Terrorism: A Christian Response

by Providence Crowder

There is a constant battle being waged between good and evil.  The latest terrorist attacks in San Bernadino, CA where 14 Americans were slaughtered by two Islamic extremists reminds us that evil is ever lurking.  We have a real and present enemy who is wrecking havoc in our lives, causing panic, exploiting our fears, and inciting hatred and division.

As an American, I am angry and fearful that those who hate us will continue the attacks, using any means necessary—even the cloak of religion to gain access to us only to destroy us.  However, as a Christian, I understand that our true adversary is not the Muslim, per se, but the devil and his host of demons who desire to kill, steal, and destroy.  The devil would love me to identify the enemy as Islam against the West, but as a Christian, I recognize that he is the real enemy behind acts of terror and our anger should be directed at him.  The Bible says, “For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” –Ephesians 6:10

After such an attack, there is a real temptation to turn to hatred and bigotry against Arabs and Muslims.  But we should resist the devil and he will flee—James 4:7.  Our true strength lies in the fact that as Christians, “we are not to be overcome by evil, but we are to overcome evil with good”—Romans 12:21.  There is no time like the present for Christians everywhere to seek out opportunities to exhibit the love of Christ to Arabs AND to others who have rejected Christ and are also in danger of the hellfire.

I cannot speak for the secularist whose moral foundation is undefined.  However, as a Christian, I can look to Scripture and say with certainty that we do not personally retaliate, seek revenge, or harbor hatred against Muslim people.  We hate their sin, for what are they but sinners deceived and blinded by the Evil One?  They have been lied to and many of them are committed to perform evil and murderous acts against humanity in the name of a lie.

Christians, we are at war with sin, not with Muslim people.  Now, if we are consumed with hatred for Muslim people, how can we ever follow Christ’s great commission to bring the Good News to all nations and people?  If we cannot complete this simple command, we are nothing more than self-serving frauds who have no use for our Bibles.  Nonetheless, people are very afraid and rightfully so.  And there are political opportunists who use their platform to exploit this fear at any expense.  But to the Christian, we cannot allow ourselves to be caught up in emotionalism and sensationalism.  We should not be found among the choir of voices calling for the persecution of Muslim people.

History is ripe with examples of persecution against Christians.  Even the Apostle Paul, whose letters attribute to nearly a third of the Bible’s New Testament, professed to believing he had a religious mandate to kill and terrorize Christians before he had a personal encounter with Jesus Christ.  It was his encounter with Jesus Christ that transformed him in a dramatic way.  Our brothers and sisters in Christ in every age have suffered greatly for the name of Christ.  We have privilege in this nation.  Let’s not use our privilege as an occasion for malice.

The Christian response to what ails our nation is not to look for political solutions to spiritual problems.  However, it is imperative that our government  responds  robustly to terrorist threats.  It is appropriate and necessary.  Our government should do everything within its power to protect its citizens from foreign and domestic threats.  Freedom is to be earnestly guarded and defended.  Every precaution should be taken before admitting anyone into this nation who could potentially do it’s citizens harm, and if after due diligence it is still impossible to determine if a foreigner is a threat, then safety supersedes hospitality.  There is much the government can do, but it can only do so much.  The government can only respond to the external effects of sin and can never address what would cause a person to commit terrorist acts in the first place.

The government’s response to terrorism, though necessary, brings only temporary well-being to a long-lasting problem.  Just when we think we are free from strife, there is always some other “ism,” some other evil mounting to take its place.  We need to seek God and ask God for every opportunity to bring hope, love, and forgiveness in the midst of our trials.

As a Christian, I love Muslim people, but I reject the tenets of the Muslim faith.  There should be no question that I believe that without salvation through Jesus Christ, Muslims will die in their sin.  I can attest the Bible declares that ANYONE, without salvation through Jesus Christ, will die in their sins.   I reject any evil, violent and perverted practices that some in Islam promote and that their Holy Book sanctions.  I reject the violent and perverted practices of anyone, regardless of national origin or creed. And because I love ALL people and do not want them to die in their sins, I feel it is imperative that they know that “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life”—John 3:16.  They can have peace, they can have eternal life, but only through a relationship with Jesus Christ.

Christians, the irony of Muslims settling in this nation over the past century, whether it be for economic reasons or ill will towards Americans as some have proven to be true, is that we can be missionaries to Muslims without traveling to often dangerous Muslim lands.  We should recognize that God may use us to witness Jesus Christ to those Muslims right here in America living among us . . . many of whom not only reject terrorism, but are also living in fear of terrorists just like we are, and experiencing the backlash of Muslim resentment, retaliation, and revenge from other frightened and angry Americans.

Going forward, it is a must that we let the Holy Spirit consume our hearts and erase our fears and doubts.  We cannot be so paralyzed and consumed with hatred and fear that we cannot heed these words of Jesus Christ: “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.  For if you love those who love you, what reward have you?”—Matthew 5:44-45.  We should pray for our leaders to have discernment and wisdom, for it is sorely lacking.

Christians, we can be patriots as well as peacemakers.  We can both shun the  evil works of terrorists AND love our neighbors with the love of Christ.  Therefore should we pray for God’s grace to extend to the heathen of ALL stripes.  We need healing, all of us, the victims of terrorism, their families, and their loved ones.  We need a savior, all of us, the Muslim, the Atheist, and every other unbelieving soul.  When Christians are obedient to the Word of God, God is glorified and lives are saved.  We need revival, a spiritual awakening in this nation.  Come Lord Jesus, come.

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Comments

  1. Totally disagree with you on this one Providence. Read Revelation very carefully and don’t be deceived. I am not saying this out of emotion but what scripture is unfolding. There needs to be a more thorough background check on people coming to the U.S. I think the American people have been very tolerant and no backlash to the Muslim community but to disregard the safety of the American people??? Isis already stated they will use the refugee crisis to infiltrate other countries including the U.S.

    • administrator says:

      Thanks for your comment Kathy. The title of this article is the CHRISTIAN response to terrorism The Christian should always evangelize to the lost, even Muslims living in our country when we are presented with the opportunity, and the government should always use every precaution to protect its citizens against terrorism and other threats. Godspeed.

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