Tag Archives: Christ

Ayaan Hirsi Ali is doing it again! And Richard Dawkins is on her side! – Battling fundamentalistic Islam

A friend of mine sent me his weekly letter where he addressed “the remarkable twist of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, darling of the liberal crowd, a modern day hero in Richard Dawkins’ book, is now appealing to Christian churches to wage a propaganda battle against Islam by starting new Christian schools, sending Christian volunteers into city neighborhoods and spreading the Christian message!”

Today we have again an article in SVD on the Muslim extremists, we speak about the need of dialogue and understanding each other.  Some years ago, our own Dick Erixon wrote in “Nyliberalen” that he considered Ayaan Ayaan Hirsi Ali as the worldest foremost debater especially in regards to the question of the survival of Western “Civilization” (notice the quotation marks!) – and how to deal with fundamentalist Islam in a free society. In August 29, 2005 Ayaan Hirsi Ali was awarded the annual Democracy Prize of the Swedish Liberal People’s Party “for her courageous work for democracy, human rights and women’s rights.” She received the prize at a ceremony at the Swedish Riksdag from the party leader Lars Leijonborg.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali was born Ayaan Hirsi Magan 13 November 1969 in Mogadishu, Somalia is a Dutch intellectual, feminist activist, writer, and politician. She is the estranged daughter of the late Somali scholar, politician, and revolutionary opposition leader Hirsi Magan Isse. She is a prominent critic of Islam, and her screenplay for Theo Van Gogh’s movie “Submission” led to death threats. Through the worldwide spread of this instance she became know to a wide international audience. Since van Gogh’s assassination by a Muslim extremist in 2004, she has lived in seclusion under the protection of Dutch authorities.

When she was eight, her family left Somalia for Saudi Arabia, then Ethiopia, and eventually settled in Kenya. She sought and obtained political asylum in the Netherlands in 1992, under circumstances that later became the center of a political controversy. In 2003 she was elected a member of the House of Representatives (the lower house of the Dutch parliament), representing the People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD).

In 2005, she was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.

Now she is doing it again!

Let me quote from my friend’s letter: In her new book, Nomad, she continues her campaign against radical Islam. She is presently in Holland promoting her book, which quotes arch-atheist Dawkins on the cover saying: ‘This woman is a major hero of our times.’

Solution

Europe is sleepwalking towards its downfall, she warns, a cultural, ideological and political downfall; because churches neglected the immigrant ghettos. But there is a solution, she suggests. Mobilize the churches again! If Saudi-Arabia can invest millions in Koran schools and religious propaganda, why not the Catholic Church, with all its wealth and millions of faithful followers? She says that churches could be active in Muslim communities and offer there the same services that radical Muslims now do, by building schools, hospitals and civic centers, and doing the same civilizing work they did in Africa during the colonization period. 

Now, is there any white person who could get away with saying that?! Westerners have looked on for too long while Muslim scholars won souls, she continues. Churches of all persuasions must enter the competition of systematic religious propaganda with Islam, to curb its growth. Churches should revive such Christian institutions as schools, Christian volunteers in urban neighborhoods, and the spreading of the Christian message!

The West is losing the propaganda war, she says, and the Church can help Muslims assimilate. Motivating immigrants to adopt Western values has been neglected for too long. European leaders–including church leaders–have for decades neglected to take the newcomers into their flock.

“It’s maybe paradoxical to call in the church, while advocates of the enlightenment always fought the Vatican,” writes Hirsi Ali, “but Christianity has changed and the Church has become a much more tolerant institution.” (Dawkins may be reading her books, but she doesn’t seem to be reading his!)

Choice Muslims don’t need to give up their faith to assimilate, she allows. They can pray, keep Ramadan and other Islamic practices.  But they need to give up the social-political side like Jihad, Sharia, the oppression of women, intolerance against homosexuality or those born Muslims but who want something else. “That is a choice. Immigration is a choice. Nobody forced them to come here. Everybody came here willingly.” “In my opinion,” she was reported as saying, “many Muslims are searching for a God that answers to the description of the Christian God. Instead they are being given Allah.” Those Muslims who want to believe in a Creator and eternal life should choose for Jesus as their spiritual leader, she suggests.

