What are the facts and forces behind the refugee crisis? What does the future hold? How should we as Christians respond? Our greatest priority on earth is to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength, and to love our neighbour as ourself. We are to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matt 6:33). The Great Commission must be our supreme ambition. “All authority has been given to Me in Heaven and on earth. Go therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptising them in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you...”
We need wisdom and we need to pray
Obviously, Christians need to respond with love and compassion for genuine (legitimate) refugees and seek to not only show practical love in action, meeting immediate needs of those who have lost everything, but effectively evangelise and disciple nations. As our Lord Jesus Christ declared: “My house shall be a house of prayer for all nations.”
This requires us to “understand the times” (1 Chron 12:32) in order to know what we ought to do. There is no virtue in gullibility and we need to be wise stewards of what the Lord has entrusted to us. Hospitality to strangers is a Biblical command. “If one of your brethren becomes poor, and falls into poverty among you, then you shall help them, like a stranger or a sojourner” Lev 25:35.
Love in action
The Lord makes it clear that we are to be His witnesses, both in our own Jerusalem, and our Judea (a similar culture close by), our Samaria (a different culture not too far away) and to the uttermost parts of the earth (Acts 1:8). We are to cross borders, to let the earth hear His voice, to proclaim God’s Word to the nations, to put feet to our faith, to express the love of Christ in practical actions, on the ground, where people are, meeting desperate needs.
The Lord describes the Day of Judgement not so much in terms of the evil that we have done, serious though that is, but in terms of the good that we failed to do. (Matt 25:41-43, James 4:17).
Serving the suffering
There are hundreds of thousands of Christian missionaries reaching out throughout the world, in remote villages, in refugee camps, in conflict areas, on the streets and in informal settlements. There are a tremendous multitude of bold and Biblical initiatives to reach the unreached and care for the needy. In prisons and in hospitals, Christians are ministering to the sick, the lonely, the aged, the downtrodden, those trapped in alcohol and drug addictions, and those fleeing from violence and oppression.
Christian ministries have provided vast quantities of practical aid on the ground for refugees in Iraq and Syria fleeing ISIS terrorists. Samaritans Purse, for example, provided 20 000 blankets, 3 800 baskets of food, 5 000 pillows,
7 500 mattresses, 4 500 pairs of shoes and tons of other aid to refugees in Iraq last year. [As a Christian wanting to do the right thing, we would be best served to give to and to support, Christian ministries and missionaries working in these war-torn and persecuted nations].
Foreign aid through governments not only increases dependence, but [can often] foster an attitude of entitlement and lead to widespread wastage, abuse and corruption. [It has been reported that] the vast quantities of food, fruit, juices and other high quality, expensive, aid provided to Muslim migrants arriving in Europe is being thrown away untouched: evidence of the unworkable wastage of state welfare.
A hijrah hijacking...?
It is natural that Christians want to help those in a crisis. We seek to be good Samaritans, to reach out to those in need. However, there are [some well-informed people] warning us that what we are facing is not a refugee crisis, but a Hijrah. Hijrah (jihad by emigration), is to move to a new land in order to take Islam there. Hijrah is to emigrate for the cause of Allah. In Islam, the Quran declares: Hijrah is considered to be a highly meritorious act. A senior Imam, Sheik Muhammad Ayed, speaking at the Al-aqsa Mosque, in Jerusalem, declared that Muslims must use the migrant crisis to “breed with Europeans” and “conquer their countries.”
An unpopular reaction...
Prime Minister Viktor Orban, of Hungary, recently declared [to much criticism in the media]: “We are not facing a refugee crisis, we are facing a migration crisis...let us not forget that those who are arriving have been raised in another religion, and represent a radically different culture. Most of them are not Christians, but Muslims. Is it not worrying in itself that European Christianity is now barely able to keep Europe Christian? If we lose sight of this, the idea of Europe could become a minority interest in its own continent.”
British author, Peter Hitchens, has written: “We will not save refugees by destroying our own country. I am amazed at how relaxed we are about giving [our countries] away...Mass immigration means we adapt to them [the Muslim refugees], when they should be adapting to us...
I can see neither sense nor justice in allowing these things to become a pretext for an unstoppable demographic revolution in which Europe merges its culture and economy with North Africa and the Middle East. If we let this happen, Europe would lose almost all the things which make others want to live here.”
Helping refugees in their own lands
British Prime Minister, David Cameron, has said that the United Kingdom must not only act with the heart, but also with the head. He pointed out that Britain, more than any other country, is helping the refugees with direct aid in the Middle East. He also notes that Britain is currently not only fighting terrorism, but coping with the problem of economic migrants and humanitarian problems caused by a growing refugee population.
