Our guest article today, written by a leader of the United Kingdom, reveals current challenges facing the United Kingdom.
The UK, or United Kingdom, consists of four countries: England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, with a combined population of nearly 68 million people.
British Muslims have been at the forefront of political, media, and societal concerns in regards to terrorism, radicalisation, women’s rights, and segregation. More recently, there is the sexual exploitation and abuse of children, notably the Rochdale and Rotherham “grooming” child sexual abuse. Earlier this year it was revealed that almost 19,000 suspected child sexual exploitation victims by grooming gangs were identified by the local authorities in one year. This news was suppressed by “political correctness” and fear of being seen as Islamophobic.
Muslims account for only 15 percent of the overall UK prison population but still have the ability to dominate the UK prison system. Radicalised Muslims don’t see prison as an obstacle. They view it as an opportunity to organize and expand – recruitment thrives because they have a large “pool of vulnerable people” from which to draw. They are able take control of the entire prison system, not through a riot but by intimidation. One inmate said “If I said I didn’t want to be a Muslim I’d need to watch out in case someone stabbed me. It’s very dangerous to denounce Islam.”
London is the leading centre for Islamic Finance in Western Europe. It operates a Sharia banking system, with the first Islamic bank in Europe to deal in “sharia compliant” Sukuk Bonds.
In an effort to peacefully engage Muslims and their Imams, churches are holding Interfaith meetings, compromising the deity of Christ. Several Cathedrals have held multi-faith services with the Islamic call to prayer. Notably, the BBC has broadcast the Islamic call to prayer five times a day throughout Ramadan.
The majority of Muslims in Britain want to live peacefully, work, and provide for their family and have freedom of worship. Some have become disillusioned with Islam because of the continued Islamic terrorism across the world. Refugee Muslim families are attending church because of the support received and the many acts of kindness shown by Christians, and are openly engaging with the gospel.
There are many stories of encouraging conversations and open discussions about Jesus during Ramadan. One man walked into a church asking how he could tell his parents he was leaving Islam. Another young Muslim taxi driver had an earnest discussion with a Christian traveling with him, saying, “I wish the journey had been longer, so we could talk some more.”
The entire world is in a kingdom conflict between Satan’s kingdom of darkness and God’s kingdom of light.
In Matthew Chapter 24, the Bible reveals this conflict. And Jesus answered and said to them, “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all of these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.”
Jesus prophesied of these days, “kingdom against kingdom.” On 9/11/2001, when Islamic terrorists attacked the United States World Trade Center in New York City, the kingdom of the antichrist attacked the kingdom of God. The Bible tells us, “we fight not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers in heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).
Because this is a spiritual battle, we must fight with spiritual weapons and display kingdom character. Our heart attitude must be of the kingdom of God. Pride, the greatest form of sin, caused the fall. The greatest virtue is love working through humility. The Word of God tells us that the fear of the Lord (and its resulting humility) is the beginning of wisdom (Proverbs 9:10). Along with humility, victory is assured when there is forgiveness. Because of what our Lord Jesus accomplished on the cross, we are seated in heavenly places with Christ Jesus, and the enemy is under our feet (Ephesians 1 and 2).
With God’s power and authority, humility, forgiveness, and His heart of love, His kingdom comes on earth as it is in heaven. As we follow God’s kingdom principles and are led by His Spirit, we can trust Him for victorious results. God desires that all would be saved. He is showing each of us how to work with Him to open the eyes and hearts of Muslim believers to the love and salvation that is theirs in Christ Jesus.
We have the privilege of standing with God and letting Him live through us as we humbly pray for Muslims to be saved. We are called to personally show respect, compassion, and love when we have the opportunity to be in the presence of individual Muslims. We must keep our hearts open as God’s heart is open. We cannot harden our hearts in judgment or fear, but we open our hearts with humility and love. We remember, there was a time that we, too, were lost and deceived.
PRAYER POINTS –
There is a vast difference between Christianity and Islam. Both are considered religions, but Christianity has a crucial distinction that separates it from Islam. That difference is relationship.
Grace is God’s blessing on people and is the basis of the relationship between God and Christian believers, both men and women. The Bible, in John 3:16, declares that because God loves us, He took our punishment upon Himself. All we must do to be forgiven of our sins and have a relationship with Him is to accept God’s gift of salvation by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8-9; II Corinthians 5:21).
