A week ago Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people in Norway. He admits it. He’s eager for his day in court so he can warn the world that Judeo-Christian culture is under attack.
A Stratfor analysis says:
“Shortly before the attack, Breivik posted a manifesto on the Internet that includes his lengthy operational diary. He wrote the diary in English under the Anglicized pen name Andrew Berwick, though a careful reading shows he also posted his true identity in the document. The document also shows that he was a lone wolf attacker who conducted his assault specifically against the Labor Party’s current and future leadership. Breivik targeted the Labor Party because of his belief that the party is Marxist-oriented and is responsible for encouraging multiculturalism, Muslim immigration into Norway and, acting with other similar European governments, the coming destruction of European culture. Although the Labor Party members are members of his own race, he considers them traitors and holds them in more contempt than he does Muslims. In fact, in the manifesto, Breivik urged others not to target Muslims because it would elicit sympathy for them.”
Breivik saw the Muslim wave over taking his homeland and reacted violently. Physically violently.
The reality is that Islam is on the rise and that there are many with in Islam whose goal is world domination. Of those who would see Islam rule the world, some have the patience to wait for birth rates and proselytization to give them victory while others would take it by military force.
Anders Breivik knew in his heart that something had to be done. His lawyer said Breivik “believed the actions were atrocious, but that in his head they were necessary.”
What is the right reaction?
Islam is on the rise. ReligousTolerance.org reports that while Christianity has the most adherents, the numbers are dropping. Islam is number 2 and is growing. (Incidentally, the number of atheists and agnostics is growing in the West but falling worldwide. The global drop is attributed to the fall of communism in the Soviet Union.)
As a follower of Jesus of Nazareth, Yeshua, the Messiah of Israel, how are we to respond to the challenge of Islam?
British Bible teacher David Pawson says the answer is in Habakkuk, particularly chapter 3.
Here’s the gist of the story: Habakkuk is a prophet and spiritual intercessor for Judah. The book opens with Habakkuk pleading with God to do something about the evil and injustice plaguing the Jews. Then God says, The Babylonians are coming to judge Judah. Habakkuk thinks it’s a bit much and questions God’s methods and selection. Then God reminds Habakkuk that He is God. In the end, Habakkuk returns to his place of of humble intercessor and worships God in face of the coming invasion.
Here’s is what David Pawson says: Islam is rising to judge the Church and the nations for departing from YHWH.
I heard this teaching at IHOP-Kansas City. With so many under 30 in the audience, there is always a bit of buzz in the crowded auditorium even during a teaching. When Pawson pointed out that we are Habakkuk and Islam is coming to judge our nations, there was utter silence.
I know this is a provocative thought. I hope you are provoked, because I want you to ponder this, to pray about this, to study this out. Ask God what is happening now and how He would have us react.
Here are some links for you to investigate this further:
- Habakkuk — part 1 — David Pawson at IHOP, May 2011(mp3)
- Habakkuk — part 2 — David Pawson at IHOP, May 2011 (mp3)
- Habakkuk’s song set to Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” — led by Misty Edwards at IHOP, May 2011 (mp3)
- Lyrics of Habakkuk’s song (pdf)
- “Challange of Islam to Christians” by David Pawson (book)
I also suggest you read all of the Stratfor analysis — Norway: Lessons from a Successful Lone Wolf Attacker. Why? Because this is not how we operate. Because, as much as sometimes we feel we must be, those of us in Yeshua are never lone wolves and we are not on a military offensive in the natural. We are one body and work together in Messiah.
Yes, the kingdom suffers violence and the violent take it by force. We suffer physical violence. In the Matthew 11, from where this quote comes, Yeshua speaks of His cousin John, who died a violent death for the Kingdom of God. But our reaction is not physical violence, as Anders Breivik resolved. “We wrestle not against flesh and blood” but against spiritual foes. Don’t mistake spiritual for mental or intellectual or internal or anything like that. Do not fall in to the trap that spiritual means imaginary, intangible, unreal. It is real. Satan and his minions are real. They would love to see us fight this spiritual battle physically so that we would lose our credibility and our lives. Don’t give him the pleasure.
Our intercession and our worship are more powerful because they move a powerful God to act. The unbelievers will say, “God was not there for the 77 dead in Norway at the hands of a madman.” And He will reply, “You did not ask me.”
God gave us free will and respects it. He wants our love and our trust, but we must give it. That is why we must be as children… children who run to their Father as ask for His protecting embrace and His good gifts. We love Him by asking Him, and He loves us by responding.
He loved the whole world by sending Messiah to pay for our crimes against Him and to pay for our adoption in to His family. The ball is each human’s court.
For those of us who already believe, let us worship our God as Habakkuk did even in understanding the coming invasion.
Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. –Habakkuk 3