By JASON REYNOLDS
Tennessee Christian News
Baptist pastors are calling on all Christians to stand up to the ISIS terrorists who are slaughtering Christians and other minorities in the Middle East.
Calvary Baptist Church and the New Duck River Baptist Association are circulating a resolution pertaining to ISIS. The resolution calls for Christians to “resist apathy,” pray for Christians around the world — especially in Iraq and Syria — and urge the U.S. government to “avenge the evil of the Islamic State.”
ISIS refers to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, which seeks to create a worldwide caliphate. ISIS is sometimes called ISIL or the Islamic State.
The resolution will be delivered to U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais and Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker after the Baptist association’s meeting on March 23, said Tom Henry, pastor of Calvary Baptist.
Romans 13:4 says that government “is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer,” said Jason Porter, associate pastor of Calvary Baptist. That’s why the resolution will be given to Bedford County’s government leaders at the national level.
Henry and Porter said the resolution came about after they noticed TV pundits asking where America’s pastors were in condemning ISIS. Then, Pope Francis denounced the beheadings by ISIS. Henry said he checked with other pastors, who said they had not been preaching about ISIS. Then, they found such a sermon by Dr. Robert Jefferies, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas. That sermon mentioned how pastors were silent during the Holocaust and compares that situation to radical Islam.
Porter said he used part of Jefferies’ remarks during a two-part sermon that concluded last Sunday.
“Apathy is part of the problem of the Christian community,” Porter said.
Henry summed the thought up as “Use it or lose it. The Word became flesh,” meaning God took action and came to live among us.
Porter’s sermon mentioned Jesus’ Olivet Discourse and end-time prophecy.
“I asked where is America in prophecy,” he said. “I believe it’s a deafening silence.”
Where are Israel and the church, he asked. ISIS is not in the Bible, but its characteristics closely match the end-times and Antichrist, Porter said. Revelation 20 mentions beheadings. Ezekiel 38 and 39 also come to mind, he said.
However, Porter said he does not believe the Antichrist will be a Muslim since Scriptures say Israel will sign a peace treaty with the Antichrist. Henry said he agrees.
“Israel would never sign a treaty with ISIS,” Henry said.
Porter said, “We are on the threshold. ISIS is one more of those evil components in the end time prophecies of how evil will abound.”
Henry said it’s not enough to preach messages at church.
“Get out of your apathy,” he said. “Invite people to become part of a movement.”
So, Calvary Baptist issued the resolution last Sunday, Henry and Porter said. They have more than 200 signatures. They are asking more than 50 churches in the Baptist association to place the resolution in front of their congregations.
Henry said he will take the matter up with the Bedford County Ministerial Association during the next meeting. Anyone who wishes to sign the resolution may come to Calvary Baptist any day of the week, the pastors said.
(This was a story I originally wrote for the Times-Gazette): Shelbyville Times-Gazette: Local News: Stand up to ISIS: Baptists (03/05/15).