Light in the Midst of Darkness

A few hours before the recent attacks in Paris, a Palestinian terrorist shot and killed two members of the Litman family, who were driving in their car near Hebron. Tragically, a “Red Crescent” ambulance came up to the car while the family was bleeding within, but refused to stop and help them.

There is no difference between terror against French people and terror against Jews. The victims of terror and murder are never to be blamed for the attacks–the terrorists are. Israel is not to be blamed any more than France or Russia. We grieve with compassion for all victims — whether Arabic, African, Russian, French or Israeli.

Prime Minister Netanyahu has consistently warned the European nations of the danger of terrorism. The recent attacks on the Russians and French should remind us that poor socio-economic conditions of Muslim immigrants to Europe, or Palestinians in the West Bank, can never justify terror and murder. There is no “moral equivalency” between the two.

The first step in fighting Islamic extremism requires a change of “concept,” an awareness that the problem exists and what is causing it. The French sent planes to bomb in northern Iraq and Syria; but the terrorist attacks were planned in southern Brussels and Paris. One Israeli commenter noted, “if you raise snakes in the back yard, don’t be surprised if one day they come into the living room to bite you.”

The Paris security forces did not arrive on the scene for approximately an hour and a half. This delay points to a total unpreparedness to deal with such attacks, which in turn points to a false conception within the French government as to the nature of the danger itself.

Jihad – war against non-Muslims

In some ways, the term “terrorist” is outdated. These are Jihadists. They are part of the apocalyptic scheme of Islamic extremism to kill Jews, Christians and all “blasphemers;” to destroy Western civilization and conquer the world.

The attack in Paris was well planned and coordinated. It required dozens of people involved in weapons procurement, transportation, communication, financing and mapping. These people are not deranged psychotics. They are well-indoctrinated (or brain-washed) Jihadists.

Since these Jihadist attacks involve a substantial infrastructure, those infrastructures can be fought, and thereby at least limit the effects of the terrorism. The young man that attacked the Litman family has already been arrested. How? The boy’s father reported him to the police, because he knows of Israeli law allowing the destruction of the houses of convicted terrorists as a deterrent. In this case such a deterrent helped to apprehend the terrorist.

Some commenters have described this as a clash between Western civilization representing life and Islamic culture representing death. That is only partly true. There has also been a great erosion of Judeo-Christian values in Western culture, resulting in decadence, corruption, drugs, sexual perversion and political correctness. We seek to promote biblical values of integrity and faithfulness in every society; whether in family, business, education or government.

Darkness cannot overcome the light

We are to pursue justice and righteousness (Deuteronomy 16:18-20) and to choose life over death, goodness over evil (Deuteronomy 30:15, 19). While we are certainly called to fight evil in all of its forms, we also have a positive message to present to the world.

 Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of YHVH has shone upon you. For behold the darkness has covered the earth and deep fog the peoples; but upon you YHVH will shine and His glory appear over you. And nations will come to your light…Isaiah 60:1-3

This verse is beginning to be fulfilled in our time. It is not a “millennial kingdom” verse, because it states that darkness is covering the world. The word for “darkness” חושך seems to represent evil, while the word “fog”ערפל seems to represent confusion. That seems well to represent the world we live in.

Yeshua (Jesus) taught that the days before His return would be similar to the times of Noah and Lot (Luke 17:26-30). We are already seeing similar sins of both violence and decadence spreading around the world.

But it is exactly at that same time that the people of God are to “shine” with glory and light. The evil in the world will force many Jews and Christians to unite. The glory of the Lord will shine on that unity between Israel and the Church.

It may well be that radical Islam will conquer Europe and destroy Western Civilization (Revelation 13:7, 17:16). Yet, at the same time millions of Muslims, Jews, Christians and people from every nation will turn to true faith.

There is no power in the world that can change the heart of human beings from evil to good other than the death and resurrection of Yeshua. We have a message of hope and light in the midst of a world filled with despair and darkness. This is the time for the people of God to shine with the glory of God. The light will shine in the darkness, and the darkness will not be able to overcome it (Genesis 1:3-4; John 1:5, 9).

This article originally appeared on Revive Israel, November 20, 2015.