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Friday, June 7, 2019

Iraqi Christian Burned Alive by ISIS Three Times?

Fox News (and many other sites, news and Christian) are recounting the tale of a Yazidi man who claims he was stoned without harm and set on fire three times without harm. In the stories and videos I have seen, I do not see the man's name listed or any account of reliable witnesses. (Video)

More troubling is the fact that I cannot find even one skeptical comment at the sites I've visited (apart from my own). The man's confession of faith consists of Christ Jesus supposedly appearing to him in a dream and telling him a secret. I don't recall Paul giving us that particular path to resurrection life.

I am not limiting the Lord's ability to visit someone in a dream (although I find it unlikely in this age), but even if such a case did occur, God cannot lie. Everything must line up with the revealed Word of God. That is, we must have reliable witnesses and what God is reported to have said must be consistent with scripture.

This scripture was posted by one enthusiastic commenter:

When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
-Isaiah 43:2

My first question for her is what would she tell the thousands of Christians who were burned and stoned?

This is where the importance of "Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth" guides us once again. We have looked at this issue in almost all our studies. It is vitally important that "cut straight" scripture. We can get into a lot of trouble and bring scorn upon the true faith when we fail to properly draw our lines.

Back to Isaiah 43, you can read the entire chapter for yourself, but the first and third verses are clear enough.

But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob,
And He who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by your name;
You are Mine...

For I am the Lord your God,
The Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I gave Egypt for your ransom,
Ethiopia and Seba in your place.

We need to be careful not to rob from Israel nor should we open the Lord to mockery. We cannot just open our bibles and apply everything to ourselves.

Unless there is more in regard to his confession of faith apart from "Jesus appeared to me," I have no way to assess that this man even understands who the true Christ is. We need to be careful when declaring something as fact without establishing it via reliable witnesses. There are many false-Christs, we must be able to establish the true from the false and we do that through scripture.

Rightly divide the Word of Truth.

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