Mar Elian monastery destroyed 2
Christian Persecution

ISIS destroys the the ancient Monastery of Mar Elian

 

“The Monastery of St. Elian was a Christian monastery near the town of Al-Qaryatayn in the Homs Governorate,” says Wikipedia. “Was”? Yes, the tense is accurate. It had stood there since the fifth century as a place of worship and spiritual inspiration, faithfully curating the bones of Mar Elian el-Sheikh – St Julian the Old – a Christian martyr from Emesa (modern Homs) who was murdered by his own father for refusing to renounce his Christian faith. The monastery is no more: “It was destroyed on 21 August 2015 by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in the Syrian Civil War,” we read.

It had long been a place of interfaith dialogue between Christians and Muslims. A 15th-century inscription just inside the entrance to the shrine read: “This is a holy place and everybody here is protected.” No more, of course. The entrance is now a pile of rubble, and any protection for Muslims or Christians who revered St Elian (or Sheikh Ahmed, as local Muslims called him) has also gone – dust to dust.

But it isn’t only the bricks and mortar – ancient, blessed and venerated as they were. ISIS / Islamic State / Daesh militia have kidnapped two priests: Fr Jacques Mourad, who was abducted in May 2015, and Fr Paolo Dall’Oglio has been missing since 2013. Funny how we hear more about the stones of the temple than the temples of the Holy Spirit.

Amidst the violence, brutality and annihilation of the apocalypse are the ravings of hordes of brown-eyed devils. They drive JCBs, cleansing the land of idolatry, and they carry swords, dripping with the blood of martyrs. They have not come for interfaith dialogue, but to judge the wicked. There is no pardon for those who are not chosen: just perpetual revenge and unbearable suffering in the murderous consummation decreed by Mohammed – so they say.

When the Disciples sat on the Mount of Olives and asked about the signs of his Second Coming and the end of the world, Jesus talked of wars and rumours of wars; of nation rising against nation and kingdom against kingdom; of famines, pestilences, earthquakes, deceivers, false prophets, betrayals, hate and iniquity.

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power (2Tim 3:1-5).

Having a form of godliness but denying its power? Denying justice? Denying mercy? Denying peace? Denying love? We don’t have to look very far for that, do we?

  • Martin

    And we have been in the last days since Pentecost. Men will always be wicked, always oppress other’s until the Lord comes again.

    • Dominic Stockford

      And we know that because the Bible tells us. It is true.

  • The Explorer

    A syllogism can be perfectly consistent, but still be nonsense. Thus:

    Everything before Islam belongs to the time of darkness.
    The time of darkness should be forgotten.
    Therefore, all monuments before the time of Islam should be erased.

    Thus the Buddhas of Bamiyan. Thus the destruction in Mosul. Thus the subject of today’s post. Where next? Petra? There have been serious calls in Egypt for blowing up the pyramids. Why not, after all? They belong to the time of darkness if anything does.

    If Islam should take over in Britain in the unspecified future, what about the Houses of Parliament? Westminster Abbey might survive with a minaret or two. The Parthenon and St Sophia survived thanks to the addition of minarets. But the hardliners might see that as a dangerous concession. Allow that, and you’re already half way to toleration of the infidel past. Better to raze the lot and start anew.

  • Albert

    But it isn’t only the bricks and mortar – ancient, blessed and venerated as they were. ISIS / Islamic State / Daesh militia have kidnapped two priests: Fr Jacques Mourad, who was abducted in May 2015, and Fr Paolo Dall’Oglio has been missing since 2013. Funny how we hear more about the stones of the temple than the temples of the Holy Spirit.

    Guess what the Telegraph prioritises over this?

    Panic selling grips global markets as £130bn wiped off FTSE in ‘frightful fortnight’ and Ashley Madison remains more important.

    As Pope Francis put it:

    How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses 2 points?

    • Jon Sorensen

      “Ashley Madison remains more important”

      It is important because now Saudis and Islamic countries are targeted gays and adulterers. Probably thousands of the gays in Ashley Madison list will now be jailed and/or killed.

      • The Explorer

        How about the adulterers? Won’t the jails be full? They may have to start executing a few to create more space.

        • Jon Sorensen

          Exactly. God ordained theocracy.

          • The Explorer

            Only for the Jews until the time of Christ. When the veil of the Temple was torn in two, theocracy was no longer needed.