In the performance-based religion of Islam, on the final Day of Judgment, if a Muslim’s good works outweigh his bad works and if Allah so wills, he may be forgiven of all his sins and then enter into Paradise.
In translations from the Islamic Hadith, Mohammed said, “I was shown the Hell-fire and that the majority of its dwellers are women.” The vast majority of Muslim women do not live in Western nations and have never heard the truths of forgiveness in Christianity. Since Islam is a performance-based religion, the Muslim woman will cling to whatever she thinks pleases Allah.
Muslims believe that two recording angels sit, one on each shoulder, and record every good and bad deed a person commits. It is based on the good deeds outweighing the bad that one gains entrance into Paradise. For a woman, however, there are no guarantees. Even if she has excelled in pleasing her husband, Allah can arbitrarily change his mind and deny her eternal life in Paradise. As a Muslim, they are hopeful that Allah is loving and compassionate, but the question is to whom and why?
The Qur’an clearly teaches that Allah does not love sinners:
“God loves not transgressors” (Sura 2:190).
“God bears no love for the impious or sinful” (Sura 2:276).
“God loves not the evil-doers” (Sura 3:57, 140).
“God loves not arrogant and boastful men” (Sura 4:36).
Nowhere in the Qur’an is Allah ever said to love anyone who does not love him first. But the Bible reveals to Christians the assurance of God’s love. We know that: “In this is love, that we loved God, but that He first loves us” (I John 4:10). A Christian knows that no human can be more loving than God.
Is it any wonder that a Muslim woman lives in fear? It is a totally foreign thought that God loves her unconditionally or that she can be redeemed by what God has done for her and not by her good deeds. She lives with the constant fear that even if she manages to do more good deeds than bad, Allah might still change his mind, and she will never reach Paradise.
In recent years, immigration to Western nations has dramatically increased. Europe has experienced a record influx of asylum seekers who fled conflicts in Syria and other predominantly Muslim countries in the Middle East and North Africa. The United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand have also been nations where many desire to immigrate. Some are skilled workers, and others have no particular skill or trade and often expect public assistance.
Across the West, we have seen mosques increasingly built in our cities and towns. Mosques dot the landscape of Europe. The most expensive mosque built in the United States completed by the Turkish government cost approximately $100 million. Also, Islamic schools and a host of Muslim organizations are present across the Western nations.
Western nations have made countless accommodations to Muslim demands. Included are segregated male-female swimming pools and gyms, halal food, workplace exemptions for handling pork products, and individual public prayer rooms with footbaths.
When migration to the West took place many years ago, Muslims would assimilate into the culture even while still practicing their religion. Things have changed, and immigrants have not only kept their religious beliefs but kept to themselves. For Islamists, non-Muslim land is different from Muslim land. Many never identify themselves with a Western land, flag or nationality, even though they were born there and are the second or third generation in the new nation.
If they are a fundamental Islamic family or community, they believe only Allah’s law is pure. Their mindset is that Western law is manmade and Islamic sharia is to be followed.
One of the founding fathers of Islamist thought, Sayyid Qutb, stated:
· “The homeland of the Muslim, in which he lives and which he defends, is not a piece of land;
· the nationality of the Muslim, in which he lives and which he is identified, is not the nationality determined by a government;
· the family of the Muslim, in which he finds solace and which he defends, is not blood relationships,
· the flag of the Muslim, which he honors and under which he is martyred, is not the flag of a country, and;
· the victory of a Muslim, which he celebrates for which he is thankful to God, is not a military victory.”
One man, a Muslim reformer, made this statement: “What you end up seeing is that when people are brainwashed not to identify themselves with a flag and a nationality, it disrupts the human connections and communications that need to take place within communities. It pits the indoctrinated person against the entire society and his own countrymen, and develops an ‘us-vs-them’ mentality.”
• II Corinthians 10:4 declares: “We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments.” Pray that God will reveal to the body of Christ specific ways we can pray for Muslims to free them from false teaching and stand against these strongholds in their lives.
• Pray for the Muslim community, that their eyes will be opened to Truth, asking God to send laborers across their path to share with them the truth of the message of Christ.
Five times every day, year after year after year, people in the vicinity of local mosques hear the Arabic words that Allah is god and Muhammad is his prophet. These proclamations have been going out from the mosques of the Middle East, Asia, North Africa and Western nations five times a day for nearly 1,400 years. If you multiply this by the number of mosques and the number of Muslims who pray daily, these prayers have been proclaimed billions (even trillions) of times.
