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Question asked by - Thaer
Location - Jordan
Question - I am Muslim and I hate that I dream of Jesus twice and he calls me to be with Him forever. So I visit Church here in Jordan and I see new world. I wanna be a Christian but am scared because my family, if they know about it, they will kill me and kill my wife and my kids. Please help me.
Our Answer - Of course, the easy answer I could give you would be to remind you of the words of Jesus, "...Do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more.... I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear Him. Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. I tell you, whoever acknowledges Me before men, the Son of Man will also acknowledge him before the angels of God. But he who disowns Me before men will be disowned before the angels of God" (Luke 12:4-9 NIV). However, in a practical sense, that's not very comforting for someone who wants to be a new believer. Jesus was able to see into the future and knew of the suffering that those who died without His salvation would go through. He knew it would never end. For Hell is where everyone who chooses to live according to the natural inclination of their sinful human heart will eventually go. And Jesus knew that nothing anyone could suffer in this would can compare with it. The Only good thing about earthly suffering is that it will eventually end, even if it kills you. But the eternal suffering of those who die without God's salvation will never end. It will go on and on and on forever and ever. So Jesus was attempting to distinguish the difference between temporary earthly suffering and the eternal torture of pain and misery in Hell. By the way, a little bit of the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:14-15), located in Hell, can be seen each time an earthquake erupts and spews that hot liquid fire up from the center of the earth to the surface.
So, given a choice in the matter, no matter what I may have to suffer for my love and obedience to Jesus Christ, at least I know that I have the reassurance that I will eventually get to Heaven and escape the terrible fate of eternal Hell. Nevertheless, I know how frightened you must be. No one wants for themselves or their family to die before their time. But you must be willing to love Christ so much that all thoughts of suffering seem insignificant by comparison. It is possible for a mature Christian to achieve that goal. The Apostle John wrote, "...We know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like Him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because He first loved us" (1 John 4:16-19 NIV). However, a new believer is not likely to have that much confidence. It takes a great deal of spiritual growth and many lessons from the Lord before a Christian can get to the point of losing their fear of persecution.
Take a look at the story of Jesus' disciple Simon Peter. Peter was a new believer in Christ, but he loved Jesus so much that he thought he would be willing to die for Him (Luke 22:33). Yet when Peter was actually put into a situation where his life was in danger, he became afraid and denied Jesus three times (John 18:15-27). Yet church history tells us that when Peter was an old man he did die for Christ. In one account I heard that Peter had actually escaped from the Romans and was in a safe location. He and his wife knelt down to pray, but God told him, "Go back Peter. Go Peter." Peter loved and trusted Christ so much that, knowing what would happen, he obeyed the Lord and turned back. History tells us that they made Peter watch while they stripped off the clothes of his elderly wife and nailed her to a cross. As she screamed in agony, Peter called to her, "Beloved, remember Christ. Remember Christ." When it came time for Peter to die, he told the Roman leaders that he did not feel worthy to die the same way as his Savior. So they should crucify him upside down. They did. And that was an even more painful way to die.
There's no guarantee that you and your family will become martyrs for Christ. It wouldn't be very useful to the Lord for your lives to be wasted so quickly. However, as Jesus said, "...Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves Me must follow Me; and where I am, My servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves Me" (John 12:24-26 NIV). Above all, keep in mind that Jesus must love you a lot or He wouldn't be calling to you to come to Him. He must have very special plans for you and your future.
I have tried to contact another Christian organization to see if they would be able to offer you any help, as they have a missions ministry that's worldwide. But I have not received any response from them. And I have learned over the years not to keep pushing against the tide, so to speak. If it's God's will for something to happen, it will happen without a struggle. Since I got no response to my inquiry, the Lord must have something special in mind for you. And so I don't want to get in His way. What we will do however, is place your question in our "Prayer Request" file and ask people to pray for you and your family. So try to read the Christian Bible and pray with your family as much as possible. During times of extreme stress and danger, it usually helps to combine your praying with a period of fasting for extra spiritual strength. And remember the Bible says, "But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars - their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death" (Revelation 21:8 NIV).
