I currently live in Detroit, Michigan, which has a significant Arab population. The cities of Dearborn and Hamtramck especially have a substantial Arab communities, but even in my small town of Melvindale, it’s not uncommon to see women walk down the street in burkas or supermarket signs written in Arabic. It’s an incredible mission field for the Gospel. But recently, I have realized how little I know about Islam.
I think it's important that Christians stop fearing Islam and start seeking to understand it. In fact, the limited studying I have done has actually strengthened my Christian faith. As I read how Islam describes Allah, I see how my God is completely different. As I read about Islam’s path for salvation, I rejoice in Christ’s sufficient death for my sins. The Allah of the Qur'an is not the God of the Bible. I hope that as you read the following three contrasts between Allah and Yahweh, you will be both prompted to praise your glorious Savior and pushed to spread the Gospel to those who still dwell in darkness.
Most churches would agree that when it comes to their worship services things must be done with excellence and order. We carefully plan out an “order of service” and expect all the special numbers to be well-rehearsed. We will not tolerate a lack of preparation when it comes to the worship time. “God expects our best,” is the pastor’s attitude. I get that. I appreciate that. I commend that. I just wish we were as serious about the preaching time of our service as we are the singing time.
Let’s face it. As long as there are sermons preached there is always going to be a fair share of “bad” sermons. I’ve certainly heard my fair share of poor homilies in the pulpits of colleges, camps and churches. Some of them have been famously “bad.” I remember listening to a preacher who introduced his sermon by saying, “I didn’t have time to get to this sermon until late last night.” He literally admitted he’d only spent an hour or two in preparation! Is this okay? Should we tolerate this kind of preaching?
Have you ever ordered something online only for it to arrive in the mail and be the wrong color or the wrong size? Perhaps a gift you had been sent was broken during transit or the package never arrived in the first place. Undoubtedly, we have all experienced one such horror story or another, or we know someone who has. This last fall, my wife and I received a wedding gift in the mail… around 15 months after our wedding date. Somehow it had gotten lost in the good ole’ system of the postal service. Needless to say, the feelings that come over us when we encounter such unexpectancies can greatly vary. From laughing at a comical inconvenience to having a total complete melt-down, we have difficulty coping with circumstances where we don’t get what we rightfully deserve.
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