Nathan Schneider

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Radicalized Islam and Mission

This morning’s Briefing from Al Mohler, President of Southern Seminary, had the idea of mission as it’s theme. He begins his analysis of the news by looking at the story of John Maguire, a young Canadian who converted to Islam and became radicalized. He has since joined ISIS and appears in a video urging for attacks on Canadian soil. The questions to be wrestled with is this, “How does a young Canadian, who did not grow up in an Islamic family, become radicalized to the point of wanting destroy his own country?” The secular world does not have a sufficient answer to this question. A secular worldview, which prides itself on progress and the diminishment of religion, can not make sense of a young boy converting to a radicalized religion to despise his place of upbringing.

How does a biblical worldview shape the answer to the beforementioned question? Mohler’s┬áresponse is to point us back to Genesis 1 and the Garden of Eden. We are not mistakes or an unintended consequence of a biological process. Human beings are the intentional design of a Creator and as created beings, we’ve been created for mission and passion. However, when this mission and passion are not directed toward the One, True God, we seek to fill that desire through other avenues. In the case of John Maguire, and a surprising number of other young people, the avenue is radicalized Islam.

Why is this important? Because our teenagers seek to live for something bigger than themselves and the thing that grips the hearts of the next generation will be the dominant pursuit of the future. This why instruction in the gospel and a biblical worldview are so vital to the mission of the church and each Christian family. We are not simply instilling good values, but we are furthering the mission of the church, which is to glorify Jesus and make disciples. Challenge young people with the only mission that’s truly worth the surrendering of their lives. It’s time to raise the bar!

Mohler concludes his bit on Maguire by giving this charge:

So, when you see the teenager sitting at your dinner table or in the pew next to you at church, when you look in and see the youth group at your church, when you look in and see high school students talking on the street corner, realize what you’re actually watching. You’re watching the future taking shape. Whatever rules their hearts, will rule the future.