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Spirit of Islam: A Primer
Last time I wrote a message on Islam, a Catholic priest said he reported me to the FCC for broadcasting what he referred to as "an eMail hate letter." Several long-time subscribers of various other denominations ALSO gave me a tongue-lashing... just before unsubscribing.
In contrast, many others thanked me. It's for them, and all other the seekers of truth, that I write. Not to mention the fact that, since early this morning, the phrase, "We become as the gods we serve" has been rolling around in my spirit.
I had no choice but to write this.
Moscow, October 25th, 2002, a special forces assault on a Moscow theater after a three-day siege left more than 90 hostages dead, but 750 others were rescued and dozens of their Chechen captors killed. What is the spiritual slant of these Chechens? They're Muslims.
Here in the states, a man goes on a killing rampage, randomly murdering 10 innocent people throughout Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. Three others, including a 13-year-old boy, were critically wounded. The sniper's last name? Muhammad, a follower of Islam.
I could go on and on with worldwide reports of atrocities going on as we speak, direct results of Islamic aggression. It would be depressing.
Here's an interesting snippet I found on the REAL Muhammad whose upstart religion is now covering the planet: "Muhammad gained wealth & power when he led raiding parties against innocent caravans. Zealous followers of Muhammad raided the rich caravans traveling to Mecca for polytheistic worship. "In 624 Muhammad and 300 Muslims attack Meccan caravan at Fabr (Vabr) ... In 626 drives out Jewish tribes ... In 628 - 629 attacks Jewish Oasis at Khaibar." Arabs in History by Bernard Lewis: Harper & Row - 1966 revised edition.
After reading that, one might say that terrorism is in the Islamic blood.
ALLAH IS LOVE?
Muslims today portray Allah as loving and kind yet obligate each follower to obey whenever one of Allah's "spokesman" calls for a jihad or holy war. By the way, according to Paul Harvey on Friday, August 19, 2005, Pakistani schools are now teaching "Jihad" to their children. Since Allah is not the one and only true loving God of which the Bible speaks, suicidal terrorists were assuredly most unpleasantly surprised on September 11, 2001 after they caused the very planes on which they traveled to crash into American buildings. Surprise! They had believed all their lives that they would enter into Paradise and live happily ever after with Allah and Muhammad and a bevy of virgins. They had put "faith in faith" rather than putting faith in Jesus Christ.
The object of one's faith is of utmost importance. If Jesus had been that object, rather than the Islamic Spirit of Religion, these attacks would never have happened. You see, if it is not the Holy Spirit who we allow to lead and guide us, SOME spirit WILL gladly fill that position. Spirits of Religion, Murder, Chaos and others, all operate in unison through Islam as they launch their constant assaults against humanity worldwide. These demonic spirits know us quite well and focus their attacks upon mankind's religious nature, i.e., our desire to please a god of some sort in an effort to obtain his blessings and favors ... regardless of that god's blood thirsty tendencies.
But you see, right there is where most Christians lose their impact in spiritual warfare: the majority of us don't even BELIEVE in demon spirits as being much more than mere symbols of evil.
Satan LOVES that about Christians!
BACK TO ISLAM
The simplest way to describe Islam is that it is a religion of submission to the will of Allah. To Muslims, Allah is the God that they worship, the one TRUE God. But his character revealed in the Qur'an is not the same as the character of the God of the Bible. If one is to submit to Allah, one must submit to Muhammad and all the people that are leaders of Islam. Faith in Islam is based upon the fundamentals of the Qur'an as well as the lifestyle of Muhammad. True, his historical life was not all that exemplary. According to Islam, however, Muhammad was actually sinless. He is portrayed as having been the holiest person on planet Earth. He is a revered by Muslims worldwide.
AYATOLLAH YOU SO!
Remember Ayatollah Khomeini from Iran? He was from the head of the Shiite sect and was called 'Ruhollah,' meaning 'the spirit of Allah.' That's what the Iranian people believed. They thought Khomeini was very holy. His words were the laws of Islam though he altered the law and regulations strongly. According to Reza Safa (a former militant Shiite Muslim) in his book Inside Islam, Khomeini's reign of terror was equaled to what happened in the French Revolution. Whoever resisted Khomeini and his regime was resisting Allah. When the Iranians started the war with Iraq, over 1 million Iranians and Iraqis died.
Unbeknownst to its followers, the Islamic jihad is a spiritual force that wants to wage war against everything that is from God; everything that is holy MUST be destroyed. It is oppressive and controlling. Again, we have to go back to the fact that Islam means submission, total submission; that it is a theocracy centered on the supreme will of Allah. To refuse obedience to Allah, or to those in leadership who serve him, is to be counted an infidel and an enemy of Islam.
TV's talking heads would have us believe that Muslims are very peace-loving people and that there's nothing in Islam that encourages war. Though the majority of Muslims are good people (all the ones I know are great!), in actuality, through warfare and terrorism, Islam has spread since the 7th century devouring nation after nation as Christians neglected the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus to "go and make disciples."
