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Guillaume Smit and the “Culture” of Islam?

Dear Rev. Guillaume Smit:  

1)  Islam is not a culture.  But let’s say it was;  that means as per you, that Christianity is a culture too?  Hmmm… no wonder all you Ecumenical people can speak so easily about faiths joining hands, because it’s only a ‘culture’.

2) I wont mention your hate speech of not planning to become a Muslim anytime soon (as written below in your latest article).

See The Christian Bully vs The False Teacher and Revisiting: The Christian Bully vs The False Teacher where Guilluame Smit called Christians who are against New Age teachings and preaching’s ‘bullies’ and hinted that disagreeing with his beliefs (culture) and exposing his “All religions (cultures) lead to one God” post-modernism was considered Hate Speech.  Even blogged some laws and legislation on Hate Speech too towards Christians who adhere to the Word of God 100%.

Guil (I feel that we are on a first name basis now, after all this dialoging).  Let’s read your article first and then we can see below for list of Christian persecution articles from around the world.  Just thought I would inform you of today’s culture.



This weekend (especially Sunday) is an important time for people adhering to the Muslim religion. They celebrate the festival of Eid in this time. A friend of mine is in management at the company she works for. As such she forms part of a diversity team that helps company employees to understand each other’s traditions, cultures and religions better. She sent the following piece of information on Eid to me, telling me they send it to everyone in their company.

Obviously I am not Muslim, and I do not plan to become one anytime soon. My love for Christ is burning way too strong. Yet I decided to share my friend’s piece, as it helped me gain new insight in a very important festival for the Muslim community (of which I know nothing about).

Perhaps we, as Christians, by gaining this knowledge, can try to be a bit more understanding towards this very fundamentalistic religion. And, perhaps, through this, we can show more respect to people who are Muslim believers as our testimony about the love of Christ, even if we differ fundamentally from them.

Here is some information about Eid for Non-Muslims.

Eid ul-Fitr or Id-Ul-Fitr (Arabic: عيد الفطر ‘Īdu l-Fiṭr), often abbreviated to Eid, is a Muslim holiday that marks the end of Ramadaan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. Eid is an Arabic word meaning “festivity”, while Fiṭr means “to break the fast” (and can also mean “nature”, from the word “fitrah”) and so symbolizes the breaking of the fasting period.

Common greetings during this holiday are the Arabic greeting EĪd mubārak (“Blessed Eid”) or ‘Īd sa‘īd (“Happy Eid”). In addition, many countries have their own greetings based on local language and traditions.

Typically, Muslims will wake up early in the morning and have a small breakfast. Muslims are encouraged to dress in their best clothes (new if possible) and to attend a special Eid prayer that is performed in congregation at mosques or open areas like fields, squares etc.

Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the fasting of Ramadaan. This has to do with the communal aspects of the fast, which expresses many of the basic values of the Muslim community. Fasting is believed by some scholars to extol fundamental distinctions, lauding the power of the spiritual realm, while acknowledging the subordination of the physical realm.[3]

The Islamic tradition also associates events with the occasion. For example, on Eid al-Fitr, the angel Gabriel descended with white clothes for each of prophet Muhammad’s grandsons.

Eid al-Fitr falls on the first day of Shawwal, the month which follows Ramadan in the Islamic calendar. It is a time to give in charity to those in need, and celebrate with family and friends the completion of a month of blessings and joy.

Before the day of Eid, during the last few days of Ramadan, each Muslim family gives a determined amount as a donation to the poor. This donation is of actual food — rice, barley, dates, rice, etc. — to ensure that the needy can have a holiday meal and participate in the celebration. This donation is known as sadaqah al-fitr (charity of fast-breaking).



A few updates on the persecution on Christians around the world by different ‘Cultures’

Note many of these articles will speak about Catholics as being Christian which I do not agree with.  Roman Catholicism is not Christian.  The point is that MURDER IS MURDER no matter what .   If Christians went around killing others I would say emphatically that they are NOT born again Christians for God says ‘Thou Shalt Not Kill’.  A truly saved Christian has the conviction of the Holy Spirit in their life NOT to SIN.   So these fake Christians are nothing but murdrers (until such time that they come to know Jesus Christ and repent of their sin – in which they will then be truly born again

  Yet a murderous Muslim remains a Muslim no matter what.

BREAKING NEWS: Violence Overshadows Funeral Murdered Pakistan Christian
Tensions remained high Thursday, September 17, in Pakistan’s Punjab province after police dispersed angry crowds protesting against the death of a young Christian prisoner, who was held for allegedly desecrating the Koran, viewed as a holy book by Muslims.

Saudi Arabia Detains Internet Writer For Becoming Christian
A young Internet writer in Saudi Arabia was in life danger Wednesday, January 28, after he was detained by authorities for announcing on his blog that he converted from Islam to Christianity, religious human rights investigators said.

Somalia Islamic Militants Behead Four Christian Orphanage Workers
Christians in Somalia faced a tense day Thursday, August 13, amid fresh reports that fighters of the country’s main Islamic insurgent group al-Shabab beheaded four Christian aid workers for refusing to renounce their faith in Christ.

Pakistan human rights group says police colluding with jihadists who are murdering Christians with impunity.    As indicated here. “Collusion between police and extremists cause of deaths in judicial custody, Pakistani NGO says,” by Fareed Khan for
Asia News, September 17 (thanks to C. Cantoni):

NEWS ALERT: Chinese Security Service Raid Beijing House Church Home
By Worthy News Asia Service BEIJING, CHINA (Worthy News)– A prominent member of a house church movement has been told to leave his home this week after Chinese officials and security forces raided his rented apartment in the capital Beijing, representatives told Worthy News Tuesday, September 15.

Islamic Militants Kill Christian Convert in Somalia
Christians in Somalia were facing another potential day of bloodshed Monday, August 24, amid fresh reports that Muslim militants are hunting down converts to Christianity, killing at least one man in recent days for abandoning Islam.

Iranian Women Demand Release Christian Converts
Women dressed in white have gathered outside the Iranian embassy in London as part of a prayer vigil to highlight the plight of two female Christian converts from Islam who have been held at Evin Prison in Teheran “without charge”for the last six months, organizers said.

Concerns Over Kidnapped Christians In Yemen As Fighting Escalates
Intense fighting between government forces and Shi’ite Muslim rebels in northern Yemen is hampering international efforts to locate a kidnapped Christian family and a British engineer, Worthy News established Saturday, September 5.

EU Ambassadors Discuss Belarus Threats To Close Megachurch
European ambassadors to Belarus have met with the leader of New Life Church in the capital Minsk to discuss “threats” by authorities to “destroy” one of the country’s largest evangelical churches by confiscating its building, a former cowshed, church officials said in a statement obtained by Worthy News Thursday, August 27.
Random jihad in Egypt:    Muslim murders Christian shopkeeper, stabs two others
“There is anger among the Christians because they feel their blood has been made cheap.” Their blood was already cheap. “The indemnity paid for a Jew or Christian is one-third the indemnity paid for a Muslim.” — ‘Umdat al-Salik, o4.9   “Egyptian Christian’s murder sparks sectarian tension,” from Deutsche  Presse Agentur, September 17 (thanks to The Religion of Peace):

BREAKING NEWS: Christians Sentenced To Long Prison Terms For Aiding North Koreans
Christian Li Mingshun has been sentenced to 10 years imprisonment for helping North Koreans fleeing to South Korea, while her fellow Christian, Zhang Yonghu, received a seven-year sentence for organizing transportation for the refugees, trial observers said.

