Many participants were unable to log in to watch megachurch pastor and bestselling author David Platt’s “Secret Church,” an online event to express solidarity with and pray for persecuted underground Asian house-churches, due to a suspected cyberattack.
“We know many of you were not able to join the SC20 simulcast last night,” read a post on the event’s Facebook page Saturday. “It appears our site was under attack, keeping many of you from logging in. And we understand your frustration.”
The post added, “Good news: The full simulcast replay is available NOW. Log in or register for access to the replay through June 30.”
Later, Platt, the lead pastor of McLean Bible Church in Vienna, Virginia, and author of Radical, wrote on his Facebook page, “We are working diligently to fix the current errors on the Secret Church website. Please continue to refresh your page and clear the cache on your computer. Once you are able to log in, you will be able to ‘rewind’ Secret Church.”
The idea behind Secret Church came from Platt’s teaching and ministering among underground Asian house-churches. “Due to hostility from the government, from the surrounding community, and even from their own family, many of our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world are forced to gather in secret, sometimes at the risk of their lives,” the event’s website says.
“The plight of our persecuted brothers and sisters also explains why prayer for the persecuted church is a major part of every Secret Church gathering,” it adds. “We remember those who cannot meet openly, asking God to sustain their faith, to change the hearts and the actions of their persecutors, and to use their witness for the spread of the Gospel.”
In January, Platt, former leader of the Southern Baptist Convention’s International Mission Board, said there was a time in his life when he needed to “repent” for not preaching enough on abortion as a younger pastor.
“There was a point as a pastor when I just kind of stayed away from abortion [because I’d think,] that’s a political issue,” Platt told The Christian Post. “But I got really convicted. Far before it is any kind of political issue, it is a biblical issue that God speaks really clear about the value of life.”
In his prayer, he said, “We have all turned aside from your ways to our ways — in our lives and as a country. How we have settled for racial injustice, ignored the immigrant, marginalized the poor and neglected the needy. How we have confused sexuality, abused authority, objectified beauty and how we have taken the lives of children.”
He further prayed for an end to laws that “make it legal to murder a child.” Whereas before he was too timid to speak on abortion, today he believes that as a pastor who preaches “God’s Word,” he must speak clearly about the “value of life for babies, for women, for men.”
Platt’s latest book, Something Needs to Change: A Call to Make Your Life Count in a World of Urgent Need, highlights the plight of those suffering around the world and calls on Christians to do their part to bring physical, emotional and spiritual healing to such individuals.
At the National Day of Prayer last May, Platt said church and ministry leaders are too frequently “tempted” to accomplish their ministry goals through human abilities and ingenuity without the “presence of God.”
Last September, Platt issued an urgent call to those in the Church to transform their compassion for a lost world into action and truly live out what they claim to believe.
“It’s impossible to be a Christian without change,” he said. “We are continually being changed more and more into the image of Jesus. ... It’s what it means to be a disciple of Jesus, and it’s what it means to make disciples of Jesus, which is what we’ve all been called to do.”
Platt added, “This is everybody’s greatest need in the world; the need to change, the need to be changed ... by the love of Jesus. Girls need to be rescued from trafficking. People need to be saved from preventable diseases. Men and women need to hear the Gospel before they die. In order for change like that to happen in the world, there’s some change that needs to happen in us.”