Last Friday night I had the distinct pleasure of speaking at a Sunday school class dinner event at Calvary Church in Grand Rapids. After giving a short preview of American Decency Association’s Interfaith Dialogue at The Shack this past spring, I was invited by a few churches to come and give the full presentation; this was one of the invitations.
If anyone would like to have our Interfaith Dialogue power point or Bill Johnson’s The Sword of the Lord and of Gideon power point shown at their church or gathering, contact firstname.lastname@example.org call us at (231) 924-4050 to reserve a date for showing.
Real interfaith dialoguetakes place when both people of faith are honest about their beliefs and their religions’ exclusivities. There’s an exchange of ideas—discussed frankly—for the purpose of understanding and resulting in an amicable resolution. On the other hand, the Interfaith Dialogue movement is an invention of the Muslim Brotherhood, attempting to get people of other faiths to cross a “one way bridge” to the Islamic faith. No Christian evangelism is allowed and the exclusivity of Christ and His atoning work upon the cross is ignored or denied. As Christians, when it comes to either real Interfaith Dialogue or the Interfaith Dialogue movement, maintaining and putting forth the exclusivity of Christ is vital!
Many churches are getting caught up in a form of the interfaith dialogue movement; they keep the exclusivity of Christ in their back pocket so as not to offend Muslim people. Pastors are inviting Imams (Muslim pastors) to share or pray from their pulpits and don’t realize what that means.
What does the exclusivity of Christ mean? In John 14:6 Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father but by me.” That’s an intolerant exclusivity; but it’s the truth, it’s our core belief, and it’s our core duty to share this truth with others.
The presentation started with a brief listing of the various ways in which the Muslim Brotherhood has infiltrated our government and our culture. These “jihads” (holy war) were shown for the purpose of laying a foundation and then zeroing in on the interfaith dialogue movement. Although not every interfaith dialogue meeting is a faction of the Muslim Brotherhood, those who lift up the Islamic faith, expecting the Christian faith to quietly fall in line—for the sake of peace and service—are working to the same ends as the Muslim Brotherhood. It’s a very dangerous and slippery slope.
After going through some of the many dangers of the interfaith dialogue movement, the importance of knowing the whole story was pointed out. It’s important to recognize that Islamic terms and Western English terms do not have the same meaning. One such example would be the term “unbeliever.” For the Christian, “unbeliever” means anyone who is not a Christian. For the Muslim, “unbeliever” means anyone who is not a Muslim.
Another important part of knowing the whole story is recognizing that two messages are being sent during these dialogues or public speeches. One message is the plain meaning which is sent to the non-Muslim listener; however, there’s a deeper meaning that is being given to the Muslim. Many times this is done through the relating of an historical account or a popular Islamic story. You and I, not being raised in the Islamic faith, only know the part of the story which is shared; but the people of the Muslim faith will know the whole story and glean the deeper meaning while we remain unaware. This is why we must seek out the truth for ourselves.
During this presentation we looked at Interfaith Dialogue Imam Eboo Patel and his presentation at Calvin College. We listened to a part of his presentation, learned “the rest of the story,” looked at how he twisted the Biblical Scriptures, and some of the areas of deception which he laid out.
The Kaufman Interfaith Institute of Grand Valley State University was referred to, specifically one of their events I attended. At this event half truths were portrayed, the pastor representing the Christian faith accepted things at face value, and when the truth was raised the event was called to a close (approximately 30 minutes early).
After showing the above examples of the interfaith dialogue movement, this presenter wanted to show a strong example of real interfaith dialogue. This was done by using a short audio clip of Ravi Zacharias’ teaching in which he spoke with one of the founders of Hamas.
Wrapping up the power point presentation, we looked at several ways to be prepared for such interfaith interactions. There were also many resources suggested to better be informed—some free, others at a cost.
Our time together ended with a brief question and answer period. Many good questions were asked and several came up afterward stating that they had learned a lot. Others commented on how important this topic is for the church today.
If anyone would like to have Bill Johnson’s The Sword of the Lord and of Gideon power point or our Interfaith Dialogue power point shown at their church or gathering, contact email@example.com call us at (231) 924-4050 to reserve a date for showing.
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