Last Friday, April 24, we remembered how exactly 100 years ago the last historic Muslim caliphate, the Ottoman Empire, tried to cleanse its empire of Christian minorities — Armenians, Assyrians, and Greeks — even as we stand by watching as the new caliphate, the Islamic State, resumes the genocide.
And in both cases, the atrocities were and are being committed in the name of Islam.
In November, 1914, during WWI, the Ottoman caliphate issued a fatwa, or Islamic decree, proclaiming it a “sacred duty” for all Muslims to “massacre” infidels — specifically naming the “Christian men” of the Triple Entente, “the enemies of Islam” — with promises of great rewards in the afterlife.
The same Koran verses that the Islamic State and other jihadi outfits regularly quote permeated the Ottoman fatwa, including: “Slay the idolaters wherever you find them — seize them, besiege them, and be ready to ambush them” (9:5) and “O you who have believed! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are but friends of each other; and whoever among you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them” (5:51) — and several other verses that form the Islamic doctrine of Loyalty and Enmity.
Many Muslims still invoke this doctrine; it commands Muslims to befriend and aid fellow Muslims, while having enmity for all non-Muslims (one Islamic cleric even teaches that Muslim husbands must hate their non-Muslim wives, while enjoying them sexually).
As happens to this day under the new caliphate — the Islamic State — the Ottoman caliphate crucified, beheaded, tortured, mutilated, raped, enslaved, and otherwise massacred countless “infidel” Christians. The official number of Armenians killed in the genocide is 1.5 million; hundreds of thousands of Greeks and Assyrians each were also systematically slaughtered (see this document for statistics).
Will the outrageous terrorizing, the cruel torturing, the driving of women into the harems, the debauchery of innocent girls, the sale of many of them at eighty cents each [today the Islamic State sells enslaved Christians and Yazidis for as little as $43], the murdering of hundreds of thousands and the deportation to, and starvation in, the deserts of other hundreds of thousands, the destruction of hundreds of villages and cities, will the willful execution of this whole devilish scheme to annihilate the Armenian, Greek and Syrian [or Assyrian] Christians of Turkey – will all this go unpunished?
A century later, consider how Christian minorities today are still being systematically decapitated, crucified, tortured, raped, and enslaved — also under the pretext of war. In every Arab nation the U.S. has helped oust (secular) autocrats — Iraq, Libya, Syria — indigenous Christian minorities have been massacred by the jihadi elements that were once contained by Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, and Bashar Assad (read here for details).
The Islamic State’s recent slaughter of some 30 Christian Ethiopians in Libya — and two months earlier, 21 Christian Egyptians — is merely the latest serving of Christian persecution in post “Arab Spring” Libya.
Nor is this limited to the Arab world. In Muslim-majority northern Nigeria, Muslims, spearheaded by the Islamic organization Boko Haram, are waging a savage jihad on the Christian minorities in their midst. Boko Haram’s stated goal is to cleanse northern Nigeria of all Christians — a goal that should be reminiscent by now.
Finally, to understand how the Ottoman Genocide of Christians is representative of the modern-day plight of Christians under Islam in general, the Islamic State in particular, one need only read the following words written in 1918 by President Theodore Roosevelt — but read “Armenian” as “Christian” and “Turkish” as “Islamic”:
The Armenian [Christian] massacre was the greatest crime of the war, and the failure to act against Turkey [the Islamic world] is to condone it… the failure to deal radically with the Turkish [Islamic] horror means that all talk of guaranteeing the future peace of the world is mischievous nonsense.
Indeed, if we “fail to deal radically” with the “horror” currently being visited upon millions of Christians around the Islamic world — which in some areas has reached genocidal proportions according to the United Nations — we “condone it” and had better cease talking “mischievous nonsense” of a utopian world of peace and tolerance.
Put differently, silence is always the ally of those who would commit genocide. In 1939, on the eve of World WWII, Hitler rationalized his genocidal plans against the Jews, when he reportedly asked: “Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?”
And who speaks today of the ongoing annihilation of Christians under Islam?
The Israelis will destroy several Iranian nuclear facilities and my educated guess is that they will do so before the end of this year.
Israel has no margin of error when it comes to nuclear reactors in nations that threaten its existence. While President Obama does everything in his power to enable Iran to create its own nuclear weapons, it is a good idea to recall that in June 1981 the Israelis destroyed a reactor in Iraq. It was the first air strike against such a facility. In September 2007, the Israelis destroyed a Syrian reactor. There was no reprisal in either case.
From Wednesday, April 22 to Friday April 24 the Israelis struck Hizbollah and Syrian military targets in the Walamoun Mountains on the Syrian-Lebanese border. The calculations were that the location, a site for long-range missiles, would be safer from the Israelis. They were wrong.
In September 2014, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the United Nations General Assembly warning “don’t be fooled by Iran’s manipulative charm offensive. It’s designed for one purpose and for one purpose only. To lift the sanctions and remove the obstacles to Iran’s path to the bomb.”
