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Bixby News

One City, Clashing Worldviews: the Charlie Hebdo affair

9 January 2015 | by Bixby

As I write this on Friday morning, there is a standoff going on between thousands of police and two militant Islamic brothers, responsible for the death of 12 innocent victims two days ago. The added interest for me, as a father of four children, is that this is taking place fewer than 10 miles from my home.

One city, clashing worldviews

One element that makes this tragedy unique is that both the victims and the perpetrators were all from the same city. The two terrorists were born and raised in the City of Lights. Their victims lived and worked in Paris. What a horror to see a wounded officer lying on a city sidewalk, maliciously killed without pity! Not only was the attack perpetrated in the capital city of France, but the competing ideologies that provoked it were stoked and bred in the same city.

The killed

The magazine that was targeted is a radical leftist satirical paper that proudly proclaims itself to be“provocative.” In their own words, they have a disdain for “obscurantism,” especially that of religion. Their trademark is to mock (often with crude cartoons) all religions. They are, in a sense, extremists in their own right. However, while proud to be scoffers, their only weapons were their pens.

The killers

French born, they were raised in the Muslim faith. They have been for some time known to be radical in their views. I heard today from a French pastor whose Muslim neighbor told him the magazine had it coming to them because of their blasphemous ways. He responded kindly by pointing out that the magazine is know for mocking all religions, including Christians. However, it was not the “Christian extremists” who responded by murder.

Can clashing worldviews coexist?

This event brings to the fore an important question: Can sinful men live peaceably in this world while maintaining such conflicting worldviews? We now live in a world where ideologies are no longer kept from clashing through borders or mutually incomprehensible languages. They grow up alongside each other in the same cities.

One thing is evident: ideas matter; worldviews control our understanding of right and wrong.

Please pray for the lost and wandering. Sadly, at both extremes, they are without God and without hope in the world.

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