ISIS is the wealthiest, most technologically advanced, and most powerful terrorist organization in history. Its members are extremely diverse, having been recruited from countries all over the globe, including Canada, Britain, and the U.S.
Now that ISIS has the world’s attention, what’s next?
Governments around the world have spent billions of dollars employing military strategies, and they are still convinced that ISIS is mainly a political problem that requires a political solution. But what if the answer isn’t political or military? What if the real solution is spiritual in nature?
Missionaries from the underground church of China are launching a spiritual offensive. They are not armed with a sentence of death but with a message of life, and ISIS jihadists are in their crosshairs. In ISIS, the Heart of Terror, you will learn about the missionary vision “Back to Jerusalem” and the underground church’s unique method of responding to ISIS by evangelizing Muslim militants. Discover how Chinese missionaries are fulfilling the Great Commission by sharing the gospel with some of the most unreachable people groups in the world, and find out how Christians everywhere can take part in a powerful evangelization of the Middle East.
Rifqa Bary grew up in a devout Muslim home, obediently following her parents’ orders to practice the rituals of Islam. But God was calling her to freedom and love. He was calling her to true faith. He was calling her to give up everything.
Hiding in the Light is the story of Rifqa’s remarkable spiritual journey from Islam to Christianity. It is also the untold story of how she ran from her father’s threats to find refuge with strangers in Florida, only to face a controversial court case that reached national headlines. Most of all, it is the story of a young girl who made life-changing sacrifices to follow Jesus—and who inspires us to do the same.
The Underground Church demystifies the Chinese house church movement, with real-life examples and personal testimonies from Chinese Christians. The movement’s unique characteristics—both good and bad—are addressed, as well as how they have led to the church’s astonishing growth.
Read and be amazed at what God is doing in China!
In this powerful and timely book, one of the most admired and authoritative religious leaders of our time tackles the phenomenon of religious extremism and violence committed in the name of God. If religion is perceived as being part of the problem, Rabbi Sacks argues, then it must also form part of the solution. When religion becomes a zero-sum conceit—that is, my religion is the only right path to God, therefore your religion is by definition wrong—and individuals are motivated by what Rabbi Sacks calls “altruistic evil,” violence between peoples of different beliefs appears to be the only natural outcome.
But through an exploration of the roots of violence and its relationship to religion, and employing groundbreaking biblical analysis and interpretation, Rabbi Sacks shows that religiously inspired violence has as its source misreadings of biblical texts at the heart of all three Abrahamic faiths. By looking anew at the book of Genesis, with its foundational stories of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, Rabbi Sacks offers a radical rereading of many of the Bible’s seminal stories of sibling rivalry: Cain and Abel, Isaac and Ishmael, Jacob and Esau, Joseph and his brothers, Rachel and Leah.
“Abraham himself,” writes Rabbi Sacks, “sought to be a blessing to others regardless of their faith. That idea, ignored for many of the intervening centuries, remains the simplest definition of Abrahamic faith. It is not our task to conquer or convert the world or enforce uniformity of belief. It is our task to be a blessing to the world. The use of religion for political ends is not righteousness but idolatry . . . To invoke God to justify violence against the innocent is not an act of sanctity but of sacrilege.” Here is an eloquent call for people of goodwill from all faiths and none to stand together, confront the religious extremism that threatens to destroy us, and declare: Not in God’s Name.
From the Hardcover edition.
Shen Xiaoming is the pastor of millions.
Founder of one of the largest underground churches in China, he is no stranger to persecution from China’s historically hostile government. Time and again, Pastor Shen has experienced deprivation, disease, and imprisonment for the sake of the incredible spread of the gospel in rural central China.
But April 16, 2002, brought the persecution to a new level. Pastor Shen was kidnapped by the murderous Eastern Lightning cult after being lured into a supposed Bible conference. This dangerous cult believes that Christ returned in the form of a female Chinese leader, and they use force, torture, and indoctrination to gain followers. Yet again, Pastor Shen had to take a stand against evil.
Here is his story.
At just under five feet tall, Virginia Prodan was no match for the towering 6' 10" gun-wielding assassin the Romanian government sent to her office to take her life. It was not the first time her life had been threatened—nor would it be the last.
As a young attorney under Nicolae Ceausescu’s brutal communist regime, Virginia had spent her entire life searching for the truth. When she finally found it in the pages of the most forbidden book in all of Romania, Virginia accepted the divine call to defend fellow followers of Christ against unjust persecution in an otherwise ungodly land.
For this act of treason, she was kidnapped, beaten, tortured, placed under house arrest, and came within seconds of being executed under the orders of Ceausescu himself. How Virginia not only managed to elude her enemies time and again, but how she also helped expose the appalling secret that would ultimately lead to the demise of Ceausescu’s evil empire is one of the most extraordinary stories ever told.
A must-read for all generations, Saving My Assassin is the unforgettable account of one woman’s search for truth, her defiance in the face of evil, and a surprise encounter that proves without a shadow of a doubt that nothing is impossible with God.
Literally dark—most of its regions are too poor to afford electricity and other basic needs. Figuratively dark—its daily life is hidden from outsiders, its citizens reticent, and its propaganda vast. And spiritually dark-its ruler, Kim Jong-il, is both worshipped and feared and the gospel is squelched without question.
Into this darkness, Esther walked.
