Can’t We Be Nice To Muslims?

Have you noticed how unfriendly many Christians are towards Muslims? After September 11 I have known Muslims and traveled in Muslim countries for over 20 years and I can tell you that Islamic nations, just like Christian nations, have their share of violence.

However most Muslims, just like most people in all countries, are peace loving, hardworking people. Most importantly, Jesus died for the world – for everyone.

Our task is not to criticize or attack others, but to share the good news of God’s love revealed in Christ. Many of the “Christian” books that have been written about Islam have titles and subtitles with words like “dark side”, “terrorism” and “jihad”, “unveiling”, “de-masking”. Though Islam has had its fair share of violence in history, we must never forget that we Christians have a violent past. It wasn’t really glorious 800 years ago when the Pope promised warring Crusaders an instant entrance into heaven when they dies in battle against the infidels (which at that time was a term used to describe Muslims).

In his book “Terrorism, Jihad, and the Bible”, John McArthur claims that Muslim suicide bombers are merely expressing “pent up sexual desires” resembling the attitude of their founder. He is historically incorrect and there is no basis for his statement. Is this the way Jesus speaks to unbelievers? McArthur also exaggerates, claiming that the Turks in the late 1800’s killed several million Armenians, when the actual figure is 1.5 million. I guess a million here or there doesn’t matter? Is this the kind of message that Jesus would preach? He loved the Jews, the Samaritans and the Romans. Jesus saved, healed and touched without discrimination. He told His followers to go into the entire world to preach the gospel.

How are we to affect the 1.4 billion Muslims? By demonizing them, or by sharing God’s love revealed in Christ? I for one believe in the power of love. Jesus is the answer. When people of any religion, including Muslims, open their heart to receive His imputed righteousness they become new creations in Christ. Once the new life has come into a person Jesus makes Himself known.

This is the best cure for terrorism and hatred in any culture. Get Jesus to live inside of people. That is why I am writing a book entitled “My Muslim Friends”. I want to build bridges, reach out to people, and have a positive effect instead of creating rage and bigotry. I believe in salvation for the Muslim world. They are Abraham’s descendants and God has promised to bless them. There is no blessing outside of Jesus; this means we must give the message of Jesus Christ to all of Abraham’s descendants.

Let me know what you think. Are you biased against Muslims? Have you shared the gospel of Jesus with Muslims?

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