~~By James J. Fire
We now conclude this three part series with this last segment. It is the prayer and hope of TTUF that we will all remain vigilant in our prayers for this nation, and all its peoples, to recognize Divinely appointed opportunities to reach out with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and manifest His love, even in the face of those who would count us their enemies.
In light of this, may this information prove useful to you, and encourage us in evangelism as well as contending for the faith once delivered to us all!
UPDATE: 10-31-11 LET US REASON's TREATMENT on the QURAN and What it says to the Muslim regarding unbelievers.
~ end of update.
THE ISLAMIC AGENDA and MIND SET –A very valid point must be made here: claiming rights and authority for Muslims seems to go unilaterally, that is, they are all for THEIR rights being honored, THEIR authority being established, but they protest loud and long against any others who would seek to protect their own rights!
The same Islamic mind set that demands that their law be respected, to the exclusion of all others, such as found in Saudi Arabia where its illegal upon pain of death to carry a Holy Bible through town, much less be able to conduct a Bible study there* The same Islamic mind set that demands that their law be respected, to the exclusion of all others, such as found in Saudi Arabia where its illegal upon pain of death to carry a Holy Bible through town, much less be able to conduct a Bible study there (I recall from Operation Mobilization that a Christian missionary was flogged to death (600 lashes) when he was caught preaching the Gospel in Saudi Arabia); there are no churches nor synagogues allowed anywhere in Mecca or Medina, or any where else in this country. Yet immigrants from this and other Muslim nations that arrive here expect to be placated and respected, but again, refuse to be considerate of other people and their beliefs.
Consider Dearborn, MI. which has been referred to as “Little Istanbul”.
The You Tube Channel of ACTS-17 APOLOGETICS
Arab Festival 2009: Sharia in the US
Arab Festival 2009: Responses to Sharia in the US
The web site, ANSWERING MUSLIMS, has some very pertinent commentary on the above videos (one of which is actually posted here at this site); you can read this here:
Answering Muslims Web Site: Sharia Comes To Dearborn, MI
Brannon Howse, host and founder of World View Matters conducted an interview with a Osama Dakdok, an Egyptian Christian, son of a Baptist minister (in Egypt no less!) who has seen first hand and up close the machinations of Muslims, their perspectives and attitudes, and how they genuinely relate to the real world (far apart from the propaganda that Islam is afforded today in the mainline media, as well as the various political and religious platforms throughout the world). This interview has some extremely chilling implications and will no doubt affect many people’s views on Islam. Here is the link where you can listen to the radio interview (presently archived, see Listen To Archives on site):
Radio Presentation with Brannon Howse and Osama Dakdok
This is the web site of Osama Dakdok: The Straight Way
You will find the other videos that Osama has produced from a solid Christian perspective. What may be particularly interesting for all of us, is Osama’s insights regarding Barak Hussein Obama; here is the link for this 12 part video series. You might find some of this to be quite alarming!
Revealing The Truth About Barak Obama
Also you may find the responses to this video at the site above rather interesting.
JIHAD in AMERICA – 60 Minutes of Stark Reality About Muslim Mentality in the EXTREME:
Finally from youtube, a presentation is posted here for your viewing. I would recommend that you skip this video until you have extra time to spare to view them in their entirety (1 hr. 21 min):
JIHAD In America
HOW TO RESPOND TO THE MUSLIM and THIS AGENDA –
There are many Muslims who, being born into the culture and religion that is Islam, who had no choice in the matter but to be Muslim; who, if they attempt to leave, or say anything disparagingly against it, may be slain by family members in what’s called an ‘honor killing’. These are trapped in a religion that they don’t want, and for fear of being persecuted or slain remain in such a prison as this.
Others who have faithfully adhered to the tenets of Islam and all its accompanying “pillars” have nevertheless experienced a decided lack of fulfillment, disillusioned by the inconsistencies of this faith, and even more so its practices, and yearn for God in a way that Islam cannot provide.
