Saudi Arabia: MERS cases reach more than 400, more than 100 dead
This was one of the headlines from one of the articles on Reuters site for today 05/05/14. A particularly nasty virus from Saudi Arabia is killing one out of four people that get it. When some tragedy strikes Islamic countries and people some of us respond with joy. How is that Biblical? How is that at all different from the world? It isn’t. God says, “You have heard that it was said, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR and hate your enemy.’ “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. “For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? “If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? “Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Matthew 5:43-48)
As Christians we might err and say among ourselves, “See, I knew that God would punish those Muslims for their evil ways!” I know I have heard people speak this way, but how are they behaving any differently than the Muslims they hate? It seems to me that we shouldn’t hate anyone. We can hate what they do, we can hate who their master is, and we can hate their satanic doctrines, but we mustn’t hate them. God said in His word, “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation. Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men. If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men. Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY,” says the Lord. “BUT IF YOUR ENEMY IS HUNGRY, FEED HIM, AND IF HE IS THIRSTY, GIVE HIM A DRINK; FOR IN SO DOING YOU WILL HEAP BURNING COALS ON HIS HEAD.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Romans 12:14-21)
Hate proves we are not in the will of God and our hearts are hardened. We must consider ourselves the servants of all. We need to esteem ourselves as lower than others. Our sins put Christ on the cross. We know Jesus, they don’t. We don’t have any excuse for behaving like the world. We can’t be pragmatic like the Muslims of the communists. We operate on faith. We don’t solely rely on what we can see and prove. We have the word of God, and we must apply it to our lives. Faith is in stark contrast to pragmatism. It operates in direct conflict. We do things that don’t make sense to them. We need to be obedient to God. This is worship, to truly apply His word to our lives. So let us pray for them to be converted by God. Let them become our brothers and sisters in Christ. This world is suffering and the lost are a multitude of peoples. What hope have they, Except for the faithful to share the gospel and for Christ to save them.