Recession-proof Christian Life
7/22/10 at 03:18 PM 0 Comments

The Complexity of Islamic Persecution. Maza, Jos Nigeria Attack on 17th July 2010 and Politics.

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Psalm 122 [6] Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.

In my previous writings I discerned a strong but not always obvious link between oppression and recession. In dealing with issues related to economic recovery and prosperity (material and spiritual) one cannot detach from pains of the body of Christ ... even in quiet poor corners.

Ask Queen Esther. It is easier to sympathise with the plight of prisoners, AID’s victims, orphans, the hungry and strangers than to step into the arena of people groups targeted for complete extermination. Truly, only those unafraid to confront their "flesh" and have fully conquered their personal fears and self-life can challenge threats of death and respond boldly and truthfully to challenge the progress of satanically inspired genocide.

Esther 4 [16] Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish. [17] So Mordecai went his way, and did according to all that Esther had commanded him.

The dialogue on ethno-religious persecutions is infinitely more complex for several reasons:

  • Proponents risk exposing their identity in a deadly battle...making themselves instantly vulnerable to deadly personal attack or perhaps more effectively to be shunned and cruelly labelled as crazy fanatic misfits – loved only from a distance and excluded sometimes in subtle ways from normal economic and political participation reserved for more “correct” persons.
  • Governments and its allied institutions mean well but are impotent in spiritual battles - often naively confused as to why normal peacekeeping palliatives have only played to worsen the situation.
  • The real actors of spiritual warfare are described in the Bible as masked and concealed wicked puppeteers in high places pulling steel strings that control voluntary and involuntary vassals in industry, media, government and politics.

Back to the central region of Jos, Nigeria...where killings of Christians continue...

'It has been pointed out that the attitude of all Western governments toward Islam is one of the most difficult and delicate problems of colonial politics. When the matter was discussed at the Edinburgh Missionary Conference (1910), the following resolution, characterized by great timidity, was passed "It is not singular that, in the effort to give to Mohammedanism the outward respect due to it in a region peopled by its adherents, the British officials should sometimes 'lean over backward.' But the Commission is of the opinion that in Egypt, the Sudan and Northern Nigeria the restrictions deliberately laid upon Christian mission work, the deference paid to Islam are excessive, and that a respectful remonstrance should be made to the British Government on the subject." from, The Law of Apostasy.

We do not want to be woken to realities of a serious battle with life and death implications. My friend Mark Lipdo in Jos sent an update and recent images captured to share to brethren on what carnage and persecution looks like and the inhuman ugliness we would rather not see…But can we love God if we do not love His children wherever they are ? Can God prosper us if we remain ignorant or unperturbed on issues hot on His burner …

The images of the carnage (not shown in this post) were captured and can be seen on "The siege of Ethno-religious conflict in the Middle-Belt, Nigeria (Maza, Jos; Wukari; Kizachi Dawai Chawai" .  I must strongly warn that these images are very disturbing and depict vividly the murder of innocent children and so should be viewed only if burdened to do so.

Lipdo reports “On the 3rd of July 2010, at about 8.30pm the people of Kizachi Dawai Chawai community realized that Fulani’s in military uniforms similar to the one used by the Joint task force in Jos, Plateau State, surrounded the entire village. The incident that resulted to the bloodshed of innocent lives and destruction of property in Wukari town in Taraba State North East of Nigeria on 13th May 2010 began when a Police Area Commander, an Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) was transferred to the area. Who according to sources started erecting a mosque building in the Police Barracks, but was strongly advised by the Elders and Traditional Council of the Land to stop the building as such is capable of creating misgivings among the people. The fallout ... five Christian youths were reportedly shot by police men and three of them died while the other two were badly injured as a result. This was what led to the escalation of the violence.

More recently …on 17th July 2010…in Maza, a little village in Jos North Local Government area of Plateau State, five kilometers Northeast of Jos city center, has also been visited by the cruel Islamist style massacre that has plagued the region in recent times. Since the inauguration of shari’a (Islamic law) by 12 Northern Nigeria States, Nigerian Muslims have increasingly demonstrated deep hatred for non-Muslims in their communities. There are several instances of violation of Non- Muslims’ rights in these 12 States but little has been done to expose or confront it. However Muslims are quick to project appearances of similar treatment against them elsewhere in the country, particularly where Christians are in majority. Christians are perplexed by what now appears to be an apparent collusion between the media and the Muslims. Grumblings persist that media reporting often favor Muslims, no matter the situation.

This village which is located on the State’s border with Bauchi, just at the foot of the Plateau hills, was at the mercy of its attackers in the early hours of Saturday the 17th of July 2010. According to reports, at about 12:30am, some people, suspected to be Fulani’s, strategically positioned themselves around the community and began shooting in the air. Scared by the shootings, the villagers rushed out of their homes confused, and encountered the bullets, machetes and petrol fires of the perpetrators. This was an approach, similar to the 17th March 2010 gruesome attack on Dogo na hauwa village, southeast of Jos city center. The attack left 15 houses burnt, 8 people killed and 4 admitted in different hospitals. The mutilated victims include 4 children 3 women and 1 man. 7 of them died in the village and one later in the hospital. The Pastor of a nearby Church was the most affected. He lost his wife, two daughters and his grandson also. The grandson was in his house when it was set on fire. His Church was also completely destroyed. Security men arrested one Haruna Mohammed and 3 others in connection with this inhumane crime. They were taken and are being interrogated at Rukuba Military cantonment in Jos..."

The body of Christ cannot be megachurching in prosperity if only a little toe is badly hurting. Please be alert to the Holy Spirit's guidance on these issues ... praying especially for wisdom, the spirit of forgiveness and mercy... doing also whatever you can ... not just in Nigeria but in other locations of the world where persecution continues. Meanwhile we should not be deceived to imagine this and other manners of warfare are not at our doors... progressing a well staged agenda albeit with a different strategy in our vicinity. Rather be vigilant and pray.

Romans 8 [36] As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. [37] Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. [38] For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, [39] Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

(Previous posts on Jos Crisis) ... Also read the post "Why Go I mourning?" ... for an encouraging devotional by Spurgeon.

(Research by Mark Lipdo, Stefanos Foundation, Jos.)

Pray that God will comfort the mourning and increase the grace to bear the losses without bitterness. In Jesus Christ we are indeed always more than conquerors. God bless you. Amen

Bode

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