The prayer, “Allah is god and Muhammad is his prophet,” is called the great confession. It, as well as other repetitive prayers, dominate the days of Muslims who maintain their faith. What is essential for us to know is that the power of proclamation established through the reciting of the confession and the repetitive prayers is indeed powerful.
Derek Prince, Greek and Latin scholar at Cambridge University served with the British army in World War II. He began to study the Bible and experienced a life-changing encounter with Jesus Christ. Out of this encounter, he formed two conclusions: first, that Jesus Christ is alive; and second, that the Bible is an authentic, relevant, up-to-date book.
He then made the connection between the repetitions of Islamic proclamation and power during the many years he spent living in the Middle East. Prince observed, “The basis of the spiritual power of Islam the Middle East and North Africa is summed up in one word, proclamation. The Arabs, whether consciously or unconsciously, have understood the tremendous spiritual power of persistent proclamation . . . and I believe that is the real basis of the tremendous dominating spiritual power of Islam. It’s this persistent, ceaseless proclamation of the spiritual force that they want to establish.”
Truth is far more powerful than untruth; it doesn’t take the same number of proclamations of truth to defeat error. As Christians, the opportunity before us is to respond with the declaration of the Word of God. God tells us in Job 22:28 that if we decree or declare a thing, it will be established.
In Philippians 2:9-11, the Word of God also proclaims: “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him (Jesus) and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
As Christians, we proclaim the Word of God! Therefore, it is our great privilege to lift the name of Jesus in the power of counter-proclamation. We proclaim His victory, the power of His name, the power of His blood, and the power of His resurrection. Jesus Christ is King of kings and Lord of lords, and of His kingdom there is no end. As Christians, we proclaim these truths in prayer, intercession, worship, praise, and the declaration of His Word. The truth of His Word will penetrate the darkness!
There was a panel discussion on one of the most well-known television shows in Egypt. The host, a Muslim woman, is known for her controversial topics of conversations that are watched by millions in the Middle East. On this particular program, her guests were Muslim and religious leaders. In the last centuries, Muslim leaders denied the fact that Muslims were converting into the Christian faith. “This is Christian propaganda,” they usually said.
Today, however, there are millions of Muslims leaving Islam and converting to Christianity, with an abundance of hard evidence that can’t be denied any longer. Note that the subject of this discussion was not whether Muslims are turning to Christianity, but rather, “Why are they converting to Christianity?” Egyptian born and educated, Dr. Victor gave us this report and shared he was watching this show live on an Egyptian channel that is licensed by government authorities. The discussion was all about, “Why and what to do about it?” Many reasons were discussed. Eventually, one of the guests asked the hard question, “What about signs and wonders? We cannot deny that many Muslims have experienced the healing power of Jesus. In fact, it is recorded in the Qur’an.”
Dr. Victor shared, “We know that the Sharia law of Islam allows the killing of any Muslim who changes his/her religion. We have watched the news about many Muslim countries that regularly execute those who have turned their back on Islam; the executions were enforced by the high court of Islam. In the last several years, however, the Egyptian authorities refused to issue the death penalty in such cases declaring they are not called to carry out the death penalty. Instead, they put the responsibility on the Islamic high court.
The leaders of the Islamic high court found themselves in a dilemma, as the increasing number of converts made it hard for them to issue the death penalty in such numbers. So, their answer, in the end, had to be, “Let Allah punish them.”
Millions still leave Islam for a variety of reasons, but the one that stands very firm is the undeniable fact of signs and wonders done in the Name of Jesus.
Another phenomenon that is experienced in Egypt and throughout the Middle East are dreams and visions of Jesus. Muslims are open to dreams because of the precedent in the Qur’an. Mission Frontiers magazine reported that a survey of 600 Muslim converts to Christianity, 25 percent experienced a dream that led to their conversion.
In their dream or vision, they shared that Jesus was speaking Scripture to them that they had never heard before, or “a man in white” was physically appearing. This supernatural encounter brought them a great sense of peace, and they realize that Jesus Christ is truly God.
For Christians living in democratic nations, intense religious persecution is rarely experienced. Yet 1 in 9 Christian believers in other nations are regularly suffering true religious persecution.