          • Jon Sorensen

            Jewish sources never mention “the veil of the Temple was torn in two”. Surely they would have known if that would have happened.

            Anyways it’s so relativistic to think that Gods laws depend on time and place.

          • The Explorer

            Two possible reasons. One, because it never happened. Two, because it did happen but they suppressed the fact because they saw the implications for their religion. Incidentally, I’d say Matthew IS a Jewish source. Matthew is a Jewish Gospel, written by a Jew for Jews. In that respect, it’s like the Book of Hebrews in terms of its audience.

            Laws ARE relativistic. You can’t have sex legally until you’re sixteen. You can’t buy fireworks until you’re eighteen. What is wrong for you at one age becomes okay at another. Laws also depend on place. A woman can be topless on a topless beach, but not walking down Oxford Street. You can have sex in your bedroom, but not on a park bench.

          • Jon Sorensen

            Aaah. A Jewish conspiracy theory.. sure.

            Laws ARE relativistic, but you use false analogy fallacy, twice.
            There are mans laws and Gods laws; don’t compare them.
            Secondly you compare person getting older vs laws changing for a person who is same age.
            Please try again.

          • The Explorer

            Matthew refers explicitly to a Jewish conspiracy about the body being stolen. (28:13-15). If one conspiracy, why not another?

            I don’t see that you have shown why my anaolgies are invalid. However, what about when man’s laws are based on God’s laws? In the past, they have been. And when they were they were relativist in the sense I have shown. And what about Nature? God made Nature, and Nature is relativistic in your sense. Some blood tests must be taken in the afternoon. (That privileges afternoon against morning.) Some mushrooms that are edible in the morning are poisonous by evening. Fish can breathe in water without assistance, and we can’t.

            However, God says murder is wrong for humans at all times and in all places. If God said murder was okay at eighteen, but not at fourteen, or okay in Kabul but not in London that would be my understanding of relativism.

          • Jon Sorensen

            “If one conspiracy, why not another?”
            So you use the Bible to support the claims in the Bible. Nice.

            Either God’s kosher laws are valid or not. If God’s kosher laws change based on time it is relative to time. It’s that simple.

          • The Explorer

            “So you use the Bible to support the claims in the Bible.” Not really; my statement was suppositional.

            In the days before freezers, there were time guidelines for food kept in larders. Now we have freezers, the larder times are no longer valid. They were valid then, they are not valid now.

            In the same way, the kosher laws are no longer valid. They were necessary for a) health reasons, b) separateness from other nations, c) spiritual discipline. They have been superseded. Christ said so.

            On the other hand, we still have ‘Best before’/Use by’ dates. They have simply been extended.

          • Jon Sorensen

            Nice analogy! (It’s actually a false analogy fallacy)

            God ordered food laws. Now hey have been superseded. It’s like “They were valid then, they are not valid now” and “Best before’/Use by”.

            And you should read the Bible. Christ never said “they have been superseded”. He said the opposite; Until heaven and earth pass away, not one jot or one tittle shall pass from the law until all is fulfilled…

          • The Explorer

            I agree it’s confusing if one doesn’t distinguish between the ceremonial law and the moral law. Christ fulfilled the Old-Testament law, ending its requirements: ‘Romans’ 10:4, ‘Galatians’ 3 23-25, ‘Ephesians’ 2: 15. Christians are subject to the new law of Christ: ‘Matthew’ 22: 37-39, ‘Galatians’ 6:12.
            Jesus “declared all foods clean”. (‘Mark’ 7:19). and confirmed this in his vision to Peter ‘Acts 10:15.

          • Jon Sorensen

            Jesus never talked about “ceremonial law and the moral law”. This is modern apologist non-sense.

            So the morality of eating shell fish is relative to time. So Jesus was relativist when it comes to morality?

          • The Explorer

            Mark 7:19 does not agree with you. “For Christ ends the law and brings righteousness for everyone who has faith.” ‘Romans’ 10:4. What does that mean to you? “The law was a kind of tutor in charge of us until Christ should come.” ‘Galatians’ 3:24.

          • Jon Sorensen

            Sorry, non-relativist God disagrees with Paul and Mark (Leviticus 11:9-12) and Jesus disagrees with Mark (Matthew 5:18)

          • The Explorer

            You’re right. God just can’t make up His mind.

          • William Lewis

            God’s laws are not based on time, they are based on God. It’s that simple.

            “Thus says the LORD, … Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?” Isaiah 43

          • Albert

            They also reflect human nature.