So rely on this final word from the Apostle Paul, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28 NIV). He also said, "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: ‘For Your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.' No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, either the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:35-39 NIV). And finally Paul tells the Philippians, "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:7 NIV).
Question asked by - Domo
Location - Morocco
Question - I no longer feel I am a Muslim. I have a friend in America, who told me about Christianity. I became interested in the teachings of Christ. And I want to give up Islam and come to Christ. I need some help. You know, this is a serious change of religion in a Muslim country. Please help me any way you can.
Our Answer - Have you read any of the articles I wrote that are available on our website at our Christian Newsletters in English page? They should put you on the right track. Also take a look at our prison inmate testimony section. I think it will help. One concern I have is that you do not go from the Moslem faith into a cult or some type of counterfeit Christianity. The Apostle Paul said to the early Christian church, "I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel--which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from Heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!" (Galatians 1:6-8 NIV). There are many false doctrines in the Christian religion, as the devil is trying to dilute the truth. That is "...there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all men..." (1 Timothy 2:5-6 NIV).
The Bible tells us "...all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23 NIV). And no matter what the Catholic church or any other entity may tell you, the Bible says that we can't pay the debt we owe to God for our own sin. That's because the sin within us makes us spiritual slaves of the devil (John 8:34). You see, originally God created mankind perfect in the form of the man named Adam, and his wife named Eve (Genesis chapters 1 thru 3). However, mankind rebelled again his Creator, thus becoming sinful. It happened because Adam loved his wife, Eve, more than he loved God. Adam was not deceived (1 Timothy 2:14). He knew the consequences of his sin. But Eve was deceived by the devil! And she ate the forbidden fruit God told them not to eat or even touch. I think it's fair to assume that Adam did not want to be separated from his wife. Whatever happened to her, he wanted to suffer the same fate rather than be without her. So he also ate the forbidden fruit. As a result of his disobedience Adam changed masters. And since he had chosen to follow Eve, who obeyed the devil (also called Satan), the devil gained all that God had given to Adam (Genesis 1:26). That included the ability to rule over this entire planet (Matthew 4:8-10)! Adam was never supposed to die. All that changed when Adam sinned against God. Not only did he die spiritually, for separation from God is spiritual death (Romans 6:23 and Revelation 2:11, 21:8), he also began the process of dying physically (1 Corinthians 15:22 and Romans 6:23). And because Satan now controls the systems of this world (that he finagled away from Adam), that's why this world is so evil!
Although the rest of us were not there at the time that Adam sinned, we all inherited his sin and the sentence of death that goes with it. That means we are separated from God spiritually, even from the time of our birth. Each innocent looking baby is born with the disease of sin. That's because Adam carried the seed (semen) for the entire human race in his loins. So all of us were born into this world contaminated by it. God knew that unless He drastically intervened in the situation there would be no hope for mankind. You see, long before mankind was created, God made the angels. As He did with mankind, He gave them free will to choose whether or not to serve Him. He didn't want a race of robots. For programmed love is no love at all. The angels all served Him perfectly for a long time. However there was one angel, named Lucifer, who became the most powerful angel of all. He had served God so perfectly that God had blessed him with many gifts. He became the most prestigious, honored angel of them all. However there came a time when all this honor God had given him went to his head. And Lucifer began to question his loyalty to God. He even got to the point of becoming jealous of what God has. As a result, he gained influence over one third of God's angels, who are also called stars in the Bible (Job 38:7). "And there was war in Heaven. Michael [a powerful angel who remained faithful to God] and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in Heaven. The great dragon was hurled down - that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him" (Revelation 12:7-9 NIV).
