On Wednesday, April 29, 2015 at 12:35 a.m., eight men were executed in Indonesia for drug trafficking. Indonesia has received worldwide criticism for these convictions, as all but one of the men were foreigners whose countries requested clemency, and Indonesia refused. The relationship between Australia and Indonesia is particularly strained. Tony Abbott, Australia’s prime minister, has had the Australian ambassador return home.
But despite all of the controversy, there is some great encouragement. Witnesses to the executions have stated that the men died worshipping God. One witness stated that it was the first time she had witnessed someone so excited to meet God. She added that the prisoners sang one song after another until they were shot. One prisoner in particular, Andrew Chan, came to Christ while in prison. He studied theology while in prison and was ordained as a minister earlier this year. Brian Houston, the senior pastor of Hillsong Church, was in daily contact with Chan while he was in prison. Houston reports that Chan had great faith and strength, and even stated, “What good is a testimony without the test in it?”
Pray that the prisoners praising God until their deaths will have an impact with family, friends, and their executioners. Pray for prisoners Chan shared the Gospel with, and ask that they would receive Christ.
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