Should Christ Followers Love ISIS?

As a Christian minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ a frequent question I get asked is, "How should we feel about ISIS?"

The question more specifically asked is, "Should we love ISIS?" My answer is always the same, "Yes."

God has made all men in the image of himself and we should love them. The question continues with, "How do you love someone who is persecuting Christians and killing innocent men, women and children?" We love them with the agape love of God, with the love of the will.

God has made all men in his image (Gen. 9:6). He is no respecter of persons. In fact the Bible says, "For there is no partiality with God" (Rom. 2:11). We are to love the person and dislike the sin. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23).  We have all heard the saying, "Hurting people hurt people." These men need to know the abundant love of God.

We are to extend love and be love, whether or not we are receiving it back. If more people would activate their faith and share the gospel of Jesus Christ, perhaps the ISIS situation would not have gotten out of control.

I love my friend Leif Hetland's ministry. He has a mission to love Muslims on purpose. He is all about being a love ambassador for Christ to all people. If everyone made it their mission to love people who are different from them, the world would be a better place. 

Jesus says, "Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven" (Luke 6:37). Even though ISIS is persecuting Christians, our responsibility is to be love and extend love, to not judge and to forgive.

How is ISIS different than any other sinner? We love homosexuals, but don't agree with the sin they are participating in. We love people who have had abortions, but don't agree with the murder of innocent babies. We love those who have committed adultery, but don't agree with adulterous relationships. Sin is sin.

We need to extend the love of God and allow him to be the judge and vindicator. We should be repenting for our own sin and not consuming ourselves with another person's sin. The Bible says, "And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?" (Matt. 7:3).

There are a lot of things in the world we do not agree with, support or believe in. If we are consumed with should we love them or how should we feel about them, we are going to spend a lot of time getting angry and bitter. Yes, what ISIS is doing is unfair and wrong, but God says, "And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love" (1 Cor. 13:13).

He gave us two commandments for us to live by in Matthew.  "Jesus said to him, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind'" (Matt. 22:37) and "You shall love your neighbor as yourself" (Matt. 22:39). 

Love isn't always easy, especially in the face of adversity, but Jesus commands it. It says, love is the greatest and to be love.  We are to be an extension of God's love. God loved us when we didn't always deserve it, but we are worthy and deserving through Him. All men, all women, all people are deserving of the same love we receive.

There is a saying, "Love always wins." It really is true, if someone would have won these men with the love of Christ we wouldn't have the problems we have today. Love can turn a situation around, love can make a difference. What difference are you going to extend by releasing the love and power of God into the lives around you?

Kathy DeGraw is the founder of DeGraw Ministries a prophetic healing ministry releasing the love and power of God, igniting people in the prophetic and releasing people from emotional bondage.  She is passionate about sharing her campaign #belove as she travels hosting conferences, teaching schools and having evangelistic love tours. Kathy enjoys writing and is the author of several books that educate, empower and equip people, including A Worship Woven Life, Time to Set the Captives Free, and Flesh, Satan or God. Connect with Kathy at or on Facebook at Kathy DeGraw.


Why Evangelical Christians Should Not Support Donald Trump

I understand the tremendous popularity of Donald Trump in America in 2015.

He is a larger than life reality TV star; he is incredibly rich and not beholden to anyone; he is fearless and speaks his mind; he articulates the frustrations and anger of millions of his countrymen; he gives the impression that he can fix our economy and will put an end to illegal immigration; he is not a Washington insider; he could be a strong leader who could face down our global enemies; he can even be winsome and self-effacing at times.

Yes, I do understand all this to the point that, for some weeks, I wondered to myself if I could get behind Trump as a candidate. And the question still remains, if the presidential race was between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, could I cast a vote for Trump? (I could not possibly vote for Hillary Clinton.)

But let's not deal in hypotheticals now. The immediate question is: Should evangelical Christians support Donald Trump as the Republican candidate? I do not see how we can if the Word of God is to be our guide and if it's important to us that a candidate have a solid moral compass and a biblically based worldview—and I mean to be our president, not our spiritual leader, since we are electing a president, not a pastor or priest.

The Scriptures teach that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks (Luke 6:45), and so Trump's consistent pattern of reckless speech points to deeper issues which could make him unfit for the office of the presidency.

I'm not just talking about his silly attacks on Megyn Kelly (blood), Carly Fiorina (face), and Marco Rubio (sweat) or his more serious attacks on Mexican immigrants (accusing the many of what the few do) and others. I'm talking about his character assault on Ben Carson, comparing him to a child molester who has pathological problems and, most recently, his apparent mocking of the disability of New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski.

Worse still, rather than apologizing for his most recent remarks, he claims he is being unfairly attacked for his comments and alleges that he doesn't even know what Kovaleski looks like. Is he lying?

Notice that he referred to Kovaleski, who suffers from arthrogryposis, which visibly limits flexibility in his arms, as a "nice reporter," before saying, "Now the poor guy, you've got to see this guy," flailing his arms as he pretended to be Kovaleski.

Is this the man you want to be our president? The warnings in Proverbs are strong: "Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him" (Prov. 29:20). "A fool utters all his mind, but a wise man keeps it in until afterwards" (Prov. 29:11).

We need a statesman, not an irresponsible flame thrower, and one can be a strong political leader who is cutting and fearless with words—think of Winston Churchill—without making a fool of oneself.

What of Trump's claim that, "I have no idea who this reporter, Serge Kovalski (sic) is, what he looks like or his level of intelligence," and, "Despite having one of the all-time great memories, I certainly do not remember him"?

If this is true, why did he refer to him as a "nice reporter" and what did he mean when he said, "Now the poor guy, you've got to see this guy"? And did he merely flail his arms mocking someone who, he claimed, couldn't quite remember things correctly—this was Trump's defense—or was he making fun of Kovaleski's arms? (Watch for yourself and you be the judge as to whether he is telling the truth.)

Kovaleski, for his part, states that, "Donald and I were on a first-name basis for years. I've interviewed him in his office. I've talked to him at press conferences. All in all, I would say around a dozen times, I've interacted with him as a reporter while I was at the Daily News."

How could Trump have forgotten someone with Kovaleski's condition?

Trump pointed to the large sums he has given to help people with disabilities, and I don't doubt that he has, nor do I doubt that he cares about the disabled and handicapped.

But what is undeniable is that he is often irresponsible and reckless in his speech, something that could be utterly disastrous for the president of the United States of America. As noted by Jay Ruderman, an advocate for the disabled, "It is unacceptable for a child to mock another child's disability on the playground, never mind a presidential candidate mocking someone's disability as part of a national political discourse."

Yet there's something that concerns me even more when it comes to evangelicals supporting Donald Trump and that is the issue of pride, the sin that is often at the root of a host of other sins (Is. 14:11-15), the sin which God resists (James 4:6), the sin which leads to destruction (Prov. 16:18).

Trump seems to have little understanding of what it means to ask God for forgiveness, while his very open, unashamed boastfulness is part and parcel of his persona. Trump and pride seem to walk hand in hand, and quite comfortably at that.

So while I do understand why many Americans are behind Donald Trump and while I do believe he could do some things well as president, I cannot understand how evangelicals can back him, especially when we have a number of solid, God-fearing, capable alternatives.

(For my video commentary on this, with the relevant clips from Trump, click here. The ugly comments from Trump supporters are quite telling.) 

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