Growing up a Chinese-Korean, Esther wanted nothing to do with Christianity until a visit to an underground church in China flooded her with the mercy and power of the Spirit—and she was given an unusual call: be a missionary to North Koreans. But again, Esther wanted nothing to do with it, or rather, with them. Rude, filthy, and abusive, North Koreans seeking refuge in China were the worst of the worst. However, when Esther slipped inside North Korea for the first time and witnessed for herself the shocking conditions, she finally understood: they acted desperate, because they were.
Esther gave her all to her mission. Although imprisoned and tortured by both North Korea and China, sometimes destitute and always in danger, having few resources and little time for family, for the past fifteen years Esther has faithfully spread aid and the gospel witness to North Koreans. Smuggling Light is her true tale of bravery, humility, and complete reliance on the mighty hand of God in one of the darkest nations in the world.
‘Her’ was Surjit Athwal, Sarbjit’s sister-in-law. Within three weeks of that meeting, Surjit was dead: lured from London to India, drugged, strangled, and her body dumped in the Ravi River, never to be seen again.
After the killing, risking her own life, Sarbjit fought secretly for justice for nine long, scared years. Eventually, with immense bravery, she became the first person within a murderer’s family ever to go into open court in an honour killing trial as the Prosecution’s key witness, and the first to waive her anonymity in such a trial. As a result of her testimony, the trial led to the first successful prosecution of an honour killing without the body ever being found.
But her story doesn’t end there. Since the trial, her life has been threatened; her own husband arrested after an allegation of intimidation. Shamed is a story of fear and of horror – but also of immense courage, and a woman who risked everything to see that justice was done.
All Christian disciples have one thing in common: as they carry the gospel across the ocean and across the street, persecution will become the norm for those who choose to follow Jesus. How believers respond in the face of persecution reveals everything about their level of faith and obedience.
The Insanity of Obedience is a bold challenge to global discipleship. Nik Ripken exposes the danger of safe Christianity and calls readers to something greater. The Insanity of Obedience challenges Christians in the same, provocative way that Jesus did. This book dares you—and prepares you—to cross the street and the oceans with the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Some of Jesus’ instructions sound uncomfortable and are potentially dangerous. We may be initially encouraged by His declaration, “I am sending you out.” But how are we to respond when He then tells us that He is sending us out “like sheep among wolves"?
In light of the words of Jesus, how can modern day believers rest comfortably in the status quo? How can we embrace casual faith in light of the radical commands of Jesus which are anything but casual? Ripken brings decades of ministry experience in some of the most persecuted areas of the world to bear on our understanding of faith in Jesus. The Insanity of Obedience is a call to roll up your sleeves . . . and to follow and partner with Jesus in the toughest places on this planet.
"We have the high privilege of answering Jesus’ call to go," Ripken says. "But let us be clear about this: we go on His terms, not ours. If we go at all, we go as sheep among wolves."
Jesus gives us Himself. And He gives us the tools necessary for those who dare to journey with Him.
Jay Sekulow, one of America’s most influential attorneys, closely examines the rise of the terrorist groups ISIS and Hamas, explains their objectives and capabilities and how, if left undefeated, their existence could unleash a genocide of historic proportions.
Recently, the world has been shaken by gruesome photos and videos that have introduced us to the now infamous terrorist group known as ISIS. The world’s wealthiest and most powerful jihadists, ISIS originated within Al Qaeda with the goal of creating an Islamic state across Iraq and Syria and unrelenting jihad on Christians. Separate from ISIS, the terrorist group Hamas has waged an equally brutal war against Israel. Both groups, if left undefeated, have the potential to unleash a catastrophic genocide.
Rise of ISIS gives a better understanding of the modern face of terror,andprovides an overview of the laws of war and war crimes. These laws differentiate between the guilty and innocent, and explain why the US military and the Israeli Defense Forces are often limited in their defensive measures.
The authors’ firsthand experience, including multiple appearances before the Office of the Prosecutor, International Criminal Court at The Hague, along with direct contact battling jihadists during operation Iraqi Freedom lends insight into this important geopolitical issue.
A must-have for anyone who wants to better understand the conflict that exists in the middle east, this well-researched and fully annotated volume is invaluable in revealing how this new brand of terrorism poses a very real threat to Americans and the world at large. It also serves as a guide to what we as individuals—and as a nation—can do to stop this escalating violence, prevent jihad, and protect Israel and America from this imminent threat.
Why are suicide bombers attacking our cities? Why are shooters invading our workplaces and malls? Why are students attacking speakers at their colleges? Why are there two versions of the truth on the Internet and in the media?
Michael Youssef, popular teacher and Middle Eastern expert, explains in detail what’s troubling today’s world. Aggressive secularism is stripping our nation of the vestiges of truth, as many Christians are browbeaten into silence. What’s ironic is that secularism is actually opening the door to the “might makes right” nature of radical Islam. In a post-truth world, the most powerful voice wins.
What can save us and our children from this chilling future? Michael Youssef, in this groundbreaking book, shows how we can win the war against aggressive secularism, beat back the threat of radical Islam, and build a brighter future for both ourselves and the next generation.
Be prepared for the times in which we live. Understand what’s happening. Stand up for a brighter and hope-filled future for our children.
