Tagged with ISIS

Is ISIS Really Muslim?

Is ISIS Really Muslim?

This article was first published in the March print edition of Christianity Today. For Egyptian Christians, 2017 was the deadliest modern year on record. At least 87 were killed by terrorists. But despite being labeled by ISIS as its “favorite prey,” Copts were only 12 percent of such fatalities last year. Far more Muslims died … Continue reading

How Many ISIS Jihadis in America?

How Many ISIS Jihadis in America?

A recent edition of the New Yorker tackled the problem of ISIS fighters returning to their home countries. Given the controversies in the US about Muslim bans and extreme vetting, it is interesting to note other nations have it much worse: A new report, to be released Tuesday by the Soufan Group and the Global Strategy … Continue reading

The Arrogance of Enemy Love: A Poem to ISIS

The Arrogance of Enemy Love: A Poem to ISIS

This article was first published at The Table. Many have been impressed by the forgiveness Coptic Christians have offered to their enemies. Beheaded, ambushed, churches bombed, shot in cold blood – they have not retaliated. Instead, though anger boils, they pray for their persecutors. In the links above you can explore the opportunities I have … Continue reading

Secondary Separation, in Islam

Secondary Separation, in Islam

In fundamentalist Christian circles there is an approach to the world known as ‘secondary separation’. While the Bible notes Christians are not of this world, there is tension when Jesus says they are also in this world, and should not expect to be removed. Fundamentalism is one expression of this tension, that leans in the … Continue reading

Is Sex Slavery Legal in Islam?

Is Sex Slavery Legal in Islam?

In my recent post about al-Azhar and the doctrine they spread around the world, one reader offered this question in the comments: Someone I know wrote an article about Islam recently and made the statement that, according to his knowledge, official Islam has never condemned the action of ISIS soldiers in raping Yazidi women. He … Continue reading

A Coptic Poem to ISIS

A Coptic Poem to ISIS

After the latest atrocity against the Copts perpetrated by the Islamic State – killing 30 in an ambush of a church outing to visit a monastery – the following poem was circulated on social media. It is entitled ‘A Message to ISIS’, written by Kiro al-Masry. The translation is mine and the Arabic original is … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Aya, Easter

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Aya, Easter

God, Easter passed peacefully, but not Egypt. Though there were no troubles on the holiday, others sandwiched. A few days earlier Copts praying in a village were pelted with stones, as police looked on. A few days later terrorism struck at St. Catherine’s Monastery in the southern Sinai, as police responded. One officer died, a … Continue reading

ISIS Attacks Major Christian Monastery in Egypt

ISIS Attacks Major Christian Monastery in Egypt

This article was first published by Christianity Today on April 19, 2017. Two weeks after killing 47 Egyptians in twin church bombings on Palm Sunday, the Islamic State claimed a fresh attack on the ancient monastery of St. Catherine on the southern Sinai peninsula. One policeman was killed and four injured during an exchange of … Continue reading

An Eye on Egypt after the Palm Sunday Bombings

An Eye on Egypt after the Palm Sunday Bombings

This article was first published at Providence Magazine. Episode one. “They are just following the teachings of their book, and the example of their prophet,” said a Coptic friend following the twin church bombings in Tanta and Alexandria on Palm Sunday, killing dozens. I refrained from rolling my eyes, as this was a moment for … 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

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

Just War Can be Impatient

Just War Can be Impatient

While pacifism can be accused of dangerous idealism, within Christian moral theology it provides a very important balance to the just war tradition. Interviewed in Plough, Ron Sider says adherents of the two perspectives must dialogue in cooperative friendship. How might Just War adherents and pacifists work together? Pacifists and Just War Christians need to … Continue reading

Christian TV Helps ISIS Survivors

Christian TV Helps ISIS Survivors

This article was published at Christianity Today on January 7, 2016. Last spring, a 10-year-old Christian girl famously forgave ISIS for driving her family from their home in Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city. Myriam’s video interview with Christian broadcaster SAT-7 went viral, witnessed by more than 3 million people on television and social media. When Myriam … Continue reading