Thursday, January 13, 2011

Persecution of Middle Eastern Christians

Massacre of Coptic Christians in Egypt and Copts fight Egyptian police


On New Year Day, Coptic Christians had gone to a special New Year Mass, as were worshiping in church Muslim terrorists detonated a bomb and killed 21 Christians and injured 100 who had been attending the service. After this latest massacre-outraged Egyptian Christians rioted! The last time that I am aware that Christians revolted in Egypt was the 800s! So, I am amazed that they revolted. One of the revelations of the "wiki-leaks" is that America is criticizing Egypt's military. Egypt's military has been considered the best in the Middle East. However, America was saying that it is failing to modernize and that they train to fight against Israel, with whom they have signed a peace treaty. They have failed to recognize the threat of an Islamic terrorist attack or revolt and are not prepared to respond to such an attack.


The Persecution of the Copts


Coptic Christians face persecution every day. Here are some examples of recent acts of persecution. (1981 Coptic Pope arrested. In 1991 there was an attack on Christians at Imbaba, a suburb of Cairo.)


  1. Southern Egypt Massacre (January 2000) Al Kosheh, a "predominantly Christian town" in southern Egypt. After a Muslim customer and a Christian shoe-store owner fall into an argument, three days of rioting and street fighting erupt leaving 20 Christians, (including four children) and one Muslim dead.(The Muslim was accidently killed by another Muslim who meant to kill a Copt.) In the aftermath 38 Muslim defendants are charged with murder in connection with the deaths of the 20 Copts. But all are acquitted of murder charges, and only four are convicting of any (lesser) charges, with the longest sentence given being 10 years." After protest by the Coptic Pope Shenouda the government granted a new trial. (Nothing happened.)
  2. January 2010 Christmas Day Massacre in Nag Hammadi. Muslim radicals spray church with Machine gun fire. Kill seven Coptic Christians.
  3. Using the "Swine Flu" as a pretense, the Moslem government slaughtered all pigs in Egypt. Many Coptic subsistence farmers use pigs (considered "unclean" in Islam). This means that Muslims were killing all of poor farmers livestock. This prompted the UN to start referring to the virus as H1N1-since there was no evidence that it was being spread to human from pigs, swine or ham.
  4. In November 2010, Muslims set fire to twenty Christian homes in Egypt. The government determined that it wasn't arson-it was "fate." (Copts had video of Muslims setting the fires screaming the Islamic war-cry "allahu akhbar"!)
  5. October 2005 Three people have died during a riot outside a Coptic church in Alexandria, Egypt, after a protest against a play accused of offending Islam.

Police used sticks and tear gas to hold back a crowd of some 5,000 protesters who marched on St George's church. Dozens of people were injured in the crush. One man who died was trampled and had inhaled tear gas, police said. On Wednesday, a Muslim man stabbed a nun in protest at the sale of a DVD of the play, staged at the church in 2003. The demonstration was the latest in a series of incidents at the church related to the performance of the play. Entitled I Once Was Blind but Now I See, the drama tells the story of a poor young Copt who is drawn to Islamist militants who then try to kill him. The ministry said the demonstrators gathered near the church in the Mediterranean port city after Friday noon prayers at local mosques. Coptic Christian leaders have said the play depicts the dangers of extremism, not of Islam. "Copts would never tolerate anyone insulting Islam," Coptic Bishop Armia is quoted by Egypt's official Mena news agency as saying. The Egyptian Interior Ministry described the protesters as "fanatic elements" who "escalated a negative reaction to a play", according to the Associated Press new agency. Stones were thrown at the church and police officers, injuring 20, and cars were set alight before police fired tear gas to disperse the crowd. Dozens of people were arrested. Relations between Muslims and the Coptic minority - which makes up 5%-10% of Egypt's population - are generally calm, although tensions sometimes flare. Copts remained the majority in Egypt for centuries after the 7th Century conquest of the country by Muslim armies. Nowadays, they complain of discrimination in the workplace, restrictions on church construction and periodic fears that Christians are being forced to convert by Islamic extremists

THE FACT OF THE MATTER: The Egyptian government persecutes Christians. Egypt is also one of the largest recipients of U.S. foreign aid. Sean Hannity did a report on the incident and has noted that such violent attacks against Christians are practically ignored by the News Media Establishment.


IN THE MIDDLE EAST traffic is terrible. Also, pedestrians often walk in front of traffic. Lights are seldom used-if present they usually a. don't work or b. are ignored. Consequently, people often get hit by automobiles. If you are a Christian and yet get hit by a Muslim-your basically up a creek without a paddle. However, if you are a Christian and you hit a Muslim, your life if over. You can expect to spend at least five years in jail-and that is if the Muslim you hit with your car has minor injuries. As non-Muslims, Christians are not part of the "Umma" (Islamic nation) and are non-citizens and face discrimination and persecution.


