Experts estimate that there are over 20,000 Christian denominations. Each one has their own different beliefs and practices. It would be hard to make a statement of faith that they all agree on. The same is true when it comes to Islam. With that in mind, I will still try to explain a few general differences between Islamic and Christian beliefs (even though it may not apply to every Muslim) in a few short blogs.
The Muslims I know are very agreeable in general and will not argue most points of the Bible. Many even believe in Mary’s virgin birth (although they do not believe Jesus is the Son of God). However, there is a sharp conflict when it comes to the history of Christ and the cross. Muslims do not believe Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead. They believe He was spared death and taken up to heaven. To them, the cross has no saving power since they do not believe a sacrifice was ever made on it. To us, Christ’s death on the cross was the sacrifice that saves us from sin. Christ’s resurrection guarantees we too will be raised up from the dead. Therefore, the cross is the cornerstone and symbol of our faith, yet it is insignificant in Islam.
Muslims believe the Bible is an inspired (but corrupted) holy book. The Qur’an (written several hundred years after the death of Christ) is considered a more pure sacred text for Muslims. Christianity teaches God’s Word is without error. 2Timothy 3:16 states “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness…” If we believe God gave us the Word of God, it stands to reason He has protected it over the years. Scripture has been proven reliable by many transcripts including the Dead Sea Scrolls. Jesus authenticated the accuracy of the Old Testament by quoting it. History and archaeological finds support Biblical accuracy. (Archaeological discoveries have actually disproven the historical accuracy of the Qur’an.) The more you study the Holy Bible, the more it becomes apparent it is an incredible piece of literature because it is the literal Word of God.
With so much common ground, it seems odd that so much controversy would arise from these two religions. Why do we hear about so much violence towards Christians from Islamic countries? The reason is the Qur’an actually commands holy war against non-Muslims who refuse to convert. ” Islamic Extremists” is the name we commonly call Muslims who literally interpret the Quran as a legitimate authorization to kill non-Muslims. However, there are many peaceful Muslims so it is important to differentiate between “peaceful Muslims” and “Islamic Extremists.” Peaceful Muslims living among us condemn the killing and persecution just like we do.
The Bible was completed and closed around 400 A.D. Christians believe the Holy Bible is the final authority. No prophecy can supersede the Holy Bible. God warns us in Revelation 22:18 never to add to His Words. Yet several hundred years later, Muhammad claimed to have received a message from the angel Gabriel. This message was compiled in the Qur’an. Muslims believe the Qur’an supersedes the Bible in authority. Muhammad reminds me of the old prophet in 1 Kings 13. A man of God had been commanded by the Lord not to eat or drink on his journey. He even rejected the king’s offer to sup. Yet an old prophet convinced him that he has received a message from an angel that told him to bring this man of God to eat with him. The man of God defied God’s command and dines with the old prophet. The man of God’s disobedience cost him his very life!
As Christians, we should always have a warm smile and a kind word for peaceful Muslims living among us. As for the extremists, Jesus tells us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute you in Matthew 5:44. I hope that, in time, more Muslims can agree on its superiority to the Qur’an. I pray you will be God’s instrument for delivering this truth. It is a spiritual battle and one that can be won through the Holy Spirit’s supernatural enabling. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 2 that he did not come to them with persuasive words or human wisdom but with the testimony of God with fear and trembling. Christ has told us to testify. All we need to do is be obedient.
If you are a Muslim who has accepted Muhammad’s message over God’s own words in the Holy Bible, what will happen to you? Repent and become a Christian today with this prayer of salvation: Father God, Forgive me my sins. I believe Your Son Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead. I trust His death paid for my sin. Send your Holy Spirit and make me new. In Christ’s Name, Amen. If you can’t accept my words, take the truth from a former Muslim. It is enlightening to both Muslims and Christians. Watch this amazing video testimony by a Muslim who turned Christian: http://www.cbn.com/tv/1403094459001. May the light of Christ walk before you everywhere you go and prepare the way in His mighty all-consuming power!
© 2015 Kim Bond
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