Other Muslims who are fervent, and zealous for Islam, and willing even to lay their lives down for the glory of Allah, are likewise lost and deprived of the Truth according to the Gospel. In all of these cases, these are souls who are in need of salvation through the LORD Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ died for their sins as well and desires to see them come to repentance!
To read such stories, go here:
Muslims Converting To Disciples of Jesus Christ!
Do a word search on “Islam” at the same web site (access link below) for more information on what’s happening in the world of the Muslim:
Joel Rosenberg's Weblog-EPICENTER
In this last section, we will post various web sites that deal with Islam, as well as recommend several books that treat this enormously powerful and proliferating religion. We can also recommend some missionary societies and organizations that minister the evangelization of Muslims.
HELPFUL BOOKS TO AID IN THE REACHING OF MUSLIMS –
I have in my library various books that may help Christians in reaching out to Muslims with the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ as contained in the Gospel:
The first is CHRISTIANS ANSWER MUSLIMS by Gerhard Nehls. It just so happens that this entire book is available for reading online!
Read it here: Online Version of Book: 'Christians Answer Muslims' Courtesy of Answering Muslims.org (note: there is also a link at the bottom of this web page where more books by this author is available).
Another short, but excellent source is:
SHARING YOUR FAITH with a MUSLIM By Charles Marsh –
While I could not find a web link that would adequately brief the reader on this work, I can highly recommend his materials on Muslim evangelism. It would seem however that Mr. Marsh has subsequently written and promoted ideas in his works concerning "social justice" which is a euphemism for socialism. Therefore let the reader beware and understand that TTUF does not endorse these works, nor promotes socialism in any form, be it named that or 'social justice'.
A concise but excellent book by a forty three year missionary who lived among Muslims is by William McElwee, entitled A Christians Response To Islam.
A Christians Response To Islam
Three titles by Phil Parshall are as follows:
Beyond the Mosque, New Paths in Muslim Evangelism, and Bridges to Islam. These, and all other titles by author Phil Parshall can be viewed here –
The Collective Works of Philip Parshall On Islam
The Islamic Invasion – Confronting the World’s Fastest Growing Religion by Dr. Robert Morey The Islamic Invasion
These last two titles are more in the line of personal testimonies from Muslims who have come to faith in Christ:
Into the Light by Dr. Steven Masood – See this title and four others by the author here:
Into The Light and Other Works by Dr. Masood
And lastly, My Big Brother by Dr. Bruce Farnham – (no accompanying link could be found, but you might find this title among others that deal with Islam and Missions among Muslims).
Four related books that would certainly prove useful in understanding how Islam effects the world in which we live are these:
A Cup of Trembling, and Judgment Day by Dave Hunt and the aforementioned book,
From Time Immemorial by Joan Peters. All three titles are available through TBC (thebereancall.org)
Islam and the Bible: Why Two Faiths Collide, by David Goldmann:
Islam and the Bible
MY OWN EXPERIENCE WITH MUSLIMS –
In the summer of 1987 I (James Fire) had the enormous privilege of departing the United States on a mission to go abroad, in seeking to minister to Muslims with Operation Mobilization. As someone who himself carried the burden of attempting to please God by my subjection to His laws, and seeking to do good works in order to gain approval by Him (though my background is that of a Roman Catholic), I could readily relate to the Muslim mind set that likewise holds such views and religiously bound obligations.
As I ventured towards Europe for further missionary training (having already received some in the [then] main headquarters of O.M. in New Jersey) the LORD led me to minister with other Christians who joined up with F.F.A. (Friends From Abroad) in seeking to share the Gospel with Muslims, but also Hindus, Buddhists, and Sikhs as well. For those two months of intensive outreach, evangelism, street witnessing, and church attendance we were able to touch the hearts of many in that land of England. Even back in 1987, twenty three years ago, the Muslims had the motto of “England is our Gate-way” that is, that once Muslims established themselves in England, they would then have the means to retake Europe. Today we see the fruits of their efforts and they are formidable indeed.
