Stop The Jihad

On Sunday, February 15, the Islamic State terror group, ISIS, released a video showing 21 Coptic Christians being beheaded on a beach in Libya. This was entitled, “A Message Signed With Blood To The Nation Of The Cross.” What was the content of the message? A masked holy warrior wasn’t slow to tell us:

“All praise is due to Allah the strong and mighty. And may blessings and peace be upon the ones sent by the sword as a mercy to all the worlds.
“Oh people, recently you have seen us on the hills of Al-Sham and Dabiq’s plain, chopping off the heads that have been carrying the cross for a long time, and today, we are on the south of Rome, on the land of Islam, Libya, sending another message.
“All crusaders: safety for you will be only wishes especially if you are fighting us all together. Therefore we will fight you all together. The sea you have hidden Sheikh Osama bin Laden’s body in, we swear to Allah we will mix it with your blood.”

Then, to prove their seriousness, the ISIS terrorists proceed to behead their Christian victims, many of whom whispered the name of Jesus before they died. It was a scene of martyrdom, and brutal, diabolic savagery rarely matched in modern times. The message concluded with these words, “And we will conquer Rome, by Allah’s permission, the promise of our Prophet, peace be upon him.”

The U.S. State Department, through its spokesperson Marie Harf, has responded to this and other acts of “violent extremism,” suggesting that we will defeat terror by providing the soldiers of Allah with “opportunities for jobs.” President Obama echoes this sentiment; if only the Jihadis had jobs and money, they would stop cutting people’s heads off and do something more constructive instead. 

At the risk of a lack of nuance, Ms. Harf’s claim, and that of the Administration she represents, is as absurd as it’s weak and ineffectual. Osama Bin Laden, for example, didn’t feel driven to kill out of a desire for improved living conditions and more money, he was a millionaire. Likewise, the Muslim terrorists that sent a message in blood to the “Nation of the Cross” didn’t do so as part of a heartfelt plea for better jobs. They acted out of faith, out of a pure, apocalyptic faith that aims to do nothing other than emulate and obey its founder, the warlord Prophet, Mohammed himself. That means making war on the world until it is brought under the submission of Islam.

There is nothing new in this. Islam has waged war against the world continuously, since Mohammed emerged from the Saudi Arabian desert in the 7th century A.D. Started by him, and then fighting under his banner, the Jihad conquered the Persian and Eastern Roman Empires, all of Spain, the coasts of Italy, and the Balkans. It took control of the Mediterranean, and even reached the gates of Vienna itself, less than a century before the American Revolution. And as ISIS has told us, today’s Jihad doesn’t intend to stay on the beaches of North Africa. So how can it be stopped? The answer to this can be found by asking another question; who stopped the Jihad in the past?

One thing’s for sure, the Mohammedan advance wasn’t halted in Europe thanks to a secular socialist campaign of winning Muslim hearts and minds through the provision of high- quality employment opportunities. Charles Martel famously didn’t win at Poitiers, and save France from Islamic enslavement, by offering the Saracens employment, complete with benefits, in the Frankish civil service. The Muslim siege of Vienna, in 1683, wasn’t lifted thanks to a strategically placed job fair, and the Muslim fleet at Lepanto wasn’t dispersed because Don Juan of Austria gave the nautical Ottomans more meaningful work in the merchant marine. 

In brief, well-meaning secularists did not stop the Jihad, but what about the Protestants? These were either not in existence or, post-Reformation, were too busy fragmenting among themselves, while fighting other Christians, to fight Islamic aggression. So who stopped the invaders? One group, and one only, has had the courage, coherence and faith to meet the Muslim onslaught head-on and defeat it. 

Only catholic Christians have had the strength to stop and notoriously in Spain, roll back the Muslim attack. Catholic Christendom alone has proved itself able to rally the people of West against the Mohammedan threat to our civilization, and this brings us to today.

The war that we’re faced with is religious, it’s at heart a spiritual conflict; ISIS fights for its religion, for Islam, and it does so ferociously. The West fights for its religion too, the religion of having no religion, of faithlessness, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that our politically correct secularist leaders cannot even name the threat they face. How could they? Having denigrated the spiritual to the realm of illusion, they are constitutionally unable to credit a fundamentally spiritual aggressor as being anything other than illusory. No wonder, then, that the nations of the West consistently refuse to identify Islam itself as the enemy that wants to destroy and enslave them. Clearly, a different religion is needed.

Perhaps protestantism will ride to the rescue of the West and give us the spiritual impetus we need to defeat the Jihad, but which Protestantism? The classical Reformation denominations are almost as secular as the U.S. State Department itself and the congregationalists are just that, congregationalists, with no clear doctrine or coherence. Some, it’s true, commendably stand up and denounce Mohammedan atrocities; pastors like Rev. Franklin Graham boldly go so far as to say that the Cross must be brought to the Crescent and Islam brought to Christ. But that’s one minister, albeit a powerful one, among many. Protestantism, it seems, does not have the necessary unity of voice that’s needed to bring about the kind of spiritual revolution necessary to fight back our religious enemies.

That leaves catholicism. It, and it alone, has proved itself capable in the past of withstanding and countering Islamic aggression. Precedent argues that it will do so again and reason suggests that a threat to all Christians and ultimately all Judeo-Christian civilization, has to be met by a religion that is united and whole in itself, that is catholic. In the meanwhile, the followers of the Prophet continue their savage war of aggression, as the secular powers of the West look on, apparently unable or unwilling to rise to the defense of Islam’s victims. Pope Francis’ words speak powerfully to this tragedy:

“I would now like to turn to my native tongue to express feelings of profound sorrow. Today I read about the execution of those twenty-one or twenty-two Coptic Christians. Their only words were: ‘Jesus, help me!’ They were killed simply for the fact that they were Christians. [...] The blood of our Christian brothers and sisters is a testimony which cries out to be heard. It makes no difference whether they be Catholics, Orthodox, Copts or Protestants. They are Christians! Their blood is one and the same. Their blood confesses Christ. As we recall these brothers and sisters who died only because they confessed Christ, I ask that we encourage each another to go forward with this ecumenism which is giving us strength, the ecumenism of blood. The martyrs belong to all Christians.”

An ecumenism of blood. May the confession of the martyrs work for the unity and wholeness of a fractured Christendom and with it, that militant catholicism which will bring the light of the Gospel to the followers of Mohammed.

Forward in Christ

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