In this eye-opening, REVISED AND UPDATED EDITION, Gabriel explains:
ATROCITIES COMMITTED BY MUHAMMAD IN THE NAME OF ALLAHHOW ISLAM WAS INFLUENCED BY WARLIKE ARABIAN CULTURE OF THE SEVENTH CENTURYHOW EGYPTIAN FUNDAMENTALISTS MURDERED AND ROBBED CHRISTIANS TO RAISE FUNDS FOR TERRORISMTHE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MODERATE MUSLIM AND A FUNDAMENTALIST MUSLIMTHE PROMINENCE OF JIHAD (WAR AGAINST INFIDELS) IN ISLAMIC THEOLOGYTHE GOALS OF ISIS AND THE IMPACT OF IT SWIFT GROWTH AND IMPACTThe motive behind Islamic world activity will no longer be a mystery. You will learn how each action is rooted in the philosophy of Islam. Now both the Christian and the political world must decide how to react to Muhammad's revelation.
Born in 1905 to a wealthy family in the oil-boom city of Baku, at the edge of the czarist empire, Lev escaped the Russian Revolution in a camel caravan. He found refuge in Germany, where, writing under the names Essad Bey and Kurban Said, his remarkable books about Islam, desert adventures, and global revolution, became celebrated across fascist Europe. His enduring masterpiece, Ali and Nino–a story of love across ethnic and religious boundaries, published on the eve of the Holocaust–is still in print today.
But Lev’s life grew wilder than his wildest stories. He married an international heiress who had no idea of his true identity–until she divorced him in a tabloid scandal. His closest friend in New York, George Sylvester Viereck–also a friend of both Freud’s and Einstein’s–was arrested as the leading Nazi agent in the United States. Lev was invited to be Mussolini’s official biographer–until the Fascists discovered his “true” identity. Under house arrest in the Amalfi cliff town of Positano, Lev wrote his last book–discovered in a half a dozen notebooks never before read by anyone–helped by a mysterious half-German salon hostess, an Algerian weapons-smuggler, and the poet Ezra Pound.
Tom Reiss spent five years tracking down secret police records, love letters, diaries, and the deathbed notebooks. Beginning with a yearlong investigation for The New Yorker, he pursued Lev’s story across ten countries and found himself caught up in encounters as dramatic and surreal, and sometimes as heartbreaking, as his subject’s life. Reiss’s quest for the truth buffets him from one weird character to the next: from the last heir of the Ottoman throne to a rock opera-composing baroness in an Austrian castle, to an aging starlet in a Hollywood bungalow full of cats and turtles.
As he tracks down the pieces of Lev Nussimbaum’s deliberately obscured life, Reiss discovers a series of shadowy worlds–of European pan-Islamists, nihilist assassins, anti-Nazi book smugglers, Baku oil barons, Jewish Orientalists–that have also been forgotten. The result is a thoroughly unexpected picture of the twentieth century–of the origins of our ideas about race and religious self-definition, and of the roots of modern fanaticism and terrorism. Written with grace and infused with wonder, The Orientalist is an astonishing book.
Iran has repeatedly declared its intention to destroy Israel. ISIS continues to gain ground, leaving a trail of death and terror in its wake. And Russia is inserting itself into Middle Eastern affairs in a power play prophesied long ago.
ISIS, Iran, Israel is an updated edition of the book Iran and Israel by prophecy scholar Mark Hitchcock, with all-new information on ISIS, Russian involvement in Syria and Iran, and the state of relations between Israel and Iran. Hitchcock brings a strong biblical perspective to the latest conflicts, while answering important questions such as...
An eye-opening survey of where things stand and how it all ties in with Bible prophecy.
Carson traces the subtle but enormous shift in the way we have come to understand tolerance over recent years -- from defending the rights of those who hold different beliefs to affirming all beliefs as equally valid and correct. He looks back at the history of this shift and discusses its implications for culture today, especially its bearing on democracy, discussions about good and evil, and Christian truth claims.
Using real-life examples that will sometimes arouse laughter and sometimes make the blood boil, Carson argues not only that the "new tolerance" is socially dangerous and intellectually debilitating but also that it actually leads to genuine intolerance of all who struggle to hold fast to their beliefs.
The wars in the Middle East have become religious wars in which God is believed to be directly engaged on behalf of one side against the other. The hijackers who attacked America on September 11, 2001, thought they were fighting in the name of God. According to award-winning writer and scholar of religions Reza Aslan, the United States, by infusing the War on Terror with its own religiously polarizing rhetoric, is fighting a similar war—a war that can’t be won.
Beyond Fundamentalism is both an in-depth study of the ideology fueling militants throughout the Muslim world and an exploration of religious violence in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. At a time when religion and politics increasingly share the same vocabulary and function in the same sphere, Aslan writes that we must strip the conflicts of our world of their religious connotations and address the earthly grievances that always lie at its root.
How do you win a religious war? By refusing to fight in one.
