Skip to content
News Around the World
Published on 30 August, 2011

28 dead in Iraq bombing

Iraq (MNN) — A suicide bomber has rattled confidence even
amongst Sunni Muslims in Iraq.

On August 21, the attacker blew himself up inside Baghdad's
largest Sunni mosque. Todd Nettleton with Voice of the
Martyrs
says, "Twenty-eight people lost their lives, so it's a significant
attack, a significant bombing, and one more thing in a long line of items that
make us worry about the stability of Iraq, particularly as U.S. troops pull
out."

What makes this attack even more noteworthy is that a member
of parliament was among the victims. Early into the investigation, explains Nettleton, "They are suspicious
of al Qaeda, in spite of the fact that this was a Sunni Mosque and the
predominant faith within al Qaeda is Sunni Islam. It seems odd that al Qaeda
would orchestrate an attack on a Sunni mosque."

Even as authorities investigate the "how's" and the "why's,"
there is one minority group to whom the message is well-defined. Nettleton says it stands to reason that if a
bomber can get inside a Sunni mosque to kill so many, a bomber could easily
attack a church body. "The message
is very clear for Christians who would gather together for worship: 'You're not
immune to this kind of violence.' I think
the other thing is just the overall stability of the country. That can be both
a challenge and an opportunity because as there is so much upheaval, there are opportunities
to be a witness for Christ."

Bombings of Christian religious institutions have been
common throughout the process of democracy. Obviously targeted by the militant
Islamic groups active in Iraq, thousands
of believers have fled to neighboring countries. Today, Christians form around 1.6% of Iraq's population, according to Joshua Project.

Nettleton agrees that within the remnant church, "this can be a time for evangelism and a
time for revival. But it obviously comes at a price, because the instability affects
everyone inside the country." Isolation and discouragement can disrupt the work of sharing the hope of
Christ.

VOM teams have not given up trying to reach those who've
been forced underground. "We're involved in aid to Christians who are
affected by persecution. One of the other significant points of our work in Iraq,
as well as other nations, is simply getting Scriptures into the hands of the
people there."

Keep praying for stability in the days ahead. If the aim is to stir up trouble, there's
precedence behind the move. Five years
ago, an attack on a Shiite shrine in Samarra triggered a period of civil
warfare in which thousands died. In the
chaos, the balance of power tipped somewhat. With a power vacuum forming in Iraq, everything is up for grabs. 

VOM Action Packs are one way to encourage believers. Click
here for more.

Leave a Reply

Today's Audio:

Download:

(Photo courtesy Ian Terry/Flickr/CC)

About Iraq

  • Primary Language: Arabic, Standard
  • Primary Religion: Islam
  • Evangelical: 0.2%
More News About Iraq
Info About Iraq
Data from the Joshua Project
Phone: (918) 337-8015
Web site

Voice of the Martyrs, USAP.O. Box 443
Bartlesville, OK
74005

Call to action

Related News

Featured Mission Trip

Hope for India - 11/29/2014

Location: India
Magnificent historical sites attract millions of tourists and students from across India and the world to India's Rajasthan state. But the beautiful architecture can't cure the brokenness they carry with them--a cure that is only found in Jesus. Partnering with national India Campus Crusade for Christ® staff members and local churches, you will have the...
Find Out More About This Trip JFPWord_logo copy
  • Mobile Ad 1

    Free book
  • Mobile Ad 2

    GFA-03-14-14-166-x-166-ad
  • Mobile Ad 3

    OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 30 Days of Prayer
  • Free book