International Ministries

Prayers for Egypt and Beyond

January 30, 2011 Journal
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Dear Friends,

Tunisian citizens have just overthrown their dictator, and are struggling to shape a democracy out of the rubble.  Egypt is in turmoil, and other Middle Eastern governments are no doubt fearing for their political lives.  The United States is seeing regimes that have had very positive relations with us in jeopardy, and this is making some people extremely nervous.  The truth is, democracy has risks.

While we advocate freedom and democracy for all, the results are sometimes disturbing when politicians that are from parties or ideologies we do not like are elected into office.  This is true both within our own country, and in other countries. While there certainly are questions about the legitimacy of elections in some places, what is our response when people or parties or ideologies that we do not agree with are elected to positions of power?

Our commitment to freedom of thought grows out of our commitment to freedom of religion.  Our Baptist predecessors, along with others from the “non-conformist” churches, realized that the practical application of Jesus’ teaching that we must love our neighbor as ourselves is that if we want freedom of religion and thought, we must grant the same to our neighbor.  And that means that if we want the freedom to hold our beliefs although others think we are wrong, then we must also grant that same freedom to others.  We must even give others the freedom to be wrong, and that is precisely because of the teachings of Jesus!

What will the results of the current cataclysmic upheavals be?  Will those committed to democracy be able to establish the social institutions necessary to sustain it?  Or will those who are happy to use the freedoms of democracy only to establish their own totalitarian system prevail?  Will it be one person one vote, or one person one vote only one time?

Now is the time for intense and committed prayer that God will use this moment in history to bring freedom, and in particular true freedom of religion, along with justice to countless people who have been denied it, and that it will be done through a peaceful process.  Pray for the Arab world in particular, that freedom will reign giving equal opportunity for all.  Pray that the result will be peace and prosperity for all throughout the Middle East, so each person has the freedom to become all that God has intended for them.

Watching the news with prayer,


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