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Christian Apologetics toward Islam and Missions to Muslims

The Division Between Muslim And Christian Doctrine – Part 3

ChristianityVsIslamThe presidential candidates are arguing and bickering and President Obama is speaking at a Boston area mosque which has ties to terrorist organizations. Obama is telling us that Islam has a long history with America, and he is right. Our first foreign war was with Muslims, the Barbary Pirates.

While all of this is going on, secretly behind the scenes, in Philadelphia, one of America’s top 5 largest cities, the school board is voting to close their schools for Muslim holidays. They are following the example of New York City. We are trying to get some opposition set up against this. We will keep you informed on this.

Now I want to finish the subject we covered on Saturday about The Division Between Muslim And Christian Doctrine.

A major problem in sharing he Gospel with Muslims is not knowing what they believe. As we just saw, they believe that Allah is the inventor of sin, and that it is his will that they sin. This means they don’t see themselves as culpable for their sin. In other words, they don’t see themselves as being guilty before their god.

We must make Muslims understand that they are culpable for their sin. They need to understand that they sin because of their sin nature and that they have broken God’s law. As a result, God is justified in condemning them to Hell.

Islam’s View of Salvation

As I said earlier, Muslims have no guarantee of salvation except through martyrdom (Shaheed). This explains why so many are willing to die in jihad. Although it is generally believed, even this is questionable.

This was one of Shahram’s issues when he was a Muslim. He would ask his parents how he could be sure of going to heaven and they never had a good answer. The best they could come up with is that Allah is fair. Shahram had been taught about the shaheed. He liked life and wanted to live. He didn’t want to become a martyr.

The Qur’an’s teachings regarding salvation are inconsistent. On the one hand, Qur’an teaches salvation could be attained based on purification by good deeds – Surah 7:6–9. Any possible salvation in Islam is by works. They must follow the teachings of Islam and the example of the Prophet Muhammad.

On the other hand the Qur’an teaches Allah has predetermined every person’s destiny, and one’s righteous acts may or may not affect Allah’s decision – Surah 57:22. This means that Allah determines who will get into Paradise and one’s good works may not affect this decision.

Muslims who don’t want to die in jihad will make every effort to live by the teachings of Islam. They well do their prayers, give alms, make the hajj to Mecca, and so forth, including waging jihad in one of its forms, violent, cultural, personal, etc. and still be unsure. They are taught that Allah has already determined who he will allow into Paradise.

For a Muslim, if they didn’t make it on the list, what do their works matter? This can be a very big problem for Muslims if they are willing to admit it.

According to Islam, both righteous and unrighteous will be led into hell by Allah before the righteous can enter heaven – Surah 19:67–72. This means that all of them will go to hell and then Allah will allow those he has chosen to come into Paradise. No Muslim can know his or her eternal destiny in this life.

The bottom line is that Muslims have no promise of eternity in Paradise, even if he is righteous in this life. As long as he is alive he will never know if he is going to Paradise or not.

If someone has to wait until he dies to know if he is going to Heaven, it is too late. After on dies there is nothing that he can do about it. This caused Shahram to have a tremendous amount of fear.

Even Muhammad himself was unsure of his salvation – Surah 31:34; 46:9. this is why they say “peace be upon him” when they say his name. How foolish is it to follow a faith where the Prophet that is so highly revered didn’t even know his destiny until he died. In Islam there is a doctrine similar to the Catholic doctrine of Purgatory, and they don’t even know if their Prophet is there doing penance for his sins or not.

The Muslim is trying to earn his way into Paradise. He is trying to earn Allah’s favor so they can get there.

The Christian Response

The Bible is clear about how one is saved.

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)

There is no room for pride in the Bible’s view of salvation. It is all by God’s grace and it is received by faith without works on our part. Pride and self-righteousness separate us from God. A Christian does not think that he merits salvation. The only hope a Christian has of Heaven is humbling himself before a holy God and seeking His mercy.

What a contrast! The God of the Bible became a man in Jesus Christ and died on the cross to pay our sin debt. His shed blood alone can pay for our sin and guarantee us entrance into Heaven. The God of Islam causes men to sin and then says the only way they can be guaranteed to escape hell is if they die for him.

When sharing his faith with a Muslim, the Christian should contrast the uncertainty of the Muslim’s salvation with the certainty of salvation through Jesus Christ.

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. (John 5:24)

This is one of the many places where the Bible give assurance to Christians of their salvation. Contrast the Muslim belief in righteousness through works with the Bible’s teaching that no good work can make a person righteous; it is only through Christ’s righteousness that a person can be saved.

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (John 3:17-18)

Our righteousness does not come from us, it comes from Him. When we believe His righteousness is put in our account. Here is what the Bible says about Abraham’s faith and ours:

He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification. (Romans 4:20-25)

We have this righteousness imputed to us on this side of death. We don’t have to wait until death to find out our destiny. We have God’s promise and need nothing else.

We shouldn’t be telling Muslims that some of the things they believe are good. We shouldn’t be telling them that the Qur’an is correct in many ways. We should not be trying to find common ground between the Bible and the Qur’an. How could there be anything common between what Islam teaches and what Christianity teaches?

Islam has a wicked god that wills sin and then sends people to Hell for sinning. He choses who will go to Paradise and who won’t and won’t let them know their standing until they die.

We must draw a contrast, not find common ground. Contrast the Muslim belief that all will enter hell with the Bible’s teaching that only Satan, the demons, and the unsaved will enter hell.

For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; (2 Peter 2:4)

And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. (Revelation 20:1)

And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. (Revelation 20:14-15)

Contrast the Islamic teaching that salvation through Allah is arbitrary and can only be known after death with the Christian hope that the truly repentant heart can be saved by grace through personal faith in Jesus Christ’s finished work on the Cross.

How can we say that we love Muslims if we are not willing to give them the truth of the Gospel? If you are not willing to risk offending them by giving them the Gospel you cannot say you love them.

Even Muhammad, who was supposed to be the perfect man, had no guarantee of salvation. Don’t you think the Muslim has the right, and even the desire, to know that he can have assurance of salvation?

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Updated: February 5, 2016 — 9:22 AM
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