There are currently about one billion adherents to Islam. In Safa's book, there is a passage taken from Sura 9:5 of the Qur'an: "When the sacred months are passed, kill those who join other gods wherever you find them, and seize them, beleaguer them and lie in wait for them with every kind of ambush But if they convert and observe prayer and pay the obligatory alms, then let them go their way."
To those who fear the impact of Harry Potter books, THIS is the real book to be concerned about!
Are today's fanatics yielding to these teaching? You better believe it. Does the average Muslim know the Qur'an? Most Muslims I've met here in the USA are pretty clueless. Is the typical Muslim even able to read the Qur'an? Fact is, just as is the case with most Christians, the majority of Muslims are ignorant of what their holy book actually teaches. Though some may have an idea regarding its message, the majority are led about by their leaders like lambs to slaughter. Most people cannot understand the Qur'an, because it is in Arabic and they are told you have to understand the Qur'an in Arabic or you don't understand what it's saying at all. For all the Muslim nations that are not Arab, such as Iran, the Muslims must learn the language and study the Qur'an in Arabic. Most won't put forth the effort. They claim Islam they one would choose its favorite soccer team. They follow the instruction of Muslim clerics for a multitude of reasons. Imagine being taught to hate the Christian and the Jew from age 4. Imagine being taught that, to die as a martyr was a quick ticket to Paradise. Folks, this could be a very long war.
DO THEY KNOW?
Most Muslims are completely unaware of what their holy book teaches, just as most Christians are pretty clueless about the bible. Here are a few things the Qur'an has to say about Jesus:
His virgin birth... When the angels said, 'O Mary, ALLAH gives thee glad tidings of a son through a word from HIM; his name shall be the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, honoured in this world and in the next, and of those who are granted nearness to God; 'And he shall speak to the people in the cradle, and when of middle age, and he shall be of the righteous. She said, 'My Lord, how shall I have a son, when no man has touched me? He said, 'Such is the way of ALLAH. HE creates what HE pleases. When HE decrees a thing HE says to it 'Be,' and it is;" -- Qur'an, Surah 3:38-48
His Resurrection... "Thereupon she pointed to him. They said, 'How can we talk to one who is a child in the cradle?' Jesus said, 'I am a servant of ALLAH. HE has given me the Book, and has made me a Prophet; 'And HE has made me blessed wheresoever I may be, and has enjoined upon me Prayer and almsgiving so long as I live; 'And HE has made me dutiful towards my mother, and has not made me arrogant and graceless; 'And peace was on me the day I was born, and peace will be on me the day I shall die, and the day I shall be raised up to life again.' That was Jesus, son of Mary. This is a statement of the truth concerning which they entertain doubt." -- Qur'an, Surah 19:30-35
DOES GOD LOVE MUSLIMS?
Of COURSE He does. The vast majority are wonderful, loving, hospitable folks who, just like the rest of us, must trust Jesus ALONE for their salvation. We must differentiate between these people and those who have yielded to the spirit of jihad and resist the tendency to prejudge every Middle-Easterner. Typically, once a person yields to the Islamic spirit, they fall within the grasp of a very vengeful, hateful, demonic, Spirit of Death. The determining factors regarding whether or not a person chooses to participate in a jihad might include the leaders one is listening to, and how strictly one decides to adhere to the militant teachings of the Qur'an. Islam actually has two major demonic entities at its helm: First, there is the Spirit of Fear. Islam creates fear and rules within the atmosphere it creates. Second, is the Spirit of Death. War, terrorism, and suicide are all well-represented within every jihad.
What are we up against?
I recall sitting in Bible College, listening with more than a little synicism to the prophetic warnings of a former 8-year missionary to South Africa. His warning? Islam is coming! At that time, I couldn't even recall SEEING a person from the Middle East there in Arlington, Texas.
A billion people currently adhere to Islam, a religion growing at a rate of 50 million a year. How many have yielded to this jihad spirit? No one knows for certain but by the commentary I'm hearing, even within so-called Christian circles, very few "experts" understand what we are up against. We are facing an enormous demonic stronghold - one to which the world, including "Christian America" - has given place.
Islam is nothing less than an allegiance to a demon spirit. Though the West is not at war with Islam, Islam has certainly waged war against us. "The weapons we use are not carnal but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds," 2 Cor 10:4. Islam has permeated countries such as Iran, Iraq, North Africa, Egypt, Algeria and Sudan. France has more mosques than churches and England is being overrun by those of the Muslim faith. Regarding Pakistan, Safa writes in his book that "Pakistan has 120 million Muslims," he says. "Out of that, 10-15 percent are the radical Muslims-the Taliban variety."
