Skip to comments.A Tale of Two American Martyrs
Posted on 06/14/2012 4:48:14 AM PDT by SJackson
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A Tale of Two American Martyrs
Posted By Raymond Ibrahim On June 12, 2012 @ 12:20 am In Daily Mailer,FrontPage | 130 Comments
Apologists for Islamic persecution of Christians regularly argue that the animosity is not driven by religion, but rather a sectarian divide, as well as any number of indigenous factorspoverty, intertribal conflicts, political machinations, etc. Other times, persecuted Christians are portrayed as Zionists and rapists, spies and traitorsanything other than people killed for their Christian faith.
Consider, however, the following two stories which deal with, not indigenous Christiansthat is, not members of the native framework with its complex socio-political factorsbut American Christians; not Zionist spies, but teacherswho were, nonetheless, killed by Muslims last March, for sharing their faith with Muslims.
First, on March 1, Jeremiah Small, a beloved teacher and friend who taught at a Christian school in Iraq, was shot to death by an 18-year-old student, even as he bent his head to pray at the start of a morning class. The 33-year-old teacher from Washington state took bullets to the head and chest and died at the scene. According to students, Mr. Jeremiahs hands were still folded in prayer when he fell; others say a day before the shooting a heated discussion broke out during which the pupil threatened to kill the teacher because of conflicting religious views.
The official story, however, as reported by the mainstream media, such as the Wall Street Journal, is that the source of the quarrel is a mystery, and religion is unlikely; mention that he was murdered during prayer is also withheld.
To those who do a little digging, however, it becomes clear that he was most likely murdered for sharing his Christian faith. According to this article, which interviews family and friends, Small was a devout Christian who frequently praised Christianity and prayed in the classroom, and his friends in Washington said his evangelism is what motivated him to teach in Iraq but he wasnt pushy. A pastor who once interviewed Small says He knew he was putting his life on the line He felt this was a way to serve and touch some lives for God. His parentswho wrote on Facebook Our oldest, Jeremiah was martyred in Kurdistan this a.m.do not appear to doubt the context of his murder. Finally, it is interesting to note that the Muslim father of the pupil who killed Small condemned Christian evangelists, portraying them as more dangerous than al-Qaeda.
Speaking of al-Qaeda, on March 18, Joel Shrun, another American teacher, was shot dead eight times in Yemen by gunmen on a motorcycle. The assassins, who escaped after the attack, are members of the al-Qaeda linked Supporters of Sharia (which recently beheaded a witch). The group issued a message saying, This operation comes as a response to the campaign of Christian proselytizing that the West has launched against Muslims, calling Shrun one of the biggest American proselytizers.
Shrums employers strongly denied the charge: Shrum, 29, was an American development worker who had been working in Yemen with his wife and two children since 2010. Unfortunately Joel S. has been accused of being a part of a proselytizing campaign, but the staff of ITDC, which consists of Muslims, Christians and other religions working together, has continually focused on human development, skill transfer and community development, adding that Joel S. was a very professional employee who highly respected the Islamic religion. (Note the boilerplate kowtowing to Islam, which one would have thought unnecessary, at least in this context.)
However, an interview with Shrums wife makes clear that, not only was Shrum a devout Christian, but he likely shared his faith: He lived in the reality that we are all created in the image of God and that nothing can separate us from the love of God . These truths were an inspiration for everything that he did. Moreover, there is no reason to doubt his Islamic murderers when they say he was killed for proselytizing. There are many other Americans in Yemen: if al-Qaeda was simply targeting American infidels in general, there would be more random killings.
To conclude, Small and Shrum were not missionaries devoted to proselytizing Muslimsif so, they would have probably been killed earlierbut they were Christians who were not hesitant to share the Gospel with anyone showing interest, including the Muslims of Iraq and Yemen. This was enough to kill themthe one by a student, the other by al-Qaeda.
Finally, it is well to recall that these two Americans had nothing in common with the indigenous Christians of the Muslim world; the arguments used to dispel the persecution of the lattersectarian strife, political machinations, etc.do not apply to the former. Instead, the only thing they have in common is Christianity. This reaffirms, yet again, that the animosity that killed the Americans Small and Shrum, is the same animosity that persecutes and kills the Islamic worlds Christian minoritiesan animosity fundamentally based on religious intolerance.
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“Speaking of al-Qaeda, on March 18, Joel Shrun, another American teacher, was shot dead eight times in Yemen by gunmen on a motorcycle.”
Ha, not enough for my neighbor’s cat, although he’s exhausted a number of lives just dealing with us (like thinking a garage is a nice place to run into just when we’re leaving for the weekend...luckily we left water for him).