Date:  August 27, 2022

The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit. (Proverbs 18:21)

Our words are powerful – the Bible reminds us of this more than once. They can be either life-giving or destructive, and sadly we have seen evidence of the latter recently in Egypt, where a prevalence of hate speech is dividing communities and fuelling violence.

Pray that more would be done to combat hate speech and its dangerous consequences, and that the nation would be transformed with words of hope, healing and truth.

Pray for full recovery following a knife attack

In the early hours of 28 July, Joseph Israel, a Christian, and his son were attacked outside their shop by a Muslim man armed with a knife.

Thankfully they survived, after their Muslim neighbours intervened and beat the assailant, but Joseph and his son had to go to hospital for their injuries, as did the assailant.

The attack is believed to have been triggered by hate speech from controversial Islamist preachers such as Sheikh Mabrook Attia. A number of lawyers have filed complaints against Sheikh Attia under Article 98 of the Penal Code, which relates to contempt of religion. However, although this law is regularly used against Christians and intellectuals, it is never used against preachers spreading hate.

Pray that the law would be applied consistently, for the perpetrators of this attack to be held to account, and that this would deter others from stirring up intolerance and inciting or committing acts of violence.

In summary, please pray:

  • Giving thanks that Joseph and his son survived the attack, and for their full recovery.
  • That the assailant, Ahmad Mouhammad, would be brought to justice, would have a change of heart and would no longer seek to do harm to others.
  • That the Egyptian government would enact effective policies to counteract hate speech, and that this would act as a deterrent.
  • That the country’s laws would be applied consistently, to ensure freedom and safety for people of all religions or beliefs.

P.S. On Monday the world marked the International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief.

As well as praying for Joseph and his son, please take a moment to remember all those who have experienced violence because of their beliefs, including those who did not survive their injuries. May the God of comfort and healing be with them and their loved ones today.