By Theodore Shoebat
American Christians, who are so frustrated, sick and tired of how their government has not been doing anything for their persecuted brethren, have gone to Iraq and joined an Iraqi Christian militia, and together they are fighting ISIS. I did a whole video on this:
According to the report:
Saint Michael, the archangel of battle, is tattooed across the back of a U.S. army veteran who recently returned to Iraq and joined a Christian militia fighting ISIS in what he sees as a biblical war between good and evil.
Brett, 28, carries the same thumb-worn pocket Bible he did whilst deployed to Iraq in 2006 – a picture of the Virgin Mary tucked inside its pages and his favorite verses highlighted.
“It’s very different,” he said, asked how the experiences compared. “Here I’m fighting for a people and for a faith, and the enemy is much bigger and more brutal.”
Thousands of foreigners have flocked to Iraq and Syria in the past two years, mostly to join ISIS, but a handful of idealistic Westerners are enlisting as well, citing frustration their governments are not doing more to combat the ultra-radical Islamists or prevent the suffering of innocents.
The militia they joined is called Dwekh Nawsha – meaning self-sacrifice in the ancient Aramaic language spoken by Christ and still used by Assyrian Christians, who consider themselves the indigenous people of Iraq.
A map on the wall in the office of the Assyrian political party affiliated with Dwekh Nawsha marks the Christian towns in northern Iraq, fanning out around the city of Mosul.
The majority are now under control of ISIS, which overran Mosul last summer and issued am ultimatum to Christians: pay a tax, convert to Islam, or die by the sword. Most fled.
Dwekh Nawsha operates alongside Kurdish peshmerga forces to protect Christian villages on the frontline in Nineveh province.
“These are some of the only towns in Nineveh where church bells ring. In every other town the bells have gone silent, and that’s unacceptable,” said Brett, who has “The King of Nineveh” written in Arabic on the front of his army vest.
Brett, who like other foreign volunteers withheld his last name out of concern for his family’s safety, is the only one to have engaged in fighting so far.
The others, who arrived just last week, were turned back from the frontline on Friday by Kurdish security services who said they needed official authorization.
‘Stop some atrocities’
Tim shut down his construction business in Britain last year, sold his house and bought two plane tickets to Iraq: one for himself and another for a 44-year-old American software engineer he met through the internet.
The men joined up at Dubai airport, flew to the Kurdish city of Suleimaniyah and took a taxi to Duhok, where they arrived last week.
“I’m here to make a difference and hopefully put a stop to some atrocities,” said 38-year-old Tim, who previously worked in the prison service. “I’m just an average guy from England really.”
Scott, the software engineer, served in the U.S. Army in the 1990s, but lately spent most of his time in front of a computer screen in North Carolina.
He was mesmerized by images of ISIS militants hounding Iraq’s Yazidi minority and became fixated on the struggle for the Syrian border town of Kobani — the target of a relentless campaign by the jihadists, who were held off by the lightly armed Kurdish YPG militia, backed by U.S. air strikes.
Scott had planned to join the YPG, which has drawn a flurry of foreign recruits, but changed his mind four days before heading to the Middle East after growing suspicious of the group’s ties to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
He and the other volunteers worried they would not be allowed home if they were associated with the PKK, which the United States and Europe consider a terrorist organization.
They also said they disliked the group’s leftist ideology.
The only foreign woman in Dwekh Nawsha’s ranks said she had been inspired by the role of women in the YPG, but identified more closely with the “traditional” values of the Christian militia.
Wearing a baseball cap over her balaclava, she said radical Islam was at the root of many conflicts and had to be contained.
All the volunteers said they were prepared to stay in Iraq indefinitely.
“Everyone dies,” said Brett, asked about the prospect of being killed. “One of my favorite verses in the Bible says: be faithful unto death, and I shall give you the crown of life.”
There are some very interesting observations one can make from the various virtues and aspects of these very brave and righteous men. Firstly, the report speaks of a Catholic fighter named Bret who carries with him a photo of the Virgin Mary. Many will ask, what does the Virgin Mary have to do with Holy War. This is the observation that I would like to expound on.
