HomeOpinionOpinionBattle for Britain’s soul — Charles Gardner

Battle for Britain’s soul — Charles Gardner

 

A City of London police officer bows in respect as a coroner’s vehicle is driven away from London Bridge (PHOTO: Reuters/Daily Mail).

Enough of pussyfooting platitudes – there’s a war on!

News of yet another terrorist attack will have had a numbing effect on many of us. The fact that seven died at London Bridge, and that it once again brought back memories of the 7/7 horror of 2005 when my brother was among the severely injured, only added to feelings of despair and sadness just as a concert was being held in Manchester in memory of the 22 who died there less than a fortnight earlier.

But we have lost God’s protective cover because we have stopped serving Him; we have said we don’t want Him or His laws; and this has made us particularly vulnerable to attack.

Many Christians will identify with the feelings of the prophet Elijah who, after winning a great contest with the idolatrous false prophets on Mt Carmel, realised that he had still not yet convinced Israel’s leaders of their need to turn back to the Lord.

Queen Jezebel was furious at the undeniable display of God’s miraculous power and authority, and was determined to kill His prophet before a day was out. Weary of battle and exhausted from his tireless exploits, Elijah succumbed to a severe bout of depression and ran away.

I have had enough, Lord, (1 Kings 19:4) he said, praying that he would die. What more could he do to bring Israel back to God?

Jews and Arabs now meet to worship Jesus at these beautiful premises on Mt Carmel.

Satisfying the need for diversity and equality
Many British Christians are understandably frustrated and weary. We have been warning our leaders for so long about the Islamic threat along with the dangers of discarding God’s laws. But, as in the days of Jeremiah, their response is to declare ‘Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace (Jeremiah 6:14): or tell us that the new morality is good for us because it satisfies our need for ‘diversity and equality’. Of course, if you throw God out of the equation, who’s to judge what is right and wrong?

But at last it seems, in the UK, as if the country has had enough too, judging by the tone of Prime Minister Theresa May, saying “enough is enough”, indicating her intent on introducing much tougher measures against terrorism, while Daily Mail columnist Richard Littlejohn said he was sick of politicians pussyfooting around with platitudes. We are engaged in a war that has everything to do with Islam, he writes, citing the chilling statement by one of Saturday night’s attackers, “This is for Allah!”

Scorning the tired mantra that says such atrocities are “nothing to do with Islam”, he even challenged Mrs May’s reference to it being a ‘perversion of Islam’.

“Does she think the Saudi predilection for chopping off heads, or the popular Pakistani sport of stoning to death women accused of adultery are perversions of the religion of peace, too?”

He adds that “it is incontestable that the terrorists are all Muslims who quote the Koran to justify their deranged war against those they consider to be filthy ‘infidels’.” And he says “the political class must shoulder the blame for allowing murderous Islamism to establish deep roots in Britain…”

“Rather than address the root causes of terror, the politicians are content to send the police into the front line — a task to which they rose with exemplary bravery on Saturday night.”

Declaring that we were engaged in a war of attrition which the terrorists were winning, he challenged the politicians to face up to the enemy within.

This monument to Elijah on Mt Carmel stands as a reminder of the great battle he won over idolatry.

The church should challenge the decadent culture
It’s taken journalists like Richard — Melanie Phillips is another — to call our leaders to account. The church should take note, and rise up as one in challenging the decadent culture we have lamely come to accept in our midst.

Could this be the turning of the tide? Yet the liberal left, at every turn, try their utmost to intimidate those who speak the truth — especially Christians or their allies. And as in the days of Elijah, there is a Jezebel spirit across the land manifested most obviously through the LGBT+ movement which has managed to penetrate every crack and crevice of our government and precious institutions. Even the church, for the most part, has been intimidated into silence in speaking out on sexual ethics for fear of being seen as ‘homophobic’.

Elijah ran away and wanted to die, but God refreshed him instead — with food and sleep, and then with His still, small voice that spoke above the earthquake, wind and fire. Further, he was told to anoint his successor, Elisha, to continue the heavenly mission, and was then reminded that there were 7 000 who had not bowed the knee to Baal (the false god).

The remnant of true believers in Britain need to keep their nerve, hold steady and be encouraged. This is no time to run away or give up. Seek God’s refreshing from on high; His limitless power is available as we carry out the gospel mission which alone will turn the tide of evil. There are people all over the country — Muslims included — who are hungry for the truth that will set them free.

The latest London attack took place just 90 minutes before Britons traditionally celebrate the Day of Pentecost — the empowering of the church 2 000 years ago when the Holy Spirit fell on the disciples who were thus endued with power from on high (Luke 24:49 — in the words of Jesus) to boldly preach the gospel to the ends of the earth.

Yet the focus at this tragic time in England was on a pop concert when what we really need is another Pentecost. Elijah’s great victory on Mt Carmel was a precursor to Pentecost. He challenged his rivals that the God who answered by fire would be the true God! The false prophets frantically called on their god for hours, and there was no response. But the God of Elijah answered by fire, which burnt up the sacrifice even though it had been covered with large amounts of water. (1 Kings 18:16-46)

Do it again, Lord! Send the fire!

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About the author

Charles Gardner, 67, is a former Assistant London Editor of the South African Press Association, working for them in Fleet Street throughout the late 1970s before moving to Yorkshire, where he has lived for the past 37 years while working in various senior editorial capacities for a number of newspapers. He has also launched several Christian publications. Born in Cape Town, Charles grew up in Ladysmith, KwaZulu-Natal, and was educated at St Andrew's College, Grahamstown. He is married to Linda, 59, who teaches Christianity and Judaism in primary schools, and has four children and nine grandchildren.

 

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