I found the Muslims there in England, for the most part, very passionate and even enthusiastic in having conversations about God; most were quite eager to hear what we had to say, particularly since we represented our various homelands which numbered anywhere from seven to twenty two different countries! There were others who seemed rather ambivalent, even in discussing their own religious beliefs; it seemed that these were Muslim in name only, or nominal believers. On the other end of the spectrum there were those who were not only passionate, but zealous to the point of being hostile, verbally and otherwise (though in all actuality we met with more violent reactions from Jewish people than we did Muslims).
We learned not to be timid or shy about our beliefs; Muslims respect those who hold strong beliefs, passion and faith in their own ‘religion’. Any timidity is seen as a form of wavering, weakness or even disbelief.
I recall having a debate with one Muslim gentleman who was obviously quite intellectual, which I found appealing as I’m somewhat of a thinker myself. We were engaged deeply in various arguments, and involved with clever rhetoric and theological discussion. The missionary accompanying me was Juha Petranov from Finland, and as his English was somewhat limited, he resolved to remain quiet but in an attitude of intercessory prayer. During a lull in our conversation however, Juha broke in and said with his halting, broken English, but with a demeanor of complete humility and gentleness:
”Excuse me; my English is not so good but I need to say to you about Jesus. It is very important that I say this because He loves you so very much, and He wants you to know that He died on the cross for your sins, and you can have life with Him forever. I know this is true because my life with Jesus is real; it is not religion, it is my life which Jesus saved. You can have this life too, but you don’t work for this, it is God’s gift for you and He wants you to have Jesus, because He loves you! Thank you for hearing me.” With a gentle smile, Juha bowed out of the conversation and resumed prayer.
I felt my eyes stinging with tears as I witnessed this gentle, young man with absolute sincerity share Jesus, not with the intellectual pride that I had (or perhaps even the Muslim gentleman with whom we spoke), but with the faith of a child. I looked at the Muslim who likewise had tears in his eyes. Up until that point, he continued to refuse the free book I was offering him, but once Juha had finished, we looked silently at one another, and without another word, took the book from my hand, entered back into his apartment and quietly closed the door.
A real faith, living, breathing faith, that speaks of a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and a heart of love and compassion towards the Muslim (which they can obviously sense) goes a long way with making an impression. You see, for the Muslim, God is the unknowable one and to have a relationship with God as one would have with one’s own (loving, caring) father is truly an alien concept for them. Yet this is the treasure that we as believers in Jesus Christ, born of God’s Spirit possess!
Another gentleman, an elderly Jamaican man from the church we were attending while conducting missions, was well known among the congregation for bringing Muslims to faith in Christ. We would all be flabbergasted as he would routinely bring a Muslim with him to church, and almost invariably, they would surrender their lives to the LORD!
When we asked him about this, and how he accounted for his success in making these converts to Christ, he replied with a tooth-gaped smile and a wonderful Jamaican accent:
"Beforl I say one wor’ to de Muslim, I say ten tousand wor’ to tha Lawd!”
In other words, this aged saint understood the importance of spiritual warfare and intercessory prayer as preparatory prior to the delivery of the Gospel. He would select a Muslim in the neighborhood, and commence with weeks, sometimes months of prayer and at the time appointed by God, he would be led of the LORD to share the good news!
Any work with the LORD can not know success unless we are engaged with the LORD in prayer!
WITNESSING TO MUSLIMS –
(excerpts taken from Reaching Muslims Today – available from STL Distributors, P.O. Box 48, Bromley, Kent. England
Compiled by North African Mission: pgs. 41 – 42) NOTE: Statements within brackets [ ] are my own.
What To Do –
1) Prepare to witness to them! Study the culture and the way they think! Try to get acquainted with Muslim neighbors and try to understand their point of view.
