Friday Prayers for Egypt: Blind Threat

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Blind Threat

God, As one era passes, another begins. One died, and then two others. There is no connection, save a pernicious idea. Defeat it, God, and save the people – target and targetter alike. Far away in America, the Blind Sheikh passed away after many years of incarceration. Linked to terrorism in the first World Trade … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Divorce and Authority

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Divorce and Authority

God, You know best the worth of a woman. You know what is timeless, you know what is cultural. Help Egypt to know as you do, and act accordingly. Troubled by rising divorce rates, the president pushed for reform. Hoping a standardized process might curb rash decisions, he asked administrative witness and registration be made … Continue reading

Islam, Jihad, and Syria

Islam, Jihad, and Syria

Two days ago I shared my new article at Christianity Today contrasting Muslim and Christian polls about eschatology. As ISIS surged in the Middle East, it activated also Christian visions of Armageddon. But it is good also to look at the raw material. This article by Josh Landis contains many interesting tidbits on how Syria … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Falling Short

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Falling Short

God, Egypt was almost happy. Perhaps she was a little. The national soccer team came close to reclaiming its heritage as ‘best in Africa’, but fell short in the final. But so also seemed many of Egypt’s actors this week, for good or for ill. A women’s labor strike at a textile factory abandoned the … Continue reading

Who Awaits the Messiah Most? Muslims

Who Awaits the Messiah Most? Muslims

This article was first published in the Jan-Feb print edition of Christianity Today. Jesus did not show up to defend ISIS—and the first to celebrate was a Muslim. “The [ISIS] myth of their great battle in Dabiq is finished,” Ahmed Osman, a Free Syrian Army officer, told Reuters in October after coalition forces drove more … Continue reading

Chris Wright and the Bible of Reformation

Chris Wright and the Bible of Reformation

This article was first published at the Anglican Diocese of Egypt.   Visiting Egypt for the 500th anniversary of the European Reformation, Chris Wright aptly taught on Biblical preaching. And in his public lecture to nearly 300 people on January 26, he focused on the centrality of the Bible for all reformation. “Ecclesia semper reformanda,” … Continue reading

Conspiracy Theory Comes to America

Conspiracy Theory Comes to America

Living in the Middle East one drinks deeply from the well of conspiracy thinking. It pollutes the mind, but also trains it. So while Americans mused over the merits and demerits of Trump and Clinton, I feared the patterns I was watching develop. To describe would require a full listing of faults, but I mean … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Quiet Revolution

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Quiet Revolution

God, January 25, 2011 was a momentous event. But if the president hadn’t said something, in 2017 Egypt might hardly have noticed. It was a turning point in history, he declared, though it brought on many troubles. But he praised the people and the martyrs, giving assurance Egypt is on the right path. May it … Continue reading

Where Credit is Due

Where Credit is Due

Two years ago I wrote about Egypt and her struggle to return to normal. Protests were still being waged on the streets, as terrorism assaulted the post-Morsi regime. But that article featured also the mundane. A foot bridge was repaired by local authorities in the Maadi neighborhood of Cairo, but for a long time left … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Red Sea Verdict

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Red Sea Verdict

God, The court has spoken, and the land is Egyptian. Perhaps. Months ago the president and the Saudi king concluded an agreement that included return of sovereignty over two small islands in the Red Sea. Opponents called it an illegal transfer, as Egyptians died in war defending their home soil. This week the High Administrative … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Law, Left and Letter

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Law, Left and Letter

God, The law carries many meanings, but among them is license. Neither state nor citizen may act as they wish; the law – in principle – standardizes behavior. In Egypt, two laws in particular are illustrative. God, may the proper lessons be both learned and applied. Several weeks ago the parliament passed a controversial draft … Continue reading

Creative Solutions to Sexual Crime

Creative Solutions to Sexual Crime

Official Egyptian statistics departments have recently published sobering numbers concerning domestic violence: At least 18 percent of adult Egyptian women have reportedly experienced physical or sexual violence at the hands of family members or close acquaintances in 2015, according to official estimates by Egypt’s Economic Cost of Gender Based Violence Survey (ECGBVS), published in June … Continue reading

Arabs: Disproportionate Troublemakers or Victims?

Arabs: Disproportionate Troublemakers or Victims?

Here is a sobering stat related by the Economist. Interpret it as you will: Horrifyingly, although home to only 5% of the world’s population, in 2014 the Arab world accounted for 45% of the world’s terrorism, 68% of its battle-related deaths, 47% of its internally displaced and 58% of its refugees. Surely there is no … Continue reading