Obama does something right


Obama did condemn the attack on Egyptian Christians and did specifically name the victims as "Christians." So, that is a step in the right direction. In his "Cairo Speech" which was horrid-he did ask Moslems to show greater tolerance to Copts and Maronites (Lebanon's Aramaic Christian community). The "Cairo Speech" was awful but I never heard any other president say anything about Copts and Maronites ever before. So, I am not an Obama friend and I hated the speech-but I do commend him for those words. (One example of a problem with the Cairo speech was he defended the right of Muslim women to wear the veil but he didn't say anything about the right of Muslim women to choose not to wear a veil.)


Clarification about Calvinism


I am not a Calvinist. However, I did grow up in the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, a Calvinist denomination. I have fond memories of growing up Presbyterian. I consider myself a Baptist. In a prior newsletter I mentioned problems with Calvinism. What I meant was we have the new Hyper-Calvinist movement. This is a new development. I read books by Calvinists who have passed on. The new Hyper-Calvinist movement is very hostile. They are in your face and stress controversial doctrines such as their idea that Jesus did not die for the sins of the world or that God hates people. Naturally, these extreme views create conflict. These Hyper-Calvinist are turning Christians against Christians and are dividing and harming the body of Christ. This is especially bad because Christians are in conflict against Christians and it is a waste of effort. We need to struggle against Islam and Secularism. These controversies drain the church and weaken our efforts to defend ourselves against attacks. For instance, Assyrians are being wiped out in the Middle East and we aren't doing anything about it. This is partly because we are distracted because we are embroiled in the Calvinist controversy. This is especially a bad problem in the Baptist Churches-especially the Southern Baptist Convention, where the New Calvinists are having great success in taking over churches and driving out non-Calvinist.


Bad Christian responses


Here are two ways Christians react to the news I give them about the massacres of Coptic and Assyrian Christians.


  1. It's a sign of the last days. (Maybe so, but this isn't an excuse for apathy. What if it isn't a sign of the last days? By your indifference Islam becomes stronger and you put yourself and your children in danger from future attacks. If Muslims are allowed to massacre Middle Eastern Christians-I guarantee you that they are coming for you next. I think it is a sign that Islam represents a threat to freedom.)
  2. It's all part of God's sovereign plan. God is in control. (Perhaps, put I am going to fulfill may part of God's sovereign plan by kicking the terrorists behind. I am going to fulfill God's sovereign plan to bring these murderers to justice. This is just another cop out.)


Sometimes you also get the quote from Tertullian "The blood of the Martyrs is the seed of the church." That may have been true in Tertullian's time. But Islam, through massacring Christians has been able to totally erase Christian communities-they also try to erase the historical memory that these Christians communities even existed. (See the book "From the Holy Mountain" by William Darymple.) In the early 20th Century Turkey had millions of Christians. Now the Christian population of Turkey is less than one percent. Tertullian was from North Africa, one of the important centers of early Christianity. There are no Christians in the region Tertullian hailed from. (In North Africa-only Egypt's Coptic population has managed to survive.) The Romans had intermittent persecution. Certain emperors persecuted Christians. Others did not. The long sustained persecution of Christians carried out by Muslims has led to the extinction of many ancient Christian communities. I have hope-but we may be seeing the end of the Assyrian people in Iraq.) We need to confront and punish Islamic extremism. If we fail to do this-we are doomed. I am optimistic-but in saying this, I am being a realist.


Wiki-Leaks Revelation: Bush and Brown conspire together to release dangerous Lockerby Terrorist in Exchange for a lucrative oil contract with Libya


The Lockerby bomber was given a compassionate release from prison for his act of terror in killing hundreds of innocent people in 1988. George W. Bush was informed that the man was going to be released and he agreed to the release. The British government claimed that the man was terminal. He is still alive and well. It was a lie. The families of the victims have stated that they have tried to fight for justice for their family members and the U.S. government has been obstructing their quest. It's all about oil and the desire to appease Islam. I don't believe that Bush was really serious in his war against terror. If he really cared about taking a stand against Islamic terror, he would have prevented this man's release. If he really cared about American security he would have protected our southern border. (In the late 1990's about 200 Chaldeans entered into the San Diego area and took refuge with the Iraqi Christian community there. They were fleeing religious persecution and were given sanctuary. But, if Iraqi Christians can travel to Mexico and enter the country illegally from there-do you really think that radical Muslims haven't already taken the same route? We have probably 20 million illegal aliens in this country. We are at risk and Mr. Bush doesn't care and he doesn't care about how this crisis is hurting the country.


Good News!


