God transforms the Church of Lebanon

Lebanon (MNN) — During the interminable financial freefall, people continue to suffer. During this time, God worked to transform the church in Lebanon from spectators into participants.

Ellie Haddad, President of the Arab Baptist Theological Seminary, says, “I remember growing up in the church in Lebanon. I lived through the civil war in Lebanon. The Church was not at all involved in what was going on around it at the time. More recently, perhaps in the past 10 years, God has used these circumstances to truly transform the Church and give it a different heart and view of what it means to proclaim the gospel.

A new point of view

This is a crucial prospect, says Haddad, for any Christian body. Churches can often focus on survival or growth, not so much on society. Lebanese Christians are increasingly involved in life outside the walls of the church, mending, cleansing and nurturing.

Haddad says it’s a way to show Jesus’ hope to a hurting country. “We understand that Christ is coming. We understand that there is eternal life. We understand that in the end, the good will outweigh the bad. But outside of the church, they don’t have that concept. And they don’t care to learn what’s going to happen at the end of time when they’re hungry, and they’re starving. They have immediate needs.

Ask God to provide for the Christians of Lebanon and to give them ever-increasing compassion. And pray likewise for churches around the world. Haddad said, “If we want to research the state of the church, or the health of the church in Lebanon right now, we don’t go to services on Sunday mornings. We go to the streets of Beirut, where the great need is.

Header photo courtesy of ABTS on Facebook.

Charles K. Eckert