2) Learn their language; [while such would not be necessary in circumstances we have here in America, a cursory knowledge of basic language would go a long way in reaching hearts] many Muslims today can be reached without a knowledge of Arabic. However a worker considering full time service among Muslims must master the Arabic language.
3) Be open to opportunities to witness [where there is willingness, there are doors opened by Divine Providence!]
4) Love them sincerely [Prayerfully ask God to give you a heart for these people, He will!] and be gentle; they will sense this. Understand that the objective is to win the person, not the discussion [As aptly demonstrated with the story of myself and Juha from Finland]. The goal is not just to defend Christianity but to present Christ.
5) Listen patiently to what they say; you will understand them better. Your turn will come to talk. Muslims must hear many times before they will believe. [Understand also that we Christians are all ‘links in the chain of witness’: the LORD leads Muslims from one Christian to another, and another, and each play their part in sowing the seed of God’s Word, and watering that seed; always however God gives the increase, and yet another Christian will be involved in the harvesting. Seldom is one believer involved in all aspects.]
6) Explain the Gospel very simply, in every day terms, and do not forget to define such words as sin, prayer, Son of God, faith. These often have another meaning to the Muslim.
7) Stress the unique being of Jesus Christ:
a. His miraculous birth and the prophecies concerning His birth, life, death and resurrection. [Over 300 prophecies that foretell the first coming of Christ Jesus; in this, He is unique!]
b. His sinless life and extraordinary teachings.
c. His unique names (the Quran calls Him: the Word of God, a spirit of God)
d. The fact that he is alive in heaven.
e. The fact that Jesus is returning [with even more prophecies regarding His 2nd Coming than the First!]
8) Encourage reading the Bible, especially the Gospels [In Arabic, it’s called the Injil].
9) Share how you found peace and assurance of salvation through Christ [your testimony will have a powerful impact as the Muslim has nothing in their own life to compare with such].
10) Show how they can have a personal relationship with God.
11) Stress the fact that God is absolutely holy and that He demands righteousness, whereas man is unrighteous and is enslaved by his sinful nature. His condition does not need to be made better by education; rather, he needs to be “born again” in order to become a new person [An explanation of what it means to be born again, in basic language will be required].
12) Answer objections with gentleness and kindness; at the same time ask:
a. How do you know that the Gospel is not true? Have you read it?
b. Have you ever studied the Bible for yourself, or are you just repeating without thinking, what others have said about it?
c. How can you know if God has pardoned you? Do you have the assurance of salvation?
d. Do you have eternal life?
What Not To Do –
1) Never attack the person of Mohammad, but do not accept him as a prophet either [Sharing the moral and character failings of the Prophet of Islam with the Muslim will not build bridges, but walls].
2) Do not be misled by their belief in Jesus or the Bible. Normally their belief has a Muslim context and not a Biblical one.
3) Don’t be fooled by the claim that they know all about Christianity; Muslims do mot want to admit their ignorance about true Christianity.
4) Do not speak right away about Jesus being the Son of God; they will not accept this [Its usually best to start out with basic truths about God, with which the Muslim can readily agree: His all knowing, all powerful nature as the Creator of all things, seen and unseen, etc].
5) Do not look for disputes and controversy [even if they do, try to re-direct the conversation towards the Gospel]; they only generate anger. Yet do not avoid them if it is necessary. One must show that the Bible has an answer that is logical and true.
6) Never enter into discussion without knowledge, love, prayer and the necessity for it. Our dependence on prayer and the work of the Holy Spirit cannot be stressed too strongly.
PRESENTING The GOSPEL to a MUSLIM –
The manner in which we receive our friends as people is of primary importance in any witnessing effort. In many cases the person is seeking to solve a problem in his life, We might wish to share how God has met a similar problem in our own life. The Muslim wants a religion that works!