Part of the punishment God gave them was the loss of their solid bodies. The Bible tells us that God incinerated their bodies as they stood before Him! He later told Lucifer and his followers, "By your many sins… you have desecrated your sanctuaries [bodies]. So I made a fire come Out from you, and it consumed you, and I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of All who were watching" (Ezekiel 28:18 NIV). These fallen angels became known as "demons" and God changed the name of their leader, Lucifer, to Satan. He also changed Satan's position from "light bearer", (which is what the name Lucifer means) to the devil (which means "accuser of the brethren" - Revelation 12:10). But that's not all their punishment. They are no longer allowed in Heaven, unless invited for some special occasion, such as in Job 1:6. They were hurled to the earth (Revelation 12:9 and Luke 10:18). Eventually they will be all thrown into a horrible place of torture and fire called Hell (Mark 9:47-49, Revelation 20:10, 14-15). The Bible tells us that Hell and the Lake of Fire is in the center of the earth (Ezekiel 26:20, Deuteronomy 32:22, Numbers 16:1-34, Isaiah 5:14, Amos 9:2, Proverbs 15:24, Ephesians 4:8-9) and that it is a place of unfathomable torture and fire with brimstone. In modern times, scientists and geologists have discovered that the center of our earth is filled with liquid fire and brimstone. While in Hawaii in 1985, my husband and I visited "Volcanoes National Park" on the big island. We smelt the sulfur in the air and saw the smoke rising out of cracks in the earth. We had an eerie feeling about it, spiritually sensing the millions of screaming people entrapped there forever!
You see, as a result of mankind's sin, unless we humans are willing to acquiesce to the will of God, our Creator, and accept the only salvation He offers us, we will follow Satan and his demons into that horrible place. Millions of people have chosen to reject His offer and are in that horrible fire of hell today! Once there, they will never get out, and will burn there for all eternity! However, "the Lord... is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance" (2 Peter 3:9 NIV). Unfortunately most do not! Nevertheless, "...God so loved the [people of this] world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him" (John 3:16-17 NIV). That salvation did not come cheaply to God. God's Son suffered our eternal punishment in our place! The God we serve, as true Christians, is not filled with hatred and violence as many Moslems are taught. He is filled with love and compassion for us (see Psalms 103:13-14). That is the basics of Christianity. It is the understanding that the Son of God came into this world (John 1:1-14), and suffered and died in our place. But we must remain faithful to Him and obey Him. He is like a Holy Vine to us and we are like branches that must remain attached to the Vine. God the Father is like a Gardener, who will prune us away from Christ if we do not remain faithfully attached to Him (John 15:1-6). Without Christ we are like dried up dead leaves that will eventually get burned in the fire (see Isaiah 64:6).
The Hebrew name for Jesus Christ is "Yeshua Ha-Mashiach." It means "Jesus the Messiah." The prophet Isaiah prophesied about Him thousands of years before He was born into this world. He wrote of the first coming of the promised Messiah, saying that He would be, "...despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces He was despised, and we esteemed Him not. Surely He took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered Him stricken by God, smitten by Him, and afflicted. But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; He was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so He did not open His mouth" (Isaiah 53:3-7 NIV). There are many metaphors about the Lord's coming in what Christians call the Old Testament, which is the Jewish Bible, called the Tanakh. One of them is the story of Abraham, after the Lord told him to sacrifice his own son, Isaac, to God. It was to be symbolic of the sacrifice God made of His Son for us.
Isaac was not a child, but Bible scholars have determined that he was at least seventeen years old. Some have stated that he was even in his thirties. The point is, he had to be old enough to have the strength to carry enough fire wood to consume a human body when set on fire. Isaac carried that wood on his back. In like manner, it was the custom of those who were to be crucified to carry their own cross. Christ did so until He became too weak from the beatings and blood loss. Then a man named Simon the Cyrene was given the task (Matthew 27:32). Another parallel is the fact that Abraham was a feeble old man of one hundred years old at the time he set out to sacrifice his son. Isaac was strong enough to carry all that firewood. Therefore, he could have easily resisted his father's attempt to tie him up and sacrifice him. Yet he was willing to obey his father, even to the point of death, just as Christ obeyed His Father all the way to His sacrifice on the cross. The fact is, Jesus Christ was the Jewish Messiah! He was a direct descendant from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Yet His own people rejected Him, as Isaiah said they would (Isaiah 53:3). Nevertheless, Gentiles like me have received Him. If He were not who He claimed to be, how could so many hearts of Gentiles be changed toward Him? If we just wanted to pick someone from history to worship, why would Gentiles choose a Jew? Why would so many be willing to suffer and die for Him?
