If this story is true, there has been yet another martyr for Christ. This time in an African Muslim country, Mauritania, where a Christian attempting to help the locals was killed (news story). Allegedly for “trying to convert Muslims to Christianity.”
The source for this statement is highly unreliable: Arab terrorists who are likely to think that any Westerner in their midst is trying to win converts for our Lord. Would that it were so, but, despite the despicable nature of the killers, it’s certainly possible they were telling the truth.
Regardless of his being a missionary (or not), Chris Leggett, the victim, had been doing good things in Mauritania. His parents, may God grant them peace, have forgiven their son’s killers. Which is noble, but perhaps shows a misplaced sense of how our Lord would have acted: yes, Jesus instructs us to forgive, seven times seventy times, as many times as needed.
But there’s a huge catch: only if the sinner repents and asks for forgiveness. These particular sinners, who spit in the face of our faith and kill us merely for practicing it, don’t seem particularly full of repentance.
We should, also as our Lord instructed us, pray for our enemies. Doesn’t mean we forgive them. It means we pray that they will have a change of heart, a repentance, so that as Christians we may forgive them.
No, I’m not holding my breath. But I am remembering that judgment is reserved to God, and that it is he who will execute his terrible, swift judgment at the end.