Every Wednesday, a Muslim woman would come to meet with a group of ladies at our house. Over sweet mint tea, they would start in the Old Testament and work their way toward Jesus. After they met, the woman would leave as quickly as she came. Then, one day, it all changed. Jesus became more than a prophet to her, more than a name in history. On that day, Jesus became God incarnate, Savior and Lord. Not long after, she followed her Savior in baptism with her new sisters in Christ, confessing a new birth and a new life.
Sharing the gospel with Muslims is one of the great privileges I have had in my lifetime. Some of my greatest memories are of sitting on the floor, telling people Old Testament stories of sacrifice and service to God, and then talking about what it means for Jesus to be God and the ultimate sacrifice.
One day, a friend with whom we had shared the gospel many times said to me, “John, I think you are right, Jesus did suffer on the cross for my sins.” For a Muslim, this was a big step. But not big enough, so we kept telling him biblical stories of faith and Jesus. Sometime later he said, “John, I think you are right, Jesus did die on the cross for my sins.” then he added, “And Jesus and the Prophet, they are the same.” Again a big step, but not enough, so we kept telling him biblical stories and sharing how Jesus is much more than any prophet that ever lived. Finally, one day, he said “You are right, Jesus is God; He is Savior; He is Lord.” on that day, he took a step of faith, “confessing with his mouth Jesus as Lord” (Romans 10:9-10).
When most of us think of Islam and Muslims, we think of extremists and terrorists. Our images are of women wearing burkas and men in head scarves. Instead, we should think of our Muslim neighbors down the street, worried about their kid’s education, how things are going at work and about their marriages and in-laws. They’re not so different from you and me. So how do you share your faith with a Muslim? When I think of sharing my faith with a Muslim, I like to think in terms of C. Peter Wagner’s 3 P’s in evangelism: presence, proclamation and persuasion. I like to add a fourth “P:” prayer, which is the foundation of all of our evangelism. Think of these four P’s as building blocks forming a pyramid.
Published April 29, 2017