“Once Iran produces atomic bombs, all the charm and all the smiles will suddenly disappear. They’ll just vanish. It’s then that the ayatollahs will show their true face and unleash their aggressive fanaticism on the entire world.” He offered a comparable message to a joint meeting of Congress in March of this year.
Is anyone listening? Not President Obama. On April 25, writing in The Wall Street Journal, Mortimer Zuckerman, the chairman and editor in chief of the U.S. News and World Report, said “President Obama has been chasing a rainbow in his negotiations with Iran. He has forsaken decades of pledges to the civilized world from presidents of both parties. He has misled the American people in repeatedly affirming that the U.S. would never allow revolutionary Iran to acquire nuclear weapons.”
The Jews returned to Israel, declared its independence in 1948, and have had the support of every President since…until Obama.
The Israelis know this. Since their independence the Israelis have fought seven recognized wars, two Palestinian intifadas, and a series of armed conflicts in the broader Arab-Israeli conflict. Most recently they put down Hamas in the Gaza once again for its repeated rocketing.
Despite or because of this, the Israelis have sought to demonstrate good will toward their Arab neighbors. There is an untold story of the December 2014 meeting of six Gulf Cooperation Council rulers in the Qatari capital of Doha to discuss steps to respond to challenges that include Iranian aggression and clamping down on the Muslim Brotherhood.
Sources close to event report that Netanyahu has achieved close coordination with the most important Arab leaders that include Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. Other members of the Council include Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates.
The Israelis have no choice, nor do I anticipate that Iran will do much, if anything, to respond in the wake of the ashes of those facilities. No other nation will come to their aid.
[This comes from The Omega Letter and is a must read]
For the better part of 50 years now, Hal Lindsey has said that Christ's return is imminent, but I fear that for many, apocalypse-fatigue is setting in. The Left Behind series sparked a huge renewed interest into the idea of the Rapture, and for what follows, but even that excitement seems to have faded. With all the geo-political, economic and technological changes happening every day, the modern man has developed an increasingly short attention span.
Increasingly, we express concern over the swelling anti-Christian sentiment that is growing in the west and express outright shock over the brutality of that same anti-Christian sentiment in the east. Half of Christianity wants to reclaim the world for Christ and build His kingdom for Him. The rest are divided on how the end does happen. In fact, MOST of what we would call Christendom today, does not advocate the only, logical, Biblical, theologically doctrinal position of a Pre-Tribulational Rapture, otherwise known as our “Blessed Hope”.
All that aside, the truth is, that believers for millennia- have long pondered, wondered, and longed to see what the days we live in would be like. While our days may be increasingly onerous and dangerous it is also exciting to see the pages of the prophetic scripture come to life right before our very eyes. It is both bitter and sweet that we live to see these days come to pass, just as Christ, the Prophets and Apostles said they would.
But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief. You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober…For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him. 1 Thess 5:4-6, 9-10
So it is that we, the final generation, are called to stand firm in the growing tide of darkness which all the more enshrouds this fallen planet. But in our standing, we are to do four things which will not only bring glory to God, become a witness and a testimony to the lost, but will also embolden our brothers and sisters in these trying times. We are to worship, wait, work, and watch.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Romans 12:1-2
For the born-again Christian, our worship is not solely limited to what we do in a church building on Sunday mornings but how we live our lives. Our lives, ALL of it, should be an act of worship. The Apostle Paul, via the Holy Spirit, instructs us to present our bodies, our hearts, and our minds to God as a living sacrifice. Once you become a believer in Jesus Christ, you are no longer your own, because you were bought with a price. (1 Cor 6:19-20) We are to become living sacrifices, crucifying the flesh daily, so that we may live in the Spirit. This is not easy, because the flesh becomes a powerful obstruction to our walk with God.
Our primary goals as believers is to worship God, mature in the faith, and be a witness to those who do not know the Lord. We demonstrate our worship by how we live our lives, by being a living sacrifice. We mature in the faith when we learn how we live by our worship, which by glorifying God puts our trust in Him, and not ourselves. And our worship becomes a living testimony to those who do not know Christ and Christ said that if we would glorify Him, HE would draw all men to Himself. (John 12:31-33)
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself. Phil. 3:20-21
Anyone who has ever had to wait for anything realizes that waiting is not fun. But waiting adds to faith, what immediate gratification cannot. It develops and matures you in your walk (sanctification) with the Lord.
Abraham, who exhibited an amazing amount of faith, waited many decades for the promise of a son that the Lord would provide to both he and Sarah.
…But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing. 1 Thess 4:10-12
Unlike the prosperity propaganda that many successful self-help televangelists love to promote, God has not called us to a life of luxury and riches. I am not saying that a Christian can’t be wealthy, or that God can’t even bless us in those arenas, because He does and He can. What I am saying is that should not be our modus operandi. While our fiat currency system may be a necessity to survive in these last days, it should not be what motivates us. That should not be what we strive for, or yearn for. Wherever you are, and whatever you do, do it for the Lord. Don’t do it so that other men can notice you, or that you do it for the accolades and praise of people, but serve God with a willing heart.
Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matt. 6:19-21
“Let your waist be girded and your lamps burning; and you yourselves be like men who wait for their master, when he will return from the wedding, that when he comes and knocks they may open to him immediately. Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes, will find watching. Assuredly, I say to you that he will gird himself and have them sit down to eat, and will come and serve them.
And if he should come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” Luke 12:35-40
What is increasingly perplexing to me, considering all that is transpiring around the world, is the outright rejection and denial by those who claim to be Christian. Now, I expect this from mainstream media, government, and pop culture, but how a denomination (take your pick), rejects 30% of their Bible, only to focus on everything BUT Christ’s soon return, baffles my mind. Consider these events that are rapidly advancing in our day:
-the coming together of global governance
-the rapid technological advancements that are enabling and merging together a tracking, monitoring, and digital financial system that ultimately will become the ‘mark of the beast’
-growing lukewarmness and apostate nature of “Christianity”
-Geo-political alignments of nations, all seemingly hostile to Israel
-increasingly devastating natural disasters and pestilence
-wars and rumors of wars
-rise of occultism and paganism
-rise of all sorts of violence around the earth
-global economy on the verge of collapse
We are called, in these last days, to stand firm and to be bulwarks in a growing storm that is increasingly and violently, shifting and moving everything about. The only way we can stand firm, is if we stand in Christ, because in and of ourselves, we do not possess the ability, or even the desire to go against the dark tide. It is not pleasant, especially considering what is coming upon the earth and in particular, what we have to look forward too so long as the Lord tarries. But we stand nonetheless, and we proclaim the saving power of the blood of Christ through worship, waiting, working, and watching.
Some worship and work, and do not watch or wait for the Lord’s return…and they quickly burn out. Some watch and wait, but do not work or worship, and they drift off into the fringe. We need all four to balance out our faith, because work is tiresome, and without the hope of our “Blessed Hope”, we lose heart. All watching and no worship, causes us to watch for anything, and soon our short-attention spanned hearts, will drift into areas that appear more exciting or conspiratorial. We need all four, because God built us to do all four, and when any of the four lack, we drift from where God intended us to be. God built us with eternity in our hearts, and only the eternal, can fully satisfy what we know is lacking in the here and now.
Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 2 Cor. 4:16-18
One would think that the ruling clerics of the Islamic Republic would moderate their hatred, anti-American, anti-Semitic, and anti-Western sentiments after President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry handed the Iranian government a lot of compromises, a sweet nuclear deal, eased sanctions, and have turned a blind eye to Iran’s interventionist and expansionists policies.
In fact, it is the ongoing argument made by the leftists and liberals that building diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic, reaching a nuclear deal with Tehran, and being quiet on the Islamic Republic’s regional policies and support for extremists proxies in the Middle East, will eventually tone down the ayatollahs’ position and make them responsible and rational actors.
However, Iranian leaders keep ratcheting up their anti-American and anti-Semitic sentiments, while the left keeps sticking to its failed argument. Last week, on Iran’s Army Day, the Islamic Republic introduced a new set of weapons, including Iran’s brand of the S-300 missile defense system, which is called Bavar-373. In addition, the Islamic Republic publicized a gigantic banner saying, “Death to Israel” and many officers and puppets of the Iranian regime shouted, “Death to America” and “Death to Israel.”
The New Green Religion of Global Warming/Climate Change is coming out of the closet to begin preaching from the pulpit.
In the lib-left world timing is everything. Now that Christianity is being persecuted worldwide with the many slings and arrows sent its way flashing out in neon, it’s time for ‘sustainability’ to squeeze out Salvation at Sunday church services.
“The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is spending $84,000 to study how churches can be used to combat climate change. (Washington Free Beacon, April 27, 2015)
“A taxpayer-funded graduate fellowship at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor is examining 17 faith-based institutions that have implemented “sustainability initiatives” in the hopes of developing workshops to teach pastors and other religious leaders how to change the behaviors of their congregants.
“Climate change—which affects traditional faith-based efforts to improve human health, mitigate poverty and redress social inequity—is inspiring religious organizations to advocate for clean air and water, restore ecosystems, and conserve resources,” a grant for the project, which began last fall, states. “This project seeks to understand the empirical experiences of faith-based environmental efforts within communities.”
“The project, “Sustainability at the Community Level: The Role of Faith-Based Organizations,” is scheduled to last through September 2016.
“The project sees churches and other religious institutions as an opportunity to reach millions of Americans and promote “more environmentally sustainable behaviors.”
Sustainability pushers Maurice Strong, Al Gore, and Mikhail Gorbachev must be shouting “Al-le-lujah!’, their version of “Hallelujah!”
Their goal of getting climate change preached during Sunday sermons at all community churches, has taken a long time.
No one paid attention when sustainability-as-a-concept inventor Maurice Strong joined up with former Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev to re-write the Ten Commandments. Most took their arrogant Earth Charter—carted about in a gilt covered knockoff of the Ark of the Covenant as some kind of sick joke. Few realized back then that the Earth Charter in an Ark was the beginning of the takeover of the church by a new Gaia-inspired religion.