          • William Lewis

            Indeed. They are for the benefit of mankind – who are made in His image.

          • Jon Sorensen

            I said:
            If God’s kosher laws change based on time it is relative to time.

            You said:
            God’s laws are not based on time, they are based on God

            I guess then God’s kosher laws were never God’s kosher laws.

          • William Lewis

            Then it seems that your answer to God is:

            “No, I do not perceive it.”

          • Jon Sorensen

            Not really. There is no relativist God.

          • Ivan M

            The veil of the temple according to some interpretation refers to something much more portentous. It is the ecleptic plane itself that is shifted, as befits the passing of Word through Whom the world is made. I lost the the reference links and can no longer find them

      • Albert

        And you really think that is the reason it is being reported with such relish?

        • Jon Sorensen

          No, but that’s why it is important.

          • Albert

            But the Western obsession with sex, is what is drawing the attention of the authorities in those lands to the issue of Ashley Madison. In other words, the Western obsession with sex, rather than with human suffering, is what is causing the suffering you are concerned about.

          • Jon Sorensen

            On the contrary. It’s not Western obsession with sex or “human suffering”. Saudis are going after their own people.

          • Albert

            Yes, but they only know about it because of the Western media drawing so much attention to it, instead of focussing on real suffering. And why does the Western media do this? Because it is obsessed with sex. Why is the West obsessed with sex? Because the West is without genuine joy. As Aquinas says:

            No man can live without joy. That is why one deprived of spiritual joy goes over to carnal pleasures.

          • Dominic Stockford

            Good quote, good post.

          • Ivan M

            Albert I am afraid that it is not just the West that is obsessed with sex.

          • Albert

            This is true, but the West is only obsessed with sex.

    • Dominic Stockford

      The Telegraph front page, here at least, majors on the Islamic attack on the train. Foiled by brave US soldiers and a brave British businessman. Give them medals, immediately, and make that man a peer. He’s the kind of guy we need.

      • Albert

        True, but I fear it is the excitement of that story that prioritises it over others.

        • Dominic Stockford

          Rather than the inherent danger (spiritual as well as physical) you mean. Sadly you are probably right. Daily Mail today has a good front page – but also possibly for the wrong reasons, as you say.

          • Albert

            I think it is the excitement. Let’s face it, I’m no more likely to be attacked on the London Underground today than I was yesterday.

          • Dominic Stockford

            Unless you have suddenly started going round in a British Army uniform saying how wonderful your time killing people in the Middle East was, no. And let’s face it no-one actually does that!

          • Albert

            Yes. The biggest risk to me today is still probably being knocked over by a car while paying insufficient attention to the road.

  • The Explorer

    Islam destroys the Christian buildings, Secularism destroys the Christian institutions. But at least Secularism leaves the buildings intact.

    • sarky

      There’s a great bar on one were I live. Anyway, isn’t the church the people not the building? Even in biblical times temples were destroyed by invading armies, seems nothing changes.

      • The Explorer

        Yes. Islam destroys the church, and Secularism destroys the Church.

        • carl jacobs

          Secularism destroys the Church.

          No, it doesn’t. The Church cannot be destroyed. Secularism is consuming itself. It is weak and brittle and cowardly. That is why it must eventually be replaced. The self-centered libertine can throw a great party. He can’t sustain a civilization.

          • The Explorer

            You’re right. Substitute “attacks” for “destroys” to clarify what I meant. My point was that even when secularism does not pull down church buildings, it seeks to demolish their reason for existing.

          • carl jacobs

            FWIW, I did examine your post carefully to locate any hidden presence of “irony” lest I be subjected to more British condescension. I was pretty sure you didn’t mean it the way it sounded. So I was stealing myself for one of Jack’s “Well, he’s American, after all” comments.

          • Albert

            I don’t know whether there was any hidden irony. But I’d just like to subject you to some British condescension anyway. 🙂

          • carl jacobs

            You’re an amateur compared to Jack.

            😉

          • Albert

            You say the kindest things!

          • The Explorer

            He’s an American. They’re like that.

          • Albert

            America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without knowing civilization.

          • carl jacobs

            Still bitter about Webster’s replacing the OED, huh?

          • Albert

            I’ve never heard of Webster’s. Is it a kind of beer?

          • The Explorer

            And you know what Monty Python said about American beer. Like making love in a canoe.

          • Albert

            Now that would be bad.

