I must admit that I am conflicted about what our response to the Syrian refugee crisis should be as Christians. On the one hand, it is an opportunity to show the love of Christ and for evangelism. On the other hand is our need to protect our families and communities. Let’s delve into this issue and what scripture might say about it.
It has been estimated that 72% of the refugees entering or attempting to enter Europe are men, and mostly young men of military age. This is exactly the opposite of what you would expect for a true humanitarian crisis. It can be assumed that the number of men would equal the number of women if it were an actual refugee situation. This means an incredible 2/3 of the refugees are fleeing for economic or “sinister” purposes. The rapid onset of this huge influx of refugees implies to me this number may even be greater, with entire family units also fleeing for nefarious purposes.
What might these “sinister” purposes be? Luke 21:9 tells us that during the second year of the 70th Week, chaos will erupt across the globe.
But when you hear of wars and commotions (Gk: AKATASTASIAS, meaning rebellions, riots or chaos), do not be terrified; for these things must come to pass first, but the end will not come immediately (Luke 21: 9 NASB)
Will the Antichrist and Isa (the False Prophet) incite their followers across the globe to riot and perform Jihad at that time? In the Luke 21:8, Jesus tells us that at the beginning of the 70th Week, false messiahs will come saying “I am he (Jesus)” and “the time has drawn near.” This is exactly what Muslims expect Isa to say from their heretical scriptures. He will deceitfully claim to be the historic Jesus (just not a divine one)(“I am he”) and that “Resurrection Day” has come (the “time has drawn near”). He will then call all Muslims to fight in the final battle to make the world Islamic. IMO, most Muslims (even what we term “moderate, peace-loving” Muslims today) will arise to Jihad. When they think the “end of time” has come, even they will arise to fight. The true Jesus, our savior, assumes this will terrify the world. That is why he specifically tells us to not be terrified. He is still in control.
We know in The Book of Revelation that “authority was given him (the Antichrist) over every tribe, tongue, and nation” (Rev. 13:7). Yet the Antichrist will fight wars against other nations until the end. How can this be? He will have authority over his followers (Muslims) in every nation. He may not control every nation but he will have authority within every people group. This is a very critical understanding to grasp. Allowing Islamists, even peaceful Islamists, to emigrate is setting that country up for future violence of an unspeakable nature.
Contrasting the future danger of Islamic refugees is our Christian compassion for the welfare and salvation of all people. Jesus has instructed us to care for the poor and the downtrodden regardless of the cost to ourselves. How do we reconcile these two aspects of the current crisis?
Personally, I don’t think we will be given a chance to decide. Our governments will readily move to assist the refugees. It is the “American Way.” Plus the current political party of the POTUS will eye these refugees as potential future voters for their party. Massive numbers of refugees will enter our nation. Should we contact our representatives in Congress about our concerns and suggest that Christians and families be given priority? Yes, but I doubt that will have any effect.
Once they are here, as Christians we can have an effect however, possibly an eternal effect on some of these refugees. We need to reach out with the love of Christ and with the power of prayer. Will that prevent the future Jihad that is coming? No, Christ has already told us what is prophetically set for the appointed time. It will happen despite any human efforts on our part. But let us work for the salvation of those the Holy Spirit will reach. We must love and pray for our enemies.
Once a person realizes they will face persecution even unto death anyway during the coming years, our perspective changes. We must think like REVIVALISTS not SURVIVALISTS. Our personal survival must not be our priority. This is the opposite of what we would do in the flesh.
And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him! Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. (Luke 12: 4-7 NASB)
IMO, we must think Kingdom first. What Jesus has foretold is coming, we won’t stop it, but we can impact eternity. It is an awesome responsiblity. And Jesus has promised that he will be with us even to the end of the age. These events should actually encourage us:
Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near!!! (Luke 21: 28 NASB)
He is coming soon.