Sunday School Class: Praise Chapel, Duhok, Kurdistan of IRAQ – When you look at this photo, what do you see?
There’s been a lot of News talk about the extinction of Christianity throughout the Middle East. Not just the persecution of Christians but an apparent attempt to eradicate them from the land. This poses an interesting question, Can the Faith be “extinct-ed?” No, not the true Faith of Jesus. Christianity, just as Judaism, can be “holocausted”, scripture itself foretells the reality of this, especially in the last days.
Revelation 12:11 – And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
Revelation 20:4 – And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
Isaiah 9:7 – Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.
Revelation 11:15 – And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
Biblically, the Middle East is the turf under dispute, the historic staging area for spiritual warfare. Human conflict started here and this is the place it will end. This place, this geographic locale has been hotly contested ground for millennia. According to both Old and New Testament prophecy the final worldwide struggle between the forces of good and evil, light and darkness, are acted out here with both Christians and Jews being at the heart of the struggle as the forces of evil attempt to eradicate them. It’s out of this struggle that a new world is birthed with the return of Christ.
Like it or not, we’re a part of this spiritual drama and we can’t just standby and shake our heads in disgust at the atrocities of ISIS and their ilk as they rampage across Syria and Iraq while Iran and others cry out for the destruction of Israel.
Ten years ago when I was challenged to go to Iraq. I felt that somehow we were about to be given an open door to the Middle East to share the Gospel of Peace, that we would find a crack into a hostile closed region. What I discovered in Kurdistan was far more than I’d anticipated. I’d stumbled into the very place that has become the place of refuge and protection for persecuted Christians throughout the region.
The rest is history. History that’s being made before our very eyes and we’re a part of it. Today, we have competent leadership in Iraq fully equipped to carry out the mission; not only in Iraq but into the surrounding nations. Now take a look at our featured photo again and answer the question asked at the beginning. “What do you see?” I’ll tell you what I see, I SEE THE FUTURE!