As a former Moslem, I'm sure you have been taught to have hatred toward the Jews. That's because the devil has influenced so many false prophets, like Islamic religious leaders, and Nazis to hate Jews. For God's Son came into this world as a Jew and He is the only one who has the power to save them from Satan and the powers of Hell! Those who follow the devil are filled with hatred, violence, and contempt for anyone else's beliefs. True Christianity doesn't force anyone to worship Christ. If we reject Him, we do it at our own eternal peril (Hebrews 2:3). The Bible teaches us that when we live for Christ, His Holy Spirit lives in our heart. He gives us the opposite of hatred. "Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins" (1 John 4:8-10 NIV).
When we have the Holy Spirit of God controlling our lives, the fruit (character traits) of His Spirit gives us "...love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law" (Galatians 5:22-23 NIV). Also, Paul the Apostle of Christ wrote, "If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears... And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love" (1 Corinthians 13:2-13 NIV).
There have been many false versions of Christianity down through the ages. At the time prior to the Reformation, in Europe, the only religion that called itself Christian was the Catholic church. And contrary to the teachings of Christ, they tried to force people to worship God their way. Instead of teaching that we are to have a personal relationship with God, through Christ His Son, they taught that to reach God, we must go through the Catholic church and the Pope. They tortured people to death and burned many at the stake. It originated out of the Roman Empire, which up until the time of Emperor Constantine, persecuted and tortured those who chose to serve Christ instead of Caesar. Constantine's empire was split between Christians, who put Christ first, and the idol worshipers, who would not give up their idols. As a result, Constantine decided the only way he could unite his kingdom was to develop a watered down, compromised version of Christianity. But it was not built on the Rock of Christ (1 Corinthians 10:4). It was built metaphorically on sinking sand (Matthew 7:24-27 and 1 Corinthians 3:11-13). I don't know that much about the Islamic religion. But I read somewhere that it was due to all the hypocrisy that Mohammed saw among Catholic Popes (who had many illegitimate children), that he turned his back on Christianity. He blamed Christ for the sins he saw in the church. For they called themselves Christians. It's the same with the Jews, many of whom hate Jesus Christ because the Nazis, who tortured and killed 6 million of them at the time of Hitler, claimed to be Christians.
God has supplied new believers with spiritual shepherds who are mature leaders in the faith (1 Peter 5:1-3). But they must not become the object of worship. We cannot even call ourselves teachers, "...for you have one Teacher, the Christ" (Matthew 23:10 NIV). In other words, God's Holy Spirit must live in our hearts, and speak of His Word through us (John 14:16-17, 26-27, 15:26). Fact is, the Bible teaches us that since Christ died for our sins, we don't need any other mediator! Our faith does not revolve around any priests, imams, pastors, or any other religious leader. It must only revolve around Christ! All you need to do is get on your knees and repent of your sins to God, asking His salvation through His Son Jesus Christ. You will feel cleansed and joyful at first. But your faith and commitment will be tested after a time. And, especially in a Moslem country, it will be rough. You will probably face a great deal of persecution. But God will help you as long as you cling to Him. Pray directly to Him often, in humble submission, and He will raise you up! Try to find a Christian book store and buy yourself a Bible. And read it consecutively. You don't need any Bible Study, which could lead you to selective passages to push a particular doctrine, while ignoring other scripture to the contrary. And look to God for guidance. Many call themselves Christians, but for most it is just a religious title, not a true commitment. Trust God to lead you to those who can really help you
Hopefully, your friend will be able to send you a Bible. However, if you are unable to obtain a Bible through him, and cannot find one in Morocco, you can write to the American Bible Society, and ask how you may obtain one in your language. Their address is: 1865 Broadway, New York, NY 10023. Their phone number is (212) 408-1200. The Bible is also available on computer software (theWord or e-Sword ). You could try searching the web for other ones. Or you could use one of the many sites that have the Bible online such as bibleverses.com, Bible Hub, or Bible Gateway. I also believe that a book entitled "Samuel Morris" would be helpful to you. It is available on the web at Amazon.com and Christianbook.com. Or perhaps your friend could obtain it and send it to you. We purchased thousands of them to give to prison inmates in the United States. A Christian chaplain at one of the prisons told my husband that he used to be a Moslem. But he came to Christ after reading the book.
I hope this has been of help to you. I also hope that this ministry has aided you in your decision to come to Christ. May God bless you on your new journey of faith!
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