A friend of mine, Apostle Nancy Minor has an associate in Pakistan who was in peril because of the response to Pastor Terry Jones in Florida who burned a Koran. It's a difficult situation. I can see both sides...but, I also know that without mercy Justice cannot reign.
Read this whole thing Please:
An Open Letter…
While our hearts have went out to Japan and our attention focused on growing political unrest in several nations, something has taken place here on the home front that many have not even been aware of…
You may remember back to 9/11/2010 when a man who runs a religious organization in Fla. threatened to burn the Quran (Koran if you prefer.) There was much concern over the effects of such an act and what harm it could bring to our troops stationed in the Muslim lands, less mentioned, but also of concern was the immediate backlash this would cause Christians in Muslim dominated regions. Mr. Terry Jones agreed and gave his word he would not do this, after being contacted and visited by several ministers.
However for reasons known only to his own mind and heart, he decided to go ahead with the burning this past March 20th. It went fairly unnoticed in America as we are inundated daily with CNN’s reports fueling political agendas against Nuclear Power as the saga continues in Japan and we see more news about a nuclear meltdown threat rather than the threat to the nucleus of human hope and dignity with all the suffering and loss and devastation they have borne, as well as all the nations that are in political chaos from riots against their governments.
However, it has been picked up on a Pakistani blog (and who knows where else.) The results have been an immediate reprisal. I was still in the dark, unaware of any of this until I received an email pleading for me to intervene somehow and get a message out to Mr. Jones and anyone else. That email came from with in Pakistan and was sent by a Christian who is both Pastoring and evangelizing, traveling and crisscrossing the land to hold meetings within the Sectors that have been blocked off as “non Muslim” areas. Here is where Christians are permitted to live. Much like the old days of racial prejudice where certain people were “discouraged” from moving into “certain neighborhoods,” except much more intensified.
Here is the letter:
Dear Believer and partners.
Greeting in the mercy and Matchless grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Once again we are sadly writing of a persecution event here in Pakistan , which happened because of the Burning of Quran by American Pastor in Florida "Pastor Terry Jone" , The Muslims of Pakistan are really at their extreme position to take down all Christians of Pakistan and there is very wildly protest going on Pakistan and even on media.
This evening we had received text message from Hydrebad city, where Muslim attacked a Church where it was filled with people and Congregation was worship and service was taking place, they opened fire at the people and burnt the Church resulting in the killing of at least 4 people, and they have given message that their revange is not yet stopped and this persecution will continue.
It is also been reported that Muslim Extremist organization are preparing for a massive attack or BIG BOOM against christian.
So please keep on praying for our safety, and if possible please send this message to pastor terry Jone and other minister with same mentality not to do these kind of things either it is not "eye for an eye" for the Muslim, it is many lifes just of piece of papers to be burnt.
God Bless you. Pastor “S.P.” (Identity Hidden to protect him) Pakistan
I then contacted Mr. Jones’s organization with a preface and sent the letter to them.
My preface read:
Dear Mr. Jones- I received an email from my spiritual son in Pakistan. I am forwarding it to you. He asked that you be contacted for him. So I am doing so on his behalf.
Perhaps you have forgotten the scripture that says we do not war against flesh and blood? Teaching Truth, Living Godly, and Sharing Jesus in a spirit of Love and Humility as well as being a tireless advocate for the Kingdom and for the persecuted brethren go a long way in changing things.
Just as you were so warned, lives of Christians who are in Muslim lands are now like so many pieces of paper to be burned... I hope that you are spending much time earnestly praying for their safety, as well as the deliverance of all those in the grips of Islam who would be free...
Here is THEIR response to the preface and Pastor S P's letter:
Thank you for your mail. We follow these events very carefully and do not take our actions lightly. We know of the ongoing persecution of Christians around the world which goes largely unnoticed, and is a constant terror in Pakistan. This is what we are drawing attention to. Would you blame Christ for the deaths of the early Christian martyrs? Would you blame Martin Luther for uprisings that came from his stand? Or the deaths in the civil right's movement on Martin Luther King?
These are serious times we live in, much more dangerous than the years before WWII. How long do we continue the appeasement? Churchill said it is like feeding the crocodile hoping it will eat it last.
God Bless and Keep you, Sir, and your people in Pakistan. We also have suffering friends and loved ones in danger around the world. We are fighting a big battle - for the future of our children and grandchildren.
352 371 2487
Delusion and deception is a stronghold that finds it’s way into people’s minds and hearts when they think themselves better than, or above… and choose to ignore truth by choosing their own brand of truth.
Scriptures are clear on some issues concerning the handling of things. But first let’s check out a piece of history.
Gen 16:3 And Sarai Abram's wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.
Gen 16:4 And he went in unto Hagar, and she conceived: and when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes.
