Thursday, February 3, 2011

Egypt Turns Ugly

Yesterday, Mubarak’s government unleashed goon squads riding camels and horses and equipped with knives, sticks, and petrol bombs on peaceful anti-Mubarak demonstrators. The melee that erupted has so far killed six and wounded over eight hundred.

Repressive dictators will resort to anything to stay in power, and the world is full of them, past and present. Life, injury, poverty, or death of their people is simply a tool in the bid to retain control. Reminds me of Satan who “prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8-9).

In fact, Satan and Mubarak have a common interest: knowing their time is limited, they have nothing to lose, and accordingly are the most dangerous. They will lie, cheat, and murder to retain what’s left of their tattered dignity.

Give this some thought. Generally, nations with Christian heritage accord their citizens the greatest rights. Perhaps Japan is an exception, although their record is to copy the west—even China is slowly following suit—imitate freedom of commerce first, and rights must follow!

The current unrest through the Middle East has highlighted the fact that most Muslim countries are dictatorships, frequently using strict Sharia law to control their populations. But those populations clamour for the freedoms of the west, often irrationally hating western countries at the same time!

Of course, millions of Muslims have moved to the relative safety and freedom western countries offer. How do we respond? Do we treat them with the same dignity Christianity has conferred on us? It is illogical to champion their rights in Arab countries, while viewing them with suspicion here.

Their dignity is that Christ died for them “He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:2).They are candidates for the Kingdom just as we are. Do we see them with His eyes?

Monday, January 31, 2011

Tunisia last, Egypt now; then . . . ?

It’s not possible to watch the events unfolding in Egypt without concern. Any shift in the power base in the Middle East creates concern for Israel’s relations with its neighbours, but also for other Arab states with dictatorial regimes.

The current unrest started in Tunisia, which toppled a long time dictator, and continues in other Arab dictatorships in Jordan and Yemen. If the unrest spreads to the gulf oil states, we will also feel the effects in the west.

Egypt, the only Arab nation with a peace treaty with Israel, has the largest Arab population of eighty million, mostly Muslim. But Egypt also has sizable Christian minority, as noted in recent attacks against the Coptic Christians in Egypt.

The only recognizable opposition group is the Muslim Brotherhood of Egypt. Although it has renounced violence, it strongly opposes Israel and the west, maintains links to Hamas in the Gaza Strip, and has a wide following among the poor in the country.

According to reports, Mohamed ElBaradei, the only visible opposition leader in the country, is considering forming a coalition government with the Brotherhood should Mubarak fall.

Any change to a government that opposes Israel will change the balance of power sharply, and Israel’s position, fragile as it is now, will become more uncertain. All Arab nations surrounding Israel, apart from Egypt, are still technically at war with her.

End time prophecies centre on the biblical lands with Israel as a sovereign state. This was not possible for the last two thousand years until 1948, when Israel became a recognised nation in Palestine. Thus the Middle East is centre stage in world events; all other conflicts are sideshows.

Any event in this area interests Christians as a possible step towards the return of Christ, but I have written on the specific events that will indicate the nearness of his coming in Guess Who’s Coming to Reign! Check the website,