September 26, 2014

The Quran, the Bible, and the Islamic Dilemma

by Mike Riccardi

I came across this video from Acts 17 Apologetics this week, and found it to be a potentially helpful tool as I interact with my Muslim friends for the sake of the Gospel.

 

What do you think? Is this an effective video? Will it help you in your evangelistic conversations with Muslims? What else have you found helpful in your efforts to speak the Gospel to Muslims?

Mike Riccardi

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Mike is the Pastor of Local Outreach Ministries at Grace Community Church in Los Angeles. He also teaches Evangelism at The Master's Seminary.
  • 4Commencefiring4

    I suppose my first reaction is to ask why the narrator keeps saying, “Our Muslim friends” when, in truth, they’re our declared eternal enemies–both in word and deed.

    Jesus told us to pray for our enemies; so it’s clear He knew we would have some. And, though there are a majority of Muslims for whom christians are little more than the “uninformed”, that still leaves a couple hundred million who consider us future copses or converts. And the news around the world, particularly since the Iranian Revolution of 1979, pretty much demonstrates that fact.

    The Muslim world has a lot of explaining to do, to say nothing of launching a world-wide apology tour (Obama can help them out there). So if they ever get that done, they can get around to explaining their holy book’s contradictions. I’m not holding my breath.

    • Brad

      I think the narrator is probably just talking to people who have Muslim friends; not the entire Muslim world etc.

    • I think Brad gets it right here. All of us should have Muslim friends — i.e., Muslims with whom we are intentionally pursuing a relationship in order to proclaim the Good News to them.

      It can be a temptation for us, with all of the detestable evil being perpetrated in the world in the name of Islam, to simply conclude that these people are nothing more than our mortal enemies and we should have nothing to do with them. But something I’ve always appreciated Pastor MacArthur saying is that they are not the enemy, but the mission field.

      • 4Commencefiring4

        Well, if I were standing next to the good pastor, I would ask him this: Just who would he suggest is an example of our enemy for whom we are directed to pray? I would have no hesitation presenting the saving message of the Gospel to any one individual–of any faith, or of no faith–who sincerely expressed any inkling of interest in it.

        But what we see from the Muslim world, collectively and publicly, is not simply a different religion, of which there are many, but a violent effort to crush ours and to impose, by threat of death, a worldwide califate that is manifestly Satanic. At some point, the effort to evangelize them must be considered, at minimum, “casting pearls before swine.”

        Sure, any one individual–even a Hitler or a Stalin–is not beyond redemption…in theory. But Jesus knew who His enemies were, and He told us we’d have our share of them, too. Call me nuts, but I think we have millions of them right now, and they have jumped the fence into our yards. I don’t think they’re here to deliver a cake.

        • I don’t think anyone disputes that there is a large number of Muslims who consider us their enemies and act consistently with that consideration.

          But the point that I’m making is: it’s wrong for us to think that any individual Muslim we may interact with is necessarily the same “brand” of Muslim as ISIS terrorists. Perhaps that makes them inconsistent Muslims, but I’ll take it.

          And that leads me to what I believe is MacArthur’s point: If our default disposition to any given Muslim that we meet is, “You’re my enemy; we are against each other,” rather than, “How can I lovingly and clearly speak the Gospel to this person who is in severe need of it?” then, as they say, u r doin it rong.

          • 4Commencefiring4

            That’s very loving of you, I’ll give you that. As for me, my “default disposition to any given Muslim” these days is one of watchfulness and suspicion, knowing that they have only themselves to blame for the track record of the past 35 years. I didn’t feel this way in the early 70s, but I do now. They have lost my trust, and I’m afraid I don’t have enough years left for them to regain it…not that they’re trying or anything.

        • chrisleduc1

          “Well, if I were standing next to the good pastor, I would ask him this: Just who would he suggest is an example of our enemy for whom we are directed to pray? … But what we see from the Muslim world, collectively and publicly, is not simply a different religion, of which there are many, but a violent effort to crush ours and to impose, by threat of death, a worldwide califate that is manifestly Satanic.”

          Well that’s a pretty easy question with a pretty easy answer. 1 Tim 2 instructs us:

          “First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”

          Saul ie Paul was akin to a Muslim terrorist hell-bent on murdering Christians and destroying the faith. The “kings and all that are in authority” when Paul wrote this were mostly nasty evil men who would have done exactly what Stalin or Hiler did if they had the means, which they didn’t.

          “At some point, the effort to evangelize them must be considered, at minimum, “casting pearls before swine.””

          I’d be curious to know, how many Muslims have you shared with Gospel with to the point that you can determine that you are casting your pearls before swine?

          • 4Commencefiring4

            Okay, you answer it instead: Who is my enemy? They must exist, as we are commanded to pray for them. Is it those who follow another faith? I see no basis for calling them that. Those who refuse to consider ours? Same thing. Mockers? Ditto.

            Those who want to kill me because I don’t follow their faith? Now we’re gettng closer. Sharing the Gospel “to the point” where they reveal their hatred of me isn’t necessary if they have already made it clear in advance that embracing any faith but theirs will cost me my head. I think that qualifies.
            Carry a Bible or hold an evangelistic meeting in Saudi Arabia or Iran, and you won’t see the dawn again. Pray for them? Sure–knock yourself out. But these have set themselves against the things of Christ, and Paul calls even those far less strident “enemies of the cross” (Phil 3:18).

            I can live with those who disagree with me. I can’t live with those who would kill me for disagreeing with them.