“It may be surprising, but Christian persecution around the world is one of the biggest human rights issues of this era.” This statement is made by the ministry of Open Doors, one of the many organizations who are exposing what is happening to our brothers and sisters in Christ and speaking out on behalf of Christians who are being persecuted for their faith in 2020. This is an issue we all need to know about so we can respond with our prayers.
Reliable reports say that more than 265 million Christians are vigorously persecuted, a 6% increase from the previous year. They represent people with real lives, families, jobs, churches — who every day make the dangerous choice to live for Jesus.
Even the secular world is commenting:
Countries hostile to Christianity are in Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa. Sexual violence and abuse is prevalent among women, and Christian men are physically tortured and imprisoned without cause. Each month an average of 105 churches are attacked, burned, or vandalized.
In the Arabian Peninsula, Muslim households quietly exploit Christian maids. In portions of Africa, raiding Islamic militias regularly attack women in Christian villages or abduct them for a life of sexual slavery. Christian women are trafficked as “brides” and continually experience physical violence by their persecutors.
The Christians of Nigeria have courageously faced unbelievable persecution in recent years by Boko Haram and the Fulani herdsmen. Young girls have been abducted and taken to be wives of these terrorists. Villages are burned down and the residents murdered, or they had to flee for their lives. Yet very little is done by their government.
At age 14, Leah Sharibu in Nigeria was one of 110 female students at a Science and Technical College abducted in February 2018 by Boko Haram terrorists. Leah was the only girl who was not released because she refused to renounce her Christian faith. She said, “NO!” in the face of danger, captivity, and oppression. Forced into motherhood, she still stands strong and will not deny Christ. Leah will be 17 years of age on May 14. Her courage is remarkable, especially for a teenager. Will you join us in praying for her strength and perseverance to continue and for her release from captivity?
Most Muslim men you see are moderate in their beliefs and behavior. As you pass them on the street, in a hospital, a restaurant, or your neighborhood, they are primarily concerned about the same daily issues non-Muslims are: earning a living, feeding their families, caring for their homes, and living day-to-day life. Yet, within, they are engaged in a battle of the mind.
The teachings of their faith and the beliefs of their Muslim community are that a man must exercise control and dominance to maintain respect. The battle they face is how to live out those traits that their Qur’an and their Muslim community is expecting of them.
Some Muslim men are secular and not religious, especially if they live in the West and are westernized. However, the average Muslim is challenged to adopt this mindset of dominance around three major concepts: (1) power, (2) honor, (3) revenge.
At its extreme, this belief in dominance is seen by the world in acts of terrorism. For the moderate Muslim man, the call to dominate is much more subtle. He is called to dominate his wife, his children, his home, and himself.
Christians believe in and respect concepts such as forgiveness, mercy, love, and truth. Therefore, it is difficult for us to understand that Muslims do not share these concepts. Being truthful in the way we know it is simply not a part of their thinking or background. Truth is not relevant or essential. Thus, when a Muslim talks to you, he is not thinking in terms of what is the truth. His purpose is to outwit you. What he is saying to himself is, “Now if I say this, what will the other person say?” This disregard for truth will express itself in all aspects of Muslim life, from their personal business affairs to world politics.
What impresses them is power. Muslim men will use power to attain honor. And if by chance they fail and honor is taken from them, then they must take revenge. They will work unceasingly, no matter how long it takes, until they obtain it. This is the mindset that the Muslim man is challenged to uphold. His culture expects him to be motivated by a quest for power, for honor, and for revenge.
When he has failed to maintain power and honor, (which is a failure to dominate), then he experiences shame as a Muslim man.
Just as fear is the primary element that affects a Muslim woman’s thinking, so fear controls the Muslim man’s thinking. He fears what the Muslim community thinks of him and has a great fear of displeasing Allah.
Outsiders could interpret the control and dominance that a Muslim woman and her children live under as the Muslim man protecting his family. However, the truth is that he is protecting himself. He cannot lose honor.
The Muslim world has retained the same traditions since the founding of the religion by Muhammad in the 7th Century. Thoughts and behaviors were followed continuously from generation to generation. Muslims were afraid ever to question their beliefs or what they had been taught from their holy books. Allah only reveals his will and not his character. They are told in the Qur’an, sura 16:93, “If Allah had willed, he could have made you [of] one religion, but He causes to stray whom he wills and guides whom he wills.” They receive no hope or peace from their holy books.
