Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.
- John 3:20
Many today see the terrorists and violent acts reported on the news as representing Islam and all Muslims, and many Christian preachers, teachers, and so-called experts on Islam portray Muslims as wanting to take over our nation. When our way of life or personal security feels threatened, human nature tends to respond by either fighting or fleeing. Fighting back is not a biblical response nor does it help people see Jesus. Muslims still remember the Crusaders and believe that goal of Christendom is to conquer them. We may “flee” through denial, super-spirituality, or refusal to take personal responsibility. Some of us just keep busy with work, school, or church activities. Alternately, we withdraw through self-medication by drugs or alcohol, compulsive buying, wasting hours on the computer, or other potentially addictive behaviors.
It might be safe to say that those who give Islam a bad name could fall into the category of “doing evil and hating the light.” Those who do not know the Messiah do not have the light of life. The great majority of Muslims around the world have never met a true follower of Jesus or heard the message that their sins can be forgiven through the atonement of Christ. How can we expect unbelievers to come to the light if they have never seen it? How can they love the light if their perception of it is false or inaccurate?
The reality is that there are many Muslims who are coming to the Light in these days. Our Kingdom calling is not to fight or flee, but to be unified in our message and show Muslims that we love them. We can pray and should pray faithfully for the Muslim world; however, the appropriate response of loving our neighbor as Jesus taught is lacking without action. Our call – our challenge – is to follow his example. How can we actively express God’s agape love to Muslims? If by faith we allow ourselves to be led by his Spirit, he is able to use us to show the way to the Light. Then, by his grace, we will see many Muslims choose to follow Jesus.
I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.
- John 8:12