2,000 Evicted Pakistani Christians Fear Death And Infection, aid workers say
Some 2,000 Christians in Pakistan’s capital Islamabad, many of whom were evicted from their homes, face the prospect of dying from dehydration, infection or the cumulative effects of poverty Christian aid workers told Worthy News Thursday, August 20.

Turkish Christians Fear Nationalism After Murder And Threat
Turkish Christians remain concerned about rising nationalism and hostility towards non-Muslims in Turkey, following the killing of a Christian businessman and the attack against an evangelist, Worthy News monitored Tuesday, August 11.

Egypt Court Bans ‘Christian’ On Ex-Muslim’s ID Card
For the second time, an Egyptian court has rejected a Christian convert’s request to change his religious affiliation on his identity card in a ruling described by critics as “a severe blow” to freedom of religion of ex-Muslims.

Sudan Christians Urge Prayers Amid Widespread Killings
Sudanese Christians have urged fellow believers around the world to pray for them as armed groups are kidnapping and killing church leaders and other Christians, an advocacy group with close knowledge about the situation told BosNewsLife Tuesday , September 15.

Nigeria Christians Fear Crackdown Amid Deadly Clashes
Christian leaders in northern Nigeria fear a fresh crackdown on evangelical activities after local authorities announced plans to control religious preachers as Islamic violence left at least a dozen Christians dead and destroyed some 20 churches.

Zanzibar Christians Fear More Attacks After Church Burnings, Evictions
Christians on Tanzania’s Zanzibar Island anticipated more attacks against them Wednesday, July 1, as two churches were reportedly burned over the weekend by suspected militants opposing the spread of Christianity on the Muslim dominated semi-autonomous territory.

Concerns Over Jailed Iranian Christians Amid Political Turmoil
As the world focuses on the political turmoil in Iran, two detained Christian women are “in danger of being forgotten” amid concerns they may face execution, Iranian Christians said Tuesday, July 7.


24 comments to Guillaume Smit and the “Culture” of Islam?

  • Amanda

    Rev. Guillaume Smit:

    Yet I decided to share my friend’s piece, as it helped me gain new insight in a very important festival for the Muslim community (of which I know nothing about).

    How is it that a preacher can claim ignorance about other religions? The Bible teaches that there is only one God and that idolaters will not enter Heaven. Start right there. If that is not enough, then go ahead and find out the basic facts from Islam 101.

    Sharia Law

    Unlike many religions, Islam includes a mandatory and highly specific legal and political plan for society called Sharia (pronounced “sha-r�e-uh”), which translates approximately as “way” or “path.” The precepts of Sharia are derived from the commandments of the Quran and the Sunnah (the teachings and precedents of Muhammad as found in the reliable hadiths and the Sira). Together, the Quran and the Sunnah establish the dictates of Sharia, which is the blueprint for the good Islamic society. Because Sharia originates with the Quran and the Sunnah, it is not optional. Sharia is the legal code ordained by Allah for all mankind. To violate Sharia or not to accept its authority is to commit rebellion against Allah, which Allah’s faithful are required to combat.

    There is no separation between the religious and the political in Islam; rather Islam and Sharia constitute a comprehensive means of ordering society at every level. While it is in theory possible for an Islamic society to have different outward forms — an elective system of government, a hereditary monarchy, etc. — whatever the outward structure of the government, Sharia is the prescribed content. It is this fact that puts Sharia into conflict with forms of government based on anything other than the Quran and the Sunnah.

    As one may see, there are few aspects of life that Sharia does not specifically govern. Everything from washing one’s hands to child-rearing to taxation to military policy fall under its dictates. Because Sharia is derivate of the Quran and the Sunnah, it affords some room for interpretation. But upon examination of the Islamic sources (see above), it is apparent that any meaningful application of Sharia is going to look very different from anything resembling a free or open society in the Western sense. The stoning of adulterers, execution of apostates and blasphemers, repression of other religions, and a mandatory hostility toward non-Islamic nations punctuated by regular warfare will be the norm. It seems fair then to classify Islam and its Sharia code as a form of totalitarianism.

    What does “jihad” mean?

    Jihad literally translates as “struggle.” Strictly speaking, jihad does not mean “holy war” as Muslim apologists often point out. However, the question remains as to what sort of “struggle” is meant: an inner, spiritual struggle against the passions, or an outward, physical struggle.

    As in any case of trying to determine Islamic teaching on a particular matter, one must look to the Quran and the Sunnah. From those sources (see above) it is evident that a Muslim is required to struggle against a variety of things: laziness in prayer, neglecting to give zakat (alms), etc. But is it also plain that a Muslim is commanded to struggle in physical combat against the infidel as well. Muhammad’s impressive military career attests to the central role that military action plays in Islam.

    Go ahead. Read it all.

    Perhaps we, as Christians, by gaining this knowledge, can try to be a bit more understanding towards this very fundamentalistic religion.

    Speak for yourself. And understand this: Christians that are saved out of Islam face a mandatory death sentence.

    And, perhaps, through this, we can show more respect to people who are Muslim believers as our testimony about the love of Christ, even if we differ fundamentally from them.

    And perhaps not. They do not need our respect. They need our compassion and our proclamation of the fear of the One true God, His coming judgement on all idolaters and the Good News:

    “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
    (John 3:16-18)

    Where in the Bible does it say that we should show respect to idolaters? Proclaim the Word of God!

    “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
    (Luke 24:46-47)

  • Discerning the World

    Islam 102

    Rev Guilluam Smit. You are nothing but an insult to all Christians who are saved by Jesus Christ out of Islam who knew the penalty for doing so would be death. You sit there in your cosy chair and speak about love. You know nothing of genuine Biblical Christian love. If you did, you would speak out against these atrocities and stand up for the Gospel Jesus Christ and all those who have been martyred in the most horrendus ways throughout history.

    Instead you speak out for Caster Semenya and taking a stand by, “…. publicly adding my voice to the demand that Leonard Chuene immediatley step down as chairperson of Athletics South Africa”. MR CHUENE, PLEASE RESIGN IMMEDIATELY

    Oh my, now that’s a tough stand. Let us know when you start standing for Jesus Christ the Son of God.

  • Amanda


    Dutch Reformed ministers DO NOT resign.

    They emerge, see?

    Watch and learn, kiddo. Watch and learn.

  • cecilia

    > “Yet I decided to share my friend’s piece, as it helped me gain new insight in a very important festival for the Muslim community (of which I know nothing about)”.
    I cannot believe a “renown leader” would use such a pathetic excuse (‘reason’) as why to celebrate heathen feasts!! unbelievable!
    but here’s some really good news, positive news:
    a ex-muslim lady and her husband asked me and my hubby this week-end if they can adopt us as 2nd parents. this following their 100% ostracizing from family and friends. they especially want to do this because of their little 3 yr old daughter, whom they cannot tell at this age that her grantparents are still alive and well but does not want anything to do with her. tragic! OFF COURSE we said YES!! celebration time! this Rev Guilluam Smit and others like him, don’t have a clue how much harm they do to “the body of Christ”, “the Kingdom of God” and “those who come to repentance and to the full knowledge of Jesus Christ” out of work- and bondage religions such as Islam! shame on you!
    praise the LORD God for the hope there is in Jesus Christ and that many are answering to the call to become His disciples, notwithstanding the terrible persecution they’ll have to face. again, SHAME ON YOU REV SMIT!!

  • Discerning the World



  • Amanda

    So, even though the Bible does not teach Christians to respect other religions, Rev. Guillaume Smit assumes that it would be a good idea to learn more about Islam and he assumes that the outcome would be positive?

