The Rev. Franklin Graham says Christians should never deny Jesus Christ in order to spare their lives from slaughter by terrorists, such as ISIS, and further asserts that doing so would be a betrayal against martyrs who stood strong for their faith, despite persecution.
"Christians have been martyred going all the way back to the Romans when they fed them to the lions. We would be betraying every person who stood for their faith, who stood for Jesus Christ, if we turn our back on Jesus Christ. … I think we take a stand for our faith," Graham said on Fox News' "The Kelly File" when host Megyn Kelly asked if Christians should lie in order to save their lives when confronted with death at the hands of Islamic terrorists.
Noting that Christians who live in countries where they're the religious minority are the most persecuted people in the world, Kelly commented on a story about four Iraqi Christian children who were beheaded by ISIS militants after they refused to convert to Islam, a story reported by The Christian Post earlier this month. more >>
About 100 Syrian soldiers and at least 80 Islamic militant fighters lost their lives in a major battle over the past two days, resulting in the insurgents capturing the Wadi al-Deif military base.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights noted that militants from the Ahrar al-Sham, Jund al-Aqsa and Jabhat al-Nusra groups also arrested close to 200 soldiers who had attempted to flee the camp after it was captured.
"SOHR couldn't confirm the exact number of the detainees due to the secrecy in Jabhat al-Nusra, Islamic fighters also seized large amounts of weapons, ammo, heavy machine guns, what makes the area between Ma'ara al-Nu'man and the southern countryside of Idlib is completely out of regime's control," the group said in a report on Tuesday. more >>
Three Iranian Christian leaders have seen their convictions overturned following an appeals hearing, in what persecution watchdog groups are hailing as an encouraging victory. Pastor Matthias Haghnejad and Deacon Silas Rabbani have been granted their freedom after their six-year sentences were overturned, but pastor Benhram Irani is still serving six years for previous convictions.
Christian Solidarity Worldwide confirmed the court's decision in an email to The Christian Post on Tuesday. The group's Chief Executive, Mervyn Thomas, said in a statement:
"We are extremely pleased to learn of the release of Pastor Matthias Haghnejad, Deacon Silas Rabbani, Hossein Baraunzadeh and Rahman Bahman. While we welcome this news, we remain concerned at the continued detention of Amin Khaki and long-term prisoners like Behnam Irani and Farshi Fathi – all of whom who have been unjustly detained." more >>
U.S. Pastor Saeed Abedini, who has now been in an Iranian jail for his Christian faith for more than two years and has been subjected to harsh beatings, is in "severe pain," according to a relative who was able to visit him in prison.
"Saeed continues to have severe pain and would appreciate your prayers," American Center for Law and Justice quotes Pastor Saeed's wife, Naghmeh, as saying.
Saeed has sustained prolonged internal injuries due to beatings in the prison, ACLJ explains, stressing that "as his pain increases, so does the need for humanitarian release." more >>
An Islamic State militant, who is now imprisoned by the Kurds in Northern Iraq and claims to have killed over 70 people during his time fighting with the radical extremist group, is claiming to be another victim of Islamic State coercion.
A 25-year-old originally from the Iraqi village of Dor sal-Hadeen, going by the name of "Omar", told Fox News reporter Hollie McKay in an interview inside the prison that, unlike many of the ISIS fighters who have willingly joined the fight, he was forced into joining the group's military ranks when ISIS raided his village in June.
Omar said that when the militants took over his village, the ISIS commanders told him that they wanted him to join as an ISIS fighter. Omar said he wasn't given much choice because he could either join up as a militant or his life would be taken from him. He claims that the militants backed up their death threat by executing other people in front of him to show that they meant business. more >>
Standing atop a mountain plateau in the stark Judean wilderness, one can look down at the remains of Roman siege camps that eventually trapped some 960 Jewish men, women and children who had fled Jerusalem to Masada while the Romans slaughtered Jews by the thousands in the Holy City in A.D. 70.
Masada stands as a stark testimonial to a chapter in history most thought would never happen again. The scope of Roman savagery is a study in the fallen nature of godless, corrupt tyrants who have no regard for human life.
However, almost 2,000 years later, Christians and an estimated 40,000 people of the Yazidi sect sat trapped last summer on another mountain, awaiting death by starvation, exposure or execution while praying for deliverance. The United Nations estimated that 5,000 Yazidi men were executed and bulldozed into mass graves, while 7,000 women were being kept as slaves. This horror involves the annihilation of Christians and others who refuse to submit to the demands of the jihadist ISIS hordes running rampant through Iraq and Syria. more >>