Tag Archive | Egypt

In The Wake of Jihad

On Wednesday, it was announced that American journalist James Foley was brutally beheaded by ISIS Islamic militants in Iraq. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Mr. Foley, and pray God’s strength and comfort for them during this time.

In the wake of these events, I can stay silent no longer.

Christian          I have done everything I can to contact those in leadership in our nation – the President, the Vice-President, our congressmen and senators — about the murder, the slaughter, and the disgrace that we are allowing to happen, first in Syria, and now in Iraq. It is a national shame, and America will give an account to God for allowing this to happen… and I’m not talking about what has happened in just the past few weeks.

We have sat back in this country and allowed the Islamic caliphate to almost take over. I stated years ago, when the “Arab Spring” started in Tunisia, that they were trying to rebuild the Islamic caliphate. (The Islamic caliphate starts in Tunisia, goes to Egypt, skips Saudi Arabia, then continues to Iraq, Syria, and Turkey — the old Ottoman Empire.) I’ve said for years that the Antichrist is coming out of a revived Ottoman Empire, not a revived Roman Empire. I stated when the “Arab Spring” happened that Hosni Mubarak should never have been overthrown in Egypt; we had a better friend in him than we did in Morsi, who the military in Egypt was forced to overthrow before he destroyed the country. America has stood back and allowed a 20-year friend, who had peace with Israel, to be lied about and run out of office in Egypt. Since 2012, we have watched the same scenario play out in Syria with President Assad.  While he was accused of using chemical weapons on his own people, there is much evidence reported to the contrary (including the testimony of a Syrian guest who visited Abba’s House in 2011). However, since coming into office, the Assad regime has not fired a shot at Israel or America.  The fact is that Syria has not exhibited any aggression toward Israel since 1973. The largest synagogue in the Middle East was in Aleppo, Syria, and was being protected by Assad. Yet, it is the rebels in Syria who were known for telling Christians to “either convert to Islam or die.” There was actually one video making it’s rounds on social media of a “rebel leader” who, while standing over his defeated foe, cut the man open, cut out his heart, and ate it. And THESE were the people we were supposed to be pulling for??? These were the people our government was purportedly supporting against the Assad regime??? Now, as a result, the largest group of Aramaic-speaking Christians — a genealogy of Christians who date back to the time of Christ — have been scattered and slaughtered under our watch.

What we as Americans have allowed to happen with regard to the slaughter of our fellow Christians, not only in Syria and Iraq, but in the Sudan as well — people by the thousands being driven from their homes by Muslims — has got to stop, even if it has to stop at gunpoint. There comes a time that you have to fight for your family, fight for what is right, and fight for what you believe in.

I have been saying for the past couple of years that what we are now seeing in the Middle East was coming. In 2011, I spend four Sunday nights discussing the coming storm of Islam in our world. Now it is coming to pass before our eyes. It’s time for every person reading my blog — Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, Tea Party, Independent… whoever you are — to speak up and let your voice be heard by the people you elected into political office, and start making a difference. It’s high time for those in our government to stop hiding behind political correctness, start calling these events, and the people involved in them by their proper names, and start using the power of our government, whether it be political, financial, humanitarian, or military, to help these Christians who are being slaughtered “en masse” by Muslims all over the Middle East. When I see rallies being held on our own American soil in support of known-terrorist organizations like Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, and ISIS… we have gone too far. When I see celebrity-types speaking out of defiant ignorance, and slamming our Israeli friends and allies, it is time to put the truth out there.

WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH!

I believe in peace, but even Jesus said, “I did not come to bring peace, but a sword” (Matthew 10:34). In Hebrews 12, Paul says, “You’ve not resisted unto blood” fighting against sin. I am telling you right now, it does not take a PhD or a rocket scientist to figure out that cutting off the heads of children and placing them on poles for public display, raping women and murdering their husbands, and forcing people from their homes and sending them to flee and die of starvation and thirst in the desert — all because they are Christians — is evil. This type of behavior should not and can not be tolerated in the world in which we live. Maybe you don’t agree with me now, but you probably will when they show up on our shores, and force your wives and daughters to wear a burka, and mutilate their bodies in the name of Allah.

It’s time for the church of Jesus Christ in America to WAKE UP!