We should avoid sensitive topics, particularly those of a political nature. When they come up, try to redirect the conversation to other areas of personal interest, such as sports, work, family or studies.
In any conversation, you will come to a point which can be used to introduce the issue of God, or personal values and principles. Even more often, the Muslim will ask questions like, “Who are you?” or “Why do you speak Arabic?” [For those who are national workers in the mission field].
In all phases of witness, the “spiritual preparedness” of the one presenting the Gospel is extremely important. IF there is a close walk with God, a fulness of the Spirit, a love for others, a willingness to listen, an expectant spirit, there is almost always an impact. If God is distant to the Christian, He will be dead and wooden to the Muslim.
As the contact matures, the following questions or statements usually arise:
”What is God really like, and what could He want of me?”
“How do you know the Bible is inspired of God?”
”What makes one religion – Islam or another – better or different?”
At this point, if the situation is favorable, use one of these Three Approaches – briefly outlined below.
1) The “WHO IS GOD?” Approach
Stress evidence of His existence
His creation (being distinct from Himself)
How can He be known? Could He communicate? Did He?
a) by General Revelation (the idea of God cannot originate with man)
b) by Scripture
c) by His Son
Does man need help or can it be proven that he is sufficient to meet his dilemma?
What happened: The Fall – Man died spiritually
Became a slave to sin
Under Judgment of a righteous Judge
Explain in detail:
God’s original plan for man (Reason for creation).
His perfection (God’s masterpiece in creation).
The preciousness of the individual.
The fact that he is lost (groping in every area of life – religion, philosophy, pleasure).
God’s Intervention: help had to come from outside of man.
Why God intervened: because of His love for man.
How was this love revealed: by sending His Son – sacrifice and resurrection
Here an explanation of what transpired on the Cross will be essential.
Result: Offer of pardon, Reconciliation, Life [Eternal].
Three steps of Faith:
What is faith? Confidence in another’s character and strength.
Step 1) I know the facts
Step 2) I believe they are true, without error
Step 3) I receive them for myself and act on them – Salvation comes at step 3.
What is the evidence of real faith?
A life that seeks to please and obey God: however, small intial steps.
A desire to further the message of Christ to others.
2) The “DIRECT FROM THE BIBLE” Approach
Go directly to the Bible and examine one passage to try to understand the heart of its message:
John 1:1-12John 3: 1-36
An example is Romans 6:23, which is often used with good results. It can be developed thus:
Three parts –
“The wages of sin is death”
“but the gift of God is eternal life”
“through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Write out the entire verse so that the Muslim can get the sweep of the passage.
1) Part One –
What is sin? (disobedience to God and His Holy Will)
What does death mean? (seperation – spiritual death, physical death)
Wages are the result of what? (work)
2) Part Two –
What is a gift? (a free present)
Do gifts depend on merit or acheivement? (no)
What is life? (union – eternal life only if united with God’s life)
Would you refuse a King’s gift?
3) Part Three –
How does this gift come to us? (through Jesus Christ)
Who is Jesus Christ – why that name? (The giver of Eternal life; Christ = Messiah)
Is He unique among the prophets? (Yes, the only one to die on behalf of others).
To get the gift we need to receive Christ as: Savior – entrance
Lord – daily implication of ebing a follower of His.
Christ does not want to hitch a fide and take the back seat; He wants the wheel. The point is submission to Christ Jesus.
3) The “STORY TELLER” Approach
Muslims are quite fond of stories, and since the Gospels are full of stories in parable form, any one of these will serve. Take any single parable, and read it through with the Muslim, and then apply the appropriate spiritual lesson which will reveal spiritual truth. Other stories of the Gospels (non-parables) are also powerful, such as the resurrection of Lazarus as recorded in John Ch. 11.
From this chapter’s account we learn that Jesus was very close with Lazarus and his two sisters (vs. 2).
This family was confident of Jesus’s love for them (vs.3, 5).