          • chrisleduc1

            Jesus shared the Gospel with those who wanted to kill him, and did in fact kill Him. We don’t have an option – we share the Gospel with everyone. Most of the Muslims that you are unwilling to risk your head for have never even heard the Gospel. Shame on you.

            ” Sharing the Gospel “to the point” where they reveal their hatred of me isn’t necessary if they have already made it clear in advance that embracing any faith but theirs will cost me my head.”

            Im sure glad Jesus and the Apsotles and those they converted didn’t take that opinion or Id likely be lost today. Again, shame on your Sir.

            “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.” – Jesus

          • 4Commencefiring4

            “Do not give that which is holy to dogs, and do not cast your pearls before swine lest they trample them under their feet and turn again and rend you.”–the same Jesus.

            “Be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves.”–same Jesus. Walking into a sword with your eyes open isn’t what I’d call “shrewd.”

            Sounds like there’s more to it than losing your head. You still won’t name an enemy. I guess there aren’t any. Good luck with that.

          • chrisleduc1

            “”Do not give that which is holy to dogs, and do not cast your pearls before swine lest they trample them under their feet and turn again and rend you.”–the same Jesus.”

            “Walking into a sword with your eyes open isn’t what I’d call “shrewd.”

            Forgive me, I did not realize that I was dealing with an omniscient person! I had no idea that you knew who had already heard the gospel and had already rejected it and was therefore a dog or swine, before you ever met them or attempted to share the Gospel with them! I had no idea that you are omniscient. For the rest of us mortals, we are commanded to “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations” and only after attempting to do that, we can determine who is the dog and swine and stop wasting our time with them. We mortals have to actually attempt to share the Gospel with people, even if they threaten to kill us, because we, unlike you, don’t know if they have ever heard it, or if they have or will reject it, or if they will in fact follow through on their word to kill us. But since you are omniscient (which is the only excuse you can have for not sharing the gospel with people you don’t know) you probably have seen thousands of people converted right, since you know who is not a swine and you therefore share the Gospel with people who will not reject it, right? I’d love to hear all about that!

          • 4Commencefiring4

            Read the words more carefully: “Do not give…do not cast…” He didn’t say, “Do not continue to give…do not continue to cast…” [once you’ve tried sharing and they slice your face because they hate the Gospel]. There are people who have put us on notice, by their own words and deeds (not by our “omniscience”), that everything we stand for they hate and will fight with every fiber of their being. Perhaps God will soften their hearts in the future, but not so much now. You’d be pouring a bucket of water on a forest fire.

            If you are inclined to disagree–and obviously you are–then I can tell you that Iraq and Iran are open all night. Go there and start a neighborhood Bible study or stand on a soap box at the corner and preach to ISIS because, after all, they might be open to it. Or not. If you’re not dead (or on deck for it) within 24 hours, get back to me.

          • chrisleduc1

            Your comments reveal that your position is nothing more than cowardice and hate hiding behind poor exegesis. Your interpretation contradicts the very example of Christ Himself. It contradicts the example of the Apostles. Your rendering of the text also contradicts every commentary on this text that I can find, and I have close to 30 on Logos. When your interpretation contradicts the model of Jesus, the Apostles, and all the commentators, that should be a red flag for you.

            Blomberg summarizes it well: “Jesus is obviously not telling his followers not to preach to certain kinds of people, but he does recognize that after sustained rejection and reproach, it is appropriate to move on to others”

            as does DA Carson (and John Calvin): “Verse 6 is not a directive against evangelizing the Gentiles, especially in a book full of various supports for this, not least 28:18–20 (10:5, properly understood, is no exception). “Dogs” and “pigs” cannot refer to all Gentiles but, as Calvin rightly perceived, only to persons of any race who have given clear evidences of rejecting the gospel with vicious scorn and hardened contempt.

            Every unregenerate person is an enemy of the Gospel. The chance that the militant Muslim you are referring to has heard the Gospel is almost nill, yet because he claims to be devoted to his religion and says he will kill you, you are too sacred to share the Gospel? You don’t care that he’s never heard it or rejected it? Knowing he’s never heard it, his simple profession of faith and intent to kill you causes you to determine that Jesus does not want you to share the Gospel with that person? You have taken the place of God in determining who will and will not be regenerated by God by the proclamation of the Gospel! You are ruled by fear and the idol of self preservation. Do you know believe that the Gospel is “is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” (Rom 1:16)

            Have you no concern that this Muslim will die and spend an eternity in unspeakable horror? You have the words of eternal life and you care more about your own well being that his eternal soul?

            Have you no concern that this Muslim is living a life of treason and mutiny in the Lord’s world, is not a worshipped of the One True God? Have you no care for the Lord that the muslim is an idolator who profanes the name of the Lord? Have you no concern that Christ Jesus may have been crushed by His Father for the sins of the Muslim that you refuse to share the Gospel with? That’s nothing more than sheer cowardice, selfishness and hate masquerading behind poor exegesis.

          • 4Commencefiring4

            Who is “omniscient” now? Now it’s YOU who knows what the Muslim has heard previously and what he understands of the Gospel. And here you thought I was playing God, judging others as to their knowledge. Well, looks like we’re a team, you and me.

            As for contradicting the “model of Jesus”, perhaps you’d like to consult your 30 Logos commentaries for an explanation of John 7:1. Here, Jesus specifically avoided going into Judea. Why? “…because the Jews were seeking to kill Him.”

