By Duane Alexander Miller
More Muslims have converted to the Way of Jesus Christ in the last four decades than in all the other years since the advent of Islam in the 7th Century. Something is certainly happening among Muslims and there is an openness in their society that was not there before. It’s also important to note that large numbers of nominal Christians, especially in Europe, are converting to Islam–a main reason being so they can marry Muslim women. Who has more converts? Not sure about that. I will say that Muslims converting to Christianity often pay a heavy price in terms of persecution, and that Westerners converting to Islam are afforded generous protection by their governments.
But here is the question: why are some Muslims attracted to the way of Jesus Christ? Here are some of the main reasons:
1) The Bible. We forget how compelling and convincing Jesus’ teachings and parables are. He was certainly, among other things, a highly talented teacher, and his parables and sayings have the ability to lodge themselves into a person’s mind, even after only one hearing. His insights into human nature, society, kindness, forgiveness, and God’s power–not to mention the many miracles he worked–are convincing to a good number of Muslims. Of course, Islam teaches that the Christian and Jewish Scriptures are muharraf–corrupted. But after a fair reading of the Gospels, sometimes the integrity and wisdom found therein can break through this Islamic doctrine. Incidentally, Muslim background believers from my experience tend to center their thought on the Gospels much more than Paul’s epistles–very different than the evangelical tradition which has, in practice at least, tended to give primacy to the Pauline epistles.
2) Dreams & Miracles. What can I say? They are happening, and folks here don’t have the initial inclination that Westerners do to “disprove” or “figure out how it was done.” A miracle is from God–it’s that simple. Often times in dreams people see Jesus, though at times it is one of the saints. This may not result in conversion, but it opens a path of inquiry that sometimes leads to conversion.
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