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The Church of Syria: Believers betrayed

Monday, February 13, 2017 7:50
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News From Jerusalem

Church in flames in Syria

by Tom Brennan,

After the followers of “The Way” sadly left Jerusalem, after the Disciples were ordered not to teach in the Temple, Antioch became the leading church of the followers. The revolt that led to the slaughter of countless Jews and the destruction of the Temple, but spared the believers for a time. The church of Syria is one of the oldest Christian churches, and today it has been decimated by the war.

Church in flames in Syria

Church in flames in Syria

One of the few compliments paid to President Assad has been made by the Christians, “he left us alone”. The Jihadists and their Iranian opponents and the more than 97 separate militia groups have made eliminating Christians one of their goals. Outright genocide and religious persecution are evident, yet the Obama Administration refused to give these believers priority access to immigration. The latest betrayal comes from the US Conference of Catholic Bishops who protested the new Trump Administration’s temporary ban on immigration from seven Islamic majority nations. These nations have no functioning governments, no way to verify documents, no driver’s licenses, no way to “vet”, just the testimony of the refugee.

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Syria is a major subject of Biblical references. The church at Antioch, Damascus and in several provinces was a leader in many ways. Paul’s teachings were heard here. In the Last Days of this time Damascus will be a focal point of the last conflict that Muslims say will bring their Mahdi and the last battle before the triumphant return of The King will occur. Yet, several denominations have opted for popularity; “For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God. (John 12:43) rather than salt  “Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.” (Matthew 5:13).

Among the many troubles of what many call the Post-Christian era is the shift from being a city on a hill to being a mere subdivision of look-alikes. Social media, broadcast news and pandering social engineers have criticized any who dare to speak Biblical truth in many areas. Being “nice”, filling pews and seats, not “offending” anyone about anything have become the signs of popular religion. Syrian Christians are just not popular enough.

Recently the Governor of Idaho, a State with less than 1 ½ million residents, came out and declared that he felt Christian refugees deserved priority access to refugee status. He was roundly criticized on the Facebook page of the local newspaper, a lackluster, liberal syndicate-owned and rapidly declining organization. The Idaho Statesman has only a subscription base of 49,000 and numbers the very liberal areas of the cities as its adherents. No pastors of churches came to his defense. This area has seen a growth of population recently and a corresponding increase in church planting and construction. Yet these mega-complexes rarely extend themselves beyond their theater type auditoriums, recreational facilities and hi-tech Sunday services and worship bands to confront the brutal and harsh reality of the intense persecution of brothers and sisters. Is filling seats, paying off the mortgage or a new drum set for the worship band more important to The Almighty than His children being slaughtered?

Several denominations chose BDS against Israel in recent years. Rather than adhere to Biblical admonitions about Israel, they chose to be politically correct and popular. Perhaps a little BDS against some churches is appropriate until they decide to become salt again and rescue their at risk families in the Middle East. Israel has once again extended itself to assist wounded Syrians, orphaned children and those who would otherwise be enemies. Perhaps Israel’s example of responsible aid and comfort can become a model for those who seek to lessen the collateral damage in Syria.

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