    All righty, then. If the problem is lack of respect due to Christian ignorance, then Rev. Guillaume Smit can solve it by providing facts about the customs and religion of the ideology called Islam. I look forward to reading about the results of his studies. May I suggest the following areas of interest?

    FGM, the burqa and niqab, honour killings, suicide murders, beating disobedient wives, slaying the infidel wherever you may find them, death for apostasy, Dar-al-harb vs Dar al-Salam, the rule of abrogation, the descendants of apes and pigs, jizya, dhimmi, Taqiyya and kitman.
    How many wives may a Muslim man have?
    How many husbands may a Muslim woman have?
    What is jihad?
    What does the word ‘Islam’ mean?
    Is it lawful in Islam to saw off an infidel’s head with a knife?
    Is it lawful in Islam to fly aeroplanes into buildings and murdering 3000 people?
    How many male Muslim witnesses must a woman have to proof rape?
    Did Brian McLaren say the Shahadah?
    Who was the perfect man for all times?
    How many wives did he have?
    How old was his youngest bride?
    How many murders did he commit?
    What about the satanic verses?

    Being a theologian and a researcher, maybe Rev. Guillaume Smit can compare and contrast the founder of Islam to Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God?

  • Amanda

    Cecilia, great testimony. May the Lord bless and keep them.

    Now, if Rev. Guillaume Smit wants to be an apologist for Muslims, he can. Let’s just see if he, as a researcher and theologian, will read the Quran and examine what the Muslim scholars teach and not what the friendly and peaceful Muslim down the road says. He has set himself a lofty goal. Let’s see how he does.

  • Amanda

    Cecilia, I hear you. And no, he won’t make it. No infidels allowed in Mecca or Medina. You have to say the Shahadah first.

    Rev. Guillaume Smit’s reasoning is that, once Christians gain knowledge about Islam, they will show more respect towards Muslims. If he has identified the problem correctly, then he can help the world by merely providing Christians with data. That is not too much to ask, is it?

    Prof. Hennie Stander said something similar:

    Dit is goed om kennis oor mekaar se kultuur en geloof te hê. Dit verdryf daardie karikature wat ons oor mekaar het. Dit beteken nie dat ons met mekaar moet saamstem nie. Maar onkunde oor mekaar is net so gevaarlik en lei maklik daartoe dat ons mekaar vrees of selfs haat. Ek kan hoegenaamd nie die Moslem-geloof aanvaar nie, maar dit is goed om meer kennis oor hulle te hê om hulle beter te verstaan.

    Prof. Stander is on Ref. Smit’s list of Influential Christian Bloggers & Writers of South Africa. And so is Dr. Stephan Joubert and his gang.

    Oh, look! Rev. Cobus van Wyngaard even added Nic Paton, author of that Jesus the trickster article!

  • cecilia

    Amanda, I almost feel sorry for him. His next task (in “trying to understand” his Muslim friend(s)), is to go to Mecca (it follows the Ramadan). there he’ll get the chance to “honor” the black stone and even throw some stones at it, as if it is satan himself. that’s if he can make it alive through the crowd! I wonder if he has learned (according to scripture) to fast whenever the Holy Spirit compels him, or is he going to fast once a year (on ramadan)? just asking…. but surely this is a finger pointing to those who call themselves the “true followers” of Jesus Christ. are we fasting and praying when prompted by Holy Spirit? are we giving and caring? NOT because we learn it from the heathen in keeping their feasts and holy book ordinances, BUT by reading the Bible and adhere to whatever it teaches us, to do it, and to do it correctly (also set out in scriptures).
    I’ve read that after this ramadan the congregations of the individuals (whether pastor or not) who took part in the ramadan feast/fast, are going to be taught the ways of these people of other faiths (same as is happening in our schools). maybe I must invite a few of them to come here for 1 year and start attending all the Hindu feasts!? man, yeah, now it gets to me! They are discriminating if they don’t do that! let me go for now…

  • Discerning the World


    I somehow see them having to wear those ‘disguise plastic glasses, the mustache, big plastic nose and a turban to get past the first security check point looking for infidels.

    Ok, now I am laughing just picturing this.

  • Amanda

    It seems that Rev. Guillaume Smit is right, after all.Brian McLaren:

    I have gained new respect for the hundreds of millions of Muslim men and women and even children who observe Ramadan year after year. Many of my Christian friends see everything in other religions as efforts to “earn one’s way to heaven” (a misguided venture, we know), without realizing that this kind of earning isn’t everyone else’s preoccupation. For many people, this observance is an expression of love … a tangible way to express love for God and for one’s faith community. And it’s also a time-tested spiritual practice, which I’ll return to in a minute.

    I’m sure that anyone who has trained for a marathon gains new respect for the millions of other people who have been through that experience. When they see a marathon on TV or when they meet someone who is a marathon runner, they have a greater respect than the rest of us for the sacrifice and dedication behind every step of every runner because they’ve run many miles in those same shoes (metaphorically speaking). In my own very small way, that’s what I feel now – much more than I expected. For the rest of my life, every time I meet a Muslim who has observed the fast even once, I will have a new and sincere respect.

    But what is this?

    Morocco: Dissident receives 100 death threats in a week for defying daytime eating ban for Ramadan

    “There is no compulsion in religion,” (Qur’an 2:256) except when there is. And that time comes when the implementation of Sharia is strong enough to impose criminal punishments for the neglect of religious observances: i.e., when the time for the soft sell is over.

    People are being forced to ‘run a marathon’?
    And here is a lady who gained firsthand knowledge of the culture of the religious ideology called Islam and still she lacks respect. How can that be?

    More than anything else, I became highly skilled in the subtle arts of duplicity and manipulation during my sojourn in Morocco. And, likewise, I was the subject of much Machiavellian scheming and machination. I won people over initially by professing my profound hatred for George Bush. This never fails to win friends and influence people in Muslim Arab countries. And, it just so happens to be true. Not only did I gain protection, I also gained information. I was there to study the culture, the language, the state religion, the government, the laws, and, especially, Moroccan women’s place in society. So, I withheld verbal judgment, and I tried, as best I could, to refrain from exhibiting facial judgments. I was very open and honest about my goals. I wanted to learn as much as I could about Morocco in the short time that I had. Likewise, they were more than happy to participate in my study, because they hoped that I would take them back to the States with me. This completely misguided yet ubiquitous misconception existed that I was free as an American to simply bring back whomever I might choose. If I attempted to insist otherwise, I was met by obstinate refutations. “No, no, you can,” they would counter. So I dropped the subject. Also, I met the same obdurate resistance when I tried to suggest that not everyone living in the United States is leading a charmed life of luxury.

    I was shocked by how open and honest these young Muslim men were about their misogyny, their racism, their tribalism, and, especially, about their antiSemitism. They were also brutally honest about their interpretations of Quranic tenets and Islamic dogma. They proudly bandied about their cell phone displays, emblazoned with images of the two hijacked planes hitting the Twin Towers, for my amusement. They then sheepishly put them away when they saw the look of utter horror upon my face. Somehow they thought that my disapprobation of the American president would equate with my pleasure in seeing thousands of American innocents slaughtered.

    They all espoused a sincere desire to head to Iraq, Afghanistan, or Palestine, to engage in jihad against the infidels. Many of them claimed that only familial responsibilities, such as caring for mothers and sisters, held them back from fulfilling this ultimate Muslim duty of martyrdom. They waxed eloquent about ripping open the hymens of angelic virgins unto perpetuity as a rightful heavenly reward for their efforts. They would, in the same breath, harangue the killing of innocents as unIslamic and then vehemently defend the killing of any and all Israeli or Jewish or European or American or nonMuslim civilians, including men, women, and children, as enemies of Islam.

