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31 July, 2019 10:57

July 31, 2019

MOTIVATED BY LOVE OR LUST

Some years ago I wrote a number of new verses to ‘Be Thou My Vision,’ which happens to be a favorite song of mine. The last verse goes like this,

One day in glory your face Lord I’ll see

No greater motive could there ever be

Be Thou my vision from now until then

Thine be the glory forever Amen.

Just the other day I read an article that turned my stomach yet at the same time confirmed to me that God Almighty is HOLY. By ‘holy’ I’m referring to the fact that God is sacred, separate from, distinct, set apart, without equal. The article exposed the utter depravity of Islamic life for the tens of thousand of Isis followers. Their main motivation was not bringing pleasure to Allah (their god) but rather themselves. Allah was not their final goal or priority but rather seventy virgins they were mistakenly promised by their perverted ‘gospel’. What troubled me the most were the young women who have forsaken family and home in search of adventure and love only to be repeatedly raped by any and all who desired them. How could such a thing be happening you ask? Well, read the article for yourself but be prepared to have something to throw up into. You’ll need it. When you have finished, PRAY! This could be one of your sisters or daughters.

Here it is.

This is an extract from Operation Jihadi Bride: My Covert Mission to Rescue Young Women from ISIS, by John Carney and Clifford Thurlow, published July 11, 2019.

OPINION: After a long day patrolling the Islamic State border with a Kalashnikov, what the young jihadi fighter looks forward to is getting back to the "women’s guesthouses" for a shower and a one-night "pleasure marriage".

If he happens to bring a loaf of bread or a bar of chocolate, skinny-ribbed girls will line up to be blessed by an imam before climbing into the bridal bed. The marriage will last a couple of hours and be annulled in the morning so the woman can be passed on to someone else.

This is just one of the many stories I heard from the 70 or so women, children and disaffected fighters I helped to rescue from the so-called Islamic State over three years.

The religious one-night stand, if you will, tells so much about its twisted morality: religious piety is key, and sex outside of marriage is forbidden, yet jihadi fighters could sleep with dozens of women – be they locals, European converts or Yazidi slave girls – all while preaching purity.

From 2014 until the collapse of the self-declared Islamic caliphate in March 2019, thousands of young women made the unconscionable decision to leave their families and travel in secret to Iraq and Syria.

Under the spell of IS propaganda and lies, they went for the promise of love, adventure and jannah – paradise on Earth predicted in the Koran. What they found was a living hell.

In scores of interviews, I heard how girls as young as 15 were sold in IS slave markets to drug-fuelled jihadists boasting how they intended to score their 72 virgins on Earth rather than wait for martyrdom.

Raped, starved and beaten, most had watched beheadings. One girl caught with a phone was stoned to death and her sister brides had to join in, in terror.

Why did they go – and why did I end up trying to get them out?

Some background. After a dismal start – a violent father, low self-esteem – life had been good to me. I served six years in the Yorkshire Regiment and did two tours of Northern Ireland.

I went to Iraq in 2003 and climbed the greasy pole to team leader with Aegis Defence Services, the private security firm set up by Colonel Tim Spicer.

When US and British forces pulled out of Iraq, Saddam dead, job done, it left a gap in the security market. I stayed and formed a close protection business, escorting oil men and TV crews out of Baghdad’s Green Zone into the badlands of the Wild East.

My drivers were mainly Iraqi, many Kurds. I picked up street Arabic, learnt the intricacies of baksheesh – the tipping, or bribery, essential to survive – and built an extensive network of contacts.

It was through one of these contacts that the family of Laura Angela Hansen, a Dutch 21-year-old girl, begged me to rescue their daughter and the two children she had with her violent IS husband, who she said had tricked her into travelling to Iraq in 2015.

She was now stuck in Mosul, where Assyrian masons laid the first mud bricks 2000 years before Christ; now an IS stronghold of narrow streets and secret tunnels.

"Though Shamima Begum – the jihadi bride who left London aged 15, and is stateless in the al-Roj refugee camp – has expressed remorse for no one but herself, many women we rescued expressed deep regret."

That hot summer, Mosul was being bombed to dust by US-led coalition airstrikes, but was still ringed by landmines and jihadi gunmen in Ray-Bans and black turbans.

Extracting Laura, I knew, would be a suicide mission. But she had managed to get word to her parents that she was being abused; when they showed me a picture of her as a three year-old in pyjamas, she looked just like my own daughter had at that age.