It is time for those in our government to stop playing “political chess” with every two-bit dictatorship around the world, and stirring up the pot of political unrest in these places, overthrowing leaders who are less-than-perfect, and creating political vacuums that are being filled with the horrors of Islamic ideology. It’s time for the people of our great nation to demand more from their leadership than empty promises from empty suits. It’s time to start holding leaders accountable for the words they speak. It’s time for the people of America to start having an attention span that lasts longer than the last worthless sound-bite, and start demanding truth, accountability, justice, and righteousness from those in the seats of power in Washington D.C., and every capital building in every state across this great land. It’s time for the Church to be the Church, come together in unity, and be the force that has the ability to change the world with the most powerful weapon in the universe… the love of Jesus.

This link is to a video recorded on the floor of the Iraqi parliament on August 5, 2014. It is approximately three minutes long… please watch.

We cannot sit and do nothing any longer. We must take a stand against evil at home and abroad. We must pray fervently. We must all contact our representatives and leaders and demand more from them. Demand the truth be told. Demand action be taken. Demand that this country, firmly established and founded upon Judeo-Christian values, take a stand against the tyranny of Islam that is being perpetrated across the deserts of the Middle East, Europe, Africa, and is slowly seeping into the fabric of our great nation. While I am all for religious freedom, what I will not stand by silently and watch is for a political ideology that masks itself as a religion to invade our nation, and steal the hope of a better future from the rising generation.

May God bless America, protect our Christian brothers and sisters abroad, and grant peace to Jerusalem, all of Israel, and the Middle East.

Pastor Ron

 

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In Solidarity with Israel

RP & Paulette

Overlooking Jerusalem

I will bless those who bless you,
and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth
will be blessed through you. ~ Genesis 12:3 (NIV)

Here are a few interesting statistics…

  • Of the more than 850 Nobel Prize winners since 1901, better than 20% have been Jews.
  • One-fourth of The Fields Medal (mathematics) recipients have been Jewish.
  • One-third of the conductors of the leading symphonies in the United States have been Jewish.
  • Nearly two-thirds of Broadway’s longest running musicals were written by Jews.
  • 38% of “Best Director” Oscars have gone to Jewish directors.
  • Nearly 30% of Kennedy Center Honors have gone to Jews.
  • … I could go on and on (Grammys, Pulitzer Prizes, etc.)

With names like Albert Einstein, Jonas Salk, Sigmund Freud, Albert Sabin, Levi Strauss, and countless others, there is no denying that, in spite of their small percentage of the population (Jews comprise only 1/2 of 1% of the world’s population), the world has indeed been blessed beyond measure by the existence and contributions of the Jewish people. However, in spite of not just these accomplishments, but what the Bible plainly says about Israel and the Jews, I have observed with sadness the use of replacement theology among Western Christian conservatives. Replacement theology is the belief that the church replaced Israel, and that Israel no longer exists. One only has to read Romans 9, 10, 11, and Ephesians 2 to understand that this belief is totally without Biblical support.

The rise of replacement theology had its roots in the edicts of Constantine who banned the observance of Jewish holy days that were observed in the early church. Across the Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and even Protestant worlds, the appalling silence during WWII and the Holocaust gives witness to their embrace of replacement theology.

Dachau 2

Dachau Concentration Camp, Germany

“First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak for me.”

~ Martin Niemöller, German Protestant Pastor

Many voices coming from the Arab Church in the Middle East embrace replacement theology… simply stated, “the Jewish people have no claim to that small parcel of land (less than 1% of the Middle East)— they should be driven out.” However, not only is this approach contrary to scripture, it flies in the face of history. When has there ever been a country of Palestine? If East Jerusalem belongs to a “Palestine”, why didn’t the Arabs claim it from Jordan from 1948 to 1967? For nineteen years there was never a claim.

A brief look at history — including scripture — reveals the following facts:

  • God gave the land to Israel forever. Their ownership is unconditional, while possession of the land carried conditions.
  • There is no Palestine in Middle Eastern history.
  • The Ottoman Empire ruled the land for centuries until they were defeated by the British early in the 20th century.
  • The Ottoman’s were Turks. Can anyone find a Palestinian claim for the land in the entire Ottoman history? Where was the outcry then for a Palestine?
  • Early in the 20th century, the Balfour Declaration partitioned the defeated Ottoman empire into lands for Jews and Arabs.

