Tuesday, 24 May 2016

The Migration Crises and the Church Response Part 3 – Why we must act now.

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The Migration Crises and the Church Response Part 3 – Why we must act now.

In our first and second posts, we discussed the critical issues of the current migrations and what the response of the church ought to be. Make no mistake, the migration challenges before us mean that our ministry strategy has to change if we are to remain relevant in the next few years. We do not have many options before us than to use this opportunity and act now. Not only should we focus on the migrants, we should also target reaching our youths and the unreached within the home fronts.

If we fail to take this opportunity, the consequences will be enormous:
1.     The first thing to mention here is that our failure to reach these ones that God has brought to our door steps will be our undoing. We may never be able to live a ‘normal life’ any more in the near future. Remember what God told the Israelites about the Canaanites they could not conquer, “But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land, those you allow to remain will become barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides. They will give you trouble in the land where you will live”. Num 33:55. In fact in Judges 2:3, God said that the people of Israel will no more be able to have dominion over them and at a point, “… their gods will be a snare to you." NIV. We are neither saying that where we dwell is land of Canaan nor that we should drive Muslims out of where we reside. No. We are only drawing analogy from here saying that when we fail to reach these ones that God has graciously brought to our door steps, in the next few years, we will all suffer for it because most likely they will turn into or cause something else we may not be able to control. There is a reason why God brought these Muslims to our door steps. We should all begin to think in the direction that God will work out something good with these insurgencies and subsequent migrations.
2.     Several Muslim groups are always the breeding ground for Islamists who spread their ideology of violence. Ideologies like the one propagated by Boko Haram (Western education is forbidden) can only thrive among uneducated Muslims. We need to reach these Muslims with the Gospel  in order to see whether some will be saved before they get trapped in the revival of violence-ridden-jihad ideologies being spread all over the world among some practicing Muslims. There are many peaceful cultural Muslims but immediately any one of them desires to become more spiritual and stays under the tutelage of Sheikhs that teach violent jihad, that person will suddenly become very dangerous.
3.     We will have clash of cultures that can turn violent in the years to come. This is because Islam does not allow its members to integrate into the culture of their host. One of the wonderful things about the people from south eastern Nigeria is that they have the wisdom and freedom to adapt and integrate into their host cultures and do their business anywhere they go. But not so with Islamic culture which tends to control every aspect of the life of the Muslim even to the extent of implementing its own body of political laws. Their culture is communal and exclusive and they are often protective and can be violent in the process.
4.     When they settle, because we failed to do our own missionary work among them, Islamic missionary work will start among our people and then we will only be reacting.
5.     Our children and children’s’ children will be the ones to experience the clash of cultures and the attempt to impose Islam on them in our door steps, and the clashes will escalate.
6.     We and our church members may be caught in the web of ethnic sentiments being fanned in several quarters today which will only end up consuming everybody if they turn violent and overwhelm our security forces.
7.     If we fail to teach our members and make efforts to reach these people, our congregations and church members will not be well positioned and equipped to represent Christ in the midst of the forthcoming inevitable crises. The church will be as confused as the state and will not be able to stand in the gap. The failure of any state that has experienced the presence of Christianity starts with the failure of the church to fulfill its purpose and mandate.
8.     Finally if we fail to take the opportunity, we will be made to account before God.

The purpose of this awareness drive once again is not to panic us but to stir us up to arise and respond to God’s call upon us to reach the Unreached He has brought to our door steps. Remember, what we have shared here is not just peculiar to Nigeria, it is a global trend. If the European church fails to respond adequately to this migration challenge, in the near future, the rise of rightists and nationalists who will want to protect their culture, economies and way of life will cause a conflict that will be very bloody. If the Kenyan, Ugandan and Ethiopian churches fail to take this opportunity, the only solution the political system understands is force and war. The political nations will end up shedding more blood in their attempts to enforce peace. If the Nigerian church refuses to act now, rightist, sectarian movements and even militants with different shades and colours will arise sooner or later and they will end up causing conflicts with the attendant bloodshed. The same thing goes for the American church and of course the whole world because of the Islamic revival we are experiencing today. Let us join hands together and pray for a move of God that will awaken His church. God bless you.

You can drop a comment on our website (www.evergreenword.com) or write us. Download the presentation on this discuss for your church, ministry or study group here: pdf or pps

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