Classics’ Series Introduction
“Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish Thou the work of
our hands upon us, yea, the work of our hands establish Thou it”
We live in an age of religious and existential vacuum. We live in an age of “Market Christianity”, and false Christian life. It is an age where the foundations have been greatly shaken, “if the foundations are destroyed, what would the righteous do?”( Psalm 11:3). In fact, it seems that the foundations are already being destroyed and the House is falling down on its inhabitants.
Today, we live in an age of painful “dryness” and in a desert where no signs of water appear in the distant horizon. It is an age of almost total absence of righteous Christian leadership and spiritual models, “and I will give children to be their princes, and babes shall rule over them” (Isaiah 3:4). This is the state we are in today. This was the judgement of God against His people in the past, and the keen honest observer will see this same judgement and punishment occurring among us today in our land and in the church of our land.
When we stop in honesty and transparency to analyze the spiritual condition in our country, and in the Middle East, we will find immense poverty, even, one dare say, a famine, in the “anointed” teaching (and teachers) of the Word of God, and also in “worthy and weighty” Christian Arabic Literature. Due to these two factors, we are reaping a catastrophic outcome for the true and faithful Christians, who are seriously searching for God and desiring to live a truly righteous life.
Under these circumstances, and sensing the heart of God towards His “groaning” people, the idea of translating into Arabic the “Christian Classics” was developed. These Classics which have proven across the ages, and across the Church History, their enduring value in building up the life of God’s people. History have witnessed to these books, and the saints have testified to their priceless worth in helping them walk with God in a life of holiness.
As a rule, in this life, we stand on the “shoulders” of these men who lived before us. This is a “Law of life”. Unfortunately, our Arabic Literature is painfully and shamefully poor in these Universal Christian Classics.
“If the foundations are destroyed, what would the righteous do?”, however, we say that even if the foundations are destroyed, there is still those “faithful” righteous and suffering ones, even if their number is indeed very small. To these ones, we present these translated Classics, praying, hoping, and trusting God, that it will be a lamp unto their feet, and a “lighthouse” to their path. These faithful ones are indeed very few in number, but precisely to them, Christ came, was crucified, buried, and rose again, and will come again in glory in the clouds of Heaven, to take them with Him to the New Heaven and the New Earth. To them, said Christ The Lord, ” Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom” (Luke 12:32).
As for the others (the “market Christians”; the false Christians ), these Classics call them to escape from the “bait” which contemporary life has captured them in, and they also have willingly submitted to its snare. We say to them: There is still time to escape from the bait and to seek and find Life. However, it is indeed a short time, and the time is increasingly growing short for them, like the “foolish virgins” who fill the false Christian markets (Mt. 25:2). These foolish virgins ought to hear the worthy words of the 19th Century Christian philosopher and giant, Soren Kierkegaard, “These foolish virgins who have lost the infinite passion of expectation”, and therefore their lamps have been extinguished.
As for the wise virgins, this Classics’ Series, which history across the ages has richly testified to its eternal value, will be a rescue ship in the midst of life’ stormy ocean sea, and as drops of The Living Water to a thirsty soul walking as a pilgrim in the scorched desert of this life.
Dr. Samy Fawzy