The predominant rationale behind 70% of terrorist atrocities, is the antinomy of religion. The paradox of being peaceful, a bringer of life; along with the death of many innocent souls. There’s usually not an ounce of astonishment, when the attacker’s identity is revealed: a Muslim carry out an act of jihad against “infidels”, both non-Muslims and Muslims. Makes you wonder sometimes, why they commit such barbaric acts against their own brothers and sisters.
We all have to be truthful though, when confronting this. Every sect has in time past or current, carried out brutal acts, in the misguided name of religion. As Christians, despite the need to spread the gospel and confront other beliefs, a sad indictment on your faith, would be to judge and lump all Muslims as terrorist, due to the actions of a deluded few. The bible says in Matthew 7:3-5 (And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the note out of thy brother’s eye.) Christianity has had its fair share of savagery; the crusade of the Middle Ages and the Isis age, is all too familiar.
Our response should correspond to what Christ represents, not with a pompous and demeaning attitude, but with love and respect. After the Brussels attack, a man approached a Muslim woman in Croydon London, who wasn’t in Brussels and had nothing to do with the attack in Brussels; and had the gall to divulge his impertinence action on twitter. Only he knows his real intention.
Despite not trying to judge, we must be truthful whilst confronting other religion. Is Islam a peace loving religion? Most say yes; then why the terrorism acts? The herculean distinction between the Christian faith and Islam, is the issue of salvation; our salvation in Christianity is aided by the grace of God, through the blood of Jesus Christ; not by works, which is the case in Islam. That’s the key promoting influence within the terrorist act of jihad, to sell paradise. According to the encyclopaedia of Islam, jihad “‘is an act of pure devotion’, it is one of the gates to paradise,’ rich heavenly rewards are guaranteed for those who devote themselves to it, those who fall in jihad are the martyrs of the faith.” Hence delusional group carrying out atrocities to secure paradise. Because we are saved by grace and the blood of the Lamb, we ought to reach out to our Muslim folks; no amount of good works, would save a dying soul.
In approaching them, the log needs to be taken off our eyes, like Christians, they reject secular modernity e.g porn, divorce et al. Many Muslim head of states and average Muslims alike, have both condemned the terror activities. To demonstrate Christ love, Christians must stand against all hate crimes towards Muslims, whilst reaching out with a humble and loving nature towards innocent Muslim. To fight against terrorism as Christians, our hatred should be directed towards the demonic force leading the deluded souls of the terrorists. Satan is at work, we ought to meet him head-on, full force with prayer and fasting. Ephesians 6:12 (for we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places).
Though there are suggestions that the terrorist actions carried out by Muslims, is just a natural expression of Islamic beliefs; to avoid false testimony against our neighbours, they have to be the ones to define themselves. Whilst there should be no condemnation of innocent Muslims, there’s now a general consensus, that something is fundamentally wrong with Islamic interpretations. Ziauddin Sardar, a British Muslim said “we must acknowledge that the terrorists… are products of Islamic history. Only by recognizing this brutal fact would we realise that the fight against terrorism is also an internal Muslim struggle…” There also needs to be an understanding of the political issues involved in all these, in line with the rise of all the anger. Crises upon crises, fueling radicalisation, from the Rushdie affair in 1988 to the Gulf crises of the early nineties, Bosnia from 1992-95, then 9/11 and 7/7; and it keeps ongoing. Prayer is the only key for the advancement of God’s work in the Middle East and Muslim nations.
In combating terrorist actions, support should be lent to Muslims, who criticise the harsh interpretations of the quran. Though not agreeing with all its teachings, respect should be afforded to their religion. Notwithstanding, Christians should unapologetically commend the Christian faith through words and actions. With more Christians dying through Islamic atrocities, there’s a tendency to fear and be suspicious of all Muslim intentions. If as Christians we are to reach out to Muslim and spread the gospel of Christ, there should be no need to be paralyzed with fear, that prevents faith sharing.
Be Bold in sharing the news with our fellow Muslims.