The Christian Response to ISIS
Why We Love You & Why He Died for You
By Paul J. Nasrallah
Recently, ISIS released its 15th edition of Dabiq Magazine. Dabiq is an English-language publication put out by ISIS covering varying topics most often in support of global Jihad. This most recent publication strips away any mystery that existed regarding the intent and position of ISIS as it relates to Christianity. The 15th issue of the magazine is entitled "Breaking The Cross" with a special article labeled "Why We Hate You & Why We Fight You." So two questions confront the Bible-believing individual at this point. Why the intense hate and what should our reaction be?
The answer to why they hate is simple and, not surprisingly, it is clearly spelled out in the early portion of this publication. Dabiq states, "The fact is, even if you were to stop bombing us, imprisoning us, torturing us, vilifying us, and usurping our lands, we would continue to hate you because our primary reason for hating you will not cease to exist until you embrace Islam." Absolute submission to the ways of Islam is the only way that the extreme people of this faith will back down and relent their cries for war. They hate the west and Christianity specifically because we refuse to forgo all things we hold dear and submit to the lifestyle deemed "acceptable" in the Koran. Short of full submission, the two remaining options for the infidel are death or jizyah (infidel taxation). Personally, I find none of these options to be acceptable.
Throughout the article, not only is there a narrative of hate woven into the very core of their mission, but the word "hate" is used repeatedly. Extreme Islam has a hate for the west and the Christian faith that opposes it. This is the critical point where two faiths born in close proximity depart. Islam preaches hate while Christianity preaches love. It is impossible to find two faiths that have a more extreme practical application for the method by which they might convert individuals.
So what is an acceptable Bible-based reaction to Islamic hate? Putting aside all human emotion, fear, intolerance and frustration from the equation, how does a person who says they align closely with the thinking of Christ react to these extremists who seek to destroy us by any means necessary? What are we to do?
Love them. Love them. Love them. Mark 12:28-30 makes the case for our reaction and interaction with extremists crystal clear. The verse states:
One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, "What commandment is the foremost of all?" Jesus answered, "The foremost is, 'Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.' The second is this, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these."Loving God and loving all others is the premier commandment from God. It isn't merely a suggestion or best practice for life that believers are to follow. It is to be executed daily without fail. The verses in Mark and all their surrounding context make no exception based on conditions, feelings or projected outcomes. Bible-believing individuals are commanded to love all people. Jesus stated that there are no two commandments more important than loving God and loving others. Bible-believers show their love for God by following His commands. Love the sinner and you are in turn loving the Lord.
Loving a person who hates you so much that they'd be willing to kill you is a tall order — too tall for mankind to fulfill on our own. Christ loved to the point of death (John 3:16), yet he was fully God and fully man (John 1:14, 8:58). As Christ's witnesses here on earth, we should be willing to witness in love, even if death is a potential end result. As John 13:35 reminds us, the marker of a true disciple of Christ is found through the love that we display toward others.
We can't love others as fallen individuals (Romans 3:23) without prayer and petition to God. Even as Christ was dying on the cross He offered a prayer to God (Luke 23:34), asking Him to forgive His aggressors. We should be following suit and asking God for the ability to fulfill Mark 12:30 in order to exemplify Christ like character to the world, even when they want to kill us.
For anyone who has been, is, or may become a fighter for the cause of Islam, you must know that Christ loves you and we do as well. Christ gave His all for humanity (2 Corinthians 5:15) and this includes even those belonging to a faith that opposes him. Cling to John 3:16 and Christ will redeem even the most desperate soul.
Tags: Biblical-Truth | Christian-Life | Controversial-Issues | Other-Religions | Sin-Evil | Current-Issues
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