As I have written before, I believe that Mary will accompany her Son, Christ, in the Final Crusade of the End Times, in the Second Coming. For this reason I will repost this essay with some additions that I made to it recently…
Mary will urge Christ to unsheathe His heavenly sword, to lead “the armies of the living God” (1 Samuel 17:26), and destroy the forces of the Antichrist.
How can one make such a conclusion? I will make this conclusion all through Scripture and nothing else. I understand that nearly every discussion on Mary provokes tension, but in order to answer this question we must put aside our prejudices and look through what the Scriptures say about Mary, and the particular verses both foreshadowing and pertaining to her.
The first story we will read is the Wedding at Cana. It was at this festival where Christ began His divinely destined ministry, by making the water into wine. But Christ did not arise and do this miracle, until His mother told Him to do so. When she said to her Son, “They have no wine” (John 2:3), Christ told her, “Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come.” (John 2:4) Christ did not say this to chide her, rather He told her that the hour of His Passion has not yet come. But what does wine have to do with Christ’s passion? Wine is symbolic of blood and death, thus why Christ tells His Father, “let this cup pass from me” (Matthew 26:39), and to Peter He says, “Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given me” (John 18:11). The cup is pictorially sublime, being filled with wine, that is, suffering and anguish.
Now, In order for wine to be made, grapes must first be crushed and squeezed under a winepress, and this is symbolic of the shedding of human blood in war, and it is this very imagery that God uses when describing the victory over His enemies. For in Lamentations we read:
The Lord hath trodden under foot all my mighty men in the midst of me: he hath called an assembly against me to crush my young men: the Lord hath trodden the virgin, the daughter of Judah, as in a winepress. (Lamentations 1:5)
Thus, we know that the wine Christ made from the water represents blood, fury and slaughter. But what of the water? Water is symbolic of nations, of peoples. Hence the angel tells John,
The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues. (Revelation 17:15)
Therefore, Christ changing the water into wine is a prophetic moment, foreshadowing His return in which He will slaughter entire nations and people. The Wedding at Cana is greatly correlated by God, through Moses, turning the waters of Egypt into blood:
and he lifted up the rod, and smote the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. (Exodus 7:20)
Christ transforming the water into wine and God turning Egypt’s waters into blood, both ultimately prophesy the Second Coming of Christ in which He will turn nations of the Antichrist (the seas) into blood (wine). Thus did David write:
The waters saw thee, O God, the waters saw thee; they were afraid: the depths also were troubled. (Psalm 77:16)
Even the day upon which the Wedding at Cana took place is significant and connects to Christ’s battle in His Second Coming. St. John tells us, “And the third day there was a marriage at Cana” (John 2:1), and this foreshadows what the prophet Hosea declared:
Come and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up. After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight. (Hosea 6:1-2)
A day is as a thousand years, and “the third day” is after an approximate of two thousand years after the Resurrection. This verse of Hosea is speaking of Christ’s second coming, “in the third day” in which “we shall live in his sight”, and be in His presence. Just as on “the third day there was a marriage at Cana” in which Christ made water into wine, on the “third day” of Hosea there will be The Marriage Supper of the Lamb in which Christ will shed the waters of Satan’s armies into blood as grapes are crushed for wine. Let us read St. John:
Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God. And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, King Of Kings, And Lord Of Lords. And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. (Revelation 19:7-18)
The Wedding at Cana is a simple story that beautifully signifies the greatest and most desired of military victories. It is a story that foretells a war. It is a most transcendent moment in which justice conquering evil is illustrated by water turning into wine.
