Then Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest 2 and asked letters from him to the synagogues of Damascus, so that if he found any who were of the Way, whether men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem.
3 As he journeyed he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around him from heaven. 4 Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?”
5 And he said, “Who are You, Lord?”
Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.[a] It is hard for you to kick against the goads.”
6 So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?”
Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” Acts 9:1-6
10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,[c] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Ephesians 6:10-13
Those who are part of IsIs and other groups like it are deceived by the lies of the enemy. They base what they are doing on the teachings of Islam. They believe that every person that is a nonbeliever is an infidel and if they refuse to submit that they will be killed. Those in IsIs have been traveling throughout the earth destroying innocent lives and if we were to examine this from a natural perspective we may desire for the military to blow them off the face of the earth.
But when we examine God’s word and what His word has to say we find that those in IsIs are not our enemy. Though they may stand in opposition to the gospel and the advancement of God’s kingdom they are not the true enemy. They are simply deceived and lost sheep without a shepherd. Many of those in IsIs and other radical Isalmic groups are raised from childhood learning that those who stand against Islam are infidels and are meant to be killed.
But as believers in Christ we are called to pray and intercede. Before the apostle Paul came to Christ he was hell bent on destroying the church. He truly believed what he was doing was called of God because of his strong belief in the law and being raised as a Pharisee. According to the Pharisees the apostle Paul would have been seen as a righteousness man because they saw Jesus Christ and His teachings as simply a threat to the law and the traditions that they held.
What we have in the world today is an opportunity. As the body of Christ we are called to pray for those who persecute us. We need to pray that they would encounter the Lord Jesus. That their hearts would be softened and eyes open to the truth of God’s word and His grace and His mercy. From IsIs and other groups like it can be some of the greatest evangelist, apostles, prophets, and pastors we have ever seen.
Can you imagine if they served the Lord with the same intensity they serve the darkness. We see this in the life of the apostle Paul as Paul became one of the greatest servants of the Lord to walk the earth being saved from his sins and coming to understand the depths of God’s grace.
Some would call this impossible because they are focused on the giant before them that is IsIs. But if we see things through the eyes of God we understand that all things are possible. That God in His grace and mercy would choose to use those who are bound currently in great darkness. Through prayer and intercession we have the opportunity to confront the powers of darkness and bind and rebuke in the name of Jesus.
We need to remember that our true enemy is Satan and the demonic forces that give him allegiance. We through the blood and authority of Jesus have the opportunity to advance God’s kingdom, but it will only come through faithful prayer and intercession.
The world would try to battle IsIs with man made weapons that are carnal, but they will only be overcome with the weapons God has given us. We must always remember that those who oppose the gospel are simply blinded by the lies of the enemy. As we are saved by the grace of God and chosen before the foundations of the earth, we are called to be faithful watchman praying forth the desires of our Father in Heaven into the earth.
It is important that we view all things through the eyes of the Lord. There are so many who are lost and so many who still need to hear the gospel. We are called to be a house of prayer and as we faithfully pray and are obedient the Lord shall display His glory and His power in our day and hour. May we not sleep and slumber in this hour. May we stand fast and be faithful to watch as the Lord soon returns.