Gen 16:8 And he said, Hagar, Sarai's maid, whence camest thou? and whither wilt thou go? And she said, I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai.
Gen 16:9 And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.
Gen 16:10 And the angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude.
Gen 16:11 And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction.
Gen 16:12 And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.
Gen 17:18 And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee!
Gen 17:19 And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.
Gen 17:20 And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.
Gen 17:21 But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year.
Gen 21:9 And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking.
Gen 21:10 Wherefore she said unto Abraham, Cast out this bondwoman and her son: for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac.
Gen 21:11 And the thing was very grievous in Abraham's sight because of his son.
Gen 21:12 And God said unto Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called.
Gen 21:13 And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed.
Gen 21:14 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and took bread, and a bottle of water, and gave it unto Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, and the child, and sent her away: and she departed, and wandered in the wilderness of Beer-sheba.
Gen 21:15 And the water was spent in the bottle, and she cast the child under one of the shrubs.
Gen 21:16 And she went, and sat her down over against him a good way off, as it were a bowshot: for she said, Let me not see the death of the child. And she sat over against him, and lifted up her voice, and wept.
Gen 21:17 And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is.
Gen 21:18 Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation.
Gen 21:19 And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water; and she went, and filled the bottle with water, and gave the lad drink.
Gen 21:20 And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer.
Gen 25:7 And these are the days of the years of Abraham's life which he lived, a hundred threescore and fifteen years.
Gen 25:8 Then Abraham gave up the ghost, and died in a good old age, an old man, and full of years; and was gathered to his people.
Gen 25:9 And his sons Isaac and Ishmael buried him in the cave of Machpelah, in the field of Ephron the son of Zohar the Hittite, which is before Mamre;
In this story you see the Seed of Promise and the Seed of Impatience! So he went into Hagar whose name (reputation) was “flight.” (BDB Definition)
We walk by Faith not by flight, er I mean sight!
Now, I truncated for space and time, highlighting the texts that pull this together…
God made a promise to both Hagar and Abraham that her son would be a nation. He revealed Ishmael’s temperament and attitude to her while the child was yet in the womb:
Gen 16:12 And he will be a wild man; his hand will be [emphasis mine]against every man, and every man's hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.
(GW) He will be as free and wild as an untamed donkey. He will fight with everyone, and everyone will fight with him. He will have conflicts with all his relatives."
Wild- (I think of untamable and rebellious) running wild; like the wild ass. His hand [signifying the open one (indicating power, means, direction, etc.)] BDB and Strongs
God reiterated the promise to Abraham. Even though Ishmael was “sent away” yet when Abraham died, he and Isaac were there and BOTH buried him.
The followers of Mohammed are direct descendants of Ishmael… who was born of Abraham. So, you see there is a spiritual connection of a struggle of the natural against the supernatural, the promise against the impatience, the true against the counterfeit.
Yet, God was with Ishmael. The Word says so! So, what should be our response? It should not be fleshly fits of ego and supposed power! It should be measured and deliberate, with an end to see as many of Ishmael’s kin saved and brought into right relationship with their relatives (which are the Jews and the Christians!) as well as with God Himself.
Now let’s look at Jesus’ handling of “enemies.”
Bible in Basic English
Mat 13:24 And he gave them another story, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like a man who put good seed in his field:
Mat 13:25 But while men were sleeping, one who had hate for him came and put evil seeds among the grain, and went away.
Mat 13:26 But when the green stem came up and gave fruit, the evil plants were seen at the same time.
Mat 13:27 And the servants of the master of the house came and said to him, Sir, did you not put good seed in your field? how then has it evil plants?
Mat 13:28 And he said, Someone has done this in hate. And the servants say to him, Is it your pleasure that we go and take them up?
Mat 13:29 But he says, No, for fear that by chance while you take up the evil plants, you may be rooting up the grain with them.
Mat 13:30 Let them come up together till the getting in of the grain; and then I will say to the workers, Take up first the evil plants, and put them together for burning: but put the grain into my store-house.
Who is the man? Why it is God! Where is His field? It is the Earth and men’s hearts! Who is the enemy who hates him? The devil. What does the enemy do? He comes to steal kill and destroy. He comes to steal the seed, and he comes to plant evil seed. (John 10:10, Matt 13: 8-9, Luke 8: 11-12, Matt 13:25)
Did Jesus advocate forcibly removing the evil seed? No! His concern was for the true Seed and true Wheat, that it could possibly be harmed by such action. He guarded that seed, and advised take no premature action until the right time.
Thus should be our concern also.
Why shouldn’t we burn the Quran? But what about those who burned their curious arts and books? Yes, let’s look at that!
Act 19:14 And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so.