‘BRING MY DAUGHTER HOME’

I agreed to arrange her escape with three Kurds, ex-military men with big shoulders, few words and, like me, daughters of their own, but Kurdish Peshmerga forces swooped in and scooped her up first.

Still, when news of her escape reached the Muslim community, my inbox began to ping like a pinball machine with emails from families in London, Amsterdam, Paris, Munich. They all said the same: "Please, Mr Carney, bring my daughter home."

From that morning in July 2016 until the last days of Islamic State, we ran "Operation Jihadi Bride" non-stop, bringing women and children to a place where they could hand themselves over to local security services.

We arranged the place to meet ahead of time on encrypted chat apps, such as Telegram or WhatsApp. Meeting near hospitals was common, because young women and children would always have a reason to be travelling there.

We followed the Peshmerga as they advanced into Mosul, Raqqa, Deir Ezzor. As cities erupted in fighting, women we had set out to extract ran over the rubble, shedding their black abayas and being shot at by snipers.

We took local women to refugee camps on the Turkish-Syrian border, which I watched grow from a few hundred thousand to three million people.

We took the European girls back to one of the safe houses we had rented from locals to be debriefed of their valuable testimony. They were able to confirm intelligence from our informers on arms caches and secret tunnels that allowed jihadi commanders to escape to Turkey with suitcases full of cash; information I fed to MI6 and Asayish, the Kurdish secret service. In turn, the IS recruits could bargain for freedom.

SOLD TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER

Islamic State propaganda showed happy children in schools, men and women working freely in corn fields, female engineers building bridges and running sophisticated medical clinics. The truth was shocking and sordid: a generation of young men brought up on internet porn had been sanctioned by IS to turn vast swathes of Iraq and Syria into a giant brothel.

Some of the girls had been "lucky", married a jihadi fighter and remained his partner. Those who had been widowed, or whose partner had been posted to another war zone, were bought and sold to the highest bidder.

Shops selling "new-look" burkas, head-to-toe black gowns with narrow eye slits, also sold the sexiest underwear in the world. "They like us to keep our hair long but remove every trace of body hair," Diane Abbasi*, an English girl, told me. "When they peel away our clothes they want to find children dressed as porn stars."

"If a man has food and comes to our building, all the girls will offer to sleep with him," another girl told us. "We were prostitutes for food."

Marriage in Islam is halal – holy. Sex outside marriage is haram – blasphemy. But hormones being what they are, and young men being what they are, Sharia provides a safety valve called nikah mut’ah, a pleasure marriage.

These came about when men travelled long distances by camel or on foot to trade or during pilgrimages. Men were not expected to go without their comforts and in guesthouses a one-night marriage was standard practice.

The woman says to the dusty new arrival: "I marry you, myself." To which the man replies, "I accept." The husband for the night provides a money gift and some sweet delicacy. Divorce is granted automatically after fajr, the dawn prayer.

‘I MADE A MISTAKE’

Though Shamima Begum – the jihadi bride who left London aged 15, and is stateless in the al-Roj refugee camp – has expressed remorse for no one but herself, many women we rescued expressed deep regret.

"I made a mistake … I knew it the day I arrived," Abbasi told me. Unlike Begum, she was allowed to return to the UK, went through a Prevent deradicalisation course and is now a counsellor in the same programme.

Thousands more jihadi brides and children are still living in camps in countries that don’t want them. The UK doesn’t want them either. The Netherlands has a more liberal policy: Hansen was given a suspended sentence for planning to prepare and promote terrorist activities, but acquitted of belonging to IS, and her children are with her in Amsterdam.

Germany is repatriating children from refugee camps with the consent of mothers. One 27-year-old woman, known as Jennifer W, is currently on trial in Munich, accused of allowing a five-year-old captive Yazidi girl to die of thirst, while she was chained up in 45-degree heat as a punishment for wetting the bed.

In a recent policy change, the French have concluded that it is better to bring jihadi brides back to face "the full weight of the law", than allow them to scatter and regroup.

Islamic State with its torture, brutality and evil hypocrisy may no longer exist as a territorial power, but it will rise again, and we in the West must be vigilant.

* Names have been changed

The Telegraph, London

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26 June, 2019 15:50

June 26, 2019

TRANSITION

My wife and I have moved repeatedly over the course of the last fifty-five years. If my memory serves me correctly we have had over twenty homes in three different countries. Our reason for moving was not out of an itch to relocate but rather a desire to be in the center of God’s will. Please rest assured that if you have been in your current location for most of your life I’m not suggesting you’re outside the will of God.