          • The Explorer

            As they put it, “F*****g close to water!”

          • Albert

            I really couldn’t make the comparison. Having never tasted American beer.

          • Anton

            In the Monty Python era it was true. Today the Americans are into microbrew and there is plenty of good stuff to be had across the water. Just don’t think of another round of prohibition, chaps!

          • carl jacobs

            No, it’s the standard English language dictionary. I’m sure you can locate a copy on the internet.

          • Albert

            But Americans can’t spell. What’s the point of a dictionary that can’t spell?

          • carl jacobs

            Of course we can spell. You are such a skeptic.

          • Albert

            Now that really made me laugh!

          • Anton

            It’s such a brilliant comment that it’s almost too bad it isn’t true. Personally I prefer the exchange between Dean Acheson and Harold MacMillan (as reported in Anglophile US Ambassador to London Raymond Seitz’s book Over Here); Acheson said that Britain had lost an Empire but had yet to find a role, to which MacMillan retorted, “Henceforth we shall be content to play Athens to Washington’s Rome.”

          • Ivan M

            Dah Keenyun he kicked dem mutha Churcheel stone to dem Inggland.

          • Albert

            That is the best comment I have ever seen, ever. If only I could vote it up more than once!

          • Anton

            Pleased to have made your day! It made mine when I read it.

          • Albert

            My grief at losing the Empire has disappeared in a single sentence. The sense of national listlessness has vanished in one thought. We are no longer without a role in the world. On the contrary, we British are of all nations most blessed, for our international vocation is also our hobby: being condescending to the Americans. It may not be as fine an hour as the Battle of Britain, but it’s much more fun!

          • CliveM

            I’ve done it for you.

          • carl jacobs

            Yes, we are. And since that statement is factually accurate on its face, there is no reason for me to go in search of non-existent “irony.”

          • carl jacobs

            We do.

          • The Explorer

            You’re perfectly right. No irony. Bad choice of word on my part. (Although ‘destroy’ can refer to an ongoing, partial action as in “The sea is destroying the cliff,” as well as to a completed wholesale action, as in “Linus has destroyed his credibility.”)

          • Hmm … the sentence was plain enough to those who understand the Queen’s English.

          • carl jacobs

            As has been every sentence that produced some version of your “Irony! Irony! Wherefore art thou irony?” line.

          • It’s the British version of that “guy thing”, Carl.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Your last sentence, I imagine, involved much tongue in cheek.

  • Johnny Rottenborough

    It had long been a place of interfaith dialogue between Christians and Muslims

    The Qur’an sees Christians as a people to be destroyed:

    [9:30] The Jews say, ‘Ezra is the son of Allah’; and the Christians say, ‘The Messiah is the son of Allah.’ That is their statement from their mouths; they imitate the saying of those who disbelieved [before them]. May Allah destroy them; how are they deluded?

    In which case, the usefulness of interfaith dialogue to Western Muslims lies in appearing to be reasonable, accommodating and tolerant until such time as they become the majority. The well-being of Christians thereafter would depend entirely on the religiosity of the Muslim state; in other words, whether or not fundamentalist hotheads came to power. The Archbishop of Canterbury is a great believer in interfaith dialogue. Naïvety is a luxury Christians can no longer afford.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Well said.

    • The Explorer

      One can believe in inter-faith dialogue (play them at their own game), without believing in the necessary efficacy of inter-faith dialogue. Big difference, and nobody can then say you haven’t tried.

      For those with warm and fuzzy religious beliefs, inter-faith dialogue may be wonderful if it confirms that all paths lead to God (In whatever way you want to understand that contentious word). But for Muslims and traditionalist Christians (in my view, there are no other) inter-faith dialogue is meaningful a) if it puts an end to inter-faith dialogue because the other parties amend their beliefs; b) it at least clarifies what the other parties believe. (Mind you, try pinning down a Hindu, or a transcendental meditationist.)

  • preacher

    It is sad to see beauty destroyed, but the Christian faith does not rely on ancient buildings, it is a living faith, serving a living God, Who once rejected the building of a temple.

    An illustration of this could be of a ship, maybe even a warship. Under construction on the slipway, she needs huge timbers to support her. But she is not fit for service until the work is complete, until then she has no crew no weapon or guidance systems. She is immobile & helpless. The shape, plans & potential are there, but she is still a work in progress.
    Until the timber supports are knocked away & she is launched, then she is ready for service. Mobile & able to attack or defend, the chocks & the shipyard are no longer needed, they are redundant, a necessary part of her history, but that is all.