            Oh, no! Say it ain’t so, Joe. Didn’t Jesus care that they were
            hell-bound? Was He so cruel that He chose to preserve His life rather
            than share the Good News with his would-be killers? Why, how cowardly
            of Him.

            You can say, “Well Jesus DID know what was in their hearts; He is
            God and I’m not. He can make that choice.” Well, I’m not God, but I
            don’t need to be: they’ve already put me–and you–on notice that the
            Gospel is abhorrent to them and they consider it (many of them anyhow)
            enough of a blasphemy to warrant killing you for saying it in their
            presence.

            As for the Apostles, the early church was an underground organization, was it not? Why? Didn’t they have enough money to advertise? Were there no places to rent for Sunday services? Or was it that they risked their necks with this new “Way”, being as how it offended the Jews and perhaps disturbed the civil authorities?

            I think I’ve made my point. Tell me when you’ve got plane tickets for Saudi Arabia and the address where you’ll be setting up a neighborhood Bible study. And oh, before I forget: pay your mortage before you leave. I have a feeling you won’t be returning.

          • chrisleduc1

            “As for contradicting the “model of Jesus”, perhaps you’d like to consult your 30 Logos commentaries for an explanation of John 7:1. Here, Jesus specifically avoided going into Judea. Why? “…because the Jews were seeking to kill Him.”

            Really? Why do you think they wanted to kill Him? Do you think it had anything to do with the fact that He had already shared the Gospel with them for a couple of years already? You just keep proving my point. He made it clear that He was the Messiah, and AFTER they rejected Him, He withdrew. John 7:1 is a couple of years into His ministry. They wanted to kill Him BECAUSE He shared the Gospel. He did not avoid Judea because He was scared to share the Gospel…

            “I think I’ve made my point. Tell me when you’ve got plane tickets for Saudi Arabia and the address where you’ll be setting up a neighborhood Bible study. And oh, before I forget: pay your mortage before you leave. I have a feeling you won’t be returning.”

            I get it. You’ve made yourself clear. Self-preservation is your God. No need to keep pointing it out. Should God call me to the middle east to lay down my life for His sake, Ill go.. I hope day you too will have a love for Him that would cause the same. He is more than worthy…

          • 4Commencefiring4

            “Why do you think they wanted to kill Him? Do you think it had anything
            to do with the fact that He had already shared the Gospel with them for a
            couple of years already?”

            You have no clue, nor do I, who He may have already spoken with in Judea. Maybe one, maybe hundreds. In any case, 7:1 doesn’t say He avoided them because they had already heard the message and rejected it with predjudice. You are reading that INTO the text. He avoided them, according to the Bible I have, because of their clearly expressed desire to dispatch Him. For all you know–2,000 years later–the particular people who wanted Him dead had never so much as been in His immediate company. But news gets around, so His enemies may have been recruits, friends of those who had heard Him, whatever. You assume a lot. And you don’t know. Neither do I.

            So now you can tell us why the nascent church kept itself on the down low. Wait–don’t tell me: They had already shared the Gospel with everyone in town and, after everyone had turned their nose up at it, the Apostles told their budding congregations to give up and stay hidden lest they come into harm’s way. Got it.

            Look, brother. If you want to believe that most–or even a fair share–of Muslims 1) don’t know what the Bible says about salvation and 2) represent little to no threat to you or your family, then have at it. But I think they know quite a lot about it, and a substantial percentage of them feel that violent jihad is often justified against those who hold to what we believe.

            Do with that what you will. Me? I’ll keep a safe distance unless and until I see a change of attitude.

          • chrisleduc1

            “You have no clue, nor do I, who He may have already spoken with in Judea. Maybe one, maybe hundreds. In any case, 7:1 doesn’t say He avoided them because they had already heard the message and rejected it with prejudice.”

            You should really re-read your Bible and find some solid Bible teaching somewhere. Jesus had been to 3 passovers at this point in time in John 7. Long ago Nicodemus confessed that they (i.e. the ruling class i.e. the ones who are always described as the ones who wanted to kill him) knew He was from God. Read all 4 Gospels – time and time again the pharisees and the sadducees heard him preach. They came from Jerusalem to hear Him in many places. He preached in Jerusalem, at the temple, DURING THE FESTIVALS for several years. If you want to play ignorant and act like you don’t if the people who wanted to kill him had actually heard Him or not, go ahead. That’s just displaying that you have no desire to engage with the text. John is clear that its the religious leaders, whom Jesus had spoken with, many times, that want to kill him. But go ahead, make up whatever will so the your conscience.

            “If you want to believe that most–or even a fair share–of Muslims 1) don’t know what the Bible says about salvation”

            This is a well known, well document fact! You should actually try talking to a Muslim for a change – you might realize that not only are they made in the image of God, like you, but that the only understanding they have of Christianity is what they are taught in Islam – i.e. a false Jesus, a false Trinity, a false Gospel, etc. They know nothing of orthodox Christianity. This is true for the vast majority of them.

            ‘If you want to believe that most 2) represent little to no threat to you or your family, then have at it.”

            Yes, the majority of the however many BILLION muslims pose no threat to me or my family. Ive been around MANY of them for quite a few years now and, Im still here, no problems. Ive shared the Gospel with some and, still there, safe and sound. However the ones that do want to harm me, so be it. If I get to share the Gospel with them, then that is my mission. Christ Jesus is worthy of my obedience, as well as theirs. Until I share with them, I have no way of knowing how they will receive the Gospel. Justify your disobedience however you want. For me, Jesus is worth it. Im sorry that He is not worth it for you.

