The minority Christian community in Pakistan is said to be outraged following the rape of a 12-year-old Christian girl in Lahore by two Muslim men. Christian advocates have said Muslims often use sexual violence as a means of controlling the Christian population, especially women and girls.
"In Pakistan rape is used as an instrument of arbitrary power over Christian girls, who come from poor and marginalized families. It is a form of violence that wants to reiterate the submission to Muslims. The rest of society is not outraged because the victims mostly belong to religious minorities, who are the most vulnerable. Rarely rapists are punished," Christian lawyer Sardar Mushtaq Gill told Fides News Agency.
"Furthermore, rape victims face terrible difficulties; they do not receive adequate medical treatment for sexual assault. Many girls are traumatized and become depressed and in need of psychological assistance," Gill added. more >>
Wilfredo De Jesus, pastor of a Chicago megachurch that oversees more than 130 ministries to the poor and disenfranchised, believes Christians in the U.S. have been playing it safe for far too long. He says many are unwilling to stick their necks out for the marginalized who are suffering in the cracks created by society's broken systems and abusive structures.
De Jesus, pastor New Live Covenant Church, the largest Assemblies of God congregation in the U.S., says it is fear of being ridiculed or ostracized that has paralyzed some leaders and kept them confined to their churches, limiting their engagement with a world in desperate need for people willing to help bridge those gaps.
"A gap is a place of weakness, vulnerability, and danger — a place of real threats," explains De Jesus in his new book, In the Gap. He explains in the book that while gaps can be as broad as illiteracy and human trafficking, they can be as personal as an unfaithful spouse or an abusive family member. more >>
Sin never stands still—it either grows or withers. So, how do you win the battle within?
Dan Delzell, in a riveting blog entitled, Google Executive's Tragic Death Sends Somber Warning, wrote the following: "How do you go from being a devoted father of five and a successful Silicon Valley executive, into a 51-year-old man convulsing from a fatal dose of heroin on your 50-foot yacht, with a prostitute walking over your dying body to take a final sip of wine before leaving you to die?" He then presented the question, "How do tragedies like this take place?"
The enemy rarely pushes us off the cliff, so to speak. We're often led down one step at a time, one compromise at a time, one wrong choice at a time. For example, the enemy doesn't show a couple the pain and anguish and the years of regret that adultery brings; he deceives them with the temporary enjoyment of sex and a false sense of freedom from responsibility. If the full story was known beforehand, no doubt different choices might have been made. We're often not shown the pain that sin brings, we're enticed by the temporary pleasure. more >>
Like many Americans, I have carefully followed the news from Ferguson, MO involving the tragic shooting of an 18-year-old African American, with the notable exception that he carries my name. And so, every day, I'm reading about the shooting of Michael Brown and the death of Michael Brown and the autopsy of Michael Brown, all of which reminds me of the very real loss of life involved.
As I reflect on what is happening in Ferguson and interact with callers to my radio show, there are five obvious lessons to be learned.
1) The racial divide in America remains wide and deep. more >>
While Anyabwile's fear for his son remains constant, he says moving out of Southeast Washington or staying in the Caribbean would mean that he would be living for himself and his family, not for God, his calling or those he is meant to serve through his ministry."Greater than any fears must be our love for people who need Christ and mercy," Anyabwile told CP. "And if we're African-Americans going into African-American neighborhoods, we should pray we love our people more than we fear them. We've found the people of Southeast to be welcoming and our neighbors have been wonderful."As Anyabwile and his family continue to settle in their neighborhood, he can only hope and pray that Titus comes to love America despite the challenges he is possibly bound to face as an African-American child."I hope Titus grows to be a faithful, humble, loving, joyful, generous man of God in this country, whether it's because of this country or despite it," Anyabwile said. "I hope he loves the country as I do, and I hope he contributes positively and significantly to the future of America. ... I hope he sees and experiences the further removal of racism from America and the promotion of a just and whole society. ... I hope he abides in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ, full of faith and refusing bitterness."In the meantime, he says any parent who shares his same concerns should know that although there is limited hope to be placed in government authority, they should still "hope and expect our public officials to do what is right."In addition, if parents who are non-believers feel that same way he does, they should begin to embrace faith that God will take care of justice, he explained."Men may miss the opportunity to do what is right, but God never will. In His judgment, everything true and right will be established. No evil will go unpunished. Righteousness will prevail. We ought not want anyone to fall into God's eternal judgment; His judgment is terrible. But we can be assured that His judgment will be right and no one escapes His holy sight," Anyabwile said.Anyabwile is assistant pastor for church planting at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. and a council member with The Gospel Coalition. more >>
There are now reportedly more British Muslims fighting for terror group ISIS than Britain's military, an issue that some British Muslim leaders have recognized and warned that youngsters are being drawn by the idea that the jihadi sub-culture is "cool."
USA Today reported Thursday that close to 600 British Muslims serve in Britain's Ministry of Defense Armed Forces of 200,000 people, which is less than the estimated 800 British Muslim fighters that have joined ISIS in its war in Syria and Iraq.
United Kingdom Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond noted that the militant who appeared in a recent ISIS video showing the beheading of American journalist James Foley spoke with a British accent. more >>