(disclaimer: this is very much a “stream of consciousness” post, just thought I’d warn you)
A friend of mine posted the following story to Facebook with the question, “Would you go to church on Sunday morning if there was the potential of the church being attacked?” Here’s the link to the story: Warning to Western churches after al-Qaeda call to attack sacred places. Here’s an excerpt:
According to a report by ABC News, a new video message released this month showed the American-born al-Qaeda spokesman Adam Gadahn calling upon jihadis in the West to get hold of guns and carry out lone terrorist attacks on institutions and public figures in their home countries.
“What are you waiting for?” said Gadahn, in the first video message to be released after the death of Osama bin Laden and published by Al-Jazeera’s English language channel.
He also stated: “Muslims in the West have to remember that they are perfectly placed to play an important and decisive part in the Jihad against the Zionists and crusaders, and to do major damage to the enemies of Islam, waging war on their religion, sacred places, and things, and brethren.
So would you, would I, go to church if there was a threat that we might be attacked? This isn’t just about going to church on Sunday morning, but, in the bigger picture, about meeting together publicly with other Christians. Around the world, many “churches” are simply gatherings of people in homes or small buildings. The reality is, this dilemma is commonly faced by many Christians around the world. However, this isn’t something most Americans (I’m absolutely including myself here) give much thought to… we take our religious freedoms for granted.
As Christians, we believe in a dangerous faith that calls us to give our everything to Christ. There is a line between being stupid (needlessly walking right into a situation that will certainly cause you harm) and walking by faith in a risky situation (obeying God even in the midst of risk).
This article is making me ask myself a few questions today:
- What am I really trusting God for? What am I doing that would fail if God doesn’t “come through?”
- Why don’t I pray more for the Church (with a capital “C”)?
- Would I go to church if there was a standing threat against Christians meeting together, or would I isolate myself from other Christians in order to stay safe?