    Whether or not these proclamations were the products, in no small part, of testosterone-infused bombast, they were chilling nonetheless. These were not impoverished, uneducated, unsophisticated, and frustrated inhabitants of some shanty town on the outskirts of Casablanca. These were not young men who had fallen prey to and under the sway of some radical mullah. These were young men who wished to marry western women, move to Western Europe or the United States, and avail themselves of both the freedom and capitalism therein. Yet, these were also young men who laughed at children’s television cartoons that represented American soldiers as hapless and witless buffoons who most often blow themselves up through their own ineptitude. I have to admit that I found myself becoming angry, even incensed. They seemed completely oblivious to any sense of dissonance between their desire to destroy Western culture and their desire to become part of Western culture.

    One need only visit a Muslim Arab country to understand the true nature of the much-abused concept of jihad. There is no talk of internal struggle on the streets of Rabat. There is no talk of nonviolent conversion in the cafes of Morocco. There is only talk of blood, lust and martyrdom. Keep in mind that Morocco is a moderate Muslim Arab nation, infused with European culture and populated with cosmopolitan cities, and, arguably, America’s greatest Muslim-Arab ally.

    Read it all. She has a lot more to say.

  • Amanda

    Muslim Man Beheads Christian in Egypt

    Egypt (AINA) — Osama Araban, a Muslim man riding a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, went on a rampage last week in Egypt, killing 63-year old Coptic Christian Abdo George Younan, in the village of Bagour, before traveling onwards and stabbing with intention to kill two other Copts in two different villages, at least 10 km apart (AINA 9-18-2009).

    …This incident which took place on September 16, 2009, has left Copts in Egypt shocked and angered, not only because attacks against Copts have been escalating, but because of the way the murder was committed.

    The details of the attacks, not told by the media, but exposed by Coptic lawyers and activists, reveal that 35-year old car painter Osama Araban not only stabbed Abdo nine times but also severed his head from his body — an Islamic ritual beheading. He then meticulously washed his bayonet with the water hose the victim was using, before setting off on his motorcycle to the next two villages, looking for more Coptic victims.

  • Amanda

    While we wait for Rev. Guillaume Smit to provoke respect for Muslims in Christians by providing us with information on Islam, we can do some of the work ourselves.


    The Takbir is recited after having confirmation that the moon of Shawwal is sighted on the eve of the last day of Ramadan. It continues until the start of the Eid prayer:

    God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest,
    There is no deity but God
    God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest
    and to God goes all praise

    One variation:

    God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest,
    There is no deity but God
    God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest
    and to God goes all praise
    God is the Greatest, all Praise is due to Him, And Glory to God, eventide and in the morning
    There is no god, but God the Unique, He has fulfilled His Promise, and made Victorious His servant, and made Mighty His soldiers and defeated the confederates
    There is no deity but God
    He alone we worship, with sincere and exclusive devotion, even though the infidels hate it
    O God, have Mercy on our Prophet Muhammad, and on the family of our Prophet Muhammad, and on the companions of our Prophet Muhammad, and on the helpers of our Prophet Muhammad, and on the wives of our Prophet Muhammad, and on the offspring of our Prophet Muhammad, and Bestow upon them much peace


    Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is the Islamic month of fasting, in which participating Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking, and indulging in anything that is in excess or ill-natured; from dawn until sunset.[1] Fasting is meant to teach the Muslim patience, modesty and spirituality. Ramadan is a time for Muslims to fast for the sake of God and to offer more prayer than usual. During Ramadan, Muslims ask forgiveness for past sins, pray for guidance and help in refraining from everyday evils, and try to purify themselves through self-restraint and good deeds. As compared to the solar calendar, the dates of Ramadan vary, moving forward about ten days each year as it is a moving festival depending on the moon. Ramadan was the month in which the first verses of the Qur’an were revealed to the Islamic prophet Muhammad.[2]

    So let us now turn our attention to the Qur’an itself.

    Blogging the Qur’an: Introduction

    To understand the motives and goals of Islamic jihad terrorists, one good place to start might be to explore what they themselves say about why they’re doing what they’re doing, and what they want. That in turn will lead you to the Qur’an (or Koran), the Islamic holy book. The jihadists quote it frequently and portray themselves as those who are following “pure Islam,” the genuine article as it is taught in the Qur’an and Islamic tradition. So in the course of my work explaining the jihadists’ objectives, I’ve quoted the Qur’an a great deal – and hardly a day goes by without my being accused of “cherry-picking” violent passages, and quoting them “out of context.” Meanwhile, the Council on American Islamic Relations and other Muslim groups say that in order to understand the true, peaceful Islam, we should read the Qur’an.

    So over the course of the next few months, I’m going to read it, and discuss it in a series of columns. All of it. Not “cherry-picked” or “out of context.” The whole thing, beginning to end. Some of you may be familiar with David Plotz’s series on Slate, “Blogging the Bible.” This series will be similar to that one, but rather than just write about what I think or feel about a certain passage, I will, unlike Plotz, refer to commentaries – all Muslim ones – on the Qur’an. I’ll try to explain how mainstream Muslims who study the Qur’an will understand any given passage, and what its import might be for non-Muslims.

    … The Qur’an is for Muslims the pure Word of Allah. They point to its poetic character as proof that it did not originate with Muhammad, whom they say was illiterate, but with the Almighty, who dictated every word. The average Muslim believes that everything in the book is absolutely true and that its message is applicable in all times and places.

    You can find the index here. Please read it all and then tell us if you think that Brain McLaren, Prof. Hennie Stander and Dr. Guillaume Smit is correct, that knowledge of Islam [not feelings, mind you], will lead Christians to respect Muslims more?

    May I suggest that the correct response should be compassion?

  • cecilia

    I hope ALL who read ANYthing about Islam, first go into prayer and seek protection? I have often found that people go through serious periods of doubt, questioning, straying, denying, etc. whilst “studying” other “religions”/believes. and without the protection of the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is easy to come to a place where one will feel drawn to renounce the Bible (Word of God), and many times, renounce the Lord Jesus Christ and Lord, Savior and King. I would plead with all to read and pray double the time that you spend in research… and don’t read this stuff just before falling asleep, it works in the subconscious and can create havoc in your spiritual and physical life. cecilia

  • cecilia

    McLaren: quoted: “… every time I meet a Muslim who has observed the fast even once, I will have new and sincere respect”. so for McLaren, the 1000’s of Christians, many of them under persecution in Muslim control parts in the world, (these Christians) who fast regularly, praying for protection and guidance, AND living in peace with their Muslim controllers (from their side), for McLaren their fasting has no meaning what so ever (because he makes NO mention that as far as I know of, somewhere, of Christians who fast regularly). and here where I live, whole churches fast (regularly) for everything/anything they are seeking an answer from the Lord for. and going out of the Christian circle, what about the Hindu’s different annual fasts? Oh wait, I forgot that McLaren is pro-Muslim. His focus is on the Muslim .. on Islam … no wonder his focus is a bit blurred when it comes to clear reading of soli scriptura…

  • Amanda

    Yes, Cecilia. It is very dangerous. So, why are emergent theologians indulging in the unbiblical practice of pushing the warm, fuzzy side of Islam on Christians? Brian McLaren said:

    For many people, this observance is an expression of love … a tangible way to express love for God and for one’s faith community.