God informed Israel that as long as the cloud remained over the camp they were in the will of God but when the cloud moved they were to move with it. We read in Numbers 9:21 “If sometimes the cloud remained from evening until morning, when the cloud was lifted in the morning, they would move out…” Can you imagine pitching your tent for the night thinking you may be there, for weeks, months, or even years only to be told to move again in a few short hours.

We recently made the transition from Arkansas to Florida. Not because of the weather but in obedience to the Lord’s leading. Moving is never easy, especially when you are in your late seventies. It would have been so much easier to stay where we were. We loved the area, had good friends, a good house and great neighbors. We were familiar with the area and where everything was located, and so driving around town was effortless. Staying put would have been much easier than moving some twelve hundred miles away to an unfamiliar place.

My point in sharing this is that there is a close parallel in the spiritual realm. It’s so much easier to remain in your present spiritual state. We grow accustomed to functioning the way we have lived for the past months or even years. However when I read the Scriptures I don’t read anything about spiritual stagnation as being God’s will for His children. The fact is, God is always encouraging spiritual advancement and growth. We are encouraged to grow in grace, faith, wisdom, knowledge, love, etc. Paul who had experienced a foretaste of heaven still expressed a desire to press on in his quest to know God more intimately. He likened the Christian life to a race in which we all run. Our spiritual race should only end when we take our last breath and not before. The tragedy is that far too many believers stop running long before their final breath.

Perhaps you’re one of them? If you are then don’t quit now. Get up from where you are and press on. Remember there is no reward for those who quit. Look at the stands around you filled with so great a cloud of witnesses all yelling run, run, run. As the old song says, “It will be worth it all when we see Jesus.” He’s not only your ‘author’ but wants to be your ‘finisher’ as well!

19 March, 2019 19:07

March 19, 2019

PRAY!

I tend to be a news hound. One reason for keeping current on National and World events enables me to pray more specifically and effectively. Every day brings a new confirmation that we are living in the last days and seeing the fulfillment of much of what Jesus warned us would come to pass.

Jesus stated clearly that there would be an increase of famines, as well as ‘perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves’. My understanding of that is global warming; not necessarily generated by man but rather God. After all, God is the one in charge of the weather. The rain, snow, hail, floods, fire and earthquakes, are all part of His great heavenly arsenal.

Evil is on the rise like never before. Wars and rumors of wars have been the norm now for years. Nation rising against nation is not just country against country but rather ethnicity against ethnicity. Only tonight on the news they were blaming ‘white supremacy’ for much of the recent carnage going on. Evil however does not discriminate and has nothing to do with skin color but rather the condition of one’s heart. There is only one ‘cure’ for evil and that is the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The real problem is that behind all the evil is the evil one, the devil himself. John warned us two millennia ago that the spirit of antichrist was already at work in his day. This antichrist spirit is now rapidly intensifying; ‘knowing that his time is short.’ A better term for antichrist is the Lawless One or the spirit of rebellion. This spirit is now rampant among our youth and especially among the college generation, not to mention the faculty that continually stokes the flames of rebellion with their far-left socialistic and communistic philosophy and rhetoric.

I hear promises of a coming revival. If only I could believe it. Revival is the only answer for our nation but sadly few if any are willing to pay the price.

When was the last time your pastor called the Church together to pray. Yes, we pray occasionally for Aunt Susie or Uncle Jim or some other loved one suffering from gal-stones or cancer etc. but do we really cry out for a God given move of the Spirit. The fact is, the average believer couldn’t care less about their own spiritual condition, let alone the condition of the church and nation.

While I can hope of being a part of a heaven sent revival, I’m concerned that things are going to deteriorate to the point where the freedom we once were entitled to is no longer guaranteed us. Our religious liberty is slipping away as the World unifies against us.

Consider the recent tragedy in Christchurch, New Zealand. Some of the best years of my life were spent in that city. I’ve driven countless times past the mosque where most of the deaths occurred. I have family and grandchildren there and can well understand how the city and New Zealand as a whole is shaken by this heinous act of violence and terror. The whole world has focused on the tragedy and rightly so, but did you know that around the same time, dozens of Christian believers were slaughtered by Muslim extremists in Nigeria and yet, not one single news outlet carried the story. Our rights are slowly but methodically being silenced and removed. Our President may be there in the White House by divine decree but he is powerless to stop the spirit of lawlessness gripping our nation. There are no laws that will counteract the spirit of lawlessness.