Featuring new content and updated analysis • Originally published as How to Win a Cosmic War
“[A] thoughtful analysis of America’s War on Terror.” —The New Yorker
“Offers a very persuasive argument for the best way to counter jihadism.”—The Washington Post
“[Reza] Aslan dissects a complex subject (terrorism and globalization) and distills it with a mix of narrative writing, personal anecdotes, reportage and historical analysis.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“Aslan is not only a perspicuous, thoughtful interpreter of the Muslim world but also a subtle psychologist of the call to jihad.”—Los Angeles Times
“[A] meaty analysis of the rise of Jihadism . . . dispels common misconceptions of the War on Terror age.”—San Jose Mercury News
“It is Aslan’s great gift to see things clearly, and to say them clearly, and in this important new work he offers us a way forward. He is prescriptive and passionate, and his book will make you think.”—Jon Meacham, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of American Lion
Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a young German pastor who was executed by the Nazis in 1945 for his part in the “officers’ plot” to assassinate Adolf Hitler.
This expanded version of Letters and Papers from Prison shifts the emphasis of earlier editions of Bonhoeffer’s theological reflections to the private sphere of his life. His letters appear in greater detail and show his daily concerns. Letters from Bonhoeffer’s parents, siblings, and other relatives have also been added, in addition to previously inaccessible letters and legal papers referring to his trial.
Acute and subtle, warm and perceptive, yet also profoundly moving, the documents collectively tell a very human story of loss, of courage, and of hope. Bonhoeffer’s story seems as vitally relevant, as politically prophetic, and as theologically significant today, as it did yesterday.
ISIS—a name that inspires fear, a group that is gaining momentum. Horrors unheard of are plaguing the Middle East, and ISIS may be responsible for the worst among them. And yet there is so much we don’t know about ISIS:Where did ISIS come from?How is ISIS distinguished from other terrorist groups?Could ISIS play a role in the end times?What does ISIS mean for Israel?What impact could these events have on the United States?How should believers respond?
In The ISIS Crisis, authors Charles Dyer and Mark Tobey answer these questions and more. Drawing from history, current events, and biblical prophecy, they guide readers through the matrix of conflicts in the Middle East. Then they explore the role of ISIS in all of these matters. Finally, they encourage Christians to look to Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Refocus on the fight.
Ten years ago, when radical Islamist terrorists used three U.S. airplanes to kill nearly three thousand of our countrymen, America was angry. It was a focused and justified anger—one that generated clear objectives and a willingness to meet them. But that resolve has deteriorated so much that many of our nation’s top political and military leaders will scarcely utter the word that brought us here, “terrorism,” let alone the ideology that fuels it, “radical Islam.”
In The Fight of Our Lives, William J. Bennett and Seth Leibsohn examine the devolution of America’s post-9/11 tenacity and how this country’s well-meaning culture of religious tolerance, coupled with soft and apologetic political leadership, has placed us squarely in the pocket of radical Islamists who have made clear their intention to obliterate everything we value.
America’s devotion to political correctness has crippled its ability to accurately interpret and respond to the motives of its fiercest enemies. Unless we change course and re-engage the fight, the costs of our tolerance will prove tragic and immeasurable.
The Fight of Our Lives helps readers refocus, to reframe and understand the threats we face.
By surveying and explaining the current scene, Bennett and Leibsohn point the way to a future in which our enemies are properly acknowledged and firmly opposed.
“Crucial,” “Timely,” “Brave”—Advanced Praise for The Fight of Our Lives
“An important book. Many have forgotten the mortal threat to America that is radical Islam. Bennett and Leibsohn explain why we must wake up and what we need to do.” ?Mark Levin, nationally syndicated radio talk-show host and author of Liberty and Tyranny
“This bold and readable book makes a powerful, if controversial, case against appeasing terrorists and those who support them—and in favor of a strong cultural commitment to defeat an enemy bent on our destruction. You may disagree, as I do, with some of its points, but you ignore its central conclusions at your, and our, peril.” ?Alan Dershowitz, Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law, Harvard University, and author of Trials Of Zion
“Bill Bennett has been a brilliant sentry in our nation’s cultural life. In this luminous and spirited book, he and co-author Seth Leibsohn sound the alarm on behalf of us all. America can prevail in its struggle against radical Islamism, and they show us exactly how. A book for this moment, written with poise and passion, and suffused with love of country.” ?Fouad Ajami, Johns Hopkins University professor and a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution
“Bennett and Leibsohn follow Admiral Nelson’s strategy?“Go right at ’em”?right at both our deadly enemy, radical Islam, and its apologists, and especially right at our own politically correct, self-neutered establishment. A wise, timely, and brave book.” ?R. James Woolsey, former director of Central Intelligence and head of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency
“We are living, as Bennett and Leibsohn say, in ‘the Gelded Age,’ but we won't be living there for long because the forces of radical Islam have not paused in their drive to defeat the West. The Fight of Our Lives rouses the sleepy and the weary. It’s the crucial book of the year.” ?Hugh Hewitt, nationally syndicated radio talk-show host and author of The War Against the West
From Iraq and Egypt to Sudan and Nigeria, from Indonesia to the Indian subcontinent, Christians in the early 21st century are the world's most persecuted religious group. According to the secular International Society for Human Rights, 80 percent of violations of religious freedom in the world today are directed against Christians. In effect, our era is witnessing the rise of a new generation of martyrs. Underlying the global war on Christians is the demographic reality that more than two-thirds of the world's 2.3 billion Christians now live outside the West, often as a beleaguered minority up against a hostile majority-- whether it's Islamic fundamentalism in the Middle East and parts of Africa and Asia, Hindu radicalism in India, or state-imposed atheism in China and North Korea. In Europe and North America, Christians face political and legal challenges to religious freedom. Allen exposes the deadly threats and offers investigative insight into what is and can be done to stop these atrocities.