All of the modern Middle East — with the exception of Egypt, Israel, and Syria — was carved up by Winston Churchill…

Iran – Persia
Iraq – Part of Assyria
Jordan – Intended to be the Palestinian territory, it is now ruled by the Hashemites from Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia – Midian

Palestine was how the Romans referred to the land in 116 AD.

RISE OF TERROR AND ANTI-SEMITISM

In spite of overwhelming evidence, some naïve evangelicals and their liberal friends choose to ignore Palestinian support of the terror that brought down the Twin Towers. They totally reject Biblical eschatology that clearly prophesies the very scenario we are experiencing today. Think about it… while every special interest group is vociferously defended (homosexuals, environmentalists, abortionists, Muslims, etc.), where are the voices for millions of displaced Christians from the Sudan, Ethiopia, Iran, Iraq, Egypt, the West Bank, Afghanistan and other Muslim countries (not to mention the current atrocities against Christians in North Korea)? Where are all those so-called Palestinians from? There are now more people claiming Palestinian heritage than lived in Israel before the 6-Day War.

THE TRUTH

The fact is… Islam wants Jerusalem, or Al Quds as they call it. We have watched the Muslim Brotherhood try to destroy Egypt and take down Syria because of their secular government. This same philosophy is embraced in Gaza and other places in and near Israel.

IMPOSSIBILITY

There can be a Palestine territory in Israel much like the French Territory in Canada. However, the land is too small, too close, and too infiltrated with terrorists to ever have a separate entity. The people of Israel have a right to protect themselves, and such a scenario would make viable defense that much more difficult.

Evangelicals claiming the authority of Scripture would do well to embrace the fact that the only Biblical position is support of Israel. While I do recognize that there has been injustice and unfairness on both sides, the land belongs to Israel and the Jewish people ever since God promised it to Abraham in Genesis 12. As believers in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, we have no logical choice than to stand on the side of Israel with regard for their birthright.

POST SCRIPT

Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?
You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye. ~ Matthew 7:1-5

Landscape#1For all of their cries about justice, equality, and fairness, certain evangelicals and others who oppose the Jews might do well to focus their attention on America. Are they prepared to return lands to native Americans? What about the slaughter of Native Americans at places like Wounded Knee? How does one criticize the concentration camps of Germany, yet say nothing of the American “reservation system’? (It is a FACT that the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation (South Dakota) has the highest poverty rate of any place in the Western Hemisphere except for Haiti.) In light of the way our government has treated the indigenous people of this nation, the voices that accuse and criticize Israel for “human rights violations” are crying out, not from a  moral high-ground, but from the quicksand of hypocrisy.

Pastor RonRP

Ducks, Martyrs, & Suiting Up for the Wrong Fight

By now, nearly everyone in America that watches television is familiar with the controversy surrounding Phil Robertson, the patriarch of the Duck Dynasty empire. For those of you that have been hiding in the hills for the last month or so, let me re-cap:

Phil Robertson was interviewed by GQ Magazine, In the course of the interview, Mr. Robertson, a devout Christian, shared his beliefs regarding the sin of homosexuality. A&E (the network that owns and airs Duck Dynasty) issued a statement, saying they disagreed with Mr. Robertson, affirmed their support of the LGBT community and lifestyle, and subsequently, announced the suspension of Mr. Robertson from the Duck Dynasty program. Immediately following this announcement, social media erupted with outpourings of support for Mr. Robertson. Boycotts of the A&E Network were organized, and shouts of everything from intolerance, to Constitutional rights, to Christian persecution were being screamed across the political and social spectrum. Subsequently, within days, the network announced that it was going to suspend the suspension, and allow Mr. Robertson back on the program. This announcement was met with mixed feelings by the public. Many Christians felt vindicated. Many felt A&E’s “explanation” didn’t go far enough, and felt the network needed to out-and-out apologize. Regardless, America’s favorite camo-wearing family was back, and now – just a few weeks later – most of the furor has died down.

Before I go on, let me be clear about a couple of things. I share the Biblical position of many Christians (Mr. Robertson included) that homosexuality is sin. I dislike any time a Christian is vilified and trashed in the liberal media, simply for stating their beliefs. I am saddened by the fact that public discourse in this nation has been reduced to rabid political correctness and misleading sound bites portraying Christians as “unintelligent and backwards”, while radical leftists are portrayed as “courageous and principled”. The Bible talks about “those who call evil good, and good evil” (Isaiah 5:20). That is the day we are living in… I get that.