Christ turning the water into wine foretells how He will shed the blood of His enemies, the Muslims, as grapes are crushed under the winepress, for He told Isaiah:
Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength? I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save. Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winefat? I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there was none with me: for I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment. (Isaiah 63:1-3)
Christ comes from Edom (Arabia) stained in blood as though He was covered in wine, that is, blood, foretelling how the Messiah destroys Saudi Arabia, the motherland of Islam, the religion of the Antichrist (see Dedan and Teman in Ezekiel 25:13)
The angel told John, “The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues” (Revelation 17:15), and it is these waters (nations) which Christ will turn into wine, that is, a great slaughter, for as John recounted with his heavenly eyes:
And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. (Revelation 19:11-15)
Therefore, when Christ turned the water into wine, it was a prophetic symbol of Him crushing his enemies and shedding their blood. But who was it that told Christ to make the wine? It was His mother, Mary. It was she who told Christ, “They have no wine”; she who brought the servants and ordered them, “Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.” And it was Christ Who obeyed His mother’s order to make wine, a symbolic moment fortelling of His future wrath and slaughter of the hordes of Antichrist.
Moreover, “zeal” in Hebrew is cana, the same word and meaning as Cana, the place where the Wedding of Cana took place. It thus foreshadows the zeal of Christ in the day of His wrath, in which He will slay His enemies, just as Jehu slaughtered the house of Ahab. The wrath of the coming Christ is foreshadowed by the wrath Jehu exhibited when he slaughtered all of Ahab’s house, and he even esteemed his slaughter as zeal (cana) for the Lord, as he had told Jehonadab:
So he [Jehu] gave him his [Jejonadab’s] hand, and he took him up to him into the chariot. Then he said, “Come with me, and see my zeal [cana] for the Lord.” So they had him ride in his chariot. And when he came to Samaria, he killed all who remained to Ahab in Samaria, till he had destroyed them, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke to Elijah. (2 Kings 10:15-17)
It was Mary who told Jesus to make wine, just as it was Deborah who told Barak to war against the Canaanites, saying, “Hath not the Lord God of Israel commanded, saying, Go and draw toward mount Tabor, and take with thee ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun?” (Judges 4:6)
And after Deborah told him this, Barak said, “If thou wilt go with me, then I will go: but if thou wilt not go with me, then I will not go.” (Judges 4:8) And so Deborah accompanied Barak in the war against the pagans, just as Mary accompanied Christ in His making the water into wine.
It is the seed of Mary that shall crush the head of the Serpent (Genesis 3:15), just as the woman Jael hammered her nail into Sisera’s head, as Deborah sang:
She put her hand to the nail, and her right hand to the workmen’s hammer; and with the hammer she smote Sisera, she smote off his head, when she had pierced and stricken through his temples. At her feet he bowed, he fell, he lay down: at her feet he bowed, he fell: where he bowed, there he fell down dead.(Judges 5:26)
It was Jael of whom Deborah sang,
Blessed above women shall Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite be, blessed shall she be above women in the tent. (Judges 5:24)
And it was Mary of whom God praised, with very similar words, through the angel Gabriel:
Hail, thou art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed are thou among women. (Luke 28)
It was Jael’s nail that crushed the head of Sisera, and it is the fruit of Mary’s womb that crushes the head of Satan. And just as Deborah praises Jael hammering her nail into Sisera’s head, and calls her “blessed above women”, so does Elizabeth praise the fruit of Mary’s womb, that shall crush the serpent’s head, and calls her blessed above women:
Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. (Luke 1:42)
All of these women of the Old Testament connect perfectly with Mary, and all are involved in leading warriors to kill God’s enemies, and participate in the victory. The king killed Haman, but Esther exhorted the killing, and was with him when the enemy was killed. Barak defeated the Canaanites, but Deborah urged him to commence the war, and was with him in the holy fray. Christ made wine, but Mary told Him to make wine, and was present when He did so.
With all of these parallels and connections, the argument is made that in the time of the Apocalypse, the ultimate fulfillment of the Wedding at Cana shall be fulfilled, and the waters of the enemy will be ready to be turned into blood.