Prayer is the only answer. I’m not talking about ‘now I lay me down to sleep’ but ‘Awake thou that sleepest,’ cry aloud and spare not. If your church refuses to pray, pray anyway. My late father use to say ‘if we don’t concentrate in prayer we will pray in concentration camps.’ He was right! Pray. Our future and our Nations future depends on it!

5 February, 2019 13:08

February 5, 2019

THE LONELY GOD

There is no question in my mind that what sets man apart from the rest of creation is the fact that man was created to have fellowship with his maker.

Not only was man created for fellowship but even more importantly, God seeks fellowship with man. From man’s very beginning we read of God coming in the cool of the day to spend time with Adam.

How long these encounters lasted we are not told, nor do we know whether the days stretched into weeks and the weeks into months and the months into years before that fateful day when Adam chose to miss his appointment with God.

Rather than letting things go, God begins searching for Adam, calling out ‘Adam where are you?’ I believe it was Charles Spurgeon that suggested God is still calling out to His children ‘where are you?’ ‘I miss our times together.’ Suggesting that when we allow our devotional times with God to lapse God feels lonely, betrayed, and even hurt, by our lack of love and devotion.

The Apostle Paul reminds us that through God’s faithfulness we “were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” This is the very essence of what our Christian life is all about – fellowship with God Himself.

Unfortunately the Church has emphasized our initial acceptance of Christ more than our daily relationship with Christ. Many believers are more concerned about securing their eternal destiny than developing a relationship with the Eternal Himself.

I’m convinced that when the prodigal left his father’s house and went into a far country there to experience a severe famine, that the Father also experienced a severe famine. The son’s famine was lack of food the Father’s famine was a lack of fellowship. I’ve often said the ‘far country’ was not measured by distance but desire. You can sit in church every Sunday and still be in a far country. Jesus stood within inches of the Pharisees and yet scolded them, saying that their heart was far from Him.

Just today, I was thinking of the repentant thief on the cross who said “Jesus, remember me when You come into your kingdom!” Jesus responded by saying to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.” Jesus could have emphasized Paradise the place, but chose to emphasize “with Me” in Paradise.

I believe Spurgeon was correct concerning God calling us daily by name “Where are you?” God still longs to fellowship with us. If we don’t crave His fellowship here on earth what will change when we get to heaven? Could that be why He says ‘I never knew you, depart from Me?’

16 January, 2019 16:20

January 16, 2019

My NEW BOOK.
"The Gentile Roots Of The Jewish Faith"
Is now available on Amazon.

16 January, 2019 16:13

January 16, 2019

NEW BOOK RELEASE. Available on Amazon

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31 December, 2018 11:40

December 31, 2018

The following is taken from Smith Wigglesworth, Devotional book. December 31.

There is one thing that can hinder our faith: a conscience that is seared. [1Ti 4.2] Paul sought to have a conscience void of offense. [Ac 24.16] There is a conscience that is seared, and there is a conscience that is so opened to the presence of God that the smallest thing in the world will drive it to God. What we need is a conscience that is so opened to God that not one thing can come into and stay in our lives to break up our fellowship and shatter our faith in God. And when we can come into the presence of God with a clear conscience and a faith unfeigned, [1Ti 1.5] our heart condemning us not, then have we confidence toward God, and whatsoever we ask we receive of him. [1Jn 3.22]

In Mark 11.24 we read, “What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.” The previous verse speaks of mountains removed, difficulties cleared away. [Mk 11.23] Veneering won’t do. We must have reality, the real working of our God. We must know God. We must be able to go in and hold converse with God. We must also know the mind of God toward us, so that all our petitions are always on the line of his will.

As this like precious faith becomes a part of you, it will make you so that you will dare to do anything. And remember, God wants daring men. Men who will dare all, men who will be strong in him and dare to do exploits. How shall we reach this plane of faith? Give up your own mind. Let go your own thoughts, and take the thoughts of God, the word of God. If you build yourself on imaginations you will go wrong. You have the word of God and it is enough. A man gave this remarkable testimony concerning the word: “Never compare this book with other books. Comparisons are dangerous. Never think or never say that this book contains the word of God. It is the word of God. It is supernatural in origin, eternal in duration, inexpressible in value, infinite in scope, regenerative in power, infallible in authority, universal in interest, personal in application, inspired in totality. Read it through. Write it down. Pray it in. Work it out. And then pass it on.”

And truly the word of God changes a man until he becomes an epistle of God. It transforms his mind, changes his character, moves him on from grace to grace, makes him an inheritor of the very nature of God. God comes in, dwells in, walks in, talks through, and sups with him [Rv 3.20] who opens his being to the word of God and receives the Spirit who inspired it.