A Christian Response to Islamaphobia

Timothy Tennent, President of Asbury Seminary, has posted A Christian Response to Islamaphobia. I commend it to you.

Even some writers and speakers who are very conservative and not unready for theological battle are warning us to deescalate the fear of all things Muslim. James White of Alpha Omega Ministries is among these. I can’t find a specific file right now of his that presents his warning to christians about this, but he has repeatedly told us to get past the “all Muslims are terrorists” thing. (I wish he could be so charitable to Arminians).

If you read the Qur’an, you could come to the conclusion that the only good Muslim is a terrorist by today’s standards. There are so many passages there that make the blood run cold. It is hard to go from the Koran to the “religion of peace” thing that President George W Bush kept repeating. The Koran does not have a New Testament-like section that resolves the brutal sections of the Qur’an with a new ethic of love and peace.

Christians who have an active ministry with Muslims warn us that what we think has to be true is not true. I am not deeply enough into this kind of active ministry that enables me to balance the theological tenets of Islam with the actual realities of how they practice faith and go about life. I mostly attend to the world of ideas, and when one does this the lines tend to get very hard and the attitudes harsh. I must be careful here. You must be careful here.

My advice? One, listen to Christian apologists who are actively reaching out to the Muslim people. Two, support mission efforts to reach Muslims and read their stuff, like missionfrontiers.org/  Three, visit a mosque and get the feel for being around real people who have lives just like you and me. Go to some of their meetings. Four, pray for meaningful contact with Muslims God can bring across your path. Five, read enough so that you get several views. I commend to you the literature of InterVarsity Press for balance and intelligence.

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