The sharp decline of the birthrate of Europeans has been a direct result of the aggressive population control tactics, massive propaganda of overpopulation, promoting birth control, abortion, sterilisations and euthanasia. Now the massive influx of [predominantly] Muslim immigrants into Europe is being orchestrated to bring about a transformation of Europe into Eurabia. [It is believed by some critics that] by dramatically decreasing populations of those countries traditionally Christian, the goal is a dramatic change in demographics and the death of the West.
Where are the Arab nations?
Danish Minister of Finance, Claus Frederiksen noted: “I am most indignant over the Arab countries who are rolling in money and who only take very few refugees. Countries like Saudi Arabia. It is completely scandalous.” Many have pointed out that Saudi Arabia has a well organised tent city of 100 000 air conditioned and fire proof tents which can comfortably accommodate 3 million people and which is only used for a couple of weeks each year for pilgrims coming on the Hajj. 3 million refugees could easily be housed in the tented city outside Mecca. However, to date, Saudi Arabia is not recorded to have taken in a single refugee from Syria.
The formation of Eurabia...?
According to MuslimPopulation.com, Europe already has three countries with a majority Muslim population: Albania (79%), Bosnia (60%) and Kosovo (90%). France has 6 million Muslims (9.6%). Germany has 4 million Muslims (5%). 13% of Bulgaria are Muslim, 34% of Macedonia. 4.9% of Sweden and 5.7% of Switzerland. 4.6% of the United Kingdom is Muslim. Muslims currently make up a total population of 56 million in Europe, 7.6% of the population. That is excluding Turkey who are applying to be accepted into the European Union.
Trying to sift true refugees from economic migrants taking advantage
Arthur Chrenkoff in the New York Observer has written: “Europe is experiencing a mass movement of people not seen since the aftermath of the Second World War. Unlike the end of the war, however, none of the masses currently on the move are European. As hundreds of thousands of people continue to arrive on Europe’s doorsteps and throng her roads and railway lines...the majority of the immigrants who have arrived in Europe so far this year are not Syrians. “
A head of a UNHCR camp called these refugees “the most difficult refugees I have ever seen...in Italy, Muslim African refugees rejected pasta and demanded food from their own countries...also mobile phone charging stations so that the destitute refugees can check on their Facebook accounts. It had to be done because the refugees in Italy were throwing rocks at the police while demanding free Wi-Fi. There is a tawdry sense of entitlement...
“What is happening in Syria is a religious civil war fought over the same ideologies as the ones practiced by the vast majority of the refugees. This is an Islamic war fought to determine which branch of Islam will be supreme. It is not a war that started last week, or last year, but 1400 years ago. We cannot make it go away by overthrowing Assad, by giving out candy or taking in refugees. This conflict is in the cultural DNA of Islam.”
Helping the true victims
“There are Christian and non-Muslim minorities who are genuine refugees, but the two Muslim sects whose militias are murdering each other are not victims, they are persecutors. [Many of] the refugees are not fleeing a dictator, they are fleeing each other while carrying the hateful ideologies, that caused this bloodshed, with them...”
Approximately 104 000 Muslim migrants arrived in Germany during the month of August. This means that 413 535 registered refugees have arrived in Germany, so far, in 2015. Germany expects over 800 000 to seek asylum this year. ISIS has claimed that they have already infiltrated over 20 000 of their jihadists into Europe so far this year. Saudi Arabia has offered to help by building 200 mosques in Germany.
An indictment on Islamic nations
However, they have not been willing to receive any refugees themselves, nor are they offering any food, shelter, medicine, or jobs for these migrants. Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, all close to war-ravaged Syria, are not yet willing to house any of the Syrian refugees fleeing the conflict which they themselves are sponsoring.
A balanced Biblical perspective
There are two extremes that we need to guard against: there are those who refuse to see the crisis. They say there is no problem! Then there are those who panic and say there is no hope! Both of these extremes are false. We must recognise the problems – honestly and soberly. There is power in prayer. The Gospel is the power of God for the salvation of all who believe. How can any Christian say there is no hope? We need to make disciples of all nations, teaching obedience to all things that the Lord has commanded. We need to understand Islam and we need to evangelise Muslims.
“God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” 2 Tim 1:7. Europe must be won back to Christ. May we stay faithful to His Word.
By Dr Peter Hammond - Frontline Fellowship