            It’s clear this conversation has run it’s course. If you decide you’d like to actually engage what the Bible teaches rather than just proof-texting verses out of context with a twisted interpretation that nobody else agrees with, let me know and Im happy to discuss the Word of God with you. Otherwise, all the best and feel free to have the last word.

  • tovlogos

    What do I think? Nicely done, Mike.
    Dr. Gary Hedrick of Messianic Perspectives also does a good job discussing the koran, and the historicity of Muhammad’s interactions with Christians and Jews, whom he met living in Arabia, as well as along trade routes. Muhammad actually liked both Christians and Jews at first, where Sura 10:94 is applicable. Before Muhammad met them he was completely polytheistic. It was the Christians and Jews who gave him the idea of, One God, which made a lot of sense to him. His people gave him a hard time, since they had to give up gods they had worshipped for a long time. He thus went to the Kaaba and appointed Allah as the One God. This was in rebellion against the Jews and Christians who refused to entertain his personal ideas; and the story goes on.
    The Jews often have no patients with Muslims because of the mess they have made of some one else’s religion. (Actually the Jehovah’s Witnesses may be considered just as destructive; since they are so subtle. Not many people would notice how they have disregarded the Greek grammar in John 1:1.)
    You can see how convoluted the Koran is. Notwithstanding, not every Muslim is even open to hearing any of this, “infidel” nonsense. One a muslim threatened to hunt me down firebomb my house if I didn’t get off the internet with this infidel stuff. Of course, I began witnessing much more. Nevertheless, one should be carefully led by the Spirit to approach these people; though many are very agreeable to discussion.

    Thanks, Mike
    Mark

  • That was fascinating and an excellent teaching tool.

    Should I find myself conversing with a Muslim about Gospel truths I’d probably have a hard time “answering Islam” as I’m much better prepared to speak from the Biblical perspective.

    In my very limited interaction with Muslim’s (online and years ago) and since observing from a distance, I have found them to generally far surpass the average Christian in thoughtfulness, kindness and a well studied grasp of the (“peaceful”) tenets of their religion-which says more (or less) of the way we in the evangelical world sometimes interact with the lost, as well as with each other. A bit of a digression but a notable observation, I think.

    Some years ago I ran across this (un-attributed) quote: “Muslim’s are dangerous when they practice their religion, Christians are dangerous when they don’t“. We can see that just as with many in our own faith, there is a great lack of true understanding of their own religion.

    Anyway, videos like this can be very helpful in gaining some needed insight.

    • tovlogos

      Excellent quote, Suzanne — There is no question that Christians who never read the Bible are in a peculiar and awkward state of mind. Often they come across situations where they wish that had spent more time studying. Even worse, they are opened to the spiritual world with no guidance. Communing with the word of God certainly bolsters our prayers; so prayers alone are not enough. We really must be washed in the Word. Even if we have never read the Koran; if we know our Book, we can ad lib during an engagement. Thanks.

      Mark

      • Mark – This: “Often they come across situations where they wish that had spent more time studying…We really must be washed in the Word” is much needed admonition..truth is I have felt (and have been) scripturally ill prepared 9.5 times out of 10 when such would have been particularly beneficial..I need to remember this as I read blogs and peruse twitter etc :/.

        Thank you!

        • tovlogos

          My pleasure, sister.

    • Should I find myself conversing with a Muslim about Gospel truths I’d probably have a hard time “answering Islam” as I’m much better prepared to speak from the Biblical perspective.

      I’d venture to say that this would be the case for most of us. But I think what videos like this should do is remind us that our task is not to be equipped for either/or, but both/and. The sine qua non of faithful evangelism is, of course, being able to present the biblical case for salvation and calling for repentance and faith. But I think that as love drives us to serve Muslims who are caught in the netting of false religion, part of that is learning enough of their world to show how even their own worldview is inconsistent with itself. I think this video helps us to do that.

      • …”part of that is learning enough of their world to show how even their own worldview is inconsistent with itself

        Yes that’s exactly what the video does, and does it handily. Of course, ultimately, (stating the obvious here) it is the Spirit’s work in and through the bearance of the Gospel that saves, not our ability to address each rabbit trail formed “in the darkness”. But again, videos like this are very helpful, and quite revealing!

        Thanks, Mike 🙂

      • tovlogos

        The video is superb, Mike — I will put it as an icon on my desk top, to remember to review it often until I can speak about it fluently.

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  • I enjoyed the video and felt like it was a worthwhile tool, maybe more so for educating Christians – who are going to be encountering Muslims in our ever more pluralistic culture or globally.

    I don’t disagree with the maker, but I would probably hesitate to share it with a devout muslim because of the 3:55 mark where Mohammed is called a false prophet. It just seems to contradict the idea of making a nice video to share with Muslims. I guess if the video is intended for Christian education then I’m ok with that…it just seems unnecessary given the general direction and ‘tone’ of the video.

    It seems like it would work about as well as referring to Vatican Councils with RCs. Most of them I can just get to admit they aren’t really good RCs. I don’t know. I’ve only met a few Muslims that seemed to know their own religion well enough. I’m going to pass this on to a woman I witnessed to several years ago and see what she thinks. Maybe God will use it.

    • Yeah, I viewed the video not so much as a “tract” to pass on to Muslims, but as a tool for the equipping of Christians to engage with Muslims.

      At the same time, I don’t think we ought to shy away from calling Mohammed a false prophet. We don’t need to do so triumphalistically, or to be provocative or needlessly bombastic, but because it’s a matter of truth. Mohammed was a false prophet. Just like Joseph Smith, Charles Taze Russell and the Watchtower Society, Ellen G. White, and the rest.

