Sticking Our Necks Out For Muslims
2 August 2013
In the past two articles I've covered the persecution of Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, and the persecution of bloggers and other critics of Islam in the West. It's obvious that a Saudi Arabian critic of Islam living in Saudi Arabia has a huge bull's-eye painted on his chest. And of course, high-profile American critics of Islam like Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer are going to end up being targets as well.
But what about little old me? Surely I'm insignificant enough to be able to fly under the radar and not attract any undesirable attention? Maybe I am — or maybe not. There will probably come a day in the not-too-distant future when NOBODY will be able to fly under the radar anymore. Am I ready to face the consequences for speaking out against the evils of Islam? Am I willing to endure the punishment decreed for Mr. Badawi: seven years in prison and 600 lashes? Or even the constant death threats that Mr. Geller and Mr. Spencer receive for merely speaking the truth about Islam?
The great Jewish rabbi Yeshua (Jesus, Isa) once said: If you want to be My follower, you cannot begin until you count the cost (see Luke 14:25-34). In this passage Yeshua gives two examples of how you need to count the cost BEFORE you begin, not when you're in the middle of a hard situation, because by then it's probably too late.
In October of last year I received an e-mail from someone I don't know who was reading articles on this Web site. He wrote:
Domain name listings are public record by law, UNLESS you opt for (pay for) private listing. I can go into any WHOIS database and look up the owner of yourislamicfuture.com and see your name, address, phone and email. That's how I got yours now. Ya, it costs about $10 more to go private, but for me, it was worth it. I can rest easier knowing that some crazies can't have such easy access to my location. Persecution will come; hopefully not in the form of actual bodily attack. But even in America, you never know — people are going nuts here too. If you ever begin to receive death threats for your stand on Islam, you might consider making your domain names private, as I recently did.This is nonsense, because if someone really wanted to find out where I live, there are LOTS of ways to do so besides the public domain name listings. In this modern age it is nearly impossible to remain anonymous or to hide or to be safe. If someone REALLY wants to find you, they will. If someone REALLY wants to kill you, they will — there's not a whole lot you can do about it. So get over it, and get on with life!
Then, strangely enough, a few months ago, in April of this year, a family friend warned me that he kept feeling troubled in his spirit about this Web site. He told me that I was sticking my neck out and putting myself in needless danger. In order to protect myself and my family, he urged me to seriously consider completely removing this site from the Web! Gosh!
Breaking the Islam Code. In it, I quoted what author J.D. Greear wrote:
It is faith that unlocks the power for the mission of God. But there is one other indispensable element Jesus said was necessary for salvation to come to the world. OUR DEATH. He told His followers that a harvest of salvation will only come if they will plant themselves, like seeds in the ground, and die. Therefore, the "life" of Muslims will only come through the "death" of followers of Jesus.Maybe these words started to stir something in my heart, because only four months later I wrote the following in another article:
The gospel will go forward in Muslims only through our wounds. Wounds are not simply an unfortunate byproduct of our witness to Muslims, but the means by which they will hear and believe. For the gospel to really live in Muslims, we will have to pour out our lives for them as Jesus poured his out for us. Many of us will have to leave a comfortable life and go to live in a foreign culture very far from our families. Many of us will have to be willing to let our children grow up and do the same. When the gospel begins to flourish among Muslims, persecution will come. Some believers will suffer and die. It's always been that way. God brings the harvest through the sacrifices of His people.
if we are really serious about seeing Muslims come to Christ, we must be willing to pay the price. Reaching Muslims cost Jesus his life. If we are to reach Muslims, it will cost us ours as well. I am certain of two things regarding Muslims turning to Christ: 1) IT WILL HAPPEN; and 2) IT WILL HAPPEN THROUGH OUR FAITH AND OUR BLOOD. Perhaps mine. Perhaps my children's.