Act 19:15 And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?
Act 19:16 And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.
Act 19:17 And this was known to all the Jews and Greeks also dwelling at Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.
Act 19:18 And many that believed came, and confessed, and showed their deeds.
Act 19:19 Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.
Notice first that seven men who did not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, thought to use the name to make themselves look good…but the result was quite the opposite! This incident was noised all over amongst the Greeks and the Jews and it caused a new found Holy Reverence for the Name of Jesus and a great terror also, because they had discounted Him before! They were convicted and repentant, to the point of confessing their involvement with darkness and witchcraft. They brought THEIR OWN books and burned them. The Apostles did not go and forcefully TAKE their books away and make a public show of burning them. No, they (the Apostles) instead received their repentance and out of that repentance was born a desire amongst themselves to present the offending items to be burned.
We are not in the stead of the Holy Spirit! Repentance is a GIFT that only HE can give.
(Acts 5:31, 2 Tim. 2:25, Act 11:18 When they heard this, they quieted down, and praised God, saying, "So God has given even the gentiles the repentance that leads to life." )
We need to stand boldly and declare the Truth in LOVE, not afraid to speak truly and live truly!
So how DO we fight? Paul gave us the answer:
2Co 10:3 For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons.
2Co 10:4 For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds,
2Co 10:5 [Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One),
2Co 10:6 Being in readiness to punish every [insubordinate for his] disobedience, when your own submission and obedience [as a church] are fully secured and complete.
Did you catch verse 6? 2Co 10:6 And2532 having2192 in1722 a readiness2092 to revenge1556 all3956 disobedience,3876 when3752 your5216 obedience5218 is fulfilled.4137
Being ready to “ retaliate and punish” others disobedience when our own attentive hearkening, that is, (by implication) compliance or submission: - obedience as a church has been fulfilled. Hmm sounds like – he who is without sin, cast the first stone!
We are not to throw stones at Islam that only makes people dig their heels in more. We need to Live the Truth, Love the Truth more than our own selves (see Rev. 12:11) and Speak the Truth in Love, not backing down, but not attacking people, but rather attacking in our closets the spirit behind the people and their beliefs, and being a tireless Advocate for the Persecuted Brethren, and for the Jewish People and Israel. Write letters and make phone calls to Govt. officials, politely voicing dismay over the atrocities being foisted upon our brothers and sisters in other lands. PRAY! Plead the Blood over them. Make others aware so they can become involved.
Two excellent resources are Voice of the Martyrs and Open Doors both of which I subscribe to and participate with.
Voice Of the Martyrs http://www.persecution.com/
As Paul admonished Timothy I exhort, plead with and admonish you:
Phi 2:1 So by whatever [appeal to you there is in our mutual dwelling in Christ, by whatever] strengthening and consoling and encouraging [our relationship] in Him [affords], by whatever persuasive incentive there is in love, by whatever participation in the [Holy] Spirit [we share], and by whatever depth of affection and compassionate sympathy,
Phi 2:2 Fill up and complete my joy by living in harmony and being of the same mind and one in purpose, having the same love, being in full accord and of one harmonious mind and intention.
Phi 2:3 Do nothing from factional motives [through contentiousness, strife, selfishness, or for unworthy ends] or prompted by conceit and empty arrogance. Instead, in the true spirit of humility (lowliness of mind) let each regard the others as better than and superior to himself [thinking more highly of one another than you do of yourselves].
Phi 2:4 Let each of you esteem and look upon and be concerned for not [merely] his own interests, but also each for the interests of others.
Phi 2:5 Let this same attitude and purpose and [humble] mind be in you which was in Christ Jesus: [Let Him be your example in humility:]
Phi 2:6 Who, although being essentially one with God and in the form of God [possessing the fullness of the attributes which make God God], did not think this equality with God was a thing to be eagerly grasped or retained,
Phi 2:7 But stripped Himself [of all privileges and rightful dignity], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being.
Phi 2:8 And after He had appeared in human form, He abased and humbled Himself [still further] and carried His obedience to the extreme of death, even the death of the cross!
Yes it IS our fight! Yes you ARE your brother’s keeper! Yes, your actions, or lack of them DO have lasting consequences!
Be SALT and LIGHT! Not gasoline poured on hearts already inflamed with hatred. “We Christians have the unmistakable “scent” of Christ, discernible alike to those who are being saved and to those who are heading for death. To the latter it seems like the deathly smell of doom, to the former it has the refreshing fragrance of life itself…” 2Cor. 2:15-16 J.B. Phillips
Open your eyes, your heart, your very self to include those you may never meet this side of Heaven, but who risk torture and death daily for the Name of Christ.
Make a Difference!
Speaking the Truth in Love,
Imprinting the World with the Love of God.