The UN's attempt to make criticizing Islam an international crime seems to be losing steam. A "defamation of religion" resolution before the United Nations appears to be losing steam.

The non-binding resolution, proposed on behalf of Islamic states, does not protect religions at all, according to Knox Thames of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. "It's an attempt by some member states to influence international human-rights standards," says Thames, "and [to] limit the freedoms of religion and expression by saying certain topics are off limits and that any discussion should be criminalized."
The resolution does not mention Christianity specifically, but it does reference Islam quite clearly -- giving critics fodder for arguing its purpose is to protect only the Muslim faith from discussion or criticism. "So if a Christian says 'Jesus is the Messiah' and [that] he's the perfect revelation of God, a Muslim would say 'No, that's Mohammed' -- and both could claim that the other is defaming their faith," explains Thames. "And it would be impossible for a government entity to intervene and try to sort out who's right because it goes to the core of faith in what is true."

(Reported by Charlie Butts, One News Now, 1-2-2011)


Colonel Allen West


I have seen several videos of now congressman former LTC Allen West. He statements on how we are best to deal with the threat of radical terrorists are right on target.


Persecution of Christians in Pakistan


The governor of the Punjab province spoke out in defense of Asia Bibi, a Christian sentenced to death for "blaspheming" Mohammed. He was assassinated. 500 Muslim scholars praised his murderer for the murder of this governor who opposed the blasphemy laws. The Jamat ahle Sunnat-which is considered a part of the "moderate and mainstream Barelvi sect" approved of the assassination. It should be remembered that the etymology of the word "assassinate" is derived from the name of an Islamic sect.


Mount Soledad


A Veterans memorial in San Diego which is in the shape of a massive cross-has been ruled as a violation of the separation of Church and State. This is bad news for religious freedom.


Al-Sadr returns to Iraq


For the past three years, Al-Sadr, the main terrorist leader of Iraq, has been hiding out in Iran. Now, he is back in Iraq. I think we have lost the war. We are leaving and the terrorists are moving in. The vote of the Iraqi people for moderation and the moderate president, Allawi, was ignored and the Iranian allied Al-Maliki has retained power. With the massacres of the Christians things look very ominous indeed.



King of Saint Tabernacle


I am now working as the Associate Pastor at King of Saints Church in Cleveland, Texas.


Most Recent Publications:


In my last newsletter I included a catalog of all the things that I have had published. In this newsletter I was to showcase my most recent publications. That is, the publications that I have made since I was deployed to Iraq in 2009-2010. They are:


Christ the Man (Xulon Press)


Immerse yourself in the life of John the Baptizer and Jesus the Christ as they preach God's New Covenant with the beasts of the field, with the birds of the air, and with all the living things of the earth (Hosea 2:18). John and Jesus' radical new message of forgiveness and hope provokes opposition from the authorities. After John is arrested, Jesus decides to confront the religious establishment in the very courts of the Temple of Jerusalem! Jesus rescues the animals from sacrifice, evicts the all the merchants and their customers from the Temple and then boldly proclaims, "My Father's House shall be a house of prayer for all nationalities!" Rediscover the beginnings of the Good News of Christ the Man. Gain fresh insights on the historical background of the life of Christ supplemented with twenty illustrations from the "Christ the Man" graphic novel.



The Hammer of God: The Stories of Judah Maccabee and Charles Martel (Xulon Press, 2010)


According to the Gospel of John, Jesus Christ celebrated the Festival of Hanukkah (John 10:22). Hanukkah celebrates the heroic exploits of Judas Maccabeus and his battle for religious freedom. These events occurred during the four-hundred silent years between the Old and New Testaments. The Seleucid Greeks that ruled over the Jewish people made observing Judaism a capital offense and ordered all copies of the Bible to be collected and burned. In the year 167 Before Christ, Judas Maccabaeus led the Jewish people into battle to preserve the Holy Bible and to establish religious liberty. Judas was called Maccabeus which means "the Hammer" in Aramaic. Centuries later, in the year 732 A.D, Charles Martel, known as "Charles the Hammer," fought to defend the religious liberties of the Christians and Jews in Europe when an army of Islamic terrorists threatened to eradicate Christianity in France. In The Hammer of God learn about the history of the battle for religious freedom, a battle that continues today.


The Ascents of James: A Lost Acts of the Apostles (Create Space 2010)


The Ascents of James is an ancient account of the life of James the Just, the brother of Jesus, that was composed by the Ebionites, an ancient sect of Jewish Christians, at a time close to the end of the first century. In this ancient Jewish Christian book, James and the Twelve Apostles explain their beliefs in Jesus as the Jewish Messiah and answer questions from their opponents on the steps of the Temple of Jerusalem. The main argument made in The Ascents of James is that Jesus is the Prophet like Moses prophesied in Deuteronomy 18: 15-22. The Ascents of James provides us with a rare perspective into an extinct and very ancient form of Jewish Christianity.



