There are an estimated 200,000 to 400,000 Christians in North Korea. However, it’s difficult to get an exact figure, as Christians in North Korea must keep their faith completely secret. Of those, 50,000 and 70,000 Christians are imprisoned in terrible labour camps, simply for choosing to follow Jesus. And yet, despite the risks, the church in North Korea is steadily growing.
Kim Jong-un is the leader of North Korea. Modern day North Korea was founded by Kim Jong-un’s grandfather, Kim Il-sung, and the family are worshipped as gods. Anyone who dares to believe in a higher authority than the Kim family is considered an enemy of the state.
Christians are considered enemies of the state because they dare to believe in a higher authority than the Kim family. The North Korean regime demands absolute loyalty and obedience, and the Kim family are worshipped like gods. If a Christian is discovered in North Korea, they will be arrested and imprisoned in one of North Korea’s terrible labour camps. In the camps, Christians are worked liked slaves and often tortured; most are never able to escape.
And yet, our brothers and sisters in North Korea have decided that knowing Jesus is worth the risks they face. The church in North Korea is not only surviving, but growing and they have great hope for the future. One Christian has shared: "One day the borders will open and we will unite with the South Korean and the Chinese church to bring the gospel to some of the darkest places on this earth."