    He draws no distinction between Allah and the Lord of the Bible. Are we all worshipping the same God, but just in different faith communities? Come on! He says:

    And it’s also a time-tested spiritual practice, which I’ll return to in a minute

    Brian is promoting spiritual practices, the goal of which is to experience transcendence and to realize, hey, all is one. He quotes ‘a Franciscan novice who joined in the Ramadan fast’:

    I’ve been in Jerusalem and Bethlehem for 3 of the 4 weeks of Ramadan and also have been very much inspired by the discipline and love of God that is expressed in this holy month. I am a Christian who has come to have great respect for the Muslim faith. I was invited to an iftar last week, to the home of a family I had never met before. I was received with graciousness and hospitality and spent a lovely evening with people who were not of my faith, culture or even language. A friend of mine, a Palestinian Muslim, spent a great deal of the month at the Al Aqsa Mosque, and participated in the daily fasting. He has suffered under Israeli occupation and conflict for over 60 years, yet I could see the difference that this month made in his life.

    Let’s just skip over the lies about ‘Palestine’. This novice declares that expressing love to Allah through fasting, had, I take it, benefited this Arab? Do they not know what the Bible say about where idolaters will spend eternity? Do they not have any compassion? These emergent pastors are telling the sheep that the goats are onto some good fodder. Shameful.

    Don’t blame the Muslims for the woes of this country and don’t blame the false teachers. Blame the Christians who put them in the pulpits.

  • Amanda

    Enough of this beating about the bush stuff.

    Shane Hipps has already spelled it out for us. He preached that religions are like sails. They may differ in shape, size and effectiveness, but they all catch the same wind, the spirit of god.

    You can listen to Chris Rosebrough reviewing two of Shane’s sermons on Fighting for the Faith. The first one declares that all religions lead to the same spirit of god and the second one is about, wouldn’t you know, enlightenment! That is it. That is what the emergent church is all about. Reaching people for Jesus, my foot. Christians who might be tempted to play with this fire should hear Chris’ warnings given throughout his review:

    This is just an absolute satanic pack of lies, absolutely false.
    Did I mention that Shane Hipps and Rob Bell are really good friends?[Shane preached twice in Rob’s church’.]
    This is rank heresy!
    I cannot believe what I am hearing!
    It is called idolatry. It is called heresy. It is called apostasy.
    You are sending yourself and the people listening to you to hell.
    That is just rank heresy. This is pantheism This is not Christianity.

    Amen, Chris! Here are some quotes from the first sermon. I apologise for any mistake or lack of clarity. I encourage you to listen to Fighting for the Faith yourself. Shane Hipps:

    So one of the things this shows us, just so that we are clear, for the Jewish imagination, the Hebrew way of thinking, wisdom was not just, you know, making good decisions or giving good advice. That is kinda how we use the word wisdom. We tend to minimise wisdom. For the Jews wisdom was the very DNA of God, the creative life force that gives birth to all things. That’s what wisdom is. Really, really profound stuff.

    However, at the same time that John was writing, there were a whole lot of Greek philosophers in religion and the Greek philosophers wrote extensively about this universal animating life force called the Logos.

    John is the ultimate unifier integrator of two religious systems that have nothing in common. The Jews and the Greeks. Nothing in common. Nothing at all in common. Didn’t even use the same language most of the time. So, here John comes along and says hey, to the Jews, you know that thing that you are talking about, that wisdom, that beautiful wisdom that you talk about, yeah that, right, you know that, and to the Greeks he is saying, hey, you know that Logos, that mysterious, beautiful thing with light and fire and life, that, yeah right, that, both of those things, wisdom and logos, they are actually one thing. And they found full and complete expression in the person Jesus.

    So here is what is so stunning. At a time when it was unthinkable to try and unify religions, John is basically saying your religion, totally valid, I love it. I am even using your language. And your religion, I love it. It is beautiful. I am even using your language, but I just want you both to know that there is something bigger than what you’ve got.

    There is something that transcends what you have. It doesn’t nullify what you have. It doesn’t get rid of what you have. It just moves beyond that. So John does this unbelievably beautiful thin of basically saying I wanna get past the religious divisions among us in our world. I don’t wanna get passed it. Jesus comes to bring us past it.

    Jesus is the ultimate unifier of these various, diverse ways of looking at the world and the only way that anybody can ever see that is by looking at the interior not the exterior.

    A black man and a white woman look very different on the exterior, do they not? They look very different from the outside. But on the inside, same longings, same needs, same need for love, for significance, for peace, same need for food. Very little separates us on the inside. Now this is really very easy to talk about when you are talking about people, isn’t it? Yes, people look different on the outside, but on the inside, we are all the same. That’s not what John is doing. He is doing it with religions. Mennonites and Muslims, they are basically the same.

    ‘No, no, no. no, no, no. We’re very different. I beg to differ.’

    Right? I mean, when you try and do this with religious systems, you’re playing with very dangerous stuff. Because a religious system, what makes a religion a religion, is the thing that makes it different from other religions. A religious identity is derived from what makes it distinct. A religious identity is derived from our boundaries. We sing music this way. That’s what makes us different.

    We belief Jesus did this and so we follow Jesus that way. That is what makes us different. You don’t even believe in Jesus. We’re different from you in that way. Even religions that have come along and said our religions beliefs, there are no distinctions between religions, is in fact a distinction. So these external things, religion is about making these distinctions and guess what, that isn’t a bad thing. Having a distinct religious identity marked by some boundaries, knowing how you differ from other religions, isn’t a problem. John isn’t trying to get off that. He is trying to point beyond it.

    Keep it, but move beyond it. To loose your religious identity is like losing a sail at sea. The sail is like religion. The wind is the spirit. You need a sail to catch the wind, to harness the wind. But you have got to realise that that sail isn’t the wind. The sail is actually dependent on the wind. See here is the crazy thing. The spirit, the wind, doesn’t need sails in order for it to move about the world. The sails need the wind. So the spirit, in order for it to move and operate in the world have no need of religion, but we, those of us, made the way we are, for some reason, need sails in order to catch the wind. We need religious structures, external things, that we can touch and se and traditions and lineage that teach us so that we can better catch the wind.

    Now some sails are built better than other sails. Some sails are bigger than other sails. Some sails are a different shape than other sails. And those differences matter and sometimes one sail is better than another sail, in the same way that some religions are better equipped to catch the spirit of God. Some religions are not as well equipped to fully capture and be compelled by the spirit. So it matters why that religion, why you chose it. It matters what it looks like. But don’t ever confuse the sail with the spirit, the sail with the wind.

    Here is what is so confusing about this. John comes along and he says hey, both of you guys, you’ve got great sails. They look awesome. I just want you to know it is the wind that I’m interested in. He says Jesus became the fullness of that wind. So along comes us and we create a sail around that person! We go, now we’ve got it. Whoo-oo! It is just another sail. Just because we claim Jesus as the centre of our religion, does not make us one and the same with the wind of God just because we have another sail. I happen to think it is a more effective sail than other sails.

    This logos affects everybody, including Osama bin Laden, as long as he has got breath. In him is a spark of the divine.

    My great hope is that this [communion] will propel you beyond these elements into the very presence of God.

    The emergent church has moved beyond Christianity. It is no place for Christians.

  • cecilia

    i got a little “card” i often send to people on the cell- it says: “it is dangerous to sail the seas rudderless because you are forced to go where ever the wind blows you”. there goes the sails! I’m outa here! cecilia

  • Amanda

    Here is the full transcription: The sermon transcribed below, preached October 5, 2008 by Shane Hipps, is called Wind in the Sail.

    Mennonites and Muslims, they’re basically the same.

