The Persecuted Church Part I
“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong.”1
Several months ago Faarooq (name changed), a Daily Encounter subscriber wrote to me saying, “I converted from I'lam to Christianity 10 years ago and had to be very secretive about it until I managed to flee my homeland and came to France.
“Now at the age of 32 I have gone public about my Christian faith and started a debate on the net with my parents discussing the teachings of I'lam which Mohammed claimed were God's words. But now I am getting death threats.
“You see, the Koran says that people like me who were M'slims and converted to Christianity are worse than those born Christians. Ex-M'slims who were born in the M'slim faith and left it have to be slaughtered like cattle as a sacrifice to Allah, while those born Christians are lost but they'll give them a chance first to convert to I'lam before they kill them.
“My problem is that my visa is about to expire and I can’t renew it. Returning to my homeland will undoubtedly be a death sentence unless I convert back to I'lam. Do you have any advice as to what I can and/or should do?”
Sadly, my only advice to Faarooq was to see if he could obtain a visa to a Western country. I don’t know what happened to him because I haven’t heard from him since.
I wonder what I/we would do if the current of radical I'lam fanaticism should sweep across the country where I live? Would I remain faithful to the Lord or, to save my neck, would I convert to I'lam?
To be continued ….
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, today I pray for Faarooq and the multiplied thousands who also fear for their lives because they are Christians. Please keep them safe and give them the courage to be lights in a dark world … and grant that their persecutors when seeing Jesus in them, will want You for themselves. And please give me the courage always to be faithful to You no matter what my circumstances might turn out to be. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."
1. 1 Corinthians 16:13 (NIV).