But if we as the western church are going to be outraged, I fear we have chosen the wrong target for our righteous ire. Many Christians in America are very good at “putting on the whole armor of God”. However, once it is on, we have a bad habit of picking the wrong battle to fight. No Christian likes to see another Christian mistreated in the press, however…

Christ1Where was the outrage when Coptic Christians were being slaughtered in Egypt during the “Arab Spring”, following the ouster of President Morsi?

Where was the outrage when 80 people were executed in North Korea for “crimes” such as possessing a Bible?

Where is the same indignation for the estimated 50,000 – 70,000 Christians currently imprisoned in North Korean prison camps that we show when we see pictures of WWII Nazi concentration camps?

Where is the outrage for the fact that killing Christians on Christmas in countries like Iraq is practically a “tradition” by Islamists?

Where is the outrage for the fact that the Islamic “rebels” that we so vocally support in Syria are the same people responsible for the wholesale slaughter of Christians in that country?

Where are those voices asking why, as of 2011, two-thirds of the Christians in Iraq (the country America “liberated”) have vanished (believed either murdered or fled)?

According to Open Doors 2014 World Watch List, 9 of the top 10 countries in which Christians are most persecuted are Muslim majority states, with Islamic extremism listed as the driving force behind the persecution.

Wake up, people! Our brothers and sisters in Christ are being martyred on a regular basis in nations like Syria, Pakistan, North Korea, Iraq, Somalia, Nigeria, Egypt, and many more, and we have remained silent by comparison. By many accounts, worldwide Christian martyrdom has doubled in the last year, yet the church is not discussing it. We have not held our media to account to report on these atrocities, while they are all too complicit in carrying the water of the left-wing agenda, focusing on “hard news” items like “gay-bashing”, “climate change”, and every other politically-correct sideshow out there.

Martin Luther King, Jr. once said…

In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies,
but the silence of our friends.

While the suspension of a popular Christian millionaire from a TV show for espousing his beliefs is objectionable in this free nation, it pales in comparison to the plight of Christians in third-world countries who, for them, a stand for Christ could come at the cost of their next breath. It’s time for American Christians to get our priorities straight. It’s time for us to wake up to the fact that Jesus didn’t die so that we could be entertained… He died to give us life more abundantly – to give us a life that takes up our cross daily, and follows His example.

German Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer once said…

Silence in the face of evil is itself evil.
Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.

We must be silent no more.

In Search of… The Blessing

bat-creekAs believers in Jesus, and joint-heirs with Him, we have the rights of sons and daughters of the King. The same blessings that applied to the nation of Israel in Scripture apply to us as believers as well…

I was almost a year old when David Ben-Gurion declared the establishment of the State of Israel. Almost a year to the day later, the UN voted by majority vote to admit Israel as a member. Here are some interesting facts about Israel that you may not know:

  • For all of the terrorist attacks we hear about, Israel has one of the highest life-expectancy rates in the world. At #4, it is far ahead of our own United States (a distant #33).
  • The only three U.S. states geographically smaller than Israel are Rhode Island, Delaware, and Connecticut. However, in 2012, Israel had the 43rd largest economy in the world (based on gross domestic product).
  • Israel has the highest standard of living of any country in the Middle East, and has the third highest in all of Asia.

So how can this be? Consider the words of Mark Twain. In 1898, Mr. Twain was living in Austria, where he witnessed vicious anti-Semitic attacks, and subsequently penned an article entitled “Stirring Times In Austria” (Harper’s Magazine, March 1898). One of the responses he received was from an American Jewish lawyer who asked, “Will you kindly tell me why, in your judgment, the Jews have thus ever been, and are even now, in these days of supposed intelligence, the butt of baseless, vicious animosities?” Twain’s response was in the form of an essay titled “Concerning the Jews”. He stated:

