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Thabiti Anyabwile is one of my favorite bloggers and a converted Muslim (and incidentally Challies King for a Week – I’m calling that a personal victory). His series is completed on Witnessing to Muslims. This would be a good one to print and keep.
When Witnessing to Muslims… Know the Gospel
When Witnessing to Muslims… Renounce Fear
When Witnessing to Muslims… Defend the Bible
When Witnessing to Muslims… Get Personal
When Witnessing to Muslims… Get to Jesus
When Witnessing to Muslims… Get to Jesus (2)
When Witnessing to Muslims… Be Hospitable
When Witnessing to Muslims… Remember…
Perhaps the greatest challenge to effective gospel outreach to Muslim friends and neighbors is fear. It’s sometimes a subtle fear that appears in our assumptions (“they won’t be interested” or “it’s useless trying to reach out”) and sometimes appears in more visceral ways. But fear pervades our interactions with men and women who practice Islam.
But God did not give us a spirit of fear or timidity but of power, of love, and of self-discipline (2 Tim. 1:7). This truth needs desperately to be remembered when evangelism and Muslim are used in the same breath.
There are four fears that most Christians tend to experience when it comes to sharing the Gospel with Muslims.
1. Fear of Terrorists: Let’s face it; a great number of us think “terrorist” or “potential terrorist” when we see an Arab, in general, and an Arab Muslim in particular. The images that inform this fear are plentiful: images of 9/11, of bearded men with head scarves, of angry Arabs protesting cartoons, of masked militia wielding automatic weapons and rocket launchers, of young Arab boys throwing Molotov cocktails and rocks at tanks, of dreaded suicide bombers maiming and killing bystanders and civilians.
The almost daily deluge of these images fills us with suspicion and fear and causes us to hesitate in sharing, lest we talk with an actual terrorist and somehow end up on their “hit list.” This fear blinds us to the person’s great need of a Savior by focusing us on ourselves, our vain lust for security and safety. So, what if the person is a terrorist? Aren’t we better of rejoicing at the prospect of speaking with a terrorist and by God’s omnipotent aid actually seeing them converted from such hate-filled darkness to the joy and love-filled light of Christ? The Christian’s “war against terror” is the warfare we wage to spread the gospel to all—including folks we fear might be terrorists.