      I think it’s a strong point of apologetic defense of the faith to make strong, firm statements of truth in a tone of gentleness and respect. And I think this video struck that balance well.

      • I agree. Allow me to clarify my earlier point as it takes more characters than I allowed in my first comment.

        The general theme of the video was a very poignant and logical evaluation of the doctrine of plenary inspiration of the Muslim holy book. All 8 minutes was dedicated to following the supposition that Allah provided the Quran and the inconsistencies tied to that.

        My only point was more of an artistic one: that the reference to Mohammed as false prophet was more of an inference drawn from the facts which were presented throughout. But left unqualified it sounds more like an attack on Mohammed, rather than the logical conclusion drawn from the data. In fact, had the same statement been put in at the end of the video…as a conclusion the viewer must draw from the data and deal with personally, I’d have thought it was better placement.

        So, to clarify, I’m in complete agreement with your comment.

        • That’s a helpful clarification, Michael. Thanks for taking the time.

  • jeff

    I think the video is very good, true, clear and well done and so should be effective to anyone who agrees with the logical law of non-contradiction. I also like that it directed the viewer to a gospel presentation, though it was less well done. I would also recommend, to Muslims and Christians alike, James White’s book “What Every Christian Needs to Know About the Qur’an”.

  • Mark

    I appreciate the information, but isn’t there danger in using quotes from a book we know is false to prove something we know is true?

    • Mark – That’s a good question. If you consider the idea of answering a fool according to his folly so that he is not wise in his own eyes (Prv 27), you will see that it is a technique God provided for us to make proofs. It’s a logical construct we call reductio ad absurdum. Where we start an argument assuming something is true and then follow it logically until we get to an absurdity or contradiction…thus proving our original assumption must be false.

      I’d be more concerned with the obvious fact that someone cherry-picked verses from a book which I don’t know very well. If someone did that with the Bible, I’d pretty easily refute most arguments with a reply that the person was taking something out of context and misinterpreting the verse. A good Muslim would just reply to this video and say “that’s not what that verse means.”

      That is why we ultimately don’t make conversions with apologetics. It is the Word which actually has the power.

      For more about logic, I wrote a three part deal on it a while back. You’re welcome to see what you think http://michaelcoughlin.net/blog/index.php/2010/08/proverbs-26-4-5/

    • I appreciate the spirit of your question, too, Mark. I’m also thankful for Michael’s response. Proverbs 26:5 is an apposite reference; we are to answer a fool according to his folly lest he be wise in his own eyes.

      In apologetics, we defend attacks made against the Scripture and the Christian worldview, but we also level attacks against the unreasonableness and absurdity of all competing worldviews. Part of destroying speculations and taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Cor 10:5) is demonstrating to the unbeliever that they have no reasonable ground to stand on even in their own worldview. Now, some people can get carried away and make that the sum total of their interactions with unbelievers, and I think that’s off-balance. We need both offense and defense, both apologetics and evangelism.

      Further, consider the alternative — i.e., if we were to refuse to “use quotes from a book we know is false to prove something we know is true” — if we took that to its logical conclusion. It would mean that we could never engage with the things the unbeliever is actually saying, since their worldview is entirely false. That would reduce our task to doing nothing but plugging our ears and making assertions, which I would argue is not faithful apologetics or evangelism.

      We never surrender our presuppositions. We never argue as if the Quran is true or that the Bible is false. Rather, always presupposing the authority of the Bible alone, we show the internal inconsistency of the unbeliever’s own worldview, whether that be the Muslim’s Quran or Hadith, or the atheist’s claims to “reason.” We demand that they make sense of “the evidence” according to their own worldview, and press them that, if they can’t account for reality according to their worldview, they need to abandon it. It’s at that point that a presentation of the Gospel can be quite poignant.

      Thanks for the good question, Mark, and for giving me the opportunity to clarify.

  • mary

    any discussion is helpful this is good basic stuff to get started but then we have to deal with all the actual violent statements:

    Quran (2:216)
    – “Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is
    possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing
    which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not.” Not
    only does this verse establish that violence can be virtuous, but it also
    contradicts the myth that fighting is intended only in self-defense, since the
    audience was obviously not under attack at the time. From the Hadith, we
    know that this verse was narrated at a time that Muhammad was actually trying to motivate his people into

    raiding merchant caravans for loot.

    Quran (3:56)
    – “As to those who reject faith, I will punish them with terrible agony in
    this world and in the Hereafter, nor will they have anyone to help.”

    Quran (3:151)
    – “Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers, for that
    they joined companions with Allah, for which He had sent no authority”.
    This speaks directly of polytheists, yet it also includes Christians, since they believe in the Trinity
    (ie. what Muhammad incorrectly believed to be ‘joining companions to Allah’).

    Quran (4:74)
    – “Let those fight in the way of Allah who sell the life of this world for
    the other. Whoso fighteth in the way of Allah, be he slain or be he victorious,
    on him We shall bestow a vast reward.” The martyrs of Islam are
    unlike the early Christians, who were led meekly to the slaughter. These Muslims
    are killed in battle as they attempt to inflict death and destruction for the
    cause of Allah. This is the theological basis for today’s suicide bombers.

    Quran (4:76)
    – “Those who believe fight in the cause of Allah…”

    Quran (4:89)
    – “They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the
    same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in
    the way of Allah (From what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize
    them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or
    helpers from their ranks.”

