The Gospel goes out to the ends of the earth
Every nation, tribe and tongue
“Who is this God who helps people?” She wondered, as she read the stories. “Allah never helped me!” It suddenly starting to make sense to her, and the veil came off her eyes.
Remember what it was like before…
We do not take Rabab’s heart for Israel for granted – many Arab believers identify strongly with the Palestinians and object to the Jewish state of Israel. In a recent trip to share with some Egyptian Coptic Christians, one of our Arab students was welcomed among them with open arms… until it came to light that he was from Israel. But he challenged his new friends with this passage from Ephesians:
“Remember that you were at that time separated from Messiah, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
BUT NOW, in Yeshua the Messiah, you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Messiah. For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility.” (Eph 2:12-14)
There was a time when Gentiles were prevented from worshiping the God of Israel, and had to stay outside the temple courts. Instead of telling us to “forget about what was behind”, Paul encourages the Gentile believers to “remember” how things used to be. The wall has gone, and we are one in Messiah. The Egyptian believer ended up praying with love for the Jewish people, declaring that “All Israel will be saved!” Amen! Equally, it is important for us to stand in solidarity with our Coptic brothers and sisters as they are being so fiercely persecuted at this time. God has made great promises to Egypt too, in Isaiah 19, and calls them “My people”.
But even those persecuting the Egyptian Christians are not too far off for God to reach. I heard of someone who had personally met three ISIS members who had come to faith in Yeshua! God’s powerful message of freedom and forgiveness is truly for all flesh.