The new approach of Ayaan Hirsi Ali to stop the “Radical Muslimization process” will without a doubt call forth many responses and reactions from both Muslims and secular people. She offers an alternative, the only alternative, to a challenge that has been left unchallenged for years because of its political un-correctness. The fact that Ayaan Hirsi Ali sees no other way out in spite of her anti-religious foundational stand makes one wonder whether she is starting to see light in the tunnel. (Of course could one wonder about her discernment in regards to earlier Christian missions and the present liberal stand of many churches, but what the heck, she is at least daring to speak out as usual!) She does need protection, so pray for her because many snakes will be rattled out from the fundamentalistic nest trying to bite her!

John

Positive trend of EFK and New Life Stockholm…but

According to the Christian Daily Dagen and my friend Stefan there has been a positive trend in the development of the EFK denomination. There has been some numeral growth from 31 283 membes to 31 616 and baptisms from 514 to 586 in comparison to the previous year. New Life Stockholm, the church where I am one of the pastors was mentioned too; 800 visitors during our worship services on Sundays…

Here I need to give a rectification: we do have approx. 800 visitors to our worship services but these are held at different times and days; our Ethiopian service is held on Saturdays at 16.00, our main Swe/Eng worship meetings Sundays at 10 & 12.30, the Mongolian meeting at 12.15, the Russian meeting at 15.30 and the French/Swe meeting at 15.30. Just to avoid any misunderstandings if people wonder; I was there, but where were the other 799?

Welcome anyway!

John

Missionary work in Sweden, 1883

I have come across an interesting newspaper article from the New York Times from December 10, 1883 addressing the need for missionaries to Sweden. Here is a copy of the article which I found very interesting!

Nothing seems to have changed!

John

The reality of a visionary life-style (Part2)

In Jeremiah 33:3 we find the following verse: “Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know”.A visionary life-style, which I presume relates to those who perceive themselves to be leaders, should be characterized by the willingness to hear from God AND the willingness to OBEY! When God reveals His heart and His thoughts it is not up to us to decide and evaluate whether we like what we hear… His Words become like a command (don’t get me wrong, I do know that we are God’s children first!) God will show us great and mighty things and He wants us to respond by moving in the direction He wants us to go, it is similar to the general in the army commanding soldiers; you don’t start ask questions, you do what you’re asked.

Too many of us feel we have the right to decide over our lives, while we have said and confessed when becoming a Christian, that we have given our all, and that our old person has died with Christ, that we don’t live but Christ in us…

Another issue we should consider is whether God has already spoken to us before about our intended future. Personally I carry with me words, prophecies and scriptures, which people have shared with me since 1981. A number of these have not come through others have and those I have tested (although not fulfilled yet) I treasure and pray for and I let my life be formed in accordance to them. For some I have waited almost 30 years… But what the heck, for God one day is like thousand years…! He is never late.

A visionary lifestyle for me is thus: a willingness to obey and a long-term perspective on things

That’s the Way I see it!

John

Life to Iran (For Neda)

Jon Trott

Jon Trott is been part of the Jesus People USA as long as I can remember… His approach and writing in Cornerstone magazine were always a tremendous blessing to me. Today I found this lyric: Life to Iran on his blog here.

Life to Iran (For Neda)
© 2009, Jon Trott

They’re in the streets of Tehran
And the byways of my mind
Not looking for freedom that’s political
But freedom of an existential kind

And I wonder at their bravery
I tremble sickened at their dying
I see in their eyes that they are me
And I am them, at least I’m trying

Life to Iran
Life to every woman and man
Life to Iran
Face the dragon, I know we can…
I know we can

Protested with them in Chicago
Cost me just an afternoon
They sang the saddest song in Farsi
I felt joy was coming soon

Life to Iran
Life to every woman and man
Life to Iran
Face the dragon, I know we can…
I know we can

Jesus is my start, my end, my love
Their journey is no less than mine
All round the world love’s bleeding
Yet hope’s green ribbon is a sign

Life to Iran
Life to every woman and man
Life to Iran
Face the dragon, I know we can…
We are all Iran…
We are all Iran…
We are all Iran…
Life to Iran.

