Muslims Persecute Christians in Indonesia, To Death
The attack on America by Muslim extemists is bringing to light the long-time persecution of Christians, throughout the world, by Muslims.
by Cynthia Berry
Petrus' father, Ishak Kristian, was a pastor to Indonesia. One October morning at 11:30 a.m., about 20 radical Muslims began to protest outside Ishak's church. Ishak quietly stepped outside and tried to calm them, but the small crowd only grew in size and fury.
|Petrus Kristian remembers his family.
Pastor Kristian gathered together six of his family and friends and returned to the safety of the church and began to pray.
Shortly after noon, the small mob had grown to 200. They began smashing the church possessions and screaming for the pastor and the others to come out. Pastor Kristian and the others hid in the back room of the church.
Enraged, the mob lit the church on fire. Only one of the seven managed to escape live.
At the funeral, Ishak's son, Petrus, was told it was his family's fate. It was the will of "Allah."
In an interview, Petrus said, "At first I was really disappointed, because I lost all of my beloved people. But this made me realize what really matters in my life. After the fire, most of our congregation became stronger in faith. In my opinion, because we have Jesus, it is not difficult to be a Christian."
How can a young man who lost his father, mother, sister, a cousin and fellow church members say, "Christianity is not difficult?"
Today in Indonesia, our brothers and sisters are being slaughtered. On the Maluku Islands, they have been massacred with daggers, they have been kidnapped, raped and forcibly circumcised. The wombs of pregnant women have been slashed open. Jihad warriors have declared war on Christianity, and no one seems to notice or intervene. The violence has even spread to other islands and to the city of Jakarta.
One woman screamed during a recent attack, "Oh, God help us!" A Muslim man, hearing her plea, responded, "I'll show you how your God helps you." He then put his gun into her mouth and pulled the trigger. The bullet shattered one side of her mouth. Miraculously she survived.
Another Christian woman was discovered running for safety with her eight-year-old son. She was left unharmed, but her son was ripped from her grasp. He screamed, "Mommy! Mommy!" and began to cry loudly. She was pushed aside while the attackers left with her son. She has not heard from him since.
Indonesian Christians continue to face persecutions beyond comprehension. How do we reconcile this? Many Christians, even American church leaders, believe Islam is a peaceful religion. The only crime of Christians in Indonesia is that of believing in Jesus. Indonesian authorities are also fearful, believing it is better for the situation to work itself out.
|Over 700 churches have been destroyed in Indonesia, which has the highest population of Muslisms in the world. In Muslim countries Christians are often denied legal remedy.
The conflict facing the Indonesian church seems hopeless. To the human eye, it probably is. The only Hope is not of this world. He rules over a far greater Kingdom. Our bodies may not pass peacefully into eternity, but we can let the Prince of peace reign in our hearts.
Please continue to pray for and stand with our brothers and sisters in Indonesia. And through your own difficulties, remember Petrus Kristian, who believes that "because we have Jesus, it is not difficult being a Christian."