The Western response to the Islamic State (ISIS) has been criticized as too little, too late. But the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is again demonstrated, even in—nay, especially in—such tribulations. And the Lord God Almighty is always right on time. New life and precious hope stir, ever so quietly, beneath the rotting ruin of war’s horrifying destruction and bloated despair. In the cross-like paradoxical glory where God exploits the instrument of death to become the sign of salvation a region will be changed for the good. Indigenous Christian workers are proclaiming God as knowable through His Son Jesus Christ. As ISIS rapes, defaces, and murders in the name of Allah, Christian aid workers cradle war’s refugee-children in their loving arms and whisper “Jesus loves you this I know…” Oh what victories are secured when the people of God rely on the power of God.
And could it be that as the West approves—and even legislates—the things that God declared abominable we might catch a vision of approaching revival? For the threat of moral decay has turned to the undeniably tragic fact of moral collapse. Suffering invariably follows disobedience. Will the Lord not employ the thing that comes again us—our own self-induced affliction—to cause sickened sojourners to cry out for God? There is hope. As the venom-infected Israelites looked to the brazen serpent on a pole, so we are given the opportunity to look up to Christ on the timeless cross.
For more on how ISIS is being used by God to unleash the life-giving message of Jesus read the fine article by Christian Aid:
“Christian Aid Mission: Why Muslims Are Converting to Christ in the Face of ISIS Atrocities.” Christian Aid, n.d. Web. 20 Dec. 2014. <http://www.christianaid.org/News/2014/mir20141204.aspx?SC=MIR>.
Thankfully, the power of the cross is used by the Lord, not just in national life, but, in your life.
[Thanks to my beloved mentor, the Rev. Robert E. Baxter, who alerted me to this article.]