Head First: Calling All Youth Pastors!

Friday, February 24, 2006

Calling All Youth Pastors!

If the idea of another lock-in leaves you flat, and your kids just won't get behind an evangelism outreach, then take a cue from the Christian youth of Nigeria. These kids have put a new twist on the old hayride/bonfire scenario that's sure to bring visitors out of the woodwork (just ignore the shaved heads and swastika tattoos). With some creative sponsorship, you could even turn it into a fundraiser!

ONITSHA, Nigeria (Reuters) - Christian youths burned the corpses of Muslims on Thursday on the streets of Onitsha in southeastern Nigeria, the city worst hit by religious riots that have killed at least 146 people across the country in five days.

Christian mobs, seeking revenge for the killings of Christians in the north, attacked Muslims with machetes, set fire to them, destroyed their houses and torched mosques in two days of violence in Onitsha, where 93 people died.

"We are very happy that this thing is happening so that the north will learn their lesson," said Anthony Umai, a motorcycle taxi rider, standing close to where Christian youths had piled up the corpses of 10 Muslims and were burning them.

Dozens more corpses had been thrown into the back of pick-up trucks by security services overnight, residents said.

I searched the web, but could not find an instance where this story was reported without the use of "Christian" to describe the perpetrators of this retaliatory massacre. It really bugs the hell out of me when the word "Christian" is reduced to a socio-political moniker. I watched Kingdom of Heaven the other night, disgusted by the Crusaders' misappropriation of the word to justify their decidedly anti-Christian behavior.

Someone commented elsewhere recently on a statistic that referred to Alabama as being "90% Christian." Now, I enjoy me some free-grace teaching as much as the next guy, and nothing against you, uh, Alabam-ians, but I think that stat allows for a much broader definition of Christianity than I feel comfortable with.

I wish I had a clever way to tie this post up, but the more I think about this, the more tragic it becomes on so many levels. It's just sad.

Has "Christian" lost its meaning altogether?

14 comments:

Steve said...

I already did this as a fundraiser back in the 80's. I think we received a grand total of $127.32. Seems people preferred the car washes.

It's a shame those glory days are over.

Mrs Zeke said...

Dorsey, this is not news to me and frankly I am way past tired of things not being reported. I am not backing what they did but I know why the are doing it.

Right after or right about the same time of 9-11 Muslims moved worldwide. The groups killed 600+ in the islands of Indonesia who would not convert, men, women and children. Muslims are the controllers of the active slave trade in the Sudan and have been cutting off the heads of those who will not convert for sometime.
But our PC press does not report this because then they would have a hard time coining it the "religion of peace" they often use.

6 years ago I got into this research from the book "Jesus Freaks" and I am sure some won't like it cause "its the whole Jesus for sale" ..whatever. But the accounts are real and its such a different world then our way to comfort place here.
That started a serious research for me in, Burma, Vietnam, N. Korea, China, Africa..and on and on.

At some point after watching your father be crucified and lit on fire upside down, your mother be "circumcised" without pain killer, your big brother be gutted and have his head cut off, your baby brother be sold ripped from arms of family to be a sex toy until he is to old and then put to work to death and your little sister be raped for pleasure cause it don't matter there not Muslims so they deserve it you are gonna explode. When the world does not want to look its the same as pouring gas on a fire.

Of course not all Muslims just as not all Christians. Wrong, yes on both sides. But I can not say what I would do if a threat came near my family I don't say that with pride I say it as a reality.

The oppressive movement in Africa has been the strongest most violent then anywhere else combine that with lack of food, education, medical and the rosy glassed of the media and you are just waiting for this.

This whole thing almost wrecked me and I had to walk away a couple of years ago I no longer had the energy because it really was not much anyone else wanted to here about, talk about do anything about. Maybe it is different now but I am to scared to find out cause I don't think I could take the let down again.

Take Care your loved

Zeke said...

Yeah Dorse, but did the Nigerian kids swear when they did it? And where do they stand on the homosexuality issue?

Zeke said...

OK, funny time over... my wife is absolutely right. The world is slowly waking to the incomprehensible evil that is militant Islam. Against that, you fight, you convert, or you die. There is no peaceful coexistance with those who will not coexist. Tragic, but true.

dorsey said...

The point of the post was the corruption of the meaning of "Christian" as a term. As such, I wonder whether they were attacked because they follow Christ or because they favor a Western practice over Islam.

If believers there were martyred, then, I think Hebrews 11 applies:

"...Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated--the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground.These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect."

However, what happened in Nigeria looks like vengeance to me. Either the so-called Christians or the so-called Muslims have to say "enough," otherwise, it will continue.

Mrs Zeke said...

Dorsey let me clarify. I don't know if the act was in vengeance, what I was trying to say is this. The actions that have been going on in that country are so vile I am not sure I would not be able to refrain from vengeance.

If I knew there was a crowd coming to my home to hurt my family and within my neighborhood were people who I believed thought the same way as the crowd it would really take all of every bit of my faith not to take them out. I wonder if that is what happened in Nigeria. Not saying it is right or justified.

I don't know what kind of "Christian" I would be if I were hunted.