  • Amanda

    Random Quote at DTW:

    And during his lifetime, Abraham—like Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad had an encounter with God that distinguished him from his contemporaries and propelled him into a mission, introducing a new way of life that changed the world… How appropriate that the three Abrahamic religions begin with a journey into the unknown.” — Brian McLaren, Finding Our Way Again p 23

    Dr. Guilaume Smit tweeted:

    # @brianmclaren Hi Brian. I’m following your blog on Ramadan. The
    respect I have for you increased because of your testimony. Guillaume Smit

  • Amanda

    Dr. Guilaume Smit says:

    We are Christians, making us brothers and sisters of Christians in other culture groups.

    Careful. Those who leave Islam get an automatic death sentence.

    A wise theologian (Malan Nel) once said, to a hungry child in the street a plate of food is the message of Christ. We can preach salvation as hard as we want, but for a person who have no place to sleep, no hope in this world, no future, the message is hollow.

    The Bible says:

    For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power. For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.” Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”
    (1 Corinthians 1:17-31)

    Jesus Christ said:

    “Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. Do not labor for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.” Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” So they said to him, “Then what sign do you do, that we may see and believe you? What work do you perform? Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'” Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” They said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.” Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.” So the Jews grumbled about him, because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” They said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he now say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?” Jesus answered them, “Do not grumble among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me– not that anyone has seen the Father except he who is from God; he has seen the Father. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever feeds on me, he also will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like the bread the fathers ate and died. Whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.” Jesus said these things in the synagogue, as he taught at Capernaum. When many of his disciples heard it, they said, “This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?” But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were grumbling about this, said to them, “Do you take offense at this? Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But there are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.” After this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him.
    (John 6:26-66)

    In fact, the mission of the church is to proclaim repentance and forgiveness of sins in Jesus Christ’s Name. Luke 24:47

  • Discerning the World

    Yeah that’s the tweet…

    # @brianmclaren Hi Brian. I’m following your blog on Ramadan. The
    respect I have for you increased because of your testimony. Guillaume Smit

    but now it’s no longer there…vanished into thin air.

  • Amanda

    Dr. Giullaume Smit:

    We are Christians, making us brothers and sisters of Christians in other culture groups.

    From Jihad Watch:

    Somalia: Another church leader killed, after jihadist’s wife caught her with six Bibles

    Under Islamic law, non-Muslims are not allowed to propagate their faith, as was established in the Pact of Umar, which was concluded between Christians in Syria and Umar, and one of the four “rightly guided” caliphs of Sunni Islam: “We shall not manifest our [non-Islamic] religion publicly nor convert anyone to it.”

    The Pact of Umar also states: “If we in any way violate these undertakings for which we ourselves stand surety, we forfeit our covenant [dhimma], and we become liable to the penalties for contumacy and sedition.”

    In short, it’s dangerous to be an uppity dhimmi. And if that constitutes a “misunderstanding” of Islam, as the apologists insist, it’s been going on for an awfully long time, in awfully high places. Islamic Tolerance Alert. “Islamic Extremists in Somalia Kill Another Church Leader,” from Compass Direct News, October 1:

    NAIROBI, Kenya, October 1 (CDN) — Islamic militants in Somalia this week killed a woman who led an underground Christian movement in the war-torn country.

    Sources told Compass that a leader of Islamic extremist al Shabaab militia in Lower Juba identified only as Sheikh Arbow shot to death 46-year-old Mariam Muhina Hussein at 2 p.m. on Monday (Sept. 28) in Marerey village after discovering she had six Bibles.

    Read it all.

  • Elmarie A

    Christian question: ‘Interfaith dialogue’ or ‘useful idiots’?
    Growing trend to meet with Muslims rings alarm bells for some

    The effort among some Christian churches to meet with Muslims and dialogue about faith is a betrayal of the basic foundations of Christianity, asserts a critic of the developing trend.

    “Useful idiots,” is how Christian talk show host and Muslim analyst Ingrid Schlueter assessed the participants in a recent interfaith dialogue session between the Acts 29 Network-affiliated Harambee Church and MAPS, the Muslim Association of Puget Sound, a group that has connections to the Washington state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR.

    WND previously reported an expert on the advance of radical Islam in the United States says the Muslim Brotherhood is effectively employing a strategy of presenting “Islam lite” to organizations, including Christian churches.

    The Muslim Brotherhood is the Sunni transnational movement founded in Egypt in 1928 that has spawned most of the major terrorist movements in the world, including al-Qaida and Hamas. It’s aim is to make Islamic law supreme over the world.

    The recent church plant, a spinoff of Seattle’s Mars Hill megachurch, recently started a series of interfaith dialogue meetings with MAPS. Schlueter said there are complications.

    The effort among some Christian churches to meet with Muslims and dialogue about faith is a betrayal of the basic foundations of Christianity, asserts a critic of the developing trend.

    “Useful idiots,” is how Christian talk show host and Muslim analyst Ingrid Schlueter assessed the participants in a recent interfaith dialogue session between the Acts 29 Network-affiliated Harambee Church and MAPS, the Muslim Association of Puget Sound, a group that has connections to the Washington state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR.

    WND previously reported an expert on the advance of radical Islam in the United States says the Muslim Brotherhood is effectively employing a strategy of presenting “Islam lite” to organizations, including Christian churches.

    The Muslim Brotherhood is the Sunni transnational movement founded in Egypt in 1928 that has spawned most of the major terrorist movements in the world, including al-Qaida and Hamas. It’s aim is to make Islamic law supreme over the world.

    The recent church plant, a spinoff of Seattle’s Mars Hill megachurch, recently started a series of interfaith dialogue meetings with MAPS. Schlueter said there are complications.

    Listen to an interview with Ingrid Schlueter:

    A source in Washington state who is close to the Acts 29 Network says another reason the series of interfaith dialogues is a cause for concern is the Acts 29 Network’s and Pastor Mark Driscoll’s connections with Saddleback Church pastor Rick Warren. The best-selling author of pastor of the Lake Forest, Calif., megachurch also is involved in interfaith dialogue, Schlueter said.

    Driscoll has participated in conferences at Warren’s Lake Forest, Calif., church and was listed as a speaker at Saddleback’s Radicalis conference for youth in February.

    Driscoll’s assistant declined to forward WND messages to Driscoll’s voice mail and recommended WND fill out a request on the church website to obtain comment. But Driscoll has not replied.

    Get the book that exposed CAIR from the inside out, autographed, from WND’s Superstore!

    “It was April 20 when Rick Warren was at a Los Angeles synagogue with a group of imams and the rabbi from Temple Sinai. They were having an interfaith dialogue there,” Schlueter said. “This is happening. Whether it’s Mark Driscoll’s Acts 29 churches or whether it’s Rick Warren, this is a growing trend and it disturbs me,” the Crosstalk host said.

    She said an April 22 edition of Jewish Journal included a photograph of Warren in which he appeared to be wearing a Muslim prayer cap.

    “When I see photos like this, I see the influence of Islam in the church has gone a lot further than we think,” Schlueter said.

    A spokesman from Warren’s Texas-based publicity firm, A. Larry Ross Communications, said Warren was wearing an Ethiopian Jewish cap in the photo.

    Observers said while that may be the case, it leaves a questionable impression.

    A Massachusetts pastor who asked not to be identified said real interfaith dialogue means being who you are.

    “In real interfaith dialogue, each person brings their distinctives to the dialogue. Warren’s donning of the Muslim cap in the synagogue is compromise,” the pastor said.

    Schlueter says appearances are important.

    “It still looks like a kufi or taqiya, the Muslim prayer cap. But it doesn’t matter if it’s a yarmulke or an Islamic prayer cap. The point is that because he’s sitting with a group of imams, a lot of people will think it’s a Muslim cap,” Schlueter said.

