Imam Stumped by Vital Question

by Rick Mathes

"Would you rather have an Allah who says to kill me to go to heaven, or a Jesus who says for me to love you because I am going to heaven, and He would like you to be with me?" Last month I attended my annual training session that's required for maintaining my state prison security clearance. During the training session there was a presentation by three speakers who represented the Roman Catholic, Protestant, and Muslim faiths, who explained their belief systems. I was particularly interested in what the Islamic imam had to say. The imam gave a great presentation of the basics of Islam complete with a video. After the presentations, time was provided for questions and answers. When it was my turn I directed my question to the imam and asked: "Please, correct me if I'm wrong, but I understand that many of the imams and clerics of Islam have declared a holy jihad [holy war] against the infidels of the world. And, that by killing an infidel, which is a command to all Muslims, they are assured of a place in heaven. If that's the case, can you give me the definition of an infidel?" There was no disagreement with my statements and without hesitation he replied, "Non-believers!" I responded, "So, let me make sure I have this straight. All followers of Allah have been commanded to kill everyone who is not of your faith so they can go to heaven. Is that correct?" The expression on his face changed from one of authority and command to that of a little boy who had just gotten caught with his hand in the cookie jar. He sheepishly replied, "Yes." I then said, "Well, sir, I have a real problem trying to imagine Pope John Paul commanding all Catholics to kill those of your faith or Pat Robertson or Dr. Stanley ordering Protestants to do the same in order to go to heaven." The Imam was speechless. I continued, "I also have a problem with being your friend when you and your brother clerics are telling your followers to kill me. Let me ask you a questionwould you rather have your Allah who tells you to kill me in order to go to heaven, or my Jesus who tells me to love you because I am going to heaven and wants you to be with me?" You could have heard a pin drop as the imam hung his head in shame. Chuck Colson once told me something that has sustained me these 20 years of prison ministry. He said to me, "Rick, remember that the truth will prevail." And it will!
2011 Disciple 155x50 2011 AMG 155x50
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