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Life of Faith

Compassion-Powered Change

Throughout Jesus’ ministry, we find powerful examples of how to improve our fractured world.

By Gillian Bethel

As Sadiq, an Iraqi Muslim, approached a bound prisoner in a detainment camp for ISIS militants, he instantly recognized him from an online ISIS propaganda video. It was the same man who had watched the brutal execution of Sadiq’s friend by ISIS. The man was an Iraqi sheik and an ISIS sympathizer.

Sadiq was working in the detainment camp as part of a Muslim team bringing aid to war-weary Iraq from a US-Iraqi organization known as Preemptive Love Coalition. On this mission in 2016, they were not only helping homeless families from Fallujah; they were also bringing relief to their now-captive enemies. As Sadiq gave water to the prisoner, he said, “You killed my friend, but I’ve come here to feed you.”

Matthew Willingham, a field director for the organization, commented, “While the team had been expecting an aggressive reception from the prisoners, they were instead greeted with row

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  1. Carey Lodge, “Meet the Christians Who Love Their Enemies, Even When It’s Isis,” Christianity Today, com, Sept. 14, 2016.

  2. Personal e-mail

  3. 00Leanne Friesen, “A Living Lesson in Loving Our Enemies,” Christian Week,, Sept. 6, 2016.

  4. Preemptive Love Coalition.

  5. With imagination, all these strategies can be implemented in online “clicktivism” too.

Image credits

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About the author

Gillian Bethel taught college Bible classes for many years. She is passionate about making Christianity practical for daily challenges.