    “When you do interfaith dialogue, you be who you are. So why didn’t he participate as an evangelical Christian? Why did he compromise and wear something that will bring confusion?” Schlueter asked.

    It was a year ago when Warren addressed the Islamic Society of North American convention, explaining he wanted to promote interfaith cooperation.

    “I am not interested in interfaith dialogue but interfaith projects. As the two largest faiths on this planet – more than 1 billion Muslims and 2 billion Christians – as Muslims and Christians, we must believe in this. As more than half the world, we must do something to model what it is to live in peace, to live in harmony,” Warren said in his ISNA speech.

    Not all Christian leaders are alarmed by the developments. Harambee Church associate pastor Michael Ly, who’s also the vice president of Peace Catalyst International, said the event was primarily to build relationships.

    Ly said the event focused on discussing the two faith’s perspectives on who Jesus is, but its purpose wasn’t specifically aimed at evangelism.

    Listen to an interview with Michael Ly:

    “The event was to make more friends in the community and we have many neighbors who are our neighbors. There are as many as 75,000 to 100,000 Muslims in the Seattle-Puget Sound area. They’re our neighbors,” Ly said.

    Ly said that CAIR officials didn’t actually speak at the event, but were instrumental in helping organize it.

    He said Washington state CAIR chapter president Arsalan Bukhari introduced him to the MAPS Redmond leader, “but from that point on, wasn’t super heavily involved in organizing the event.”

    “But Arsalan helped get the Qurans we used,” Ly said.

    Calls and e-mails asking for comment on this story from Bukhari’s office have not been returned.

    Ly said the event was successful, and he maintains that the dialogue session achieved its objectives and opens the door for future evangelism opportunities.

    “There were a lot of new friendships made between Muslims and Christians who were at the event. We’re going to continue to have ongoing dialogues with the MAPS Muslim community as well as ongoing dialogues about Jesus and other parts of our respective faiths with other Muslim communities through the Seattle area,” Ly said.

    Leaders of the Acts 29 Network and Warren aren’t alone in their satisfaction with the trend toward interfaith dialogue.

    Former Michigan Rep. Mark Siljander recently published “A Deadly Misunderstanding: A Congressman’s Quest to Bridge the Muslim-Christian Divide.” He’s also the founder of the Virginia lobbying firm Global Strategies.

    Siljander said the Harambee Church’s actions and others like it are a positive step.

    “I’m very encouraged. As a believer myself, I’m very distraught over the strategy, not theology, applied by most Christians toward Islam. Outspoken Christians like Franklin Graham and others have caused tremendous and unnecessary gulfs between Christians and Muslims,” Siljander said.

    Graham recently was banned by the military from appearing at a National Day of Prayer event at the Pentagon because of his criticism of Islam’s violence.

    “Most Christians for the most part, the outspoken ones, will criticize Islam, their book and their prophet and say, ‘Let’s sit down and talk about Jesus.’ Needless to say, that doesn’t work,” Siljander said.

    “In the book that’s been out 14 months now, I say that we discovered that if you sit down with not only a respectful attitude, with Muslims, their holy book, their prophet and the culture, and do so with the enthusiasm about the person of Jesus, we find that the Holy Spirit will take hold and bring the conversation where He wants it to take,” Siljander said.

    Schlueter, however, calls such meetings simply propaganda tools for radical Islam.

    “Evangelical Christians are not seeing the false concept first of all of the interfaith services, where we share our view about Jesus and then the Muslims share their view about Jesus, is completely alien to the example in Acts chapter two,” Schlueter said.

    “The apostles got up and preached Christ crucified, the hope of the world. What we’re seeing now is ‘let’s sit down and talk about your view about of this and let’s watch how you pray with your prayer rug and we’ll show you how we pray as Christians and we’ll all go away and have some tea and cookies.’ That’s not evangelism,” she said.

    “We’re not calling for hatred or intolerance or anything of that nature. But I do believe it is wrong for Christians to go knocking on the door of a local mosque or local CAIR office and say we’d like to have a Muslim official come to our church and we’ll sit and talk,” Schlueter said.

    “What they’re doing is being useful idiots for propaganda purposes by CAIR with its terrorist ties and effort to promote Islam within the United States, the rule of Islam and the promotion of shariah law. If Christians are not going to be more discerning than that they are serving as useful idiots and promoting a doctrine that is counter to the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” she said.

    Pamela Geller publishes Atlas Shrugs, which along with Robert Spencer’s Jihad Watch, reports on developments of Islam in the West.

    Geller said any CAIR involvement should be of concern for a Christian.

    “CAIR is a Hamas front, an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas funding case. Hamas is a jihad terrorist group. Several former CAIR officials are now in prison for terrorist activities. The FBI won’t work with CAIR anymore, and is in fact investigating CAIR,” Geller explained.

    Geller also makes the tie between CAIR and the Muslim Brotherhood.

    “The Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has called CAIR the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.S. CAIR’s ties with the Muslim Brotherhood were, in fact, entered in evidence in the Holy Land terror trial. The Muslim Brotherhood’s stated goal is one world living under Islamic law,” Geller said.

    CAIR headquarters in Washington

    “The Quran teaches that Christians are under Allah’s curse for teaching that Jesus is the Son of God. The Muslim call to prayer calls Muhammad a messenger of Allah, and Muhammad taught that Christianity was just a twisted version of Islam. So what were the leaders of Harambee church thinking? What do the leaders of the Harambee church think of the worldwide persecution, oppression and subjugation of Christians living in Muslim lands?” Geller asked.

    “By working with Hamas-tied CAIR, and letting the Muslim call to prayer sound in their church, they’re showing their weakness and ignorance of the Islamic jihad program to conquer and subjugate Christians and other non-Muslims. They have submitted. They’re cutting their own throats, and aiding their own worst enemies,” Geller said.

    P. David Gaubatz and Paul Sperry write in their WND book “Muslim Mafia” that Muslims want to Islamize Jesus.

    They report the training manual for CAIR includes information about Jesus.

    Among the materials CAIR distributes in its outreach efforts in the U.S. is the book “Jesus: Prophet of Islam” by Mohammad Ata-ur-Rehman and Muslim convert Ahmad Thomson. CAIR also launched a $60,000 advertising campaign on Florida buses with the message Jesus was a Muslim. The signs read: ‘ISLAM: The Way of Life of Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad.”

    One Islamic expert who formerly worked with the U.S. government on terror said Muslims even use the writings of disaffected Christian.

    “Muslims are making use of Bart Ehrman’s commentaries on the New Testament, books that now deny the authority of the New Testament and portray Jesus as simply a man,” he said. “You will never hear a Muslim say that Jesus is the Son of God.”

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Terms and Conditions for Submission of Comments

Terms and Conditions:terms and conditions

Because this world is becoming more evil by the minute and Discerning the World is coming under attack more often from people with some very nasty dispositions, we now have ‘Terms and Conditions for Submission of Comments‘ which you need to agree too before you can comment – this is to protect us and you when you comment on this website.  If you are not here to harm Discerning the World and it’s authors, please by all means comment, however if you are here to cause harm in any way, please don’t comment.

The following conditions does not mean that the authors of Discerning The World permit only opinions that are in agreement with us. This also does not mean that we fear dissenting opinions or ideas that are contrary to the beliefs that we hold (and/or that of the revealed Scriptures of the Holy Bible).

The following describes the Terms and Conditions applicable to your use of the “Comments” submission service at the Discerning the World website.


