If you have been reading my blog for any length of time, you know I never post News articles. Tonight at our Awana program, one of our Elder's asked me, if I had heard about the recent Missionaries that lost their lives in Turkey. I told him, I hadn't heard about them. He handed me an article about it. I was on my way to the gym to meet up with my Awana group but couldn't help but stop for a moment and read this article.
I was so humbled and taken back by this article. I am so ashamed of myself, I grumble and complain because I am tired and have so much to do. (Most of which I place on myself) I don't fear for my life while I'm serving the Lord. I am free and never worry about losing my life while doing God's work. These three men didn't know what faced them that morning as they left their familes.
Please,please please pass this on to as many praying Christians as you can. We really need to hold up these Missionaries families.
A letter to the Global Church from the Portestant Church of Smyrna
On Wednesday morning, April 18th, 2007. 46 year old German missionary and father of three Tilman Geske prepared to go to his office, kissing his wife goodby taking a moment to hug his son and give him the priceless memory, "Goodbye, son. I love you".
Tilman rented an office space from zirve publishing where he was preparing notes for the new Turkish Study Bible. A ministry of the church, Zirve prints and distributes Christian literature to Malatya and nearby cities in Eastern Turkey. In another area of twon, 35 year old Pastor Necati Aydin, father of two, said goodby to his wife, leaving for the office as well. They had a morning Bible study and prayer meeting that some other believers in town would also be attending. Ugur Yuksel likewise made his way to the Bible study.
None of these three men knew that what awaited them at the Bible study was the ultimate testing and application of their faith, which would conclude with their entrance into glory to receive their crown of righteousness from Christ and honor from all the saints awaiting them in the Lord's presence.
On the other side of town, ten young men all under 20 years old put into place final arrangements for their ultimate act of faith, living out their love for Allah and hatred of infidels who they felt undermined Islam.
On Resurrection Sunday, five of these men had been to a by-invitation-only evangelistic service that Pastor Necati and his men had arranged at a hotel conference room in the city. The man were known to the believers as "seekers." No one knows what happened in the hearts of those men as they listened to the gospel. Were they touched by the Holy Spirit? Were they convicted of sin? Did they hear the gospel in their heart of hearts? Today we only have the beginning of their story.
These young men all lived in the same dorm, all preparing for University entrance exams.
The young men got guns, breadknives, ropes and towels ready for their final act of service to Allah. They knew there would be a lot of blood. They arrived in time for the Bible Study, around 10:00 a.m. The boys tied Ugur, Necati, and Tilman's hands and feet to chairs and as they videoed their work on their cellphones, they tortured our brothers for almost three hours. It is so hard to type this information into my computer, without crying for what these men had to have went through for Christ. Again, I am so ashamed of my own service for the Lord.
Details of the torture-This really should not be read by young children.
Tilman was stabbed 156 times, Necati 99 times and Ugur's stabs were too numerous to count. They were disemboweled, and their intestines sliced up in front of their eyes. They were emasculated and watched as those body parts were destroyed. Fingers were chopped off, their noses and mouths and other body parts were sliced open. Possibly the worst part was watching as their brothers were likewise tortured. Finally, their throats were sliced from ear to ear, heads practically decapitated.
Neighbors in workplaces near the printhouse said later they had heard yelling, but assumed the owners were having a domestic argumant so they did not respond.
Pastor Fikret Bocek said this about the slayings, "Don't pray against persecution, pray for perseverence.
Meanwhile, another believer Goichan and his wife had a leisurely morning. He slept in till 10, ate a long breakfast and finally around 12:30 he and his wife arrived at the office. The door was locked from the inside, and his key would not work. He phoned and though it had connection on his end he did not hear the phone ringing inside. He called cell phones of the brothers and finally Ugur answered his phone. "We are not at the office. Go to the hotel meeting. We are there. We will come there," He said cryptically. As Ugur spoke Gokhan heard in teh telephone's background weeping and a stange snarling sound.
He phoned the police, and the nearest officer arrived in about five minutes, He pounded on teh door, "Police, open up!: Initially the officer thought it was a domestic disturbance. At that point they heard another snarl and a gurling moan. The police understood that sound as human suffering; Prepared the clip in his gun and tried over and over again to burst through the door. One of the frightened assailants unlocked the door for the policeman, who entered to find a grisly scene.
Tilman and Necati had been slaughtered, practically decapitated with their necks slit from ear to ear. Ugur's throat was likewise slit and he was barely alove.
Three assailants in front of the policeman dropped their weapons.
Outside Gokhan heard a sound of yelling in the street. Someone had fallen from their third story office. Running down, he found a man on the ground whom he later recognized, named Emre Gunaydin. He had massive head trauma and , strangely, was snarling. He had tried to climb down the drainpipe to escape and losing his balance had plummeted to the ground. It seems that he was the main leader of the attackers. Another assailant was found hiding on a lower balcony.
Such attacks have been going on for the last 6 years in Turkey.
Tomorrow, I'll post the reaction of their family and friends.
"Oh God, forgive them for they know not what they do," Luke 23:34
There is so much more to the article but this is what our missionaries are facing in Turkey. May God be with them as they serve Him.