    Quran (4:95)
    – “Not equal are those believers who sit (at home) and receive no hurt, and
    those who strive and fight in the cause of Allah with their goods and their
    persons. Allah hath granted a grade higher to those who strive and fight with
    their goods and persons than to those who sit (at home). Unto all (in Faith)
    Hath Allah promised good: But those who strive and fight Hath He distinguished
    above those who sit (at home) by a special reward,-” This passage
    criticizes “peaceful” Muslims who do not join in the violence, letting
    them know that they are less worthy in Allah’s eyes. It also
    demolishes the modern myth that “Jihad” doesn’t mean holy war in the
    Quran, but
    rather a spiritual struggle. Not only is the Arabic word used in this
    passage, but it is clearly not referring to anything spiritual, since the
    physically disabled are given exemption. (The Hadith reveals the context
    of the passage to be in response to a blind man’s protest that he is unable to
    engage in Jihad and this is reflected in other translations of the verse).

    Quran (4:104)
    – “And be not weak hearted in pursuit of the enemy; if you suffer pain, then
    surely they (too) suffer pain as you suffer pain…” Is pursuing
    an injured and retreating enemy really an act of self-defense?

    Quran (5:33)
    – “The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His messenger and
    strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered
    or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides
    or they should be imprisoned; this shall be as a disgrace for them in this
    world, and in the hereafter they shall have a grievous chastisement”

    Quran (8:12)
    – “I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore
    strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them” No
    reasonable person would interpret this to mean a spiritual struggle.

    Quran (8:15)
    – “O ye who believe! When ye meet those who disbelieve in battle, turn not
    your backs to them. (16)Whoso on that day turneth his back to them, unless
    maneuvering for battle or intent to join a company, he truly hath incurred wrath
    from Allah, and his habitation will be hell, a hapless journey’s end.”

    Quran (8:39)
    – “And fight with them until there is no more fitna (disorder,
    unbelief) and religion should
    be only for Allah” Some translations interpret “fitna” as
    “persecution”, but the traditional understanding of this word is not supported
    by the historical context (See notes for 2:193). The Meccans were simply refusing
    Muhammad access to their city during Haj. Other Muslims were allowed
    to travel there – just not as an armed group, since Muhammad had declared war on
    Mecca prior to his eviction. The Meccans were also acting in defense of
    their religion, since it was Muhammad’s intention to destroy their idols and
    establish Islam by force (which he later did). Hence the critical part of
    this verse is to fight until “religion is only for Allah”,
    meaning that the true justification of violence was the unbelief of the
    opposition.
    According to the Sira (Ibn Ishaq/Hisham 324) Muhammad further explains that “Allah must have no rivals.”

    Quran (8:57)
    – “If thou comest on them in the war, deal with them so as to strike fear in
    those who are behind them, that haply they may remember.”

  • Pingback: Some right here, some there — September 26, 2014 | Posts()

  • John Azar

    The idea of using the Quran to prove the inerrancy of the Gospel
    to Muslims is a false concept. I am not sure if I even agree with the view that
    this video “maybe more so for educating Christians”.

    From my vast daily interaction with Muslims, having been born
    and living in the Middle East for over 25 years, as well as studying the Quran
    for over 12 years, and currently evangelizing a Muslim, I can tell you logic is
    Islam worst enemy. In fact a logical rational Muslim is an oxymoron statement.

    Muslims believe God “Allah” revealed Himself first to His Messenger
    “Rasoul” Moses “Mousa”, and then revealed Himself even more to His Messenger “Rasoul”
    Jesus “Issa”, and finally He got it right and inspired Muhammad to write His
    ultimate revelation also known as the Quran, making Muhammad his best and final
    prophet, The Messenger “Al Rasoul”.

    Logic in Islam is invalid, worthless, null and void, because
    Allah can change His mind depending on the circumstances. It is called “the
    abrogating (duplicator) and abrogated (copied) of Quranic verses”. The concept
    of “abrogation” in the Quran is that Allah chose to reveal a verse that
    supersedes earlier verse in the same Quran.

    In fact the prophesies and teachings Muhammad received from Allah
    while living in Mecca, pre his migration to Al Medina to escape the harm of
    Quraysh (his own tribe who knew him best, made out of Jews, Christians and worshipers
    of idols, they didn’t accept his new religion and even his own uncle fought
    him), contradicts the revelation he received in Al Medina (accepted by the
    people there and became very powerful).

    This is why in the video there are verses Allah of Islam
    revealed to Muhammad to appease the Jews and Christians of his own tribe while
    living in Mecca, fearing for his own life, that Allah so conveniently changed
    for him afterwards when he had more followers to fight alongside him and
    convert people by the sword.

    In conclusion, a Muslim perception
    of sin, salvation, grace, atonement, incarnation, etc. doesn’t exist. In Islam
    there are 99 names for Allah, none “God is Love”. This is the key to evangelizing
    Muslims. “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for
    reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness”. (2 Timothy 3:16).

    • I can tell you logic is Islam worst enemy…Logic in Islam is invalid, worthless, null and void, because Allah can change His mind depending on the circumstances.

      That makes alot of sense, particularly with their use of Taqiyya..it also sounds very much like our current American administration (et al)! I am also reminded of one way the enemy of mens souls so easily deceives: by breaking down standards of truth.

      Appreciate your input here, John Azur, thanks..and may God abundantly bless your ministry to Muslim’s!