“If the statistics are right, the Jews constitute but one percent of the human race. It suggests a nebulous dim puff of star dust lost in the blaze of the Milky Way. Properly, the Jew ought hardly to be heard of; but he is heard of, and has always been heard of. He is as prominent on the planet as any other people, and his commercial importance is extravagantly out of proportion to the smallest of his bulk. His contributions to the world’s list of great names in literature, science, art, music, finance, medicine, and abstruse learning are also way out of proportion to the weakness of his numbers.
He has made a marvelous fight in the world, in all the ages; and has done it with his hands tied behind him. He could be vain of himself, and be excused for it. The Egyptian, the Babylonian, and the Persian rose, filled the planet with sound and splendor, then faded to dream stuff and passed away; the Greek and the Roman followed, and made a vast noise, and they are gone; other peoples have sprung up and held their torch high for a time, but it burned out, and they sit in twilight now, or have vanished.
The Jew saw them all, beat them all, and is now what he always was, exhibiting no decadence, no infirmities of age, no weakening of his parts, no slowing of his energies, no dulling of his alert and aggressive mind. All things are mortal but the Jew; all other forces pass, but he remains. What is the secret of his immortality?”

Right now in our world, the Middle East is as unsettled as it has been in decades. Between uncertainty in Egypt and Libya, violence and revolution in Syria, protracted war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and incessant saber-rattling in Iran, the survival of Israel seems to be nothing short of a miracle.

“So, what does this have to do with me?” you may ask.

The mystery of Israel’s survival is not just that they have survived, but that their survival is a living picture that, in Christ, you will live and not die. Your life is meaningful and full of purpose. God made you, chose you, and loved you from the foundation of the world, and no amount of persecution, tribulation, or trial will snatch you from His hand. In Christ, you are a child of the King— princes and princesses, royal priests, and heirs to all that God has to give you.

A Middle East In Turmoil

KS77759Normally, my intent in blogging is to encourage and strengthen those who follow The Heart of Abba. However, there are those times when I feel it is important to discuss current events and unreported information, particularly when it pertains to events unfolding in the Middle East.

Today is one of those times.

There is startling, disturbing, and unreported information (except through a few outlets such as Glenn Beck’s, The Blaze) coming out of the Middle East and Egypt. I believe that it is important for all of us to understand what is going on, to understand the times we are living in, and to make informed decisions about the people and governments that we support, at home and around the world.

First of all, the arrest of former Egyptian president Morsi happened because he suspended the new Egyptian Constitution, and instituted Sharia Law. His followers declared open season on the Christians living in Egypt. Even though much more has happened, we know that last Friday (August 16th… the Muslim Holy Day), Muslim Brotherhood thugs burned 50 Christian churches, killed approximately 600 Christians, raped two teenage Christian sisters, beheaded a statue of the Virgin Mary, and burned dozens of businesses owned by Christians. The Egyptian military has stepped in, and is now trying to locate, arrest, and punish members of the now-illegal Muslim Brotherhood. Some friends of mine in Cairo have informed me that Morsi , supported by the Muslim Brotherhood, actually stole the election through fear and intimidation of voters.

It is important to remember that this man (Morsi) was supported by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the present administration, Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and John Kerry (D-MA). Democrats and Republican leaders alike declared that the Muslim Brotherhood would be friends and allies, and touted the glories of the “Arab Spring”.

Once again, we see a total lack of understanding on the part of bureaucrats in regard to the fanatical nature of extreme Islam.

Having made 25 trips to the Middle East, I have many Muslim friends who love peace, but they also are intimidated, and live in fear of extremist groups like the Muslim Brotherhood.

The truth and reality of the matter is that radical Islam must be met with force.

Right now, the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, Hezbollah, and Al-Qaeda desire to take over Egypt, Syria, Jordan, and all of North Africa, thus having Israel completely surrounded. The only hope we have to stop a massive slaughter of Christians, Jews, and Alawi (and other moderate) Muslims in the Middle East is a strong military response similar to the one we see in Egypt, and (although it is disputed) even in Syria. Christians in these Middle Eastern countries are begging for help, and for the West to support the military as it tries to protect them from these extremists.

If America chooses to side with the Muslim Brotherhood and Morsi, Egypt will become another Sudan, where tens of thousands of Christians were slaughtered while the West looked on silently.

Would you please join me in prayer for these dear people, many of whom are our Christian brothers and sisters? But beyond praying, would you put your faith into action and advise your own legislators to support the military in Egypt as it tries to restore constitutional government and democracy to that land?