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By: Callie Mitchell, SAVED News International Correspondent, Jerusalem, Israel
We live in an age where we can go to sleep and wake up the next day in a different world. That’s how I felt the morning I woke up to learn about the heart shattering Islamic Terrorist Attack that struck Orlando in June. Seeing how the aftermath of Orlando has played out in the States, so drastically different than here in Israel, I thought it might be helpful to share some basic facts about Islam, and what we as believers, can do in such perilous days. This brief article is not meant to be conclusive, rather a starting point for your further study.
Firstly, I think it’s important to understand that Islam and Christianity do not share the same worldview. As believers in Messiah Yeshua, Jesus, we worship a God who is intimately and eternally knowable through the blood covenant with His son. The Muslim god, Allah, on the other hand, does not have a son, is not knowable, and does not present a clear path for salvation. Islam, works are superior to belief, yet no Muslim can ever be sure if he or she has obtained salvation. Even the extreme act of “martyrdom” is not a guarantee. It is a religion of fear rather than personal peace.
I love reaching a point in my relationships with Muslim neighbors where I can say, “God loves you so much.” That is a foreign concept and it’s a huge blessing to see the lights come on. If the Lord has placed Muslims in your life, I’d encourage you to talk to them about what it means to know a loving God who made a clear way for salvation through His own son, and ask questions. It will take some time, but God’s Word does not return void.
Next, I’d like to clarify some understanding about Moderate and Radical Muslims. Current research shows that worldwide about 15% of Muslims are radicalized, 15% are Moderate, and the middle 70% are largely in flux according to current events.
Theologically, Islam operates under a “Law of Abrogation” which means that Mohammad’s later revelation is more important than earlier revelation. Sadly, the “Medinan” texts of the Koran containing more peaceful passages fall in the earlier portions, but the latter “Meccan” texts, prescribing violent consequences for infidels, carries more authority. The Koran presents little accountability to remain moderate for that reason, thus the middle group is vulnerable to swing toward the radicalized position when incited.
As believers, we are called to go into this nation and make disciples, but we should do so with honesty about the stronghold of Islam. One problematic area is to confuse hospitality culture for ideological belief. Hosting guests is a beautiful aspect of the region spanning ethnicities and religions, and should be reciprocated! However, this friendly practice does not indicate moderate belief. Be wise as serpents and innocent as doves (Matt 10:16), free from fear, while remaining discerning. And Intercede for their salvation! Prayer is the only way to bring this principality down! (Outside of personal experience, this has been informed by research from Andy Bannister, Hazem Farraj, and Raymond Ibrahim.)