It seems that every day is met with a new atrocity stemming from the Islamic State. We’ve lost track of the executions, the crimes against women and children are incalculable and unconscionable, and it seems that every drop of innocent blood feeds a thirst for more.
Their particular taste for Christian blood is most alarming to many of us who’ve watched from afar at their unrelenting advance on ancient Christian communities that have –until now- thrived in Iraq and Syria for nearly two thousand years.
ISIS has displaced tens-of-thousands and burned their churches, targeted their pastors, sold their children as slaves, and murdered countless among them. One particular account I’ve documented in my book Defying ISIS describes how the terror group arrived in one Christian town along the Nineveh Plain waving daggers and swords as they screamed, “shall we start beheading women and children or start with the old and the disabled? … we will behead all of you unless you convert.”
Christianity was born in the east, not the west, and we are witnessing a once-in-a-thousand-year attempt at destroying it in the place of its birth; so, how should we as Christians in the west respond to the threat of ISIS against Christians in the east?
A global lack of concern isn’t for a lack of information. Nearly every major news organization in the United States, and abroad, has given significant coverage to the threat of ISIS against Christians and other religious minorities. It’s time we pay attention to the news, and pay particular attention to those outlets based in Europe (like France 24, BBC, and Sky News) and in the Middle East (like Al Jazeera, and Rudaw). Follow reporters like Jane Arraf on twitter who are covering the situation from within the region, and follow non-profit organizations that give particular attention to the threats against religious minorities (like the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Human Rights Watch, and The Institute for Global Engagement.).
When you know what’s happening, and know the stories of those in harm’s way, it gives you empathy, inspires you to action, and prepares you to rally others to the cause. It also helps prevent you from underestimating or oversimplifying this crisis. I wrote Defying ISIS precisely to serve as an introduction to the issue for those who want to know more. Thankfully, Harper Collins Christian Publishing made the remarkable decision to release the eBook early because of their own corporate concern for endangered Christians.
Read it and recommend it to others.
Click here to read more.
SOURCE: The Christian Post