The Second Adam and the Restoration of All Things (Create Space 2010)


According to the Book of Genesis in the Holy Bible, God created Adam and Eve in a state of harmony with Nature. Adam and Eve disobeyed God and were expulsed from the Garden of Eden. In the New Testament, Jesus is described as the Second Adam who brings a restoration of all things (Acts 3:21). Describing the New Testament, Hosea says, "In that day I will make a New Covenant for them with the beasts of the field, with the birds of the air, and with the creeping things of the ground. Bow and sword of battle I will shatter from the earth, to make them lie down safely" (Hosea 2:18). According to the Gospel of Mark, the Good News is Good News for all creatures or all creation (Mark 16:15). The Bible states that in God's New Kingdom, "They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea." (Isaiah 11:9).


Saint Thaddeus and the King of Assyria: The Aramaic Origins of Christianity (Create Space 2010)


According to ancient manuscripts written in the Aramaic language, Saint Thaddeus, one of the Apostles of Jesus Christ, traveled to Mesopotamia and preached the Good News of the Kingdom of God to the Assyrians and preached in Chaldea and Babylonian as well. The Assyrian people received the Gospel and became fervent Christians. The Assyrian Church of the East produced many great theologians and scholars. Assyrian missionaries planted churches in India, China, Mongolia and Socotra all before the year 700 A.D. Under the pagan Persians and then later under the Moslems, the Assyrians endured horrific persecution because of their Christian faith. The Assyrian Christians still endure persecution and still live in Iran and Iraq and have survived as a dynamic living testimony to the saving power of Jesus Christ.


A Soldier in Iraq (Create Space 2010)


A children's book about Stephen's experiences in Iraq in 2003 and 2004.


The Secret of Jabez (Upcoming)


Discover an astonishing truth that has been concealed for centuries and is now unveiled at last! This book tells the story of the first people known to history to have worshiped Yahweh (Jehovah) as the one God, a tribe of Kenite Arabs called the Rechabites. Recent archeological evidence has convinced historians and Bible scholars that it was these Kenites, an Arab tribe that pre-dates Abraham and Ishmael, who were the first to call upon God by the name of "Yahweh," or Jehovah, and to worship him as the one true God. It was they who introduced the Israelites to the worship of Yahweh God. Jabez, who has been popularized through his short prayer found in the book of Chronicles in the Holy Bible, has a unique connection with these Rechabites. Jeremiah called the Rechabites a people blessed by God, and used the example of the faithfulness of this gentile (meaning non-Jewish) people to condemn the great lack of faith in God found among the Israelites. These Rechabites are still wandering the deserts of the Middle East to this very day. They are still devoted to Yahweh and bear on their bodies the emblem of their tribe. This symbol they have bore since their beginning as a people. Like Paul they bear on their bodies "the marks of the Lord Jesus" (Galatians 6:17). They have worn this stigma from time immemorial. Now let us unravel the secrets of the Prayer of Jabez, decode its hidden meaning and unlock the mystery of the lost and forgotten identity of Jabez and reveal the true purpose of his prayer.




(These books are also available in hard copies.)


The Language of Jesus: Introducing Aramaic (2010)


"The Language of Jesus: Introducing Aramaic" is a brief introduction to general facts about the Aramaic language. Bible scholars have determined that Aramaic was the language spoken by Jesus Christ. This book lists the evidence from the Bible, archeology and other ancient records that have led them to this conclusion. Examining the words of Jesus in his native language gives us a deeper understanding of the Messiah and his message. "The Language of Jesus: Introducing Aramaic" serves an important introduction to Aramaic biblical studies and to the last surviving native speakers of the Aramaic language, the Assyrian Christians of Mesopotamia.


Judas Maccabeus: The Hammer of God (2010)


The Story of Judah Maccabee is a timeless inspirational story of great faith and courage against seemingly impossible odds. It is also a timely story about the collision of traditional religion and modernity. Hanukkah celebrates the heroic exploits of Judas Maccabeus and his battle for religious freedom. These events occurred during the four-hundred silent years between the Old and New Testaments. The Seleucid Greeks that ruled over the Jewish people made observing Judaism a capital offense and ordered all copies of the Bible to be collected and burned. In the year 167 Before Christ, Judas Maccabaeus led the Jewish people into battle to preserve the Holy Bible and to establish religious liberty. Judas was called Maccabeus which means "the Hammer" in Aramaic. In Judas Maccabeus: The Hammer of God learn about the history of the battle for religious freedom, a battle that continues today.


Contact Stephen:,

PO BOX 882, Shepherd, TX 77371

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