  1. Discerning the World owns and operates the site (the “Site”). Your use of the features on the Site allowing for submission of a “Comment” is subject to the following terms and conditions (the “Terms”). Discerning the World may modify these Terms at any time without notice to you by posting revised Terms on the Site. Your submission of a “Comment” to the Site following the modification of these Terms shall constitute your binding acceptance of and agreement to be bound by those modified Terms.
  2. By submitting a “Comment” you are accepting these Terms through your clicking of the “POST COMMENT” button.
  3. Discerning the World has the right, but not the obligation, to take any of the following actions, in Discerning the World’s sole unfettered discretion, at any time, and for any reason or no reason, without providing any prior notice:
    1. Restrict, suspend or terminate your ability to submit “Comments,” to the Site;
    2. Change, suspend or modify all or any part of the Site or the features thereof;
    3. Refuse or remove any material posted on, submitted to or communicated through the Site by you;
    4. Deactivate or delete any screen names, profiles or other information associated with you; or
    5. Alter, modify, discontinue or remove any comment off the Site.
  4. You agree that, when using or accessing the Site or any of the features thereof, you will not:
    1. Violate any applicable law or regulation;
    2. Interfere with or damage the Site, through hacking or any other means;
    3. Transmit or introduce to the Site or to other users thereof any viruses, cancel bots, Trojan horses, flood pings, denial of service attacks, or any other harmful code or processes;
    4. Transmit or submit harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, defamatory, deceptive, fraudulent, obscene, indecent, vulgar, lewd, violent, hateful or otherwise objectionable content or material;
    5. Transmit or submit any unsolicited advertising, promotional materials, or spam;
    6. Stalk or harass any user or visitor to the Site; or
    7. Use the content or information available on the Site for any improper purpose.
  5. You retain the Copyright of any “Comment” you submit to Discerning the World. By submitting a “Comment” to Discerning the World, you agree to grant Discerning the World a irrevocable, non-exclusive, royalty-free, perpetual license to use the material or commentary that you have submitted, in any medium and in any manner that Discerning the World may, in its sole unfettered discretion, choose.
  6. By submitting a “Comment” to Discerning the World, you agree to comply with the following rules concerning such submissions:
    1.  You agree not to include in your “Comment”:
      1. Any false, defamatory, libelous, abusive, threatening, racially offensive, sexually explicit, obscene, harmful, vulgar, hateful, illegal, or otherwise objectionable content;
      2. Any content that may be seen as stalking or harassing of any other Site contributors;
      3. Any content that personally attacks an individual. (An example of a personal attack is posting negative comments about an individual in a way meant to demean that person. Note that posting your opinion about someone’s ideas, doctrine or actions is not a personal attack);
      4. Any content that discloses private details concerning any person, for eg., phone numbers that have not been made public, photos that are not in the public domain, residential address that is not public, ID numbers, Social Security numbers, email addresses that are not in the public domain, etc.;
      5. Any content that you know to be false, misleading, or fraudulent;
      6. Any use of profanity;
      7. Any content including advertisements or otherwise focused on the promotion of commercial events or businesses, or any request for or solicitation of money, goods, or services for private gain;
      8. Any content that contains software viruses or any other computer code, files or programs designed to interrupt, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software or hardware or telecommunications equipment; or
      9. Any content directly or indirectly soliciting responses from minors (defined as anyone under 18 years of age).
    1. If any part of the “Comment” is not your original work, it is your responsibility to add the name of the third party, name the book with page number or a link (url) to the website where you obtained the information.
    2. Your “Comment” may contain Copyrighted material, the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. You are however allowed to make such material available in your “Comment” in an effort to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc.  This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this Site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to:
    3. If you wish to use copyrighted material from a website or any other medium for purposes to add to your “Comment” that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. (Fair Use means you may quote from copyrighted sources, but you may not publish the whole article, book, etc., in your “Comment”.)
  8. You are solely responsible for the “Comment” you upload, post, transmit or otherwise make available to others using this Web Site. Under no circumstances will Discerning the World be liable in any way for any “Comment” posted on or made available through this Site by you or any third party.
  9. You understand that all “Comments” on this Site are pre-screened or moderated. That means that every “Comment” needs to be approved by Discerning the World before it appears in the “Comments” section.  This is not an automatic process.  Discerning the World does this for SPAM reasons.
  10. Discerning the World has the right (but not the obligation) in their sole unfettered discretion to remove any “Comment” that is posted on or available through the Site. Without limiting the foregoing, Discerning the World has the right to remove any “Comment” that violates these Terms or is otherwise deemed objectionable by Discerning the World in its sole discretion.
  11. You understand that Discerning the World in their sole unfettered discretion is not obligated and can not be forced in any manner, be it legal or otherwise to remove any “Comment” that is posted on or made available through the Site by you.
  12. When submitting a “Comment,” you will be asked to provide your name and your email address. While Discerning the World does not object to your use of a pseudonym instead of your actual name, Discerning the World reserves the right, but not the obligation, to reject, change, disallow, or discontinue at any time any submission name that, in Discerning the World’s sole unfettered discretion, is objectionable or inappropriate for any reason. Discerning the World requires the submission of your email address, but Discerning the World warrants that it will not publish your email address to an outside third party without your consent.
  13. Discerning the World does not sell or rent your personal information to third parties for their marketing purposes. From time to time, Discerning the World may contact you personally via email. Notwithstanding the foregoing, you acknowledge and understand that the “Comments” feature of the Site is designed to permit users to post information and commentary for public review and comment and thus you hereby waive any expectation of privacy you may have concerning any likeness or information provided to the Site by you.
  14. You are solely responsible for your interactions with other users of or visitors to the Site.
    1. Discerning the World shall have the right, but not the obligation, to monitor interactions utilizing the “Comments” facility of the Site, between you and other users of or visitors to the Site. You acknowledge and agree that Discerning the World, or any third party shall not be, and you shall not seek to hold them, responsible for any harm or damage whatsoever arising in connection with your interaction with other users of or visitors to the Site.
    2. Discerning the World does not verify any information posted to or communicated via the “Comments” sections of the Site by users and does not guarantee the proper use of such information by any party who may have access to the information. You acknowledge and agree that Discerning the World does not assume, and shall not have, any responsibility for the content of messages or other communications sent or received by users of the Site.
  15. The Site contains content created by or on behalf of Discerning the World as well as content provided by third parties.
    1. Discerning the World does not control, and makes no representations or warranties about, any third party content, including such content that may be accessible directly on the Site or through links from the Site to third party sites.
    2. You acknowledge that, by viewing the Site or communications transmitted through the Site, you may be exposed to third party content that is false, offensive or otherwise objectionable to you or others, and you agree that under no circumstances shall Discerning the World be liable in any way, under any theory, for any third party content.
    3. You acknowledge and agree that the Site, and the contents thereof, is proprietary to Discerning the World and is protected by copyright. You agree that you will not access or use the Site or any of the content thereof for any reason or purpose other than your personal, non-commercial use.
    4. You agree that you will not systematically retrieve data or other content from the Site by any means, and you will not compile a database or directory of information extracted from the Site.
    5. You agree that you will not reproduce, distribute or make derivative works of the Site or any of the contents thereof without the express consent of Discerning the World.
    6. You hereby agree to indemnify, defend and hold harmless Discerning the World, its affiliates and licensees, and all of their officers, directors, employees, agents and representatives from and against any and all liabilities, losses, claims, damages, and expenses (including attorneys’ fees) in connection with any claim arising out of your use of the Site or violation of any of these Terms.



16. These Terms constitute the entire agreement between Discerning the World and you with respect to the subject matter hereof, and supersede any previous oral or written agreement between us with respect to such subject matter.

Thank you!