Can evil be restrained?

IranMap3The world is watching to see if war will break out between Iran and the United States. How should Christians respond to this threat and to Iranians?

Shane Bennett writes about this in his blog. His commitment, like ours, is to love Muslims the way Jesus would love them. Here is what Shane Bennett wrote:

Can I share with you something I’m praying won’t happen? (You probably are too.) I do not want to see Iran and the US go to war. As the news unfolds, it looks increasingly like each side is waiting for, maybe even trying to generate, the catalyst necessary to unleash hell. And I really don’t want that.

I don’t want the death that will certainly follow for those who’ve chosen to serve in the military, nor those who’ve been conscripted and certainly not for those who are just trying to live their lives.

I also don’t want the massive expense of yet another Middle East-based conflict, the artificially trumped up patriotism nor the diversion from domestic issues that merit attention, both for Iran and the US. And for my country, I do not want further reason for the media or grassroots efforts to stir up animosity toward brown people in general, Muslims in particular.

The brokers of power are probably not asking you and me for our opinions on this matter, much less our advice, but doesn’t the king of everything invite us to participate? When Jesus told us to pray the Father’s kingdom would come and his will be done on Earth as in Heaven, that didn’t mean “war between the US and Iran in 2019.”

Could God redeem it? Yes. Does God want it? No.

I know of no Muslim people who’ve so earnestly sought, and found, Jesus as Persians have over recent generations. Let’s renew our efforts to pray for them in these tense days, for Christians in Iran, for Persian seekers wherever they are, for God’s kingdom to come even in the midst of struggling human kingdoms.

And if you encounter an Iranian, whether Muslim or Christian, please look them in the eye and ask, “Will you pray with me that God will restrain the hand of evil between our countries. Together let’s pray that peace will prevail.”

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