Recommended Reading

This will be an ongoing resource of books that will help you understand Christian persecution and the lives of the persecuted.


Foxe’s Book of Martyrs (John Foxe, various printings).  Free download from Project Gutenberg available in EPub, Kindle and HTML formats.  You may also obtain a print copy through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christian Book Distributors and other booksellers.

Operation World (Jason Mandryk; 2010).  This encyclopedic style handbook features statistics, data and pertinent information on persecution trends of every country in the world.  It serves as an excellent prayer companion.  I just visited the Operation World website and was directed to take a brief survey which I took and led me to anticipate a new updated version-finally!  Operation World is available in print form from all major booksellers.  The Operation World website also sells the book in print and on CD-Rom.

God’s Smuggler (Brother Andrew; 1960; 2015).  I still have my 1960’s version of this autobiography about Brother Andrew, founder of Open Doors ministry. A must read for anyone interested in learning about the events leading up to present day persecution trends or the history of the still strong mission organization that carries out Brother Andrew’s legacy. Available for purchase at all major booksellers and the Open Doors website.

Death of a Guru (Rabi R. Maharaj, 1977; 1984).  A former Hindu candidly discusses and describes his life before and after converting to Christianity.  I was introduced to this book as required reading for one of my classes a few years ago, and I was instantly a fan. I do have to say that Maharaj’s testimony is at times very emotionally intense.  Available though all major booksellers including Abe Books, Amazon and Christian Book Distributors.

The Persecuted Church Prayer Devotional (Beverly J. Pegues; 2006).  After Operation World, Pegues’ devotional is my go-to devotional for praying for the nations and persecuted Christians.  A decade later, many of the same countries are the same offenders of religious freedoms and persecutor of Christians.  I would like to see an updated version, though, but until then this is a less bulkier alternative to Operation World.   Available through all major booksellers and in Kindle form through Amazon.

The Heavenly Man (Paul Hattaway and Brother Yun; 2002). Autobiography of a Chinese Christian leader known as Brother Yun.  Yun tells of his trials, tribulations, imprisonment, torture and life as a Christian in Communist China during the latter part of the 20th Century.  Yun’s life is an inspiration and testament to standing strong in the faith of Jesus Christ in the middle of severe governmental opposition. I cried through the entire book. Available through all major booksellers and in Kindle form through Amazon.

Jesus Freaks: Revolutionaries, Stories of Revolutionaries who changed their world: Fearing God, not man (dc Talk; 2002). Long title, short idea.  I liken this to a modern Foxe’s Book of Martyrs where stories of historical and present day Christians took a stand for their faith are highlighted.  I really like the scriptural cross-references at the end of each example. Available for through all major booksellers and in Kindle form through Amazon.

Prisoner of Conscience (Frank R. Wolf with Anne Morse; 2011) Former Republican Representative Frank R. Wolf, who recently had the U.S. International Religious Freedom Bill  named after him, writes about his quest to bring the plight of those suffering from lack of religious and human rights around the world to the attention of the U.S. government.