With all of my heart I believe that the attitudes of those two guys who warned me of Islamic danger are prime examples of what is wrong with our modern Christian religion: "Be afraid, play it safe, avoid danger, keep quiet, don't rock the boat, don't stick out your neck trying to help others know Jesus, don't broadcast the truth because of possible negative consequences," and on and on! We are urged to put our family's safety before being a witness for God and His truth. No wonder the Muslims are not impressed! No wonder they have the West on the run, and are making rapid advances in their long-planned global conquest! Us wimpy "Christians," who love our own temporal lives more than we love Yeshua or the Muslims, are certainly NOT going to stand in their way!
This is what it is going to take to see Muslims in any large number come to know Isa (Yeshua, Jesus): us followers of Isa loving the Muslims enough to live in service to them, and loving them enough to bleed and die for them. As long as we show the Muslims our corrupt, perverted "power over" Christianity, they are going to resist Isa with all of their might, as they have for the past 1,400 years.
Our calling is not to defend ourselves from Muslim violence, nor to retaliate with our own violence. When Muslims finally see a large number of Christians, for the first time in history, faithfully living out the "power under" life of Isa before their very eyes, to the point that we look like Isa dying on the execution stake (cross), THEN and ONLY THEN will the eyes of their hearts be open to see Isa for who He really is.
THEN and ONLY THEN will the Muslims, and all the rest of the world, see a real difference between "power over" Islam (and the very similar "power over" Christianity) and "power under" Christianity — a difference that has never been displayed on a large scale in the 1,400 year history of Islam.
The question for us followers of Yeshua is this: do we love Yeshua enough, and do we NOT love OUR lives enough, that we are willing to pick up our execution stake and follow Him, as He commanded (see Luke 9:23-24). Our Islamic future awaits — and the Muslims world is waiting to see what we will do.
The Apostle James wrote, What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes (James 4:14). And the Apostle Paul wrote,
In the last book of the Bible, it talks about the followers of Yeshua in the End Times: They triumphed over Satan by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death (Revelation 12:11). If Christians REALLY believed all of these Bible verses I have just quoted, then we would not be afraid to die, we would not shrink from death, because we know that this life is just a mist, and that anything we suffer in this life is nothing compared to the glory we'll have in heaven, where our true life is.
I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.... Who shall separate us from the love of Messiah? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written [in the Psalms]: "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 loves us. (Romans 8:18,35‑37)
Since you have been raised to new life with Messiah, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Messiah sits in the place of honor at God's right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Messiah in God. And when Messiah, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all His glory. (Colossians 3:1‑4)
Even the sword of the Muslims cannot separate us from Yeshua's love, although we face death all day long, like sheep for the dhabihah. As followers of Yeshua, the Lamb of God, shouldn't we be ready to die, willing to die, and perhaps even eager to die, if our deaths can in any way be used by Yeshua to bring the hearts of Muslims back to Father God? Our eternal destiny is already secure in Yeshua, so what better way to spend our fleeting, mist-like lives on this earth?
I agree with my friend that I am sticking my neck out, but I do NOT agree that it is needless. On the contrary, sticking my neck out for the sake of Muslims is what is desperately needed in this hour. Even if it costs me my life. Even if it costs the lives of my family. After what Yeshua, the Lamb of God has already done, the death of our earthly bodies is a very small price to pay for the eternal salvation of Muslims.
If thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, and even millions of followers of Yeshua will also stick their necks out, then Abraham's prayer will finally be answered: O that Ishmael might live in Your sight! (Genesis 17:18) Muslims are in a slavery of fearful submission to the demonic impostor-god Allah. May they be set free from that bondage to find true liberty in loving submission to their Creator and Savior, Isa (Yeshua, Jesus)!
It is very kind and thoughful of people to warn me about the dangers of this Web site. Just like it was very kind of the Apostle Paul's friends to warn him about going to Jerusalem, where there were plans to have him arrested. But in both cases, the warnings were and are totally misplaced. Paul's friends all begged him not to go to Jerusalem. I have made his reply my reply as well:
Why all this weeping? You are breaking my heart! I am ready not only to be jailed at Jerusalem but even to die for the sake of the Yeshua the Master.... And now, compelled by the Holy Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city I travel through the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task Yeshua the Master has given me — the task of testifying to the good news of God's grace. (Acts 21:13;20:22-24)