“This book is about the most dramatic religion story of the early 21st century, yet one that most people in the West have little idea is even happening: The global war on Christians,” writes John Allen. “We’re not talking about a metaphorical ‘war on religion’ in Europe and the United States, fought on symbolic terrain such as whether it’s okay to erect a nativity set on the courthouse steps, but a rising tide of legal oppression, social harassment and direct physical violence, with Christians as its leading victims. However counter-intuitive it may seem in light of popular stereotypes of Christianity as a powerful and sometimes oppressive social force, Christians today indisputably form the most persecuted religious body on the planet, and too often its new martyrs suffer in silence.”
This book looks to shatter that silence.
Here are the fascinating and long-forgotten roots of the “Jewish difference”–the violence that greeted the Jewish Diaspora in first-century Alexandria. Wistrich suggests that the idea of a formless God who passed down a universal moral law to a chosen few deeply disconcerted the pagan world. The early leaders of Christianity increased their strength by painting these “superior” Jews as a cosmic and satanic evil, and by the time of the Crusades, murdering a “Christ killer” had become an act of conscience.
Moving seamlessly through centuries of war and dissidence, A Lethal Obsession powerfully portrays the creation of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the fateful anti-Semitic tract commissioned by Russia’s tsarist secret police at the end of the nineteenth century–and the prediction by Theodor Herzl, Austrian founder of political Zionism, of eventual disaster for the Jews in Europe.
The twentieth century fulfilled this dark prophecy, with the horrifying ascent of Hitler’s Third Reich. Yet, as Wistrich disturbingly suggests, the end of World War II failed to neutralize the “Judeophobic virus”: Pogroms and prejudice continued in Soviet-controlled territories and in the Arab-Muslim world that would fan flames for new decades of distrust, malice, and violence.
Here, in pointed and devastating detail, is our own world, one in which jihadi terrorists and the radical left blame Israel for all global ills. In his concluding chapters, Wistrich warns of a possible nuclear “Final Solution” at the hands of Iran, a land in which a formerly prosperous Jewish community has declined in both fortunes and freedoms.
Dazzling in scope and erudition, A Lethal Obsession is a riveting masterwork of investigative nonfiction, the definitive work on this unsettling yet essential subject. It is destined to become an indispensable source for any student of world affairs.
From the Hardcover edition.
In his sixth God's Generals volume, Roberts Liardon chronicles some of the great martyrs for the faith—and some of the lesser-known ones. Their inspirational testimony, acts of courage, and even seasons of doubt both encourage and point awareness toward the persecuted church of the twenty-first century.
The book includes profiles on...Apostle Paul and Stephen the Faithful (c. 100 AD)Polycarp of Smyrna, Justin Martyr, and Ignatius of Antioch (c. 100-175 AD)Perpetua, Blandina, and Irenaeus and Fabian (c. 175-350 AD)William Tyndale, John Wyclyffe, Patrick Hamilton, and John Hus (c. 1300-1530)Anne Askew, John Foxe, Hugh Latimer, and Thomas Cranmer (c. 1530-1560)Martyrs from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuriesDietrich Bonhoeffer, John and Betty Stam, and Jim Elliot (c. 1900-1950)Wang Zhiming, Gaspar Makil, and Archbishop Oscar Romero (c. 1950-1990)Martyrs from the twenty-first century, in regions such as the Philippines, Iraq, Libya, and Syria
In an atmosphere of oppression and darkness, the reformers came with revelation from God and translations of the Bible into common language. Roberts Liardon will introduce you to six men who fought to reintroduce the beliefs and principles of the early church.John Wycliffe, “The Bible Translator,” who translated the Bible from Latin into English and was martyred for his efforts.John Hus, “The Father of Reform,” who longed to spread the gospel and urged people to “search the Scriptures.”Martin Luther, “The Battle-ax of Reform,” the monk turned reformer who found that man is saved by grace.John Calvin, “The Teaching Apostle,” who organized the church and urged people to serve God in all areas of life.John Knox, “The Sword Bearer,” the rough Scottish reformer who battled queens to gain the right to preach what he believed.George Fox, “The Liberator of Spirit,” the founder of the Quakers, who lived through persecution after persecution yet humbly shared the Holy Spirit with everyone he met.As you read about these men who sacrificed everything in their fight for God, and view the many revealing photos, you will appreciate the freedom you have to worship, find encouragement for your spiritual battles, and be motivated to find biblical truth for your own life.
Rodney Stark and Xiuhua Wang offer a different perspective, arguing that Christianity is alive, well, and even on the rise. Stark approaches the topic from an extensive research background in both Christianity and Chinese history, and Wang provides an inside look at Christianity and its place in her home country of China. Both authors cover the history of religion in China, disproving older theories concerning not only the number of Christians, but the kinds of Christians that have emerged in the past 155 years. Stark and Wang claim that when just considering the visible Christians, those not part of underground churches, there are still thousands of Chinese being converted to Christianity each day, and forty new churches opening each week.