At the very root of Islam is Satanic involvement. "Spiritually speaking, Islam is one of the wisest moves of Satan," Safa says. Muslim tradition holds that the angel Gabriel appeared to Muhammad and gave him revelations that formed the Qur'an. "When Gabriel appeared to him (Muhammad) he would get a revelation. Sometimes he would see a cloud and at the sight of the cloud he would shiver and go home and hide himself under a blanket, such fear would come upon him," Safa says. Fear, as with death, has been part of Islam since day one.
Because the true battle with Islam is in the spiritual realm, Safa believes the West's reliance upon military might will ultimately fail. "... showing the strength of the arm doesn't stop them - it increases their resolve," he says. I have stated from day one, if we killed Sadaam and Osama, there would be a thousand more right behind them. Frankly, if we REALLY wanted to defeat the Islamic spirit, we would bombard theirr children with the gospel through coloring books, candy wrapped in tracts, puppet shows, movies and videos.
At the heart of Islam is works-based righteousness. "They work so hard to please God," Safa says. "The pinnacle of that law is martyrdom." In Islam, Martyrdom is the only way to assure one's salvation.
In "Inside Islam," Safa tells of the Ayatollah Khomeini's televised appeal for ten thousand volunteers to fight against Iraq. Young boys who volunteered became known as the basiji, meaning, "the mobilized."
"The next day all the boys on the street who had volunteered had a piece of red tape on their foreheads. The basijis volunteered to clear the minefields with their bodies, and they did it. Military leaders would send out as many as five thousand boys at once to run through the fields and trip the mines," Safa writes.
"Many of the boys were only 12 or 13 years old," he adds. "To them, Khomeini gave the promise of behesht ("paradise"). To symbolize this false promise, he gave them a key which they hung around their neck-a key with which they could open the gate of heaven."
The suicide bombers of 9-11 are just another case in point. "These people are already dead before they attack us," Safa says.
THE GOOD NEWS?
As Islamic terrorism grips the nations, a confident, peaceful Church will be given the Divine opportunity to tell the world about our source of peace amidst the Islamic storm. This is exactly how Reza Safa, an ex-radical Muslim from Iran was saved: through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. We can tell them about what it is we've found through the intimacy of our personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
You DO have that type of relationship with Him, don't you?
Reza Safa's quotes from Monday, January 28, 2002 report by ASSIST News Service as well as his book, Inside Islam.
CLOSING QUESTIONS & COMMENTS
To my thinking Muslim friends, I have these six brief questions to ask regarding Jesus, followed by a few comments...
1) Does the Qur'an say that Jesus was sinless? Was He a perfect man?
2) Does the Qur'an tell Muhammad to repent?
3) The Qur'an says many times that Jesus is the Messiah? Agree?
4) Was Mohammad the Messiah?
5) Where's the body of Jesus?
6) The body of Muhammad is buried in Medina, as you may know. Why did God take Jesus but NOT Muhammad?
Strangely, Muslim teachers today allege that Jesus' message was given to the Jews only, yet the Qur'an mentions Jesus as being "a sign for all peoples [beings]" (Surat 21:91). While Muslims call Jesus 'Nabi Isa' (literally Jesus the Messenger), the actual message he brought is not recorded in the Qur'an; it is found in the Gospel.
The Qur'an teaches: "We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob ... to Moses and Jesus and that given to all prophets from their Lord. We make no differences between one and another of them" (Surat 2:136).
To justify such contradiction to the Qur'an, Muslim teachers declare that the Bible, which originally recorded the messages of "Abraham ... Moses and Jesus", is no more the Word of God, but has been changed and corrupted.
That again is not what the Qur'an teaches, when it says: "People of the Book! [commonly accepted as referring to the Jews and the Christians] ... stand fast by the Law, the Gospel and all the revelation that has come to you from your Lord" (Surat 5:68). These words were written in the seventh century. Many old Bible manuscripts still in existence today are considerably older than that, yet they do not differ from today's Bibles. One would expect Muslim teachers to state when the Bible was supposedly changed, by whom, and for what purposes, but they do not.
The Qur'an actually challenges Muslims: "If you were in doubt as to what we have revealed unto thee, then ask those who have been reading the Book from before thee," (Surat 10:94). Which Book? The Book given before the Qur'an, of course! No man can honestly claim, on the basis of the Qur'an, that the Bible has been corrupted. It actually orders: "Ask those who possess the message," (Surat 21:7). Those were the Jews and Christians, the People of the Book.
As we already noticed, the Qur'an explicitly states that the Gospel is the Word of God. And it also states categorically that "no man can change the Words of Allah" (Surat 10:64 and 6:34).
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Pastor Michael is founder of t.e.a.m. ministries (email@example.com). His eMail broadcasts, known as "Your Town for Jesus" (SEARCH it!) are reaching tens of thousands WEEKLY. Log on at http://www.PlanetaryMinistry.org
Michael's mission is to bring Discipleship and Encouragement to the Body of Christ. Michael is the author of numerous booklets on a subjects that will interest the thinking Christian. Since 1999, he has written and broadcast nearly 500 inspirational articles and a dozen booklets, al designed to accelerate the process of spiritual development in God's people.
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