There are a few weeks every year where it seems even those hostile to the Gospel will consider the possibility of a miraculous virgin birth in a stable outside Bethlehem. Our guest today – known for security reasons simply as “Dr. Cynthia” – is one of the leading experts in evangelizing Muslims who coincidentally generally accept the Christmas story. Dr. Cynthia will help us unpack ways to share the Gospel with the Muslim community through her new website, Christianfrommuslim.com.
You can also listen to the extended podcast from the Culture Connection by clicking here.
Q: What are some beliefs that Christians have in common with the Muslim faith?
A: What we do have in common with them is the belief in one creator God, belief in prophets, angels, and holy books. What we try to do in our training is to take what people know that’s correct, affirm it, and build on it rather than complain. For example, for the holidays, we have a verse in Luke 1:35 where it says the Holy Spirit will come upon Mary. There is a verse remarkably like that in the Koran. We do share that they believe in the virgin birth, but they don’t know about the other part of the story. They really do find it fascinating.
Q: What are some simple things we can do to strike up a conversation with someone who we know is a Muslim?
A: You can either ask them out to coffee or have them at your house, but what if you are just meeting one around town? We do have on our website, and you can print out a free track that says the “Jesus of Christmas for Muslims.” Keep it with you at all times, especially at this time of year. If you give that to someone with a big smile, a chocolate, coffee card, or a candy cane, and say Merry Christmas, they are very receptive.
Q: Well, I think you have somewhat undersold the treasure trove that is your website. You could spend hours on this website and not absorb it all. How did you get such an incredible library of resources put together?
A: I had been in contact years ago with someone from an Arabic Christian channel who asked me to work on a women’s show with him, which I did. Several years later, Huda became a Christian, and it occurred to me then there has never been a reality show of a Muslim that became a Christian. It was a totally novel idea. This started out as a reality show that filmed during the first year of a Muslim becoming a new Christian.
Q: How can churches use your website to educate and inform about how to share the gospel with Muslims?
A: I encourage people to do a class, and almost anyone at a church can lead a class. Our website has lesson plans and videos prepared for you. You can see the questions that a former Muslim asks. You can see their reactions. That is priceless, because the questions they ask are so different than what you might expect from a new believer from a Christian or secular background.
Q: What would you say to a Christian who doesn’t know someone who is Muslim or is unsure of if they would even run into a Muslim this holiday season?
A: Ask God to fill your heart with love for these people, and just smile and say Merry Christmas. Maybe God will have you connect with someone, and they’ll look at you expecting you to say more. Maybe then you can ask if you could meet them for coffee. We call that the Esther bridge where you ask someone to eat something with you just like Esther did before she presented her case.
Q: I think one of the barriers that many believers have is that we are not educated enough in our own faith to be able to give a defense of the gospel. Your resources are such a valuable tool to be ready to go out and present the gospel in an educated way.
A: Yes, absolutely. We should get as much education as we can, but I want to encourage people that you don’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to know a lot. Just use what you have. That’s what God expects us to do. Just like the woman who gave perfume to Jesus. I would encourage every listener to just pray to the Lord. “Lord, I am yours and I know you love me, and I know you have me here for a purpose. Help me to bless people wherever I go. And if you want me to share your word or some of your truth with someone, please open that door.”
Always feel free to say you don’t know everything – nobody does. If it’s something out of your specialty, you send them to someone else. God’s love can change someone’s life. So I encourage all of your listeners to go forth in that encouragement and faith. And thank you so much for your helpful and kind comments.
The website is Christianfrommuslim.com and you really need to spend a minute there. You won’t just spend a minute; you’ll spend hours on the homepage where it says, “Gospel video track for Muslims.” This is a way we can share the Gospel with Muslims. You might even want to forward that link to some of your Muslim friends this holiday season.