    God has a purpose in all things. As the disciples saw Christ lifted up into glory, they stood open mouthed gazing upward, even after He had vanished from sight.
    It took Angels to shake them out of their stupor & tell them to get on with the work of spreading the gospel, that He would return at the appointed time – until then, prepare & go to work !.

    Is it not possible that in these evil times, the reveille of God is sounding to call His people to awake & join the Spiritual war that is currently happening in the World, whether it is the slaughter of Babies for gain in the U.S.A, or the evil in the Middle East.
    Jesus said ” Be ready, for you know not the hour that I come ! “.

  • len

    Islam portrays itself as the last word of God and as such is destroying anything that authenticates the True Word of God in the futile attempt to justify itself be this buildings (such as the Temple site in Jerusalem ) or the people who hold to the Word of God be they Jews or Christians.

    Satan comes to steal kill and destroy that is all he knows and he sends his minions out to do his evil work whether this by ISIS or in the abortion clinics and the laboratories where human life has become a mere ‘commodity.’

    Man is not only sinning but flaunting his sin in the face of the Living God and it is at this point that God has intervened in the past.

    • Ivan M

      Further if this is the worst they can do, then the Muslims are a spent force. This is nothing compared to the Khilafat movement to restore the Ottoman Empire in the 1920s. History repeats itself first as tragedy, then as comedy – Karl Marx..

      • len

        ISIS is growing all the time much like a virus..

  • carl jacobs

    After all, it’s just a building, and buildings are destroyed every day.

    Ah, but this building was constructed 1600 years ago. A man could stand within and say to himself “Men stood here 1600 years ago.” The walls become a tangible memorial to lives once lived – a connection to the past. In so doing, they give evidence to the living that not every trace of man has been erased. We find some reason to believe we are not just dust. Perhaps our footprints are more permanent than we thought. Perhaps our lives matter after all. That of course is exactly why ISIS destroyed it – to demonstrate the transience of everything that isn’t Islam. But we aren’t offended at Islamic theology. Neither are we offended for the sake of the building, but for the sake of ourselves. We are offended that the traces of men have been erased, because this reminds us that we can just as easily be erased. In the end, we are nothing but dust – and all of our monuments as well. We don’t need ISIS to teach us that.

    ISIS steadily marches the land under its control into poverty and destitution. It is a land of young men with guns. And here’s the thing about young men with guns. They rather like the prestige and power they derive from the weapons they carry. It’s an easy way to live, and they aren’t going to want to give it up. But there isn’t much economy or wealth to be created by the act of driving around in a 4×4 with an AK47. ISIS destroyed a building, but it is the land they rule that will suffer for it – or rather them. They burn their own houses. They torch their own fields. They consume their own wealth. Then they live among the ashes.

    They’ll start killing each other when they run out of infidels.

    • Albert

      Neither are we offended for the sake of the building, but for the sake of ourselves. We are offended that the traces of men have been erased, because this reminds us that we can just as easily be erased.

      I like this post. But personally, I differ from you on this quotation. I feel offended that the people who built and who cared for that building, and the faith that caused them to do it have been erased. I’m not so worried about being dust myself, because Christ is risen.

      • carl jacobs

        Yes, its a fair criticism. I was using “we” to refer to the the generic Western reaction – a reaction that will not see with spiritual eyes.

    • Anton

      ISIS has already killed many more self-defined Muslims than it has killed others, I believe.

    • Orwell Ian

      These fine young ambassadors for their “Religion of Peace” are already killing each other. Quite apart from a reign of terror among the population with all that entails in the way of random accusation and summary execution, any Jihadi’s displaying signs of weakness or heresy are ruthlessly eliminated. Sooner or later a factional split will emerge and each will turn on the other for not being Islamic enough. Self-destruction may be the best hope for a early end to this insane rampage.

  • Anton

    “Having a form of godliness but denying its power? Denying justice? Denying mercy? Denying peace? Denying love? We don’t have to look very far for that, do we?”

    No we don’t; no further than some suburbs of our larger cities. What interfaith dialogue can there be between people whose scriptures hold that Jesus of Nazareth is divine in the same sense as the universal creator and that he died on the cross, and those whose scriptures hold that he is not and did not?

    • Ivan M

      Interfaith dialogues are useless. But you can still attend to sample the food and check out the girls.

