An Introduction to the World’s Second Largest Religion
Dr. David Jeremiah
In the fourteen hundred years since Muhammad founded Islam, Christianity and Islam have been at odds, but this battle remained a distant reality for Christians in the West until the World Trade Center attack in 2001. With an estimated 3.45 million Muslims living in the U.S. today, it is critical for God’s people to have a basic understanding of Islamic beliefs as we seek to share the Gospel and interpret signs of the End Times. Here is a brief overview of Islam’s basic beliefs.
Islamic Ideas About God
- “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.” —The Shahada (in English, messenger can also be translated as prophet).
- The Christian doctrine of a Trinity is blasphemous.
- God is distant, angry, and unknowable. His judgment can only be held back through adequate submission.
- In Islam, Jesus was one of many prophets, but He was not the Son of God.
Islamic Ideas About Sacred Writings
- Muslims acknowledge the Law of Moses, the Psalms of David, and the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
- The writings of the Bible were superseded by the Qu’ran (even though the quality and comprehensibility of the Qu’ran is far inferior to the Bible from a scholastic and historical perspective).
- Muslims claim the Bible used by Jews and Christians has been distorted. Any biblical teaching that disagrees with the Qu’ran is assumed to be inaccurate.
- Hadith are not part of the Qu’ran but are used for its interpretation and application.
“Muslims are the fastest–growing religious group in the world. . . . If current demographic trends continue, the number of Muslims is expected to exceed the number of Christians by the end of this century.”2
The Five Pillars of Islam
- Reciting the Shahada
- Reciting five daily prayers
- Giving alms (as an obligation, not charity) to help others
- Fasting from sunrise to sunset during the month of Ramadan
- Traveling to Mecca on a pilgrimage at least once in a lifetime
- Note: Sunni Muslims believe jihad is the sixth pillar of Islam
Islam’s Current Impact on the World
- Islam is the state religion of 27 countries, making it the most common state religion in the world.1
- Islamic nations control much of the world’s petroleum supply, which generates tremendous wealth for those governments.
- Some Muslims seek to bring the world into submission to Allah through violent means.
- Other Muslims seek to expand Islam through peaceful means.
Turning Point’s Ministry to the Muslim World
Since 2009, Turning Point has been broadcasting in the Middle East. There are currently 22 weekly television program releases throughout the region in English, Arabic, and Farsi. More than 2,200 Your Greatest Turning Point new believer kits have been requested in Arabic and Farsi. Here is the story of one listener:
I was devastated by my father’s sudden death. I could not believe he left us, and my heart was filled with fear and depression. I later remembered that he used to watch The Kingdom SAT and enjoyed the channel’s programs. So, I decided to do the same. I began to watch your programs, especially Pastor David Jeremiah. Hope began to rise inside me and I regained my trust in God. I bought a Bible and started reading. I surrendered my life to Jesus and asked for Him to forgive me.
Ama – Syria
Glossary of Arabic Terms
|Ahmadiyya:||A sect of Islam that believes Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who died in 1908, was the promised Messiah. It is a small group, but it has become influential on American school campuses.|
|Ayatollah:||A spiritual leader in Shi’ite Islam, especially in Iran.|
|Caliph:||A spiritual leader or representative of Islam.|
|Hadith:||Collection of sayings and traditions of Muhammad.|
|Hajj:||Pilgrimage to Mecca.|
|Imam:||A spiritual head of Sunni Muslims who leads prayers.|
|Injil:||Gospel (of Jesus)|
|Isa:||The name for Jesus, which means “I hope.”|
|Islam:||Submission and obedience to the will of God.|
|Jihad:||Often refers to a physical war against the enemies of Islam; sometimes refers to an internal, spiritual struggle.|
|Muhammad:||The name of Islam’s primary prophet, which means “praised.”|
|Muslim:||One who submits and surrenders to the laws of God (as defined by Islam).|
|Ramadan:||The ninth month of the Muslim year, which occurs in spring.|
|Shahada:||Confession or testimony.|
|Shi’ite:||A sect of Islam that acknowledges Muhammad’s son–in–law, Ali, as the rightful successor.|
|Sunni:||A sect of Islam that only acknowledges the first four caliphs after Muhammad.|
|Sura:||Divisions in the Qur’an.|
|Zakat:||Compulsory giving to alleviate suffering.|
“90% of the Muslims in the Middle East and most parts of the Muslim world are Sunnis.”3
2“Muslims and Islam: Key findings in the U.S. and around the world,” http://www.pewresearch.org/fact–tank/2017/08/09/muslims–and–islam–key–findings–in–the–u–s–and–around–the–world/, accessed on February 21, 2019.
3Walter Martin, The Kingdom of the Cults (Bloomington, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 2003), 437.
Islam if true, is still false… https://youtu.be/sqLQTgKqODY
The Concept Of Jesus In Islam * https://youtu.be/vXn211TeVaM
67-year-old Christian Pastor was beheaded by Islamists in Bangladesh for refusing to convert to Islam August 2019
The Islamic persecution of Christians throughout the Middle East, Asia and Africa has become genocide.
In Bangladesh, a country with a Muslim majority, Christians are persecuted on a regular basis.
In the video below you can see a BBC report on the murder of a 67-year-old Christian man by radical Islamists.
The UN and Western leaders refuse to condemn these attacks to avoid damaging the image of Islam.
Why doesn’t the world seem to care when Christians die? Why is it that When Christians are murdered and persecuted en masse, no one seems to care — not even other Christians?