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Learning About Islam

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What do Muslims believe?
Are the God of the Bible and Allah of the Quran the same?
What is Shariah law?
How should we react to terrorism?
How can we witness to Muslims?
How do Christian beliefs about women differ from Muslim beliefs?
How are Christians treated in Muslim countries?

VOM offers Learning About Islam to help parents and teachers share the truth about Islam with students. The 60-page book is available free from the Downloads section of this site.

Spotlight Story

Trusting God at the Police Station

Afghanistan police
A policeman in Afghanistan

An officer of the secret police in a Muslim country sent for Pastor Zareef, a Christian preacher. Secret police usually work in countries where citizens don’t have a lot of freedoms. They secretly spy on citizens to see if anyone is doing things the government doesn’t like. Pastor Zareef knew he could end up in jail if he gave answers the officer didn’t like.

The pastor believed the Bible verse, “Therefore settle it in your hearts not to meditate beforehand on what you will answer; for I will give you a mouth and wisdom which all your adversaries will not be able to contradict or resist” (Luke 21:14–15). Trusting in God’s word, he went to the meeting at the policeman’s office.

At the meeting, the officer shook a pamphlet in Pastor Zareef’s face and asked, “Who wrote this?” A friend of Pastor Zareef’s had written the pamphlet to explain the truth about Jesus to Muslims. The pastor knew that his friend might get in big trouble if the police found out who wrote it.

Suddenly, Pastor Zareef began laughing! He surprised even himself!

“Why are you laughing?” the officer growled.

“Because I thought YOU were the secret police, not ME!” answered the pastor. “You are the ones who know secrets, but you are asking me who wrote it?”

“Okay,” said the officer. “I’ll let you go this time.”

After he left the office, Pastor Zareef was amazed at what happened. He had not planned beforehand what he would say, yet God helped him speak.

Praise God for His faithfulness!

Read another story about God helping a Christian speak.


Spotlight Story

Doing Nothing

Indonesian Pastor

The Voice of the Martyrs reports about Christians who are persecuted so that Christians in free countries can help them and pray for them. It is often helpful when praying for people if you learn true facts about their lives and their country.

Two Common Mistakes

  • Some people believe that persecuted Christians are “super Christians.” As a VOM worker said, “Persecuted Christians are not super Christians, but ordinary people who through God’s grace and power have been enabled to do extraordinary things. We serve the same God and have access to the same grace and power.”
  • Some people believe that no Christians can ever worship in countries where Christians are persecuted. But in many countries where VOM works, there are Christian churches in large cities.

    “Some of them obey laws against witnessing to others,” said a VOM worker. “Those churches are not persecuted because they aren’t doing anything.” They may obey laws against talking about Jesus outside of church, teaching children about Jesus, or allowing non-Christians to visit their church.

    But often other Christians in their country are persecuted because they obey God’s command to “make disciples of all the nations” (Matthew 28:19). The Indonesian pastor in the photo above preached outside after his church was destroyed by enemies.

  • To Talk About

    • Read John 15:20–21. Why are Christians persecuted?
    • How can we pray for churches whose members are persecuted?
    • How can we pray for churches whose members love Jesus but are afraid to tell others about Him?
    • Are you ever afraid to tell others about your faith?
    • If there were a law in your country against talking about Jesus in public, would you ever be arrested?

Readers Talk to Us Story

How do North Korean Christians Pray?

North Korea
A secret meeting in North Korea

In North Korea, it is against the law to choose to follow Jesus or to own a Bible. A listener on VOMRadio.net asked the following questions.

  • In a country like North Korea, how do Christians pray?
  • How do they gather together?
  • What is a worship service like in North Korea?

Todd Nettleton, host of VOM Radio, asked Rev. Eric Foley the listener’s questions. Rev. Foley is the leader of VOM Korea.

Rev. Foley: A lot of ideas we have about North Koreans hiding under a blanket to read the Bible or sneaking out of their homes at night aren’t exactly accurate. And the reason why is that everyone in North Korea is required to spy on homes that are near their own.

Things like hiding under a blanket or sneaking out of your home would make the neighbors suspicious. So when things like that happen it is usually on the border of North Korea.

North Koreans who are in the interior of North Korea who have been Christians for generations actually worship very differently. They have developed ways of worship that they can do even when people who are not Christians are watching.

One of the ways is that underground [secret] believers pray with their eyes open. They look at the person they are with as if they are having a conversation with that person. And instead of referencing God, for example, they use a phrase like “Dear Leader.” [“Dear Leader” is a title used for the former leader of their country, who is now dead. In this case, Christians are using the title to talk secretly about God.]

So instead of bowing their heads and closing their eyes, they might look at the person sitting next to them and say, “I am so concerned about Sister Kim, who is sick. But I am thankful that our Dear Leader will show special care for her as she needs love and attention.” That would be how underground Christians pray.

The way that they have worship services is on a family level. People in the same family worship together. But people from different families typically do not gather together for worship in North Korea.

(Source: VOMRadio.net. Edited and paraphrased for length and clarity.)

Rev. Foley’s book about Christians in North Korea, These Are the Generations, is available at VOM Books.

Enter “North Korea” in the Search box on this site to find more stories about North Korean Christians.


Spotlight Story

Feed Your Enemy

Boy
Boy in Pakistan

“Therefore, ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink…’” (Romans 12:20).

The Voice of the Martyrs has partners in other countries who help VOM carry out projects in those countries. Earlier this year, armed men attacked and robbed a VOM partner in his home in Pakistan. They beat one of the partner’s brothers and stole the family’s belongings.

Later the police arrested seven men for the attack and put them in jail. The attackers were hungry in jail. In Pakistan, inmates’ families are expected to bring food to their relatives in jail. Some of the attackers had no one to bring them food.

Two brothers of VOM’s partner brought food to the hungry criminals and shared the gospel with them.

Pray that the attackers will come to know Christ and give up their violent ways.


Spotlight Story

Islam in the News: Muslims Coming to Christ

Man in Syria
Muslim man in Syria

News reports tell about attacks by radical Muslims around the world. What should Christians do? Should we pretend there is not a problem? Should we be afraid?

Cole Richards, the leader of The Voice of the Martyrs International Ministries department talked about these issues recently on an interview at VOMRadio.net. Read below the third of three posts from the interview.

Most Muslims aren’t acting out violently. But the actions of radical Muslims lead all Muslims to examine their beliefs. That’s always a good process.

Muslims would be offended by this, but as Christians we hold that it is absolutely true that the more you dig into Islam, the more disappointed you are, because you will not find the truth. The truth is in Jesus Christ our Lord.

So this soul searching of the entire Muslim community globally is being used by God in a very healthy way. It gets people talking; it gets them asking questions.

We hear testimony after testimony of Muslims going to their leaders and asking them all these good questions. It leads them to the truth in many cases. And it’s not only moderate Muslims who are coming to faith.

Sometimes the most radical Muslims come to faith in Christ because they’ve pursued the path of Islam as far as it can go. They said, “I’m really going to do this thing. I’m going to do everything the religious leaders are asking of me. I’m going to do it more than anybody.” And at the end of that path, they find that it’s false. Then they find the truth in Christ.

Some of that is happening in the midst of, or you could even say because of, the bad actors among radical Islam. It’s not what you expect to find. But it’s absolutely true that more Muslims are coming to Christ now when Islam is acting out so violently than at any time in the history of missions since the advent of Islam 1400 years ago.

(Source: VOMRadio.net. Edited for length, clarity, and reading level.)

Learn more about Islam from Learning About Islam, available in the Downloads section of this site.


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