      • Anton

        Not the beer, wine or hog roast though.

        • Ivan M

          where is your sense of adventure?

          • Anton

            I meant that you don’t get wine, beer or hog roast at interfaith dialogues, and not because my Faith eschews them.

          • Ivan M

            I meant being adventurous in food. Sorry that I was not clear.

          • Anton

            No problem!

            More seriously, St Paul would have a problem with multifaith dialogue: What fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial?…What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God…Be separate, says the Lord (from 2 Corinthians 6:14-17). How separate? We should befriend people of other faiths as we find them in our daily lives; we should unite with people of other faiths against secular evils such as pornographic sex education in schools; we should debate people of other faiths in front of uncommitted audiences (including online) so that the audience can see the Christian position set out and defended. But where is the good in taking part in multifaith gatherings in which people discuss their own religions amongst each other? If prayer is offered at such gatherings, to whom? When people say “I want you to respect my beliefs” the proper reply is “I respect you because you are a human being (in the image of God); in particular I respect your freedom of conscience to hold your beliefs; but I don’t agree with them or else I would hold them myself.” I would have been called to love Nazis but not Nazism.

          • Ivan M

            People in particular those who are of the Abrahamic faiths cannot sincerely debate the tenets of their faiths. But it is more important to discover common humanity – as you say – in order to avoid hatred and bloodshed.

  • Ivan M

    Isn’t this monastery in Syria? Part of the Axis of Evil. Junior member of the Russo-Iranian confederacy? It is all Assad’s fault, I tell ya.

    • IanCad

      Hague, Cameron, and now, Hammond, have no shame.

      • Ivan M

        Syria is one of those multi-confessional, multi-ethnic nations like the former Yugoslavia that easily descends into civil war when the centre does not hold. Interested parties surrounding her all would to see her torn apart, since while the butcher’s bill is not paid by them, they prefer chaos to an ordered Syrian state.

        In a civil war, your race is your uniform — Lee Kuan Yew

  • Inspector General

    Lets see. They get to destroy a building but we get to exterminate evil people through allied air strikes. No prizes for guessing who has the better of the deal…

  • Inspector General

    Although it has not been reported as such, the Inspector feels sure that various air forces of the world are chomping at the bit to join the allies for the superb training on offer. It’s one thing to fire a rocket at an X in a deserted field, but a moving ISIS rocket launcher with crew…really unbeatable, that.

    • The Explorer

      Could depend on how large an ISIS-supporting community they have in their inner cities who might feel the need for appropriate action to discourage aerial activity by their host nation.

      • Inspector General

        ISIS extant in these countries are going to kick off anyway when the time comes…

        • The Explorer

          True, and air strikes might make that time sooner rather than later. But maybe the sooner they reveal themselves the better.

          • Inspector General

            Think that’s been the case in Australia. Given the authorities there plenty of time to plan for the worst…

  • Dreadnaught

    Let’s cut to the chase – Islam survives on blood sucking the life out of anything that stands in its way. It’s all through that soddin book. They needn’t look any further to see where ‘radicialisation’ springs from. Why for the love of humanity, can’t someone in power, in the West, admit this and stop all this appeasement of the most unwelcome disease to hit the world since the Black Death?

    • Anton

      It’s older than the main outbreak.

    • Inspector General

      What is so worrying Dredders, is that the perpetrators of many atrocities have been described as ‘ordinary people with families whom you wouldn’t think etc’. As you say, all down to that wicked book.

      • It doesn’t take the Koran for people to act with unimaginable wickedness.
        Whether it be respectable Germans becoming S.S officers and concentration camp guards; or decent Rwandan people suddenly chopping their neighbours up with machetes; friendly Serbians massacring Bosnian Moslems; Cambodians heaping up the dead in the Killing Fields, or nice British and American doctors chopping up unborn children, the fact is that ordinary people can be persuaded to do the most appalling thing things under certain circumstances. It all goes to show the truth of the Bible:
        ‘The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked. Who can know it?’ (Jeremiah 17:9).

        • Ivan M

          I have to add that generally it takes an ideologically driven propaganda machine, working on fear and hate in order to sustain mass killings. An individual may cool off after killing a few people. But genocide requires sustained dehumanization of the enemy to succeed. In Rwanda, months of propaganda preceded the killing of the Tutsis, in Cambodia the machine was directed for years by the Khmer Rouge against city dwellers who apparently lived in comfort at the expense of the peasants.

