Jeff Bartell

A "bottom line" kind of guy

Thoughts on Egypt

I admit that I haven’t been following the news on Egypt as closely as I could.  I don’t pretend to be an expert on what’s going on over there.  It has been very interesting that the former president / dictator Mubarak stepped down after many days of peaceful protests.  It is interesting because Albania has a similar situation where there is a president (Prime Minister, actually) who behaves like a dictator.  You might say he is “democratically autocratic.”  I can’t imagine the Albanian president ever steeping down simply because of peaceful protests, regardless of how many days and weeks they continue.

Well, now the focus shifts to many other Arab nations who are rising up in protest against their leaders.  Demonstrations are stirring in Algeria, Tunisia, Yemen and Jordan with Mauritania, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Sudan, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Morocco and Iran standing by and watching.  It seems that these nations, filled with Muslim people, are highly dissatisfied with their respective countries’ leadership.  They feel oppression and lack basic human freedoms.

Is it a good thing that these citizens are rising up in protest?  Yes, as long as it is peaceful.  Isn’t it possible that it could end up even worse for them in the long run?  Yes, of course it could, but who knows?  For many more reasons than we could possibly list here, these Arab citizens are screaming out to the world that they are dissatisfied.  Good for them!

I certainly don’t know what God has in mind with all this, but it sure is interesting to watch.  Without a doubt, any major political transition will be accompanied by individual hearts open to “new things” – even the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Now, more than ever, we need to be praying for these nations.  Not so much for the form of new government as for the spreading of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Maybe you have Muslim friends from Arab countries where you work.  Maybe you could politely show an interest in their homeland and lend an ear to their thoughts on the situation.  Maybe God will give you an opportunity to tell them about Jesus Christ, the son of Abraham, who died on a cross to free them from the penalty of their sin.

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