When I saw the news yesterday morning, I was solemnly reminded that there are people taking their position against the cross far more seriously than some people are holding their position for the cross. According to numerous news outlets, al Qaeda recently (although the exact date of the meeting remains unknown) had a meeting in broad daylight, in Yemen, and the 2nd-in-command, al-Wuhayshi, was present, speaking to rally. You can view the video here and here.
There is one line in his translated talk that stood out to me most of all. Here it is: “We must eliminate the cross. . . . The bearer of the cross is America!”
This should be a fresh and sober reminder that the difference between religions isn’t simply social and cultural: it’s philosophical down to the bone and root of the issue. As the apostles did, so we must hold to the message of the cross at all costs. The cross is at the center of Christianity, because without the substitution of Jesus for our atonement, there simply isn’t any Christianity. Here are some reminders:
- “For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (1 Corinthians 1:18)
- “But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” (Galatians 6:14)
- “Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2)
PS: What’s more, a hypothesis has formed around the blurred faces seen in the video. Because the skin color of those being blurred is seemingly lighter than others, analysts suggest that the lighter individuals are blurred because they’re al Qaeda operatives in Western countries. Scary. Real.