Islamic law forbids Christians to build new churches: “The subject peoples … are forbidden to build new churches.” (Reliance of the Traveller, o11.5). Islamic law also forbids Christians to repair old ones. And so in this case, the Muslims who attacked the church get off scot-free, while the Christian who set up the unlicensed church is fined.
Why does the al-Sisi regime allow this glaring double standard, even as it has pledged to protect Egypt’s Christians? Either al-Sisi cannot stop this ongoing Muslim persecution of Christians, or he will not. If he cannot, then he is a weak and ineffective ruler. If he will not, it may be that he is practicing steam control, as did Nasser, Sadat and Mubarak before him. That is, despite his affirmations of support for the Christian community, he could be quietly allowing this escalating Muslim persecution as a way to placate the pro-Muslim Brotherhood elements within Egypt, and to keep them from turning in force against his regime.
Meanwhile, Christian leaders in the West largely remain silent about this ongoing persecution, so as not to harm the “dialogue” they’re enjoying with Muslim leaders that has thus far not prevented one Christian from being persecuted or one church from being attacked.
“Leave them; they are blind guides. And if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” (Matthew 15:14)
“Egypt issues suspended sentence to 19 over church attack,” Associated Press, January 31, 2018:
CAIRO (AP) — An Egyptian court has sentenced 19 Muslim defendants to a one-year suspended sentence for attacking an unlicensed church south of Cairo.
Wednesday’s sentence was handed down in Atfih misdemeanor court. The defendants will not have to serve prison time unless they get into trouble again.
Separately, a Coptic Christian defendant was fined 360,000 Egyptian pounds (about $20,383) for setting up the unlicensed church.
The incident took place Dec. 22 when dozens of demonstrators gathered outside the building and stormed it. They destroyed the church’s contents and assaulted Christians inside before security forces arrived and dispersed them….