Oct 24 2018
God named Ishmael ‘God hears’ before he was born. Years later, God heard Ishmael’s cry when he was perishing in the wilderness and opened his mother’s eyes to see a spring of water from which she gave him drink – and he lived!
Islam claims Ishmael as a spiritual forefather. Today’s Muslims are in the wilderness perishing and crying out for living water. Let the Church pray to the Father to reveal the well of living water, Jesus, so they might live!
Captive audience #2
I’ve received more response to the October 10 GHPL than to any other I’ve written in 11 years. The Muslim women seated beside me on the plane from Cairo to Frankfort are receiving much unexpected prayer! One subscriber wrote, “I pray that God would give me the opportunity and His loving grace to share with a Muslim person.” Another said, “I am praying for what was shared to come to her mind again and again and that it will begin to take residency in her heart.” An eager and experienced evangelist recommended giving the Gospel of John or a tract on Jesus of the Bible.
A missionary to Muslims suggested I tell what accusations one of the women raised against the Bible and Christianity. They was the well-worn ones: (1) the Bible has been falsified by Jews and Christians, (2) there are many different versions of the Bible so it can’t be true, (3) fallible men wrote the Bible, (4) Jesus doesn’t say anywhere that He is the Son of God and (5) Jesus didn’t die on the cross. (Another favourite accusation is that Christians worship three gods – but we didn’t get to that one.) Then she insisted the Qur’an is the perfect word of God and is the same around the world.
Answering accusations is called “apologetics,” while debunking truth claims about other beliefs is called “polemics.” I didn’t have much time during the descent into Frankfort, so I focused on the reliability of the Bible and on reading specific verses that show the gospels are eyewitness accounts of Jesus’ earthly life and death. Our challenge and privilege is always to present Jesus first.
The apostle Peter, writing to Christians in Asia Minor, exhorted, “Have no fear of [those who persecute you], nor be troubled, but in your hearts honour Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect…” (1 Pe 3:14b-15). We can prepare ourselves by hiding God’s word in our hearts (and praying we can find it when we need it J). Here are other ways to help us carry out our desire and responsibility to engage with Muslims:
- Prepare our hearts, despite our hurry, busy-ness or fatigue, to engage with those the Lord sends us when we travel or go to public places (Jn 4:6, 39, 42).
- Prepare our bags or pockets with a copy of the Jesus video, Gospel of John, a tract, or a business card printed with web addresses of evangelistic videos, e.g. https://www.thehopeproject.com, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bu3tNLuUoKg,
Holy Spirit, show us how to prepare ourselves to meet the Muslims you send to us. Help us to see ourselves as the help You are sending to those who don’t know You. May we overflow with living water for the thirsty, accurately represent You as Your ambassadors of reconciliation, and abundantly display the blessings of living in Your Presence.
Lord, prepare the hearts of the Muslims You send our way, so that they become Your captive audience and see You in us.
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