Sadly, with increasing frequency and intensifying horror, the world is becoming all too familiar with the barbaric activities of ISIS. As you know, most recently this evil group videotaped the beheadings of 21 Egyptian Christians on the shores of Libya.
Dr. Thom Schreiner provides some biblical thoughts and perspectives about this tragic event, and the broader reality of persecution against Christians. While we in the west are generally disconnected from the brutal animosity that Christians in so many other parts of the world face, we nonetheless need to be sober and alert. We need to faithfully pray that God would comfort, strengthen, and embolden our suffering brothers and sisters. We need to likewise faithfully pray for ourselves, that we would be bold and strong in living and witnessing for Christ – come what may.
Beloved, we know “…we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places”. (Eph. 6:12) We also know God has made full provision for us to be “…strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might”. (Eph. 6:10)
And so, in the all-sufficient protection of the whole armor that God has given us in Christ (Eph. 6:11-17), He calls us to an all-out commitment to prayer:
“…praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak. (Eph. 6:18-20, ESV)
Praying for you, and with you, as we seek to walk worthy of our calling in Christ,