Thanks so much for your faithfulness to pray for us last week. It was good to get back into a routine and to be with the staff and people of The Village. I felt rested and grateful. This week is a bit different. I’m traveling to Albuquerque, NM, for Lifeway’s National Collegiate Week so part of my week will be spent there.
The Village Blog
In thinking about Islam as we did last week, questions arise regarding the Crusades. Weren't the Crusades simply an example of Christian imperialism, a more modern conquest of Canaan? If so, does this not negate Christianity itself?
Sabbaticals are a great reset button. I am grateful for our Elders and their care for my family and me. Over the last month, I found myself often thinking about all that God has done at The Village and beyond. The weight of what the Spirit has invited us into is well beyond the abilities and energies that we posses.
In recommending resources on Islam, it is important to bear in mind how we begun. Your greatest need in evangelism is the evangel, the gospel of Jesus Christ. Ponder Christ. Pray for the power of the Spirit.
But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed. Galatians 1:8-9
Islam emphasizes deeds over doctrine. What a person does (din) is more important than what he or she believes (iman). For the Muslim, all activities fall into one of five categories: obligatory, recommended, permissible, reprehensible or forbidden. However, there is no universal consensus on a great number of behaviors given variations among diverse forms of the religion.
In order to understand Islam, it is helpful to appreciate the environment where it was birthed. Pre-Islamic Arabia was centered between two once-great empires in decline (Byzantine and Persian). It was "a land of traders and raiders" with no united religion.
About 1.5 billion people today profess submission to the will of Allah. That number represents almost a quarter of the world's population in adherence to Islam, a word (like the word Muslim) formed from the Arabic root slm meaning: submission, acceptance or surrender.