The Real Spiritual Impact of 9/11
Americans don't go to church more often now, but 9/11 was still one of the most important spiritual moments in recent history.
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The 9/11 attacks gave great new energy to the cause and provided a focal point for millions of evangelicals. A new video, "Radical Obedience: Beyond 9/11," shows Southern Baptists around the world responding to the Sept. 11 attacks -- and reminds them that God's work is not yet finished. "Scripture has called us to be radically obedient, to go beyond language and cultural walls so that allpeoples may know Him," said International Mission Board spokesman Mark Snowden. "Many Southern Baptists have already committed to become radically obedient by praying for the Muslim people of the world. Others havedisplayed their radical obedience by going, in peace, to make disciples in Jesus' name."
And though we are taught to believe that anger can only eat holes in our innards, a study conducted at Bowling Green State University found that those people who viewed the 9/11 attacks as part of a theological war--and that the attacks were Satanically-driven - actually experienced greater "spiritual growth," becoming closer to God and Church.
Anti-Semitism Got New Life
Jews, ironically, may have been less shaken initially because so much of current Jewish theology attempts to deal with the horrors of the Holocaust. "The idea that people are capable of evil things is not news," says Rabbi Mark Margolies of Congregation Beth Am Israel in Penn Valley, Pa. What really upset Jews more was seeing the proliferation of ant-Semitic rhetoric.
But the apparent rise in anti-Semitism and constant turmoil in Israel have left Jews reeling. Many people, Muslims and non-Muslims, were quick to link the terrorist attacks to U.S. support for Israel. Though initially focusing his wrath on American troups in Saudi Arabia, Osama bin Laden soon began saying his attacks were punishment against Israeli treatment of Palestinians. In Arab countries, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the classic anti-Semitic treatise, gained new life and credibility. Rumors that the Israeli intelligence service, the Mossad, had actually planned the attack gained alarmingly widespread credence.