A Star in the East draws on two major national surveys to sketch a close-up of religion in China. A reliable estimate is that by 2007 there were approximately 60 million Christians in China. If the current rate of growth were to hold until 2030, there would be more Christians in China—about 295 million—than in any other nation on earth. This has significant implications, not just for China but for the greater world order. It is probable that Chinese Christianity will splinter into denominations, likely leading to the same kinds of political, social, and economic ramifications seen in the West today.
Whether you’re new to studying Christianity in China, or whether this has been your area of interest for years, A Star in the East provides a reliable, thought-provoking, and engaging account of the resilience of the Christian faith in China and the implications it has for the future.
"Beyond all particular questions, the real problem lies in the question about truth. Can truth be recognized? Or, is the question about truth simply inappropriate in the realm of religion and belief? But what meaning does belief then have, what positive meaning does religion have, if it cannot be connected with truth?"
—Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger
From the Preface
Christianity, Islam, and Atheism argues that Islam is a religion of conquest and subjugation and that in spite of 9 /11 and thousands of other terrorist attacks throughout the world, many in the West still do not know or admit this because it conflicts with their multiculturalism and their belief in the equivalence of all cultures and religions.
To meet the challenge from Islam, Christians need to know more about the important differences between Islam and Christianity, yet many have been lulled into complacency by the misleading and largely unexamined assumption that the two religions are similar. The time that Christians spend in pursuing common ground is time that Islamic activists will use to press their radical agenda.
In addition to challenging both the multicultural and common-ground approaches, William Kilpatrick also exposes the role played by atheists and secularists in advancing Islam. Despite paying lip service to freedom, radical secularists serve as enablers of radical Islam. The civil liberties that the West enjoys are the fruit of Christian civilization, Kilpatrick argues, and only a reawakened Christianity can defend them against Islam's advance.
Thirty captivating profiles of Christians who risked everything to rescue their Jewish neighbors from Nazi terror during the Holocaust.
MY BROTHER'S KEEPER unfolds powerful stories of Christians from across denominations who gave everything they had to save the Jewish people from the evils of the Holocaust. This unlikely group of believers, later honored by the nation of Israel as "The Righteous Among the Nations," includes ordinary teenage girls, pastors, priests, a German army officer, a former Italian fascist, an international spy, and even a princess.
In one gripping profile after another, these extraordinary historical accounts offer stories of steadfast believers who together helped thousands of Jewish individuals and families to safety. Many of these everyday heroes perished alongside the very people they were trying to protect. There is no doubt that all of their stories showcase the best of humanity--even in the face of unthinkable evil.
'EXTRAORDINARILY POWERFUL, POIGNANT AND AFFECTING. I WAS GREATLY MOVED' Michael Palin
FOREWORD BY CHRISTINA LAMB
Journalist Samar Yazbek was forced into exile by Assad's regime. When the uprising in Syria turned to bloodshed, she was determined to take action and secretly returned several times. The Crossing is her rare, powerful and courageous testament to what she found inside the borders of her homeland.
From the first peaceful protests for democracy to the arrival of ISIS, she bears witness to those struggling to survive, to the humanity that can flower amidst annihilation, and why so many are now desperate to flee.
In the pre-Constantinian imperial period, the conflict between Roman imperial powers and the subject Christian population hinged on competing interpretations of power, submission, resistance, and victory. This book highlights how both Roman and Christian notions of law and piety deployed the same forms of censure and critique, each accusing the other of deviations from governing conventions of gender, reason, and religion. Using Maurice Halbwachs's theoretical framework of collective memory and a wide range of Christian sources—autobiographical writings, martyrologies and saints'lives, sermons, art objects, pilgrimage souvenirs, and polemics about spectacle—Castelli shows that the writings of early Christians aimed to create public and ideologically potent accounts of martyrdom. The martyr's story becomes a "usable past" and a "living tradition" for Christian communities and an especially effective vehicle for transmitting ideas about gender, power, and sanctity.
An unlikely legacy of early Christian martyrdom is the emergence of modern "martyr cults" in the wake of the 1999 shootings at Columbine High School. Focusing specifically on the martyr cult associated with one of the victims, Martyrdom and Memory argues that the Columbine story dramatically expresses the ongoing power of collective memory constructed around a process of rendering tragic suffering redemptive and meaningful. In the wake of Columbine and other contemporary legacies of martyrdom's ethical ambivalence, the global impact of Christian culture making in the early twenty-first century cannot be ignored. For as the last century's secularist hypothesis sits in the wings, "religion" returns to center stage with one of this drama's most contentious yet riveting stars: the martyr.
●The Islamic view of God
●The role of Jesus in Islamic theology
●Islam’s controversial theology of jihad, or “holy war”
●Why Islam’s strong beliefs are so attractive to secularized Western societies
●The role of women in Islam
Inside Islam is an essential resource for anyone who wants to know more about this historic religion from the Middle East. After reading this book, you will have a better understanding of the issues discussed every day in the news.
Revised throughout, the third edition features new material on violence in Buddhism and Hinduism, the rise of ISIS, “lone wolf terrorists,” and more. This up-to-date edition draws on a variety of disciplines to comprehend forms of religious violence both historically and in the present day. The third edition of Sacred Fury is an essential resource for understanding the connections between faith and violence.
Dislike, disapproval, and regulation lurk at the heart of tolerance. To tolerate is not to affirm but to conditionally allow what is unwanted or deviant. And, although presented as an alternative to violence, tolerance can play a part in justifying violence--dramatically so in the war in Iraq and the War on Terror. Wielded, especially since 9/11, as a way of distinguishing a civilized West from a barbaric Islam, tolerance is paradoxically underwriting Western imperialism.