(all rights reserved)

A move of God in Iran?!

There is a move of God in Iran according to CBN. While in TEHRAN pro-democracy protests continue, close to 20 protesters are killed. Numerous have been imprisoned yet thousands continue to challenge the regime as they flood the streets in their fight for democracy. The promised utopia Muslim state has failed to appear and has not been able to appease the population… Now, almost unnoticed a new force has moved in; the Islamic regime is finding it’s incapable of reversing the rapid spread of Christianity there.

CBN writes:  “Christian praise songs blast from the cassette player of an Iranian taxi cab. The driver is a Muslim convert to Christianity. Despite risk of arrest and possible death for apostasy, he’s unafraid to share his faith. A cross hangs from his rearview mirror. He keeps his bible on the front passenger seat beside a can of STP gas treatment.  He shares the gospel with his passengers and gives them a bible if they want one. That alone could lead to his arrest.”

Good news in the midst of a dark periode in the lives of people who have gone through so much!

May the Lord show His mercy over the land and its inhabitants!

John

The Yo-yo of greed – is there hope for the most vulnerable citizens on planet earth?

The whole world holds its breath… what will happen at Wallstreet? Is there anything positive to report?

The good news (WAS) according the Millennium Development Goals:

· Some 400 million fewer people live in absolute poverty today than in 1990.

· At least 90 percent of boys and girls in all but two regions of the world are enrolled in school.

· Deaths from measles fell from 750,000 in 2000 to less than 250,000 in 2006, and 80 percent of children in developing countries are now vaccinated against the disease.

· Some 1.6 billion more people than in 1990 can now get safe drinking water.

These gains and others are the result of a global effort “unsurpassed” in 50 years of development history, according to a new United Nations report on the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) based on data from a number of organizations, including the World Bank.

That was the good news until recently; now the bad news: the bad news is that we have not changed in our nature as people! The bad news is that we only can share some of the crumbs of our tables as long as we have abundance!

The fact is that we are caught in a constant swing, a yo-yo if you like, where every effort to break out from our greedy nature seems to release an untamable power bringing us back in the opposite direction leading to a widening gap between the most exposed and vulnerable and the rich to whom the large majority of the Western World belongs.

The current unbelievable and unaccountable $700 billion bailout package which is being discussed for Wall Street by the US government gives us an indication of what is about to happen. According to a fellow blogger the present crisis was addressed on a closed doors session of the United States House of Representatives on Thursday, March 13, 2008.(For English reading check out the end of the text).

It was on that particular meeting that the imminent collapse of the U.S. economy was discussed to occur by September 2008. (A true story? I don’t know, you judge for yourself). The fact is that millions of Americans are thrown back into (Western) poverty level living as a direct result of greedy investors and risk-takers in the economic realm. But there is more to be concerned about… 1.4 billion people still live on less than $1.25 a day and new challenges threaten the achievement of global anti-poverty goals.

Food, fuel and other commodity prices have risen dramatically over the last year and threaten to push over 100 million people back into poverty, according to the World Bank.

The current United States-based financial crisis will affect other economies and slow growth that has helped lift many people in emerging nations out of poverty in the last decade.

Greater effort is needed to lift people out of extreme poverty in sub-Saharan Africa, reduce the number of malnourished children, prevent maternal and child deaths, and achieve greater equality for women, among other goals.

As you see, we are living in a global world with all its advantages but surely a multitude of disadvantages… And as usual, the exposed and vulnerable people in our world will be the first (and often) the only true victims… somehow many of us in the West seem to be able to avoid having to live with the disastrous, life threatening consequences of a world gone mad! What to do with it… Don’t ask me for the answers; I’ve only got one, that a man leaves his darkness as he follows the Son!

That’s the Way I see it!

John