Just as Esther, in her request to bring justice upon Haman, told the king, “we are sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, to be slain, and to perish” (Esther 7:4), Mary will plead the case of the suffering and persecuted saints to her Son the King of Heaven, to unsheathe His sword, commence the final battle against the Antichrist, and make blood out of the sea of nations belonging to Satan.
One may argue that this is wrong since Christ does the will of the Father, and not that of Mary. While it is true that Christ does the will of the Father, it cannot be simply rejected that the Father can command His will to His son through Mary, just as He did in the Wedding at Cana.
One cannot simply remove Mary from the end times, or from participation in the victory over Antichrist, just as you cannot remove Esther from participation in the killing of Haman, nor Deborah in the vanquishing of the Canaanites. God tells the Serpent in the garden:
And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. (3:15)
Satan has hatred toward Mary, because it is her seed that crushes his head. Therefore, she is involved in the war against Satan. St. John witnessed “a great sign in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under the feet,” (Revelation 12:1), the moon is the crescent moon of Islam, and she steps on it, just as her seed crushes the head of the Serpent.
St. John saw how “she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron” (Revelation 12:5), this is no doubt Christ, and therefore is this woman John speaks of Mary. While the woman is both redeemed Israel and the Church, it is also true that this is Mary, since she brought forth the Messiah, just as Israel brought forth the Messiah. Satan hates the woman, and makes war against her and her seed, or the Church, as John says,
And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. (Revelation 12:17)
Mary gives birth to Christ, and thus to the Church with which Christ identifies Himself, for He told Saul, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” (Acts 9:4)
Therefore, “the remnant of her seed” is the Church. Satan hates the Church, he hates Christ, and thus he hates Mary. Because of this enmity, Satan’s attacks are not just against Christ and His Church, but against His mother. Therefore, Mary is involved in the war against Satan and his corrupt seed, the Antichrist.
When Christ returns to tread “the winepress of the fierceness and wrath” in the Marriage Festival of the Lamb, Mary will be with Him, just as she was with Him when He made wine at the marriage festival of Cana. While this assertion provokes objection, we cannot forget what the prophet Zechariah declared, “the Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with thee.” (Zechariah 14:5) All of the saints means both those on earth and those in Heaven, for God “is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living” (Mark 12:27), Moses died and yet still talked with Christ on the mountain (Matthew 17), and even after Samuel died he still visited king Saul (1 Samuel 28).
Moreover, John saw how “the armies which were in heaven followed him [Christ] upon white horses” (Revelation 19:4), and Mary most definitely is amongst this army going to earth to do battle with the Antichrist. Mary, then, will emphatically be with Christ, and add to this the fact that she brought forth God in the flesh, and furthermore the stories of Deborah and Esther in conjunction with the Wedding at Cana, and we know that she will be with Christ in a very high position.
Additionally, in ancient Israel the mother of the king was the queen, and so thus is Mary the queen, accompanying the King in His battles.
During the Crusades, it was said by a French monk that “the soldiers of Christ marched out against the acolytes of the Antichrist,” (Robert the Monk, Historia Iherosolimitana, 6.8, trans. Carol Sweetenham), the same will happen in the end, but this time it will be God in the flesh leading forth His armies into the ultimate victory over the Father of Lies and the one who “was a murderer from the beginning” (John 8:44) and He shall fight alongside His mother, “terrible as an army with banners.” (Song of Songs 6:4)
MARY IN WAR ACCORDING TO CHRISTENDOM
In Christendom, Mary was seen as intricately involved in Holy War.
During the great battles between Christians and Muslims, the Christians would call upon the Virgin Mary for her intercession during the fray, while the Muslims absolutely hated the Christians’ reverence and exhortations toward her.
In the ninth century, a Muslim military leader who was the emir of Tarsus, send a letter to the Byzantine general Andrew, mocking the Virgin Mary and proclaiming that she nor her Son Christ, would not help them in the impending battle:
I will see whether the son of Mary or she who bore him will help you in any way when I march out against you with forces.
When Andrew read the letter, he hung it on an Icon of the Virgin Mary and declared:
Behold, mother of the Word and of God; and do you, her son and God, behold; behold how this insulting barbarian disparages and abuses both you and the people who are special to you.
