LEAVE ROOM FOR GOD TO WORK
There was an amazing story recently that took place during the riots in Egypt. As a backdrop remember that on New Year’s Day of this year there was a suicide bombing of a Christian church in the Egyptian city of Alexandria, which killed 23 Christians and wounded 97 others. And another incident took place days later when three men in a car sprayed automatic gunfire into a crowd of churchgoers in the southern Egyptian town of Nag Hammadi, killing at least seven people as they left a midnight service. But in spite of that, something dramatic took place during the Egyptian riots against the government.
Government soldiers and police where everywhere, and many had been killed or beaten. But the time for prayer for Muslims came, and as these Muslims knelt for prayer, with their face to the ground, they were vulnerable and susceptible to attack by government soldiers. Dramatically, Christians began to surround the praying Muslims. They held hands and faced outward in a large circle to protect these men, even though they may have been their enemies and may have inflicted a great deal of harm on them or their fellow Christians. The reporter covering the story posted a picture of the Christians holding hands in a circle on Twitter and stated, "Bear in mind that this picture was taken a month after the Alexandria bombing where many Christians died in vain."
Perhaps there were those among the men praying who cheered the bombing of the church. Perhaps there were even collaborators. But the Christians there did not take justice into their own hands, they left justice to God. They were following the scripture which says, "Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay,’ says the Lord. On the contrary: ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.’ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good." Romans 12:19-21
They did not take revenge, but left room for God to work, and by so doing may have done more to stop the cycle of violence than all the legislation and intervention of global powers. They did what Jesus had shown them by example. They were followers of the Lamb.
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