          Given that it is the case that the most atavistic instincts can be aroused by racial conflicts, the European leaders have to seal their borders, control immigration and expel those who continue to cause trouble, since no matter what the leftists say, race competition is a biological reality.

        • Dreadnaught

          You defend the Koran and its world wide reach by comparing the Serbs vs Muslims conflict etc? Your’e crackers and such a typical Whataboutist, with nothing to say that is anything to do with the issue in question.

          • Anton

            Where did he defend the Koran?

            Some of us consider that Islam is impending judgement for the sins of secular humanism.

          • Dreadnaught

            Where did he defend the Koran?

            In trying to deflect attention by introducing other issues that imply the mantra that ‘my enemy’s enemy is my friend’. But where, are the secular humanists (never thought of Pol Pot or the SS in that light before) of today he wishes to condemn engaging in beheading (and worse), Christians like the Yasidis or the Jews on a world-wide scale, for not being a particular band of non-believers.
            You rush to the aid of Fartin Martin, giving credence and respect to Islam and the Koran, by use of the ‘us’ in your comment, which must include an unknown number of others I assume. Bearing that in mind would you like to elaborate on your comments?

          • Anton

            Not to you. That “defence” of the Koran was imputed by you; if you want to know what *he* thinks of the Koran, ask him.

          • Dreadnaught

            Disappointing. How about if not to me – then to yourself perhaps.
            I suspect he knows little about messages of the Koran else he may have responded by now.

          • Anton

            As you are a regular here you will be well aware of my views of the Koran. You are good at claiming to know what goes on in other people’s minds, but it is a rhetorical trick that, like insult, discredits principally its writer.

          • Dreadnaught

            At least then I am good at something, I’ll take that as a compliment.

          • Well, it’s certainly easy to write a post saying how horrible ISIS is.
            But people have been slaughtering ‘innocents’ since long before ISIS was ever thought of. Only the Bible has the answer as to why.

          • Dreadnaught

            ISIS horrible? Come now don’t get yourself all over heated. You say the Bible has the answer why – but that is not the the question. We know why; it’s the Bloody Koran; and you won’t find that statement in the bible. It’s not ‘why’ that we are looking for but WHAT to do to and HOW to destroy it.
            If you want to pray about it go right ahead and see what changes. If you want to do something about it – start by making contact with planet Earth.

          • ‘More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.’
            Tennyson

  • “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power.”
    (2Tim 3:1-5)

    Doesn’t this apply increasingly to the once Christian West as well as ISIS?

  • chiefofsinners

    This man, Julian, though dead 1500 years, still speaks and today he reaches an audience of millions. That is the power of an uncompromising life and death for Christ.

    “upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

  • elizabeth sadler

    IS are trying to do everything in their(limited) power to destroy the Christian faith;they are determined that their religion should prevail,and they will do everything and anything to accomplish this. They want to get to their paradise by works,jihad, and submission to their god.In every form of extremism there is an element of self doubt;IS want to eradicate that doubt. God’s people do not depend on bricks and mortar. “I will build my church,and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it”.

  • David

    Truth is still truth even when no one hears it spoken.
    And the Christian faith is still true whether or not churches stand or fall.
    These monsters can destroy every church in their territory but it will not make a scrap of difference to what is and is not true. All that this crude demolition does is to fuel their monstrous arrogance and pride, whilst their brutish actions prove to the world just what debased creatures they really are. If this is Islam’s advert. to the world then it speaks volumes.
    The growth of the Christian faith cannot be stopped because God wills that it will spread, as it has to many more countless millions in the last ten years alone. Christianity is growing, explosively, not through force, fear or an executioner’s beheading knife but through peoples’ recognition that here is Truth.
    Praise be to God !
    God rest the souls of the priests killed at this site, forever a martyr’s site now !

  • The Explorer

    The gates of Hell will not prevail against the Church. Actually, ‘Revelation’ suggests that for a limited time a hellish anti-Christian force WILL prevail against the Church with God’s permission. For forty-two months, “It was allowed to wage war on God’s people and to defeat them.” (13: 5-7).

    Forty-two months = three and a half years = half of seven = a limited time brought to an end by God’s intervention.

    I don’t say we’re in that phase now, but at some point in the future some generation of Christians will be.

