Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Building Bridges – but what kind of bridges?

Building Bridges – but what kind of bridges?

When it comes to sharing the Gospel with Muslims, we find that Muslims comprise at least 39% of all un-evangelized people of the world. Only 1% of mission force is directed to reach them. Most of the work by some nowadays is directed towards Muslims to make them feel at home in their own religion in the name of ‘tolerance’ and ‘love’. Indeed many of such churches, their mission committees quote the scriptures as ‘Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love’ (1 John 4:8).

I desire that many friends who are trying to ‘create peace between faith’ will realize that Love will not be satisfied with anything less than the total salvation of its object. I have seen again and again in my past 40 years that the matter of salvation of Muslims is totally ignored for the sake of and in the name of ‘multi-culturalism’, ‘multi-faith societies’ and multi faith trends with the idea that all roads lead to God.

‘Creating peace between faiths’ is very good but is it possible without watering down the status of Jesus? I wonder what happened to the peace Jesus talks about and claims to be the giver of it. No matter how much we try to bring peace between faiths and people, if we keep Christ, the original source of peace, out of it, there can be no peace.
And what do you do when one finds that the people who are teaching how Islam is peaceful, behind your back support militant Islam? The predicament is not the people, but Islamic ideology. It has 2 faces both the peaceful and militant and Muslims use both of them as the case may be. When we look at the Qur’an, the Ahadith, the schools of thought and classical commentaries, we find both trends used and being used even today.

One of the top methods that the majority of Muslims have used is not only their insistence that Islam should always have the upper hand but profess it through a military type of radicalism. I can quote to you from the Arabic Qur’an and what Muhammad has said and from the classical Muslim era, people like Urwah ibn Zubayr (d. 712), Wahb ibn Munabbih (d. 728), Ibn Ishaq (d. 761), al-Waqidi (745-822), Ibn Hisham (d. 834), al-Maqrizi (1364–1442), and Ibn Hajar Asqalani (1372-1449) and you will be surprised at how the 2 faces of Islam, its jurisprudence and communities have been used in expansion of Islamic empires and are used today to renew and restore the zenith of the Islamic empires. In the West, today, those Muslim tactics amount to hypocrisy, manipulation and unprovoked attacks.

Having said that, as Christians, indeed we should be peaceable to our neighbors, including our Muslim neighbors, in-spite that Islam has exclusivity that ‘al-Muslim akhwal Muslim, a Muslims is a brother of a Muslim.’ Let us not ignore the matter of salvation of Muslims for the sake of and in the name of ‘multi-culturalism’, ‘multi-faith societies’ and multi faith trends with the idea that all roads lead to God. If we really love Muslims, then we have to share the love of Jesus with them, by telling them that He is the only way to have the eternal life.

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