Persecution of Christians is on the Rise Again

by admin on January 18, 2011

in Socio-Political Commentary

There has been an increase in violence against Christians in Middle Eastern and African countries Like Egypt and Iraq in the last few weeks. It’s interesting that there is very little government concern in those predominately Muslim nations about the “rising tide of Christian-phobia” sweeping the region! In fact authorities in these countries are very hesitant to act in protection of their Christian minorities because they fear popular reaction and that of the religious leaders and clerics.

What we in the west fail to grasp is that in the Islamic world, the separation of church and state simply doesn’t exist. Iraq for example is a theocratic state. To choose another faith, especially Christianity, is not only a religious statement but a statement of political dissent. To attack a Christian, in many Muslim societies, is an attack on the western society. Americans are constantly citing the separation of church and state (usually incorrectly I might add) but to many in countries like Iraq and Iran this distinction simply does not exist. We are all from Christian cultures, therefore we are all Christians.

Western governments have been slow to bring political pressure as well. Strange, given that when a nutty and generally misguided pastor of a tiny Florida church threatened to burn the Koran, all political hell broke loose. Calls came in from far and wide urging the man to release his leather bound hostages and restore world peace. Look I don’t like book burning in any form but how does the empty threat to burn a few texts compare to blowing up a crowd of human beings leaving a church after mass? The loudest protests to this point have come from Italy (Rome) of course, who plans to work to reduce aid to offending nations from the EU and the UN. Pope Benedict has also called on eastern governments to protect their Christian citizens.

Now I will of course offer the standard disclaimer that I’m not talking about all Muslims. Ironically I doubt that as a Christian I would receive the same courtesy in the Muslim world. The fact is, outside the context of Europe and North America, where political correctness reigns, there is an actual religious cleansing going on. But it’s not likely to become a cause celeb given the fact that the victims are Christians. Christianity is of course the only religion / culture that modern political correctness allows us mock, ridicule and generally persecute.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Dan January 19, 2011 at 2:36 pm

Awesome courage and love for God to share this out in the open with people. I would like to ask your thoughts on a couple things. I wonder if it would help the people to relate better to God if they could see Him not so much as "trying" to do anything, but deliberately succeeding in doing all He does, never making a second best decision, never trying and failing, but calling to men to repent, and that God has succeeded entirely in doing all He could wisely do to call all men to repent. In other words, if any man is damned into hell for all eternity, the reason is that the man refused to repent–that is, it is not God trying and failing to get through, but man choosing to act stubbornly in the face of what God did. So, the judgments of God are on the man for his refusal and not for God's failure to get His point through to the man's mind.

Also, I wonder if it would help the people to relate to God more if they could see God as being able to create man with a free will without giving up the ability to know the beginning from the end. In other words, the fact that He is the Alpha and the Omega, that He is timeless, that He is from eternity to eternity never changing, does not mean He has to blind Himself or disable His ability to know what we would choose before we choose it in order to give us free will. And, that the reason God created us is not that He failed to find out or know what choices we would make, but rather that He knew that making us, knowing our choices, was the best choice He could make. In other words, He could know ahead of time a man would perish and create him anyway knowing that his right to hate God infinitely was respected, that justice was properly and faithfully applied, and that God's glory and righteousness was vindicated. To choose not to create that man knowing he would sin would be tantamount to removing his free will. In other words, only those who would choose to repent, trust, and obey Christ would be created. If that were God's intention, wouldn't it be better to make a small change and create a human race consisting of only people who would never sin?

I think God knew we would sin before He created us. He knew we would betray Him. He knew He would have to go to the cross or create us just to send us all to hell. But, He chose to create us and go to the cross. I believe the choice was deliberate, purposeful, wise, righteous, loving, and the best choice that could possibly be made since God never makes second best decisions.

Does that make sense or is it helpful? I hope so. You're doing an awesome job stepping out in courage and love to share the Gospel to people who are not always nice. As much as I have loved encouragement and the thumbs-up signs in the past, sometimes I felt the greatest impact may have been at that interface connecting with people who absolutely hated what they were hearing since it challenged them to give up their sin and change.

Dan

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