After he made his cries to Heaven, he readied his army and went forth into the battle against the emir of Tarsus. The two armies gathered together in a placed called Podandos, and there the holy fray commenced with the clashing of swords and the raising of war cries. The Christian sword slaughtered an innumerable amount of Muslims. As infidel blood puddled the earth, the emir managed to escape with only a few Muslims, (Skylitzes, Byzantine History, 6.24) putting to shame the crescent of Allah, and bringing to naught his scoffing against the Virgin Mary.
The emperor, Basil II, after conquering the Serbs and destroying their fortress in Belgrade, gave his thanks to the intercession of the Virgin Mary, the Theotokos (the Mother of God). The history John Skylitzes recounts:
When he came to Athens, he offered up thanks for his victory to the Mother of God and adorned her church with magnificent and splendid offerings, then returned to Constantinople. (John Skylitzes, Byzantine History, 16.43)
When Basil II was about to go to war against Phocas, a rebel and usurper, he clenched on one hand an icon of the Virgin Mary. As the Byzantine historian Psellus wrote:
“He took his stand there, sword in hand. In his left hand he clasped the image of the Saviour’s Mother; thinking this ikon the surest protection against his opponent’s terrific onslaught.” (Psellus, Fourteen Byzantine Rulers, 1.17, trans. Sewter)
After Basil II took the victory, the historian Psellus attributed the triumph to no other than the Virgin Mary. “For my own part,” he wrote, “I prefer to express no opinion on the subject and ascribe all the glory to the Mother of God.” (Psellus, Fourteen Byzantine Rulers, 1.17)
When the emperor Romanus III fought against the Muslims in Syria, in the 11th century, there was present within the army the “Theometor, the image which Roman emperors habitually carry with them on campaign as a guide and guardian of all the army.” (Psellus, Fourteen Byzantine Emperors, 3.10)
When the emperor Nikephoros Phokas was about to drive the Muslim invaders in Crete, he declared to his army, in the words of the ancient historian Michael Attaleiates, “that their first line of defense, their invincible courage, and most secure anchor was to seek refuge with the Mother of God, the All-Pure Lady, and please with her. Immediately, without any delay, he ordered that a church be built there in honor of the all-immaculate Lade and Mother of God. …[A] beautiful and holy church was erected in three days.” (Attaleiates, History, 28.4, trans. Krallis & Kaldellis, ellipses and brackets mine)
The temple was erected, and the warriors beheld its beauties as the trumpets played with inspiring sound when the sublime liturgy was being conducted, and as they witnessed with awe the splendid mass, they declared that the land of Crete would be brought back to Christian Roman power. The heroic sovereign unleashed the temporal sword on the Muslim heathen, slaughtered many of them with his army, and took Crete back into the fold of Christendom, and it was all done after seeking the prayers of the Virgin Mary.
The entire island became subject to the glorious Byzantine Empire, and Phokas made it a home, not for Muslim heretics, but for Orthodox Christians. (See Attaleiates, History, 28.5-6) This pious emperor was so filled with zeal and love for God, and devotion to the empire He placed under his authority, that he destroyed about twenty-thousand Muslims in numerous of his battles against the Islamic invaders. (See Attaleiates, History, 28.8)
When the emperor Alexius Komnenus was doing battle with the Scythians, he is said “stood with sword in hand beyond his own front line. In the other hand he grasped like a standard the Cape of the Mother of the Word.” (Anna Comnena, 7.3, trans. Sewter)
The emperor Botanaeiates, after defeating the rebel general Bryennios, “gave fitting thanks to the all-pure Lady, the Mother of God.” (Attaleiates, History, 34.7)
This is just one of the many theological discourses that I have written on Christian militancy from the upcoming book, which will be the most extensive study every written on Christian warfare. But before the book comes out, get the new 2-disk DVD special on Christian militancy, which is just a taste of upcoming book.