    • chrisleduc1

      John, I appreciate you sharing your experience. There is much good in what you said. However your personal experience is not the ultimate reality or the standard by which to judge and do things. I would appeal to Mr Daniel Messieh, an ex-Muslim born in Egypt who was imprisoned and tortured after converting to Christianity. He has been going back to Muslim nations and using the exact method described in the video to debate Imams and seen conversions. He teaches this method.

      Here’s a shameless plug for his book:

      http://www.amazon.com/Traitor-Daniel-Massieh/dp/0615327990

      I encourage you to google him and find some of his resources for evangelizing Muslims.

      I have a 2DVD set of him teaching on sharing the Gospel with Muslims from a Missions Conference a few years ago. He uses the exact method in the video. He shows Muslims that the Koran says they have to obey the Bible. I also have a small booklet that he uses to go through with a Muslim when sharing the Gospel. Not sure where you are or if it’s even possible, but if you cannot locate some resources on your own, let me know and Ill see if I can find a way to get what I have to you.

      You can start here at Daniel’s website and the booklet I am referring to is on the resources page for $3.00. He has a heart for the Muslims and I encourage you to make contact with his organization.

      • John Azar

        I hope this discussion isn’t about whose method is better.

        I didn’t base my opinion on my personal experience, but on
        undisputed facts and teachings stated in the Quran.

        Two things are clear in the Bible in regards to evangelism:

        1. What my pastor John MacArthur would say “God’s word is sufficient to meet every need of the human soul” (Psalm 19:7-14,
        2 Timothy 3:15-17).

        2. What he would say as well “they are not our enemies; they are our mission field” (Mark 16:15, Matthew 28:19-20)

        With all due respect to you sir and your Muslim convert friend, I refuse to use a satanic book to prove the word of God is correct.

        If you have ever debated a Muslim yourself, you will find out very soon into the discussion (like all other cults) the slippery slope he will drag you to, jumping from the Quran to Hadith (things Muhammad said or done, second to the Quran in authority, yet
        disputed between Muslims themselves Sunni and Shia) and from Hadith to Fatwas (decree by any Muslim Immam “clerk”). How can anyone apply logic in this case?

        Zakaria Boutros (a Coptic priest from Egypt) watched by millions of Muslims daily on his own TV satellite station Al Fadi (The Redeemer) using logic, literally begging Muslims to explain to him the meaning of a Quranic verse, put so many holes in the Quran he made it look like Swiss cheese. You would think no one that has an ounce of brain would still remain a Muslim!

        “We might preach until our tongues rotted, till we would
        exhaust our lungs and die, but never a soul would be converted unless the Holy Spirit be with the Word of God to give it the power to convert the soul” Charles Spurgeon. (Romans 1:16)

        • chrisleduc1

          No John, not a discussion about whose method is better. I was just simply replying to what you said, which was that “the idea of using the Quran to prove the inerrancy of the Gospel to Muslims is a false concept.”

          and

          “I am not sure if I even agree with the view that
          this video “maybe more so for educating Christians.”

          You are essentially make absolute truth statements and I am merely showing that they are surely not absolute truths. There is no 1 single method. They need to hear the Gospel plain and simple. But you keep citing “God’s word is sufficient to meet every need of the human soul” as if to say that we are to use absolutely nothing but the Scriptures in evangelism – which is not even a view that Dr MacArthur takes.

          Surely you are not saying there is absolutely no place for apologetics in evangelism? That is exactly what this is all about it – this is an apologetic method. And since you and I both love Scripture as our authority, I remind you of Proverbs 26:4-5

          “Do not answer a fool according to his folly,
          or you yourself will be just like him.
          Answer a fool according to his folly,
          or he will be wise in his own eyes.”

          According to his Proverb we are to show people the logical conclusion of their line of reasoning or worldview. And this is exactly what this method is doing. This method is NOT saying that because the Koran is saying that the Bible is true, therefore it is. No, this method is saying, if you want to be consistent in your Muslim worldview, then the logical conclusion based on your belief in the Koran is that the Bible is true. It’s simply doing what Proverbs 26:4-5 commands.

          As to dealing with Muslims myself, yes, I have, and more than one. They are not all the same. I was blessed to be in ministry at a major university where Muslims from Saudi Arabia were coming in droves to an English prep school as a pre-requisite to going to the University. I got to speak with, debate, and share the Gospel with many Muslims. The fact of the matter is that EVERY unconverted person is illogical and inconsistent in their worldivew, not just Muslims. ALL people are illogical and irrational. Presuppositional apologetics demonstrates that. Every worldview is self refuting inconsistent and unlivable. Showing nonbelievers of all stripes the inconsistencies of their worldview and their inability to live by their professed worldview is exactly what apologetics and Proverbs 26:4-5 is all about. It’s a part of evangelism. Does it work with every person? No. Did Jesus use the exact same method with every person? No? This is not being exalted as the end all be all. This is one tool in the evangelists belt. It’s a tool, not a replacement for the Gospel. If you recall, even the Apostle Paul used the same method of showing people the logical conclusion of their own worldview in Acts 17. He appealed to their authority and demonstrated the logical conclusion.

          So while everyone here would agree with you that “God’s word is sufficient to meet every need of the human soul,” that does not mean that there is no room or need for apologetics – the Bible clearly teaches otherwise both in principle and precept, hence why men in the Scriptures engaged in Apologetics and so did the early church fathers.

          “With all due respect to you sir and your Muslim convert friend, I refuse to use a satanic book to prove the word of God is correct.”

