Today, I’m filled with conflicting emotions. I am horrified and saddened by the heinous kidnapping of approximately 300 young girls from a school in Nigeria. In watching the scant news reports from Nigeria (although the press is slowly starting to awaken), my heart is torn by the agony the distraught parents are suffering.
Yet I’m filled with outrage at the particular religious forces that both planned this outrage and executed it. I am also angry at the leading voices in our world that refuse to acknowledge what even the man-on-the-street knows. This is not a political ploy by a group of socio-economic disadvantaged northern Nigerians who are disappointed they’re not sharing in the oil wealth of the south.
Boko Haram, which has acknowledged that it is the kidnapper of the innocent girls, is a group of Muslim terrorists who have fought against the Nigerian Christians and the government. Their dream is to form an Islamic caliphate in northern Nigeria.
Today, I read an analysis of the situation by a respected non-governmental intelligence service. The analysts cited the jealousy of the kidnappers because of the oil wealth in the south of Nigeria and the “ethnic differences” between the two regions that has led to political strife.
No mention of the Islam connection.
But how did the leader of Boko Haram describe his own group’s reasons for kidnapping the girls? Here’s part of what Abubakar Shekau, Boko Haram’s leader, had to say:
“I am the one that took your girls. …It is Allah that instructed us. Until we soak the ground of Nigeria with Christian blood and so-called Muslims contradicting Islam. After we have killed, killed, killed, and get fatigue and wondering what to do with their corpses – smelling of [Barack] Obama, [George] Bush and [Goodluck] Jonathan… Infidels have no value. … This war is against Christians, I mean Christians, generally the infidels. Allah says we should finish them when we get them.”
Why is it that we refuse to acknowledge what the perpetrators of these atrocities and crimes acknowledge themselves: that they are acting in the name of their god, Allah, and fulfilling the dictates of their holy book, the Koran?
I think the press coverage has been slow because these are Muslim terrorists and the politically-correct response is to downplay the Islamic connection.
I think our government’s response has been non-existent (and only now starting to become evident) because of the extraordinary influence Muslims have on this administration. And maybe because we’re just plain afraid of what they’ll do if we point the finger of blame.
I am particularly outraged by both the secular and Christian medias’ reporting of this tragedy. Of all things, the only source I found that revealed the fact that these 300 kidnapped schoolgirls are Christians from Christian homes came from the previously quoted Abubakar Shekau. Is everyone trying to be “politically correct” by never mentioning anything Christian? Are Christian churches and Pastors in particular so intimidated by the Christian-hating media that they will not stand up against this horrible atrocity? Do Christian leaders not realize that these girls that are between the ages of eleven to seventeen are being raped and tortured and then sold as sex-slaves in the name of Allah by the followers of Boko Haram? Their leader even boasted that he intended to sell them for about $12 each. If Christians do not condemn and demand justice from the house-tops on this atrocity, then we may soon find ourselves in similar situations.
For the last few months on my television program, The Hal Lindsey Report, we’ve been discussing the sharp increase in persecution and martyrdom of Christians around the world. Reuters News Service reports that the number of Christian martyrs doubled from 2012 to 2013. Several non-religious watchdog groups confirm that Christians are now “the most persecuted religious group in the world.”
We knew this would soon happen because the ancient Bible prophets warned that it would occur. Even Jesus Himself promised that in the last days Christians would be “hated for My name’s sake.”
But just knowing it is coming does not make its arrival any easier to accept. And one of the hardest parts is when innocents among us suffer. And these 300 girls are the innocents.
As we go about our lives of comfort and safety, let’s not forget that we are to remember our brothers and sisters in chains and distress as if we are bound in chains and suffering distress with them. Pray earnestly that these innocent girls will be found and rescued. Pray that their parents and families will be comforted and strengthened in their times of extreme anguish and pain.
And pray that we in the west, both in our churches and our governments, will find the courage and determination to stand up and confront the forces of evil in our world – especially from growing forces within fundamental Islam – before it is too late to salvage our nations’ Christian based heritages.