Persecution is never a benign hatred absent of demonic activity.  Notice what is said by Peter: “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.  Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world” 1 Peter 5:8-9 (ESV).  The increase in persecution today marks an increase in demonic activity (Rev 12:12).  Pray for the strength and witness of our persecuted brothers and sisters who are facing the roaring lion.