Friday, August 20, 2010

"The Gospel for Muslims"

As Christians, the reality is that most of us don't know that much about Islam or Muslims. We know what we hear in the media, but that is no help. So what can we do?

I encourage you, among other things, to read good books about sharing the gospel with followers of Islam. Thabiti Anyabwile, a former Muslim, has written a very helpful little book about sharing the good news of Christ with Muslims. The book is entitled, simply enough, The Gospel for Muslims.

Anyabwile, currently pastor of First Baptist Grand Cayman, has many helpful insights into the world of Islam and how we can reach out with the love of Jesus.

In my opinion, the best chapter in the book focuses on hospitality. This lost art among Westerners is very important in the Islamic world. We must understand this in order to effectively befriend Muslims in our neighborhoods.

Anyabwile writes about the problem of the lack of hospitality in this country, saying, "Passivity is a factor contributing to the decline in hospitality. We can be too nonchalant in cultivating meaningful affection for one another. We wait for the relationship to come to us. We want it to be 'natural' and 'just flow' or 'click.' There is such a thing as trying too hard, but I think many of us are far from that. We try too little. We'd rather enjoy the coziness of being alone with our own thoughts, interests, and friends from some yesteryear like high school or college. We don't like the toil of getting to know others and opening ourselves up (much less 'prying' into their lives) in a substantive, transparent way. But for hospitality to thrive, we must relinquish our passive approach to friendships."

Interestingly, this is true of many Christians. We are often too passive in making and sustaining relationships both within the church and with non-Christians. This book was a good wake-up call to me to be more active in making friends for the sake of the gospel.


Eddie Eddings said...

Funny thing, they don't sell that book here in Kuwait. Last night, I did find the ONLY used book store in Kuwait - and it did have a few Christian books. That is a rare thing in a Muslim country.

Eric said...


I'm glad you found some Christian books. It must be difficult there; no surprise that this book wouln't be there. What about Rushdie's "Satanic Verses"?

Eddie Eddings said...

I wouldn't even mention it. I want to add that none of the books there were of real doctrinal weight. They had the "Left Behind" series. I don't, as a practice, read fiction. The last fiction I read was "The Shack". That was enough for the rest of my life.