A positive, uplifting Arabic Christian TV program called “Diwaniya: The Rest of the Story” reaches much of the Middle East. Viewed by Christians and Muslims, they can phone a program counselor for prayer and encouragement. During the COVID-19 pandemic, people were homebound, and after seeing the programs in April 2020, there was a 1,000% increase in responses. Also, as we are currently in the month of Ramadan, many Muslims have called in who are fearful, needing direction, and hope. Interestingly, more men have called for counsel and prayer than women.
As Muslims become more educated and now can reach the rest of the world through the Internet, their minds begin to question what they were taught.
For instance, an article on April 28, 2020, by Raymond Ibrahim in the “Middle East Forum” shares: “Muslim advocacy for drinking camel urine is back in the news, this time in connection with the coronavirus, which is especially ironic if not deadly, as will be explained. An “Islamic medicine specialist” and director of a religious, scientific institution in Iran recently called on his countrymen to drink camel urine as the “best cure” for coronavirus and other ailments. Drinking camel urine and drinking Muhammad’s urine—are traced to the prophet’s own words, and are aspects of “Sharia-medicine.”
Mehdi Sabili, affiliated with the Iranian regime, uploaded a video on his Instagram account, extolling the virtues of dromedary urine on April 19, 2020. The video, which has since gone viral, also depicted him drinking a glass of freshly procured camel urine and calling on fellow Iranians to do the same three times a day for three days (nine full glasses).
In an article by Clarion Project, Egyptian Dr. Zaghlul al-Naggar, a prominent Islamic thinker and Chairman of Egypt’s Committee of Scientific Notions in the Qur’an, spoke on the topic of medical science and Islam. Questioned about camel urine, his interviewer reminded the doctor that urine is where all the body’s toxins are carried out, asking, “so, shall we drink it for health?” Naggar responded with arrogance: “I am older than you and more learned than you: you are not going to teach me; I will teach generations of people like you.”
In June 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) said camel urine could be deadly and urged people to avoid drinking camel urine. Camel urine has been linked with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS), which is also known as Camel Flu.
One wise person simply stated, “When the light of education shines on Islam, their teachings fall apart.”
Many are surprised, even shocked, to learn that a major US city is permitting the Muslim call to prayer (the adhan), to be broadcast publicly during the 30 Days of Ramadan. The Mayor of Minneapolis, Minnesota allowed a Cedar-Riverside mosque to declare the adhan over a loudspeaker five times a day. This neighborhood has become one of the most densely populated areas of Islamic immigrants, mostly coming from Somalia and Ethiopia. Locals have called the city Little Mogadishu. Several other smaller communities have also permitted the adhan to be heard daily in Michigan and New Jersey.
In a first, during Ramada 2020, the BBC (British Broadcasting Company) began broadcasting Muslim prayers in Britain on its network as mosques remain closed because of the COVID-19 virus. One commentator said, “In today’s Britain, it is extraordinarily unlikely that the BBC will stop broadcasting the adhan, once the coronavirus pandemic is over. A cultural line has been crossed.”
Many mosques in European cities this year are also broadcasting the adhan, including mosques in Amsterdam, Paris, Rome, Brussels, Stockholm, Hannover in Germany, and Oslo in Norway.
Just before dawn, the adhan is called out by a muezzin from the mosque. To each direction he cries, “Allah is greatest. I testify that there is no God but Allah. I testify that Muhammad is the prophet of Allah. Come to prayer.” Traditionally it is heard from the minaret five times a day, summoning Muslims for obligatory prayer and can often be heard by all from several miles away. The fifth call will be late in the evening.
Many traditional churches have a history of the ringing of the church bells as a joyful noise to signify it is time for worshippers to gather for a church service. No declarations are expressed.
The adhan prayer call is different than when the church bells ring. The Muslim call to prayer is like a mission statement. It is controversial because it declares over the city or community five times a day that the Muslim god, Allah is greater, that Mohammed is Allah’s prophet, and there is no God but Allah.
Dr. Gavin Ashenden, a former Chaplain to the British Queen, resigned his position in 2017 in protest against a Qur’an reading that denied the divinity of Christ in a church in Glasgow, Scotland. Dr. Ashenden strongly observed that “the Muslim call to prayer is a dramatic piece of Islamic triumphalism. It proclaims Islam’s superiority over all other religions, and in so doing, casts Jesus in the role of a charlatan and a liar. The Muslim god, Allah, is unknowable and has no son. Jesus was, therefore, a fraud in claiming He and the Father are one.”