French bombs falling on ISIS strongholds and command centres.
The British Prime Minister preparing the case to Parliament for British air strikes against ISIS.
Facebook profile pictures with the French flag superimposed on top of them.
Wembley stadium lit up with blue, white and red and the words ‘Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité’ above the entrance, while English football fans sang the words of La Marseillaise at Tuesday night's England-France soccer match, the teams linked arm-in-arm.
Spontaneous displays of respect in schools and workplaces across Europe as people observe a minute of silence for those slaughtered in the terrorist attacks.
In hundreds of ways, big and small, the world is reeling and responding to the unspeakably callous evil of the ISIS gunmen and bombers who, in the words of Psalm 10 ‘sat in ambush in the villages; in hiding places [they] murdered the innocent. [Their] eyes stealthily watched for the helpless; [they] lurked in ambush like a lion in his thicket… The helpless are crushed, sink down, and fall by his might.’ (vv8-10).
What should our response be as Christians - to this and the ongoing ISIS atrocities throughout the Middle East? Several articles on this blog or linked to it in the last week have given helpful and biblical counsel about how to think and pray about these violent times. I want to mention one more. Let’s pray for all Muslim men and women throughout the world, in the darkness and bondage of their false religion. Once we were in darkness too, and the Lord had mercy on us and brought us into his marvellous light.
Let’s pray for those many Muslims who regard these things with abhorrence – pray that they will see that their god is a false god and turn to the true and living God, the Triune God of Scripture.
This is a time when there is bound to be a backlash of hatred against all Muslims and a fearfulness of them. Let’s pray that Christians everywhere, and especially in France, will be able to show love and kindness to them while others shun them. Let’s pray that Muslims will see a supernatural love in Christianity that is not to be found in Islam or anywhere else, and that they will be drawn to the love of the true God manifested in his people.
How often Satan overreaches himself! How many times our mighty, gracious Lord makes even the wrath of man to praise him! How many times have men meant something for evil and God has used it for good? May he do so again, for his glory.