Brown's analysis of the history and contemporary life of tolerance reveals it in a startlingly unfamiliar guise. Heavy with norms and consolidating the dominance of the powerful, tolerance sustains the abjection of the tolerated and equates the intolerant with the barbaric. Examining the operation of tolerance in contexts as different as the War on Terror, campaigns for gay rights, and the Los Angeles Museum of Tolerance, Brown traces the operation of tolerance in contemporary struggles over identity, citizenship, and civilization.
Tensions over Islam were escalating in Europe even before 9/11. Since then, repeated episodes of terrorism together with the refugee crisis have dramatically increased the divide between the majority population and Muslim communities, pushing the debate well beyond concerns over language and female dress. Meanwhile, the parallel rise of right-wing, nationalist political parties throughout the continent, often espousing anti-Muslim rhetoric, has shaken the foundation of the European Union to its very core.
Many Europeans see Islam as an alien, even barbaric force that threatens to overwhelm them and their societies. Muslims, by contrast, struggle to find a place in Europe in the face of increasing intolerance. In tandem, anti-Semitism and other forms of discrimination cause many on the continent to feel unwelcome in their European homes.
Akbar Ahmed, an internationally renowned Islamic scholar, traveled across Europe over the course of four years with his team of researchers and interviewed Muslims and non-Muslims from all walks of life to investigate questions of Islam, immigration, and identity. They spoke with some of Europe’s most prominent figures, including presidents and prime ministers, archbishops, chief rabbis, grand muftis, heads of right-wing parties, and everyday Europeans from a variety of backgrounds. Their findings reveal a story of the place of Islam in European history and civilization that is more interwoven and complex than the reader might imagine, while exposing both the misunderstandings and the opportunities for Europe and its Muslim communities to improve their relationship. Along with an analysis of what has gone wrong and why, this urgent study, the fourth in a quartet examining relations between the West and the Muslim world, features recommendations for promoting integration and pluralism in the twenty-first century.
We are witnessing an astonishing escalation in Christian persecution like we have rarely seen since the first century. Some estimate that every five minutes, a Christian is martyred for his or her faith. Countries like Egypt have experienced more Christian persecution in the last five years than in the previous six hundred years combined. And who could have missed the atrocities of ISIS in Syria, Boko Haram in Nigeria, and the continued persecution of Christians in North Korea?
Johnnie Moore, like many American Christians, didn’t fully appreciate the extent of what was going on—until he witnessed the graduation of theology students in India. Unlike graduation ceremonies in America—where feel-good speeches made by visiting celebrities are common—this one featured a remarkable oath. It wasn’t an oath to excel or succeed. It was an oath to be willing to die, if necessary, for the cause of Christ. This was no empty promise. This was a choice, choosing the eternal over the temporal.
Johnnie knew he was witnessing a raw, first-century Christianity that his comfortable American version had shielded him from. “For the first time, I really understand my faith,” says Johnnie Moore. Now, he’s on a mission to give this same experience to others. He and his team have crisscrossed the world, recorders in hand, gathering eyewitness accounts from dozens of people who survived persecution—and the stories of some who didn’t.
Join Johnnie Moore on this compelling journey to the heart of the Christian faith.
A different group of jihadists exists within US borders. This group has a long but hidden history, is outside the purview of public officials and has an agenda as apocalyptic as anything Al Qaeda has to offer. Radical sects of Christianity have inspired some of the most grotesque acts of violence in American history: the 1963 Birmingham Church bombing that killed four young girls; the “Mississippi Burning” murders of three civil rights workers in 1964; the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968, the Atlanta Child Murders in the late 1970s; and the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995.America's Secret Jihad uses these crimes to tell a story that has not been told before.
Expanding upon the author’s ground-breaking work on the Martin Luther King, Jr. murder, and through the use of extensive documentation, never-before-released interviews, and a re-interpretation of major events, America's Secret Jihad paints a picture of Christian extremism and domestic terrorism as it has never before been portrayed.
A compelling cast—a poor fisherman, a doctor who treated opium addicts, an Ivy League–educated priest, and the charismatic preacher Watchman Nee—sets the book in motion. Veteran journalist Jennifer Lin takes readers from remote nineteenth-century mission outposts to the thriving house churches and cathedrals of today’s China. The Lin family—and the book’s central figure, the Reverend Lin Pu-chi—offer witness to China’s tumultuous past, up to and beyond the betrayals and madness of the Cultural Revolution, when the family’s resolute faith led to years of suffering. Forgiveness and redemption bring the story full circle. With its sweep of history and the intimacy of long-hidden family stories, Shanghai Faithful offers a fresh look at Christianity in China—past, present, and future.
Other conflicts are less bloody, but still dangerous - the nervous stand-off between India and Pakistan in Kashmir, for instance, or the continuing stalemate between nuclear-armed, totalitarian North Korea and capitalist, democratic South Korea. Can we be truly confident that these arguments will not lead to armed conflict - whether by design or by human error?
