As Christians, we pin all of our hopes on the belief that Jesus was crucified and died for our sins. This is the bottom line core reason for our coming to Christ for it speaks of him doing something for us out of pure love that we in no way could do for ourselves. To us the sacrifice of Jesus represents the ultimate gift. Those outside of Christianity often look at this belief with disdain and even sarcasm for to them it is foolishness and evidence of a blood thirsty god. One question that is probably not talked about much is about the breadth of Jesus’ sacrifice – who did it cover and how do we know? In the present conditions of our world, the Muslim faith is often thought about and referenced. What do Muslims think of Jesus? While they do believe in him, they don’t see him as a redeemer. Does this mean that they are not covered by his sacrifice?
This is obviously a touchy subject, because like it or not, discussing Islam even in the brightest and most positive way can easily lead a variety of emotional responses from upbeat and accepting right down to angry and condemning. So, to try and avoid the emotional rollercoaster, we laid a foundation. We said from the very beginning that:
- Our representations of Islam would only be done through the words of Muslims themselves or from third party reporting that we deemed objective.
- We would view Islam in a positive light and therefore make no room to entertain the interpretations of the minority radical and hateful sects that seem to get all of the attention.
- We have no plan or desire to attempt to translate the meaning of the Quran – we leave that to those who have studied it and believe in it.
- Our beliefs regarding Islam are straightforward. We believe that it is not an accurate representation of the God of the Universe or his plans and purposes – but – we do not discount the positive examples of moral living and principles that are shown to us by so many upstanding moral and peaceful Muslims.
With the previous foundation in place, our objective was to compare how Muslims view God, Jesus and the Scriptures of the Bible with our own take on these matters as those who believe in that the Bible is the inspired word of God. As we approached the similarities and differences, we began to be able to clearly view not only perceptions of Jesus’ role but the scripturally-explicit guidelines of his role. One glaring reality we discussed was the absolute inability to have both perspectives “be right.” In the case of these two belief systems, one really does have to choose which perspective (if any) they see worthy of following.
In short, we attempted to have a frank conversation about differing beliefs without going down the road of condemning or insulting. We would encourage you to check out our January 30, 2017 podcast, “Did Jesus Die for Muslims?” and see for yourself why we gave an answer that some may consider surprising to that question. Hopefully you will listen and tell us what you think!
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