“You must convert to Islam, pay a fine or face death by the sword,” is what many Iraqi Christian families (and others) are being told on a daily basis in Iraq.
Right now, terrified families and children are fleeing many parts of Iraq, as a cruel wave of terroristic violence sweeps freely across the land. Among them are many, many Christians. Christians have lived in the city of Mosul (Nineveh in the Bible) for nearly 2,000 years – today, it’s entirely empty of Christians. Fighters of the Islamic State (ISIS) have conquered all the Christian villages around Mosul in the Nineveh Plain – namely Qaraqosh, Talkeif, Tel Eskof, Qaramlesh, Bartella and Al Qosh. This international crisis is growing worse by the moment as Islamic State (formerly known as ISIS) marches toward Baghdad.
I have seen horrific pictures of beheaded children, crucifixions, and pick up trucks of severed heads and countless other atrocities. Many of those suffering at the hands of the Islamist terrorists are Christians. Some families trapped on a mountain have thrown their children off the mountain to their death rather than have them tortured to death by Islamic State (ISIS).
According to Business Insider, “ISIS is now thought to be the world’s richest terrorist organization, with an estimated $2 billion in funds” (June 27, 2014). The Scripture is clear about our responsibility is a situation like this:
Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body.
I, Paul, write this greeting with my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.
Please join me in praying for our Christian brothers and sisters in Iraq as they face this mass genocide. Pray for them like you would want believers to pray for you if you were in their situation. Many of the fleeing Christians left every earthly possession behind and are facing dehydration, malnutrition, and starvation.
Yesterday evening President Obama said that he has given the green-light to the Pentagon for the limited, targeted bombing if top military officials monitoring the shifting situation on the ground believe Islamic State (ISIS) continues to pose a serious threat to people in the northern Kurdish-controlled region or if militants threaten U.S. servicemen and personnel in Irbil, according to a U.S. official.
Committing our country to military action is an immense responsibility and an almost unbearable burden. The Scripture is clear about our responsibility here as well:
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior
1 Timothy 2:1-3
Please join me in praying for President Obama and all of our nations leaders as well as our military heroes as they seek to defend defenseless religious minorities in Iraq from being slaughtered.
Come, Lord Jesus,