Vengeance is never justified this I understand but is out right terror, vengeance? It could very well be that these people acted in hate and have become what so many in Nigeria rally against...its just sad all the way around and it breaks my heart because it was preventable if the motives were from fear.

your loved

dorsey said...

"I don't know what kind of 'Christian' I would be if I were hunted."

MZ, I don't know, either. I hope I don't sound as if I possess the wherewithall to allow my family into harm's way (I'm NO Abraham). But I do believe that God gives grace in those circumstances. I recently saw End of the Spear, and can't imagine how those women went to live with the people who murdered their husbands. I remember reading an article about a guy whose daughter was brutally raped and killed, and who visited her murderer in prison to offer forgiveness and bear witness to the love of Christ.

Personally, I don't think I'm capable of such nobility, but I want to think that, in a similar situation, God would give me enough grace to walk as Jesus walked. The image of Christ praying for the guys who tore off His very flesh makes me quite ashamed of the vengeful pictures I can conjure.

Brittany said...

Yep.

Mrs Zeke said...

Dorsey you did not sound like you would allow your family into harm at all. I too hope if ever the situation I can lean on grace and not my own desire to do harm to the ones that would harm me or mine.

While Terry White was being beat in-between hits he told the one hitting him of God's love. That blows my mind but that is the difference between God being in you working through you and lip service.

We have a morbid saying in our house Missy will say "mom guy has a gun to my head and says to you deny Christ what's the right answer"
I say "pull the trigger" and this goes back and forth not because we are morbid but because we have to remind ourselves there is a greater importance then the love we have for each other.

With Nigeria I am left wondering if they ever felt important to anyone one of all of us enough to have any faith there was hope. Maybe they should never have any faith in any of us and only God, but knowing you got some place to go on this earth sometimes makes all the difference in the world.

Anonymous said...

I already did this as a fundraiser back in the 80's. I think we received a grand total of $127.32. Seems people preferred the car washes.

It's a shame those glory days are over.


too funny!

Aimee said...

well, it is terrible, if the reporters have it right, that the "Christians" are killing the Muslims. i have to agree with the point of the post here- we must be prepared to be martyred for our faith. no, not jump in front of an oncoming train to show our loyatly to Christ. if someone breaks into your home with intent to kill you for the sake of murder, then we absolutely should defend ourselves (although God does say to not be afraid of the one who can kill your body, but the one who can destroy both body and soul- Matt 10:28). but if someone is saying covert or be killed, then we know, in our hearts, what is right. and i too believe that God will provide the grace if brought to martyrdom (Matt. 10:18-20).

it's so sad that Africa as a continent is so oppressed. i have to believe that if the wealthy countries were doing more for Africa, the violence would be less. i understand that the "Muslim agenda" isn't about resources in the same way that other African militant agendas may be, but we sure don't see that "Muslim agenda" too much in the U.S. desperate people are desperate. it's not a quick leap to attach one's desperation to some hope called "religion". but that's not where Jesus calls us to rest- whether we're in the U.S or Africa. no. it is very, very wrong what's going on there. brutal violence on so many sides, in so many African countries. but what's most interesting, is that i recently read a summary of some recent international surveys that showed that Nigeria had the highest percentage of people who reported to be "happy". (http://www.msnbc.com/news/974827.asp?cp1=1#BODY) hmmmmm.......

on a side note to this liberal use of the term "Christian", that's one thing that drives me crazy- so many sermons i have heard pastors use George Barna's research to make these blanket statements about 'the church', when Barna's definition of Christianity has always been way too broad for my respect. the one i hear the most is the statistic that 'church people' have higher rates of divorce than those who don't attend church (or Barna puts it in a Christian/non terminology). but not only is his definition of "evangelical Christianity" too broad, the guy fails to ask people when they got divorced or the circumstances of the divorce. i mean, is it possible that a majority of them could have gotten a divorce before they started attending church, and calling themselves "Christian"? is it possible that some of them may have been divorced by their non-Christian spouses? blah blah. it just irks me the way pastors present and use those crappy Barna statistics.

jeff said...

I find it interesting, after watching the news for a half of an hour, that some people still call America a 'Christian nation'.

No, I don't think we're horrible, but I believe the term 'christian' is, in fact, completely overused or even abused.

The first use of the word Christian occurs in Acts 11:26. Those people hardly resemble the majority of America. When I think of it, they really don't look much like todays church, either.

I think the term 'Christian" should be banned altogether. I also think we need to lose 'saved', 'believer', and 'usher' (unless, of course, one is referring to the dude who sings "My Boo". He's alright, I guess.

Seeker said...

Has "Christian" lost its meaning altogether?

Kinda like saying "Kleenex" when you mean tissue,"Band Aid" when you mean bandage, "Jell-O" when you mean gelatin....
Today "Christian" can be anything having even a minute particle of a shred of similarity with the genuine article.

Gordon Cloud said...

Dorsey, I agree with you. The "Christian" brush paints with too broad of a stroke these days. I think it is sometimes a more accurate description if true believers call themselves "disciples of Christ" or "Christ-followers".

Of course it doesn't matter what the label says if the bottle is empty.