          With all due respect, you are missing the entire point. The point is that you are simply showing them what their own religious book says. You are showing them the end result of their worldview. If you want to be anti-apologetics that is your choice. But it’s scriptural as you keep trying to make it out to be. You can quote Ps 19 and 2 Tim 3 all you want, and you can appeal to Dr. MacArthur all you want, but not even he will agree with you that there is no place for apologetics.

        • Hey John,

          Thanks for interacting here, brother.

          I do think that we might be talking past each other a bit, though. The maker of the video isn’t really suggesting that we prove the accuracy of Scripture by means of the Quran.

          He’s suggesting that, in addition to preaching the Gospel clearly and unashamedly, we can also prove the inaccuracy of the Quran by the means of the Quran. In other words, we can show them that their worldview is internally inconsistent.

          Now, that’s not to suggest that that kind of argumentation should replace actual evangelism. Nor is it suggesting that the Word of God is insufficient. We believe 2 Tim 3:16-17 too! 🙂 It’s just saying that part of the task of apologetics is to destroy speculations and taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Cor 10:5). And that means, at least in some instances, demonstrating to the unbeliever that they have no reasonable ground to stand on even in their own worldview.

          As I said to Mark above, we never surrender our presuppositions. We never argue as if the Quran is true or that the Bible is false. Rather, always presupposing the authority of the Bible alone, we show the internal inconsistency of the unbeliever’s own worldview, whether that be the Muslim’s Quran or Hadith, or the atheist’s claims to “reason.” We demand that they make sense of “the evidence” according to their own worldview, and press them that, if they can’t account for reality according to their worldview, they need to abandon it. It’s at that point that a presentation of the Gospel can be quite poignant.

          Thanks again for your interaction here, my friend, and for your faithful ministry to Muslims who need to hear the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ. Blessings.

  • Shared this with a Muslim who has interacted with me honestly and kindly in the past concerning things. Here was her response:

    Hello Michael yes i remember you.I hope you are doing well. Good to see you are still searching for the truth. I pray that God guides you to that which is the truth. Regarding the video i would like to make some remarks. First Islam does NOT contradict itself. As i stated before we as Muslims do believe in the books sent to christians BEFORE they were changed and Yes we do believe they were changed. Which brings us to the first argument the video makes : God does say that he preserves his words but it does refer to the Quran and it doesn’t mean that he wasn’t able to protect the books before but rather for a certain reason he allowed them to be changed and sent prophets as a guidance after they were misguided. We believe Muhammad was the last prophet sent to mankind until the day of resurrection(which i am not sure if christians believe in?) Also some of the verses were taken out of context in the video and that doesn’t work with Quran. it is not a regular book in chronological order as most books rather it is intertwined in the most intricate fashion and therefore you will find some stories mentioned in more than one chapter and so on. Therefore the verses mentioned cannot be mentioned alone and must be looked at with verses before or after to understanding the full meaning.Yes there were few people of the book who had held on to the original teachings of the bible at the time of Muhammad and in the ORIGINAL texts it did speak of coming prophet:Muhammad

    Even the jews in their book the ToRah mention that Muhammad was mentioned.So why don’t we declare the Torah as the correct Book??

    Now i want u to keep in my mind that i am not a scholar nor do i have a very vast knowledge of the Quran (as much as i would like ) therefore i cannot provide you with the exact explanations you need of the verses mentioned. However, i assure you the Quran doesn’t contradict itself! You can find hundreds of videos on youtube trying to say the Quran is contradictory but u can also find hundreds saying otherwise. Have u heard of Yusuf Estes? I urge you to see some of his videos on youtube . He was a former christian who converted to islam and he spent years studying both the Quran and the bible and came to the conclusion that the Quran does not contradict itself rather the bible does. I will try and find a video to post for you in the next few days. I apologize for the very long letter but i hope i was of some assistance. Hope to hear your response .thanks

    I guess the way I saw it was the arguments in that book may have as much effect as someone telling me that Jonah couldn’t have lived in a fish or that the Bible contradicts itself because Ephesians 2:8 and James 2:24. I’d find a way to explain the verses because my belief is presuppositional…like the Muslim’s.

    Just two more cents for anyone looking for how this affected a real live Muslim viewer.

    • Thanks Michael.

      It seems the video anticipated your friend’s argument at 2:20-3:00, and responded to it. Here’s how I hear them responding to that argument:

      1. The Quran teaches that Allah’s words cannot be corrupted.
      2. The Quran also teaches that the Torah and the Gospel are Allah’s words.
      3. Muslims say that the Torah and especially the Gospels have been corrupted.

      Therefore, there is an internal inconsistency.

      Like we’ve been saying above, we shouldn’t expect that the uncovering of that reality should cause all Muslims to fall at our feet and cry what must I do to be saved. We understand that salvation is of the Lord and not of demonstrating logical inconsistencies. But if the belief that the Quran is absolutely authoritative is a superficial barrier to a Muslim’s even hearing the Gospel with an open mind, breaking down that (yes, superficial) barrier can be a step towards having them hear the Gospel with less bias.

      • Absolutely, Mike. In this case, I dispensed the Gospel to this woman and left her with a tract. This was almost 30 months ago! She remembered me. I’ll be quite pleased if the Lord sees fit to bless her with salvation. I suppose I have a less than a .01% rate of people who contact me after a tract, so this woman (Asma is her name) is encouraging to me.

        • chrisleduc1

          Thanks for sharing (the Gospel with her and your experience in both interactions)! Praise God for making you faithful and encouraging me through you!