I mean, they're being attacked and people are being killed. There's absolutely ridiculous atrocities going on.

Many of us would say that's justified, but they have chosen not to because they said think of the women and children that it would affect. And it's that mentality, voice of love and kindness. Yeah. And in the midst of facing these atrocities, that's really amazed me. These people are choosing to serve God, even when it's hard. And I think God is blessing them and protecting them for it.

It's that Matthew 5 44, right? Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. And to embody that in such a way where you have the ability to make that change, to do it different.

You know, you have the ability and justifiably by the world's terms to cut them off from those resources. But yet here they are, you know, what an incredible statement of faith. Again, like there's a lot for us to learn from these situations, truly in our, even in our personal walks with the Lord. You know, I think, and I'm speaking to myself on this one, but there are many times where, you know, it's, it feels easy to trust, right? And then you come across something like this and you're like, well, would I be able to do it the same in this situation?

Would my heart be the same for this? You know? And I think it's, it's what do we do to make those shifts to align our heart better with the Lord in that, in that way? Well, I do have to ask you, cause I know we're coming close on time, but for our listeners, what are just, what are some ways that, you know, we've said, Hey, you need to know about this because there is, we have a call to action. From, from your standpoint, what are some ways that our listeners can, can receive that call and step up? Yes. So, so I think there's several ways, actually.

One, and, and I can't emphasize this enough. I think sometimes as Christians, we think, Oh, prayer is the go-to answer, but truly prayer has changed the circumstances. I believe that not only, not only spiritually, physically God has moved. But also, like I said before, one of the only hopeful, encouraging things that I could say to these people is there are Christians praying and that truly made a difference that truly brought hope and light into their life, knowing that there's believers across the world that we're smothering them in prayer. So when I say to pray for the Christians of Manapore, I mean, I really do mean that that is a powerful, powerful, in fact, I think the most powerful tool we have in our arsenal, but not only to pray for them, but I, I had an opportunity to speak at a few churches and a few small groups and God just, God's Holy Spirit moves revival on my heart. And I really think God has a heart for revival right now in India.

So I would add that to the prayer in India, for sure. In addition to praying, of course, donating. Not only do we have short-term plans, we have long-term plans to help provide seed and training to plant gardens inside the city, since they're not able to go outside and plant in their normal fields and things in the mountains because of the danger.

We want to try to give them training to plant inside the garden. Pray, we also need, you know, we'd like to pay for counselors to be able to go and give some of the pastors training and trauma counseling. There's a lot of initiatives just to do short-term and long-term support for what's happening. So definitely we can't do that without resources. But also a third way I think that would be very beneficial would be to reach out to your local government, your local senate, your state, whatever channels that you, we would like to just send them an email about this topic. I would love to see some voices, some outrage on what's happening here in the United States to begin putting some pressure on the central government. Hey, look into this further.

The information that's coming from the local government is being falsified and we need to see the central Indian government step in and protect both sides from continuous atrocities. That's a powerful call too. Absolutely. And if you do desire to give directly to this, you can go to to do that. And in prayer, if there's a special prayer you would like to share with our team here at Lantern, our listeners, we would love for you to email us that. And we are all praying in this situation as well, but we'd love to invite you into that as well.

So please feel free to email us at lightthewayat Email us those prayers and we will gladly join you in petitioning for the sake of our brothers and sisters in Christ and those who persecute them. Let's embody that Matthew 544 and not only pray for those that are persecuted, but also those who persecute that they would have a shift in their heart. I was hoping we'd have time to pray today, but I am going to leave that on our listeners to do and take away from this is that there is an urgency and prayer to be made here. And I'm thankful that you guys stepped in to listen to the part two of this. If you're just coming in on part two, I encourage you, encourage you heavily to go back into part one so that you can understand how we got here.

And why these stories of faith are just so incredible in the midst of what's going on. John, thank you so much for joining us today and to take the time to do two podcasts on this. And it's, I know it's an issue that is very dear to your heart right now. And, um, and I just, I thank you so much for being here. It was my pleasure. Thank you. Absolutely. Bye. This is the truth network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-15 14:39:34 / 2023-07-15 14:50:21 / 11

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