In order to see the real battle lines, and the motivation behind the anti-Western forces we can look at the history of Western relations with the Arab East over the last two centuries, but that the resentments built up there are used more as a motivation tool than the primary cause. So also the fact of the more recent Western intrusion on Arab culture through the Media. It is not hard to see that the image of "America" that is seen overseas with the increase in porn in even the mainstream movies and the outrageous crimes in the news shows a nation of total disregard for the most basic sense of decency. To a people raised to revere a god of wrath and judgment, who condones the execution of a woman for allowing a bit of hair to show from under her head scarf, this "America" of such blatant indecency and violence is a great threat to their traditional family-centered way of life! On one hand, an Arab's religion is everything to him- his pride, his tradition, the ground of his being. On the other, no religion can change a person from the inside, to give them different "want-to's," so at the core there is a deeper motivation than "my pretense is higher than yours." Besides, why would the Left, both in Europe and the US, have such heart trouble opposing a militant "fundamentalism?"
In Belfast this summer a strange thing happened. When President Bush visited Belfast there were protests both at Stormont, the Northern Irish Parliament building, where he spoke, and at the Belfast City Hall. Significantly, one of the protestors hauled down the British Union Jack from the City Hall staff and replaced
it with an Iraqi flag. Now the Iraqi government is actually allied with the Western forces in trying to carve out some semblance of stability for those poor folks. Either he was just borrowing the flag pole to express his appreciation for the current government there, or he was cheering for the previous administration with its
untold atrocities against its own people. The first option wouldn't fit the anti-Bush, anti-America, message of the protest, but why on earth would he choose the second?
What other ways does this war show itself? Marxism, politely known as Liberalism today, is consistently coming out against Christianity. Whether in the different "freedom from religion" initiatives that make it an offense to wear a cross as jewellery or be seen with (let alone read!) a Bible in public in North America, or the more "progressive" laws in, say, mainland China where a person may still get 20 years of hard labor for praying with friends in his or her own home, the Left seems to see Christianity as a great evil, while wholesale abortion, even forced, and even late term and at-birth is somehow virtuous. This could be the reason why thousands of Christians in Asia or the Muslim nations for that matter, can be imprisoned, tortured, even beheaded on the way to school like those four teen girls in Indonesia, and the (Marxist) Press turns a blind eye, and even the big human rights groups have a hard time noticing! Are we talking conspiracy? Absolutely, and not at all. Con + spire, to breathe together: There is a growing movement among those who reject the Gospel to reject it more aggressively. Is there a Central Committee pulling the strings? Not that I'm aware. John wrote, "We know that we are of God, little children, and the whole world lies in wickedness," and that Jesus' light was revealed in the midst of this world's darkness, but the powers of this world are not able to comprehend that light.Today we see a growing animosity toward the Church on two fronts, and for two reasons. On the one hand, there is a message of righteousness which goes against the grain of everyone who would rather make, and break, their own laws. Just look at the noise that gets generated when a Christian group suggests that abstinence would slow the spread of STD's or that self-control in any way might even be an option! On the other hand, though, there is the problem of gross hypocrisy in the Church. The Gospel we too often preach, and live, is so weak and diluted that millions of people are claiming to be new creatures in Christ but living at least as badly as before they presumably were "saved." Anyone with the least bit of self respect is going to resent being told they "need" something which they see as completely hollow, and is going
to be in no hurry to associate with people who claim to take it seriously. In short, in order to survive this attack the Church must find her "clue bag" and take hold of the God Who is straining to transform and empower her to once again be the one effective offensive force against the spiritual darkness of this world, or
else wind up a battered and bruised laughingstock like the sons of Sceva. We don't fight fear, or curse darkness: Just turn on the Light! Is your Light bill paid?