    • len

      The Church is/ has/ and will be/ under attack from the Anti Christ Spirit whether this be in the form of the Roman Church , Darwinism, Secular Humanists Communists etc is only the intensity of these attacks which is getting worse.

      ‘They were put to death by stoning; they were sawed in two; they were
      killed by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins,
      destitute, persecuted and mistreated–‘ (Hebrews 11 ;37)

      We in the West have not suffered yet as our brothers and sisters in Christ are doing in many parts of the World today .I believe more Christians were killed(murdered) in the last Century than in all the previous Centuries combined

      http://www.seekingtruth.co.uk/persecution.htm

      • The Explorer

        Yes, quite true. The woman is in the desert for forty-two months, and the two witnesses preach for forty-two months: so the three and a half years in ‘Revelation’ seem to represent the time between Christ’s first and second coming: during which there is on-going conflict with the World, and on-going persecution of Christians. That is consistent with the gates of Hell constantly threatening to close on the Church and envelop it, but never quite doing so.

        But the message seems to be that there will also be an escalation of evil towards the end, brought to a halt by the Second Coming.

        • chiefofsinners

          Yes, or as some would have it, the woman represents Israel and the church is no longer present in the world at this time, which is why evil escalates.
          Who knows for sure? Lots of people think they do.
          The big question for us in relation to persecution is: if we aren’t being persecuted, why not? Presumably Satan has ascertained that we aren’t worth bothering with. Now there’s a damning indictment.

          • David

            Persecution takes many forms. It can involve being killed, or taxed, or a thousand and one other indignities visited upon Christians in Muslim, or atheist, majority countries.

            Now here in the west, at this moment, the pressure is far more subtle, rarely involves violence, or blatant persecution, but is nonetheless very real. It is cultural, legal, social, commercial, educational and ever present, being beamed at us constantly from the radio, the TV, the cinema, the newspapers and magazines, and even in the commonplace conversations of the “normal” people surrounding us and with whom, we of course, must and do interact.

            To remain an orthodox Christian believer requires an understanding of both Scripture and doctrine and an ever present alertness and awareness of how far short our surrounding society, and we ourselves, fall short of our teachings, plus the courage to adhere to the Christian path.

            To journey towards orthodox faith, unless we were raised in such a home which few are nowadays, takes a rare individual of courage, a truth seeker, prepared to be an exceptional person. Sadly few make it through to that state of grace, salvation through faith in Christ. But I shouldn’t be so surprised as that is what Jesus told us to expect.

          • chiefofsinners

            Very true. And as with all persecution we can stand up to it or we can shrink away and avoid it.

        • len

          There are in reality only two’ Churches’ both profess to be ‘Christian’ (although there are many many divisions in the second one)

          The True Church of Jesus Christ which you must be born (or re -born ) into and the false Church which anyone can join as long as they partake of all the ordinances that this Church demands and that you you submit to the ‘authority’ of this Church alone…. … Only Christ and Him alone can save religion never saved anyone…Time to check if you are in’ the right church’.

          Of course Explorer you know this but I speak to any who think their’ religion’ will save them.

          • Anton

            I am reasonably certain that the line between saved and unsaved goes through most congregations, including in the CoE and the RC church. That said, some systems are closer to the New Testament than others.

          • len

            I don`t doubt that fact Anton, without wishing to overcomplicate matters ‘ the true church’ is not a location but a matter of being born into ‘the true church.’As I have said before the true Church can and does exist in different denominations and outside of denominations.
            The point I am making is it is not the denomination which creates’ the true church’ but it is the Spiritual Union with Jesus Christ which does so….

          • Ivan M

            Some systems are closer to the Old Testament than others.

          • Ivan M

            So says the Church of Len-in. With apologies to Albert.

          • len

            ‘Len -in’ very good for a 1 van man (not white I suppose? )

        • grutchyngfysch

          It’s like in those great stories, where the enemy has his foot on the throat of the heroine, and just as he raises it to stamp out her life, he gloats “Where is your hero now?”

          A voice which splits the skies answers: “Here, I AM”.

      • David

        Excellent link, many thanks.

  • magnolia

    There is no will to stop IS/ ISIS and I think that who they are is a little complicated. We need to call upon the Heavenly army to stop the fraudsters in their tracks for I cannot see any government doing so. Syrians would have a go were they allowed, but they are held back….

    • Ivan M

      Some of the said governments being the fraudsters themselves.

  • Mike Stallard

    Read “Not in God’s name” by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks.