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The Forgotten Genocide: Why It Matters Today


A still frame from the 1919 documentary film Auction of Souls, which portrayed eye witnessed events from the Armenian Genocide, including crucified Christian girls.

 

April 24, marks the “Great Crime,” that is, the Armenian genocide that took place under Turkey’s Islamic Ottoman Empire, during and after WWI.

Out of an approximate population of two million, some 1.5 million Armenians died. If early 20th century Turkey had the apparatuses and technology to execute in mass—such as 1940s Germany’s gas chambers—the entire Armenian population may well have been annihilated.  Most objective American historians who have studied the question unequivocally agree that it was a deliberate, calculated genocide:

More than one million Armenians perished as the result of execution, starvation, disease, the harsh environment, and physical abuse.  A people who lived in eastern Turkey for nearly 3,000 years [more than double the amount of time the invading Islamic Turks had occupied Anatolia, now known as “Turkey” lost its homeland and was profoundly decimated in the first large-scale genocide of the twentieth century.  At the beginning of 1915 there were some two million Armenians within Turkey; today there are fewer than 60,000….  Despite the vast amount of evidence that points to the historical reality of the Armenian Genocide, eyewitness accounts, official archives, photographic evidence, the reports of diplomats, and the testimony of survivors, denial of the Armenian Genocide by successive regimes in Turkey has gone on from 1915 to the present.

 

Indeed, evidence has been overwhelming.  U.S. Senate Resolution 359 from 1920 heard testimony that included evidence of “mutilation, violation, torture, and death which have left their haunting memories in a hundred beautiful Armenian valleys, and the traveler in that region is seldom free from the evidence of this most colossal crime of all the ages.”  In her memoir, Ravished ArmeniaAurora Mardiganiandescribed being raped and thrown into a harem (which agrees with Islam’s rules of war).  Unlike thousands of other Armenian girls who were discarded after being defiled, she managed to escape. In the city of Malatia, she saw 16 Christian girls crucified: “Each girl had been nailed alive upon her cross, spikes through her feet and hands, only their hair blown by the wind, covered their bodies.”  Such scenes were portrayed in the 1919 documentary film Auction of Souls, some of which is based on Mardiganian’s memoirs.

What do Americans know of the Armenian Genocide?  To be sure, some American high school textbooks acknowledge it.  However, one of the primary causes for it—perhaps the fundamental cause—is completely unacknowledged: religion.  The genocide is always articulated through a singularly secular paradigm, one that deems valid only those factors that are intelligible from a modern, secular, Western point of view, such as identity politics, nationalism, and territorial disputes. As can be imagined, such an approach does little more than project Western perspectives onto vastly different civilizations of different eras, thus anachronizing history.

War, of course, is another factor that clouds the true face of the Armenian genocide.  Because these atrocities occurred during WWI, so the argument goes, they are ultimately a reflection of just that—war, in all its chaos and destruction, and nothing more.  Yet Winston Churchill, who described the massacres as an “administrative holocaust,” correctly observed that “The opportunity [WWI] presented itself for clearing Turkish soil of a Christian race.”  Even Adolf Hitler had pointed out that “Turkey is taking advantage of the war in order to thoroughly liquidate its internal foes, i.e., the indigenous Christians, without being thereby disturbed by foreign intervention.”

It is the same today throughout the Muslim world, wherever there is war: after the U.S. toppled Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, the nation’s Christian minority were first to be targeted for systematic persecution resulting in more than half of Iraq’s indigenous Christian population fleeing their homeland.  [In recent years that war came] to Syria—with the U.S. supporting the jihadis and terrorists—the Christians there are on the run for their lives.

There is no denying that religion—or in this context, the age-old specter of Muslim persecution of Christian minorities—was fundamental to the Armenian Genocide.  Even the most cited factor, ethnic identity conflict, while legitimate, must be understood in light of the fact that, historically, religion—creed—accounted more for a person’s identity than language or heritage.   This is daily demonstrated throughout the Islamic world today, where Muslim governments and Muslim mobs persecute Christian minorities—minorities who share the same ethnicity, language, and culture, who are indistinguishable from the majority, except, of course, for being non-Muslims.

If Christians are thus being singled out today—in our modern, globalized, “humanitarian” age—are we to suppose that they weren’t singled out a century ago by Turks?

Similarly, often forgotten is the fact that non-Armenians under Turkish hegemony, Assyrians and Greeks for example, were also targeted for cleansing.   The only thing that distinguished  Armenians, Assyrians, and Greeks from Turks was that they were all Christian.  As one Armenian studies professor asks, “If it [the Armenian Genocide] was a feud between Turks and Armenians, what explains the genocide carried out by Turkey against the Christian Assyrians at the same time?”

Today, as Turkey continues moving back to reclaiming its Islamic heritage, so too has Christian persecution returned.  If Turks taunted their crucified Armenian victims by saying things like “Now let your Christ come and help you,” [A few years back], an 85-year-old Christian Armenian woman was repeatedly stabbed to death in her apartment, and a crucifix carved onto her naked corpse.   Another elderly Armenian woman was punched in the head and, after collapsing to the floor, repeatedly kicked by a masked man.   According to the report, “the attack marks the fifth in the past two months against elderly Armenian women,” one of whom lost an eye.  Elsewhere, pastors of church congregations with as little as 20 people are targeted for killing and spat upon in the streets.  A 12-year-old Christian boy was beaten by his teacher and harassed by students for wearing a cross around his neck, and three Christians were “satanically tortured” before having their throats slit for publishing Bibles.

Outside of Turkey, what is happening to the Christians of today from one end of the Muslim world to the other is a reflection of what happened to the Armenian Christians of yesterday.   We can learn about the past by looking at the present.  From Indonesia in the east to Morocco in the west, from Central Asia in the north, to sub-Sahara Africa—that is, throughout the entire Islamic world—Muslims are, to varying degrees, persecuting, killing, raping, enslaving, torturing and dislocating Christians.  See the book, Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians for a comprehensive account of one of the greatest—yet, like the Armenian Genocide, little known—atrocities of our times.

Here is one relevant example to help appreciate the patterns and parallels: in Muslim-majority northern Nigeria, Muslims, led by the Islamic organization, Boko Haram (“Western Education is Forbidden”) are waging a bloody jihad on the Christian minorities in their midst.  These two groups—black Nigerian Muslims and black Nigerian Christians—are identical in all ways except, of course, for being Muslims and Christians.  And what is Boko Haram’s objective in all this carnage?  To cleanse northern Nigeria of all Christians—a goal rather reminiscent of Ottoman policies of cleansing Turkey of all Christians, whether Armenian, Assyrian, or Greek.

How does one explain this similar pattern of Christian persecution—this desire to be cleansed of Christians—in lands so different from one another as Nigeria and Turkey, lands which share neither race, language, nor culture, which share only Islam?  Meanwhile, the modern Islamic world’s response to the persecution of Christians is identical to Turkey’s response to the Armenian Genocide: Denial.

Finally, to understand how the historic Armenian Genocide is representative of the modern day plight of Christians under Islam, one need only read the following words written in 1918 by President Theodore Roosevelt—but read “Armenian” as “Christian” and “Turkish” as  “Islamic”:

the Armenian [Christian] massacre was the greatest crime of the war, and the failure to act against Turkey [the Islamic world] is to condone it… the failure to deal radically with the Turkish [Islamic] horror means that all talk of guaranteeing the future peace of the world is mischievous nonsense.

Indeed, if we “fail to deal radically” with the “horror” currently being visited upon millions of Christians around the Islamic world—which in some areas has reached genocidal proportions—we “condone it” and had better cease talking “mischievous nonsense” of a utopian world of peace and tolerance.

Put differently, silence is always the ally of those who would commit genocide.  In 1915, Adolf Hitler rationalized his genocidal plans, which he implemented some three decades later, when he rhetorically asked: “Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?”

And who speaks today of the annihilation of Christians under Islam?

 

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Evangelist With No Arms or Legs Nick Vujicic Draws Thousands to Christ in Secular Europe

nick_vujicic

Famous evangelist Nick Vujicic, who speaks and inspires millions around the world with his story of hope despite being born with no arm and no legs, has shared information about his recent tour of Europe and the thousands who’ve come to Christ during it.

Vujicic has been posting on social media several snippets of his time in Europe, particularly in Ukraine and Slovenia last month, where he had the opportunity to meet national leaders and ministers before thousands of people.

“Hey guys, good morning. Last night was incredible, 60 percent of 5,000 people in the auditorium stood up to receive the Lord Jesus Christ. I am here on national TV to do a recap, and from here we go speak to the Parliament, the national government of Ukraine,” Vujicic says in one of the videos, looking back at his time in Ukraine.

In another video he also talked about meeting Borut Pahor, the president of Slovenia.

“I just finished a meeting with the president of Slovenia, it was a wonderful encouragement and an enriching time. Tomorrow I will be speaking in front of students here in Slovenia, so please pray for us, and thank you for your love, prayers, and support,” the evangelist shared.

Vujicic also appeared on Slovenian talk shows where he ministered about the Gospel, and said on Facebook: “Had the most amazing interview in Slovenia! The most popular talk show host talked to me about how my book Unstoppable changed her life and led her to find Jesus. forty-five minutes later, we prayed for the country and God showed up big time! Thank you, sister!”

Unstoppable: The Incredible Power of Faith in Action, was released in 2012 and shared how the evangelist overcame some of the most difficult periods of his life, and how he was blessed with a joyful married life.

“I actually like this book a little bit better, because it’s deeper and more transparent, I think. I share about the depression I went through in 2010, and share that basically ‘unstoppable’ doesn’t mean bullet proof. When you can’t walk, God’s going to carry you,” Vujicic told The Christian Post in a previous interview in which he also talked about his first book, Life Without Limits.

“With me, in my life, I know that there are people who can get encouraged to see how God can use a man without arms and legs to be his hands and feet, but I wanted people to know that I am not a superhero, it is not about me, or how well I speak or articulate — it is the Spirit of God. It is an active relationship with him,” Vujicic told CP.

 

 

 
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Who And What To Esteem

self esteem

“Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward” (Hebrews 11:26).

We hear much today about the importance of self-esteem, with the implication that lack of self-esteem is the cause of many of the personal problems and antisocial activities of so many young people (and others as well) these days.

But this is not the Biblical perspective. The problem really is too much self-esteem. The Biblical command is that we should “in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves” (Philippians 2:3). The man Moses was once a prince of Egypt, probably in line to become the pharaoh, but he chose Christ and the people of God instead, “esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt” (text).

Paul the apostle could have become the greatest teacher and leader in the religio/political life of his own Jewish people, but he said: “What things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord” (Philippians 3:7,8). In these verses, “count” is the same word in the original Greek language as “esteem.”

Similarly, the Apostle James assures us that we should “count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations“—that is, trials that test your faith—“knowing that the trying of your faith worketh patience” (James 1:2,3).

Therefore, if we would truly conform to the will of God for our lives, we should be esteeming others more than cultivating self-esteem in ourselves, esteem knowing and serving Christ more than all the riches and fame of the world, and esteem it a joyful privilege when we are enabled to grow more like Him through the trials and testings He permits us to share.

 

 

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Christian Rapper Renounces Faith, Says He Can’t Believe the Bible is ‘Infallable Word of God’

GFBF

Christian rapper Jahaziel has renounced his faith, claiming that he can no longer believe the foundation on which Christianity is built.

 

According to Charisma News, the man Rapzilla once called one of the most important U.K. artists in the history of Christian hip-hop has completely turned his back on the faith about which he once sang.

In a Facebook post, Jahaziel explained his decision: “A short while ago I turned away from 20 years as a professing Christian. I had a good job with a church organization, a house provided by the church, a large social circle of likeminded people, a career in gospel music, a worldwide fan base, a respected reputation & status within Christian and non Christian circles.”

In a follow-up post, addressing those who questioned his decision, the rapper stated, “You can believe the bible and its God all you want but to me he just demands my fear because he cannot earn my respect. I cannot possibly agree that he is love unless I ignore all the men, women and little children he has slaughtered throughout the entire bible. But maybe some peoples Christian lenses won’t allow them to see that – cool. Mine didn’t either for s (sic) long time. I have tasted and seen – and my conclusion is that Christianity (it’s flawed book, bloodthirsty god and mythical savior) i have found unsatisfactory and unworthy of my allegiance or worship unless by threatening to kill me if I don’t – as Christianity does.”

Charisma News reports that Jahaziel’s words seem ironic in light of lyrics he penned which include the lines:

Help me God

(So help me God) So if you hear I got my eyes to the hills . . . 

They haters, doubters and (cynics) told me I’m out of my lyrics

But God’s far from finished with me

In fact he just started.

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A note from GoodFishBadFish:

We often here stories of Christians  “walking away from the faith”, but what does the Bible really have to say about that topic?

2 Corinthians 11:13-15 – For such [are] false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.

2 Timothy 3:5 – Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

Matthew 7:21-23 – Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Titus 1:16 – They profess that they know God; but in works they deny [him], being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.

Matthew 7:15 – Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

1 John 4:1 – Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

John 13:35 – By this shall all [men] know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

John 8:44 – Ye are of [your] father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

Mark 6:11 – And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.

This is by no means an exhaustive list. Study the parables found in Matthew 13 and keep in mind that they are not speaking of “good” Vs. “bad”, they are speaking of “truly born again” as described in John 3:1-21  Vs. those that are “religious” with a false sense of salvation.

 

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