Vicar of Baghdad: ISIS on Verge of Entering City

Shi'ite fighters near Baghdad
Mourners carry the coffins of Shi'ite fighters during their funeral in Najaf, south of Baghdad, Thursday. The fighters were reportedly killed during clashes with Islamic State militants in Diyala province, near Baghdad. (Reuters/Alaa Al-Marjani)

The Islamic State is on the verge of entering Baghdad.

Canon Andrew White, best known as the vicar of Baghdad, reported around 1 a.m. Monday (EST) that ISIS is within 10 kilometers (about 6 miles) of the city and killed more than 1,000 troops during the weekend. Here is White's firsthand report from his Facebook page:

"People are very fearful. The nation looks as if it has collapsed. The usual hectic and crazy streets were this morning almost empty. The news from our friends in areas surrounding Baghdad is equally worry the Islamic State. ISIS, or DAASH as they are known locally, are very close to Baghdad. We do not really know what is happening all we know is that people are very afraid. We know that civilians have been killed in air strikes; we know that there are huge battles with ISIS, and we know that our army is not very efficient.

"This morning I was with one of my soldiers who is assigned by the government to protect me. I asked him what he would do if he saw ISIS coming. He told me he would take off his uniform and run. So I asked if he took seriously his role as a soldier to fight and protect his people he assured he did not. He told me he just did it because he needed the money.

"Meanwhile yesterday at church I spoke on the subject of why we must love Israel. I posted the following brief posting:

'Why We Must Love Israel.'

"This was the title of my sermon today. Quite an interesting title for a sermon in Iraq. The sermon was based on Romans Chapter 11: "Do not boast over the root for the root supports you." The sermon was well received as I have been working on the issue for so long. Because Abraham is so important to us here the issue of the Yehudi and us is taken very seriously. Despite being in Iraq I love the Jews and Arabs. Israelis, Palestinians and Iraqis and G-d loves them all too.

"I received a barrage of postings from people whether they hated Israel and saw them as anti-Palestinian or they were totally for Israel. What most people failed to understand was that loving Israel was far more than love for a state, it was love for a people. Love for a people that the Lord Jesus ... came [to save].

"Though we can see that we are called to love Jews and Arabs alike but that loving Israel is not an option for those of us who love Yeshua we have to. We must not forget the history. We as Christians have got to accept that our theology was responsible for the development of anti-Semitism. I spent hours yesterday just answering questions on this subject. I am not going to answer any more."


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