In The World in Conflict, John Andrews tackles head-on the reasons why global conflict is an ever-present in our lives. He analyses today's conflicts continent by continent, considering the causes, participants, impact and likely outcomes. He looks at recently-ended wars that remain prone to intermittent fighting. And, crucially, he considers where, why and how new conflicts might erupt.
This is a book for our times, an essential guide for anyone and everyone who wants to know more about the world's main danger spots and how and why war and terrorism persist - in short, how we might better understand our world in conflict.
Starting with Pope Urban II’s emotive, groundbreaking speech in November 1095, in which he called for the recovery of Jerusalem from Islam by the First Crusade, Phillips traces the centuries-long conflict between two of the world’s great faiths. Using songs, sermons, narratives, and letters of the period, he reveals how the success of the First Crusade inspired generations of kings to campaign for their own vainglory and set down a marker for the knights of Europe, men who increasingly blurred the boundaries between chivalry and crusading. In the Muslim world, early attempts to call a jihad fell upon deaf ears until the charisma of the Sultan Saladin brought the struggle to a climax. Yet the story that emerges has other dimensions—as never before, Phillips incorporates the holy wars within the story of medieval Christendom and Islam and shines new light on many truces, alliances, and diplomatic efforts that have been forgotten over the centuries.
Holy Warriors also discusses how the term “crusade” survived into the modern era and how its redefinition through romantic literature and the drive for colonial empires during the nineteenth century gave it an energy and a resonance that persisted down to the alliance between Franco and the Church during the Spanish Civil War and right up to George W. Bush’s pious “war on terror.”
Elegantly written, compulsively readable, and full of stunning new portraits of unforgettable real-life figures—from Richard the Lionhearted to Melisende, the formidable crusader queen of Jerusalem—Holy Warriors is a must-read for anyone interested in medieval Europe, as well as for those seeking to understand the history of religious conflict.
From the Hardcover edition.
Through a detailed and colorful narrative, Endelman considers the social settings, national contexts, and historical circumstances that encouraged Jews to abandon Judaism, and factors that worked to the opposite effect. Demonstrating that anti-Jewish prejudice weighed more heavily on the Jews of Germany and Austria than those living in France and other liberal states as early as the first half of the nineteenth century, he reexamines how Germany's political and social development deviated from other European states. Endelman also reveals that liberal societies such as Great Britain and the United States, which tolerated Jewish integration, promoted radical assimilation and the dissolution of Jewish ties as often as hostile, illiberal societies such as Germany and Poland.
Bringing together extensive research across several languages, Leaving the Jewish Fold will be the essential work on conversion and assimilation in modern Jewish history for years to come.
The book charts Hanna’s twenty-eight days in captivity as he struggles through threats, torture, and the unknown to piece together what little information he has in a bid for survival. Throughout this time, he questions what a post-Saddam Hussein Iraq means for the future, as well as the events that lead the country on that path. Through extreme hardship, the young priest gains a greater knowledge both of his faith and of remaining true to himself.
This riveting narrative reflects the experience of persecuted Christians all over the world today, especially the plight of Iraqi Christians who continue to live and hold their faith against tremendous odds, and it sheds light on the complex political and spiritual situation that Catholics face in predominantly non-Christian nations. More than just a personal story, Abducted in Iraq is also Hanna’s portrayal of what has happened to the ancient churches of one of the oldest Christian communities and how the West’s reaction and inaction have affected Iraqi Christians. More than just a story of one man, it is also the story of a suffering and persecuted people. As such, this book will be of great interest to those wanting to learn more about the violence in the Middle East and the threats facing Christians there, as well all those seeking to strengthen their own faith.
While the Globe would want you believe that its paper's reporting was a carefully impartial chronicle of abuse and cover-ups by Church officials, this fast-paced, eye-opening, and meticulously researched book uncovers something entirely different.
Using actual images of headlines, photos, and editorial cartoons from the Globe archives, Sins of the Press exposes:
* How the Globe has routinely celebrated child molesters in its pages over the years;
* How the Globe frequently promoted an author who supported incest between fathers and daughters;
* Extensive and undeniable proof that the Globe's reporting was the culmination of a relentless, decades-long attack against the Catholic Church;
* How the Globe has deliberately dismissed and mitigated vile abuse and cover-ups in other institutions;
* How the Globe flagrantly misled its readers about the Church's response to abuse complaints;
* How the Globe was flat-out erroneous in its reporting;
* How the Globe facilitated the foundation of the notorious pedophile group NAMBLA;
and much more.
Sins of the Press will obliterate everything you thought about the Boston Globe and its reporting about Catholic sex abuse.
The first half of the collection includes original source materials justifying violence from various religious perspectives: Hindu, Chinese, Christian, Muslim, Jewish, and Buddhist. Showing that religious violence is found in every tradition, these sources include ancient texts and scriptures along with thoughtful essays from theologians wrestling with such issues as military protection and pacifism. The collection also includes the writings of modern-day activists involved in suicide bombings, attacks on abortion clinics, and nerve gas assaults. The book's second half features well-known thinkers reflecting on why religion and violence are so intimately related and includes excerpts from early social theorists such as Durkheim, Marx, and Freud, as well as contemporary thinkers who view the issue of religious violence from literary, anthropological, postcolonial, and feminist perspectives. The editors' brief introductions to each essay provide important historical and conceptual contexts and relate the readings to one another. The diversity of selections and their accessible length make this volume ideal for both students and general readers.