We learn that Jesus claims to be the Son of God, and that He understands God and the plans He has in store (vs.4, 6-15).
To Jesus, something as seemingly permanent and disastrous as death is as sleep (vs. 11, 14).
Jesus is intent on the glory of God, and to strengthen the faith of His followers (vs. 4, 15).
We learn that the disciples loved Jesus and were committed to Him, even if it meant their own deaths (vs. 16).
We learn that Lazarus was already dead for four days, but that the journey from where Jesus was to Bethany was less than one day’s journey, so He wasn’t hurrying (vs. 6, 17-18)
Martha with urgency left their home and came to Jesus when she learned of His arrival; she was confident that Jesus could have healed her sick brother, but apparently doubts that anything else can be done but holds out with the slightest hope yet (vs. 20-22).
We learn that Jesus claims to be Himself the resurrection and the life, that is He is the Supreme authority of these, and that His power is greater than the power of death itself; that those who believe in Jesus will possess eternal life (vs. 23-26).
Martha confesses that Jesus is the Christ (Messiah) and Jesus doesn’t correct her for any apparent error, thus condones such a proclamation, therefore Jesus is indeed the Messiah (vs. 27).
Martha goes and brings back Mary, whom Jesus calls for, and the Jews follow them to the tomb of Lazarus (vs. 28-31).
Mary makes a comparable confession to her sister, Martha’s regarding Jesus’ authority (vs. 32)
Jesus is grieved, and sorrowful, and expresses His love for Lazarus with his tears (vs. 33-36).
Jesus commands the stone to Lazarus’ tomb be rolled away, even though Martha protests (vs. 39).
Jesus desires to strengthen the faith of Martha and Mary, as well as His own disciples, and is intent on the glory of God being revealed (vs. 40).
Jesus prays to God as His Father, and does so, so that these would know that He was sent by the Father (vs. 41-42).
Jesus commands Lazarus to come forth, and he does; Jesus then commands that Lazarus would be loosed of his grave clothes (vs. 43-44).
From this passage of scripture we learn that Jesus, Who is the Messiah, has the power of eternal life, is greater than the power of death, can command the dead to be raised to life. Jesus is caring and compassionate, and desires to strengthen the faith of His followers. Even though He may allow tragedy into our lives, He does so with purpose in mind, and not in needless sorrow and anguish, and ultimately serves a greater and better purpose that we cannot see for ourselves.
The story method of sharing God’s Truth with the Muslim can be quite effective, particularly in a long term relationship. Sharing such stories not only imparts spiritual truth to the Muslim, but it also strengthens the bond of friendship. The Muslim will become eager to hear more such stories, and will open their hearts more and more.
PERTINENT LINKS For More Research Into ISLAM –
Islam Watch - Former Muslims
NOTE: "About Us" page from Islam Watch (below):
Former Muslims on Islam Watch Web site
History of Jihad
Introductory Articles on Islam and Christianity
Last, and perhaps best is:
Answering Islam-A Christian Muslim Dialogue
This concludes this article on ENGAGING ISLAM and The MUSLIM AGENDA. It is our hopes and prayers at T.T.U.F. that we have represented fairly the facts as they are.
While we are facing a time of potentially extreme upheaval and indeed, a likely paradigm shift in our way of life, which will no doubt involve a greater influence of this religion here in America, we must remember to conduct ourselves in any situation, no matter how dire, as true disciples and ambassadors of Christ Jesus (2 Cor. 5:20).
Let us remember that we wrestle not with flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in heavenly places. If our Gospel is hidden from those who cannot see and understand it, it is because the god of this world has blinded their eyes and such spiritual warfare must be conducted in order to relieve them from such blindness and so the glorious Light of the Gospel may touch their lives for the glory of God (2 Cor. 4:4-6)!
May the LORD Jesus truly bless us all as together we seek His Divine Will in reaching the lost of this world, including the Muslim people that He loves so dearly!