Contend Earnestly: Audio from Muslim and Christian Dialogue

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Audio from Muslim and Christian Dialogue

Here is the audio from the dialogue we had at Harambee this past Saturday. If you have any questions in what was said, let me know. I can also make the powerpoint that was used for Michael's part available if you want it. Just let me know. Thanks to MAPS Redmond for the following photoraphs. If you would like to see the full flikr stream, click here.

Imam Joban’s Presentation on Islam and Jesus in the Qur'an


Michael said...

First thing I have noticed in Michael's presentation: Not one mention of Jesus as being God.
C.S. Lewis once said that "find the part of the gospel that is most offensive to your culture and preach that."
Thankfully,the question was asked during the Q&A. The first person to respond about Jesus' deity avoided answering and Michael did finally affirm that Jesus was God in the flesh. But I believe this exposes how things are left out of the gospel to lighten the offense of it. Paul called the cross an offense and a stumbling block. It was because of their proclamation of the gospel to many groups that Paul said they have become the refuse of the world.

Also, I noticed that there were a few claims by the Muslim panelists that were not responded to by the Christians. I also noticed that while the Islam panelists referenced the Koran and the Bible to make their arguments against the Trinity and Jesus' death on the cross. The Christians gave very little specific reference to Scriptural passages. The reason I bring this up is that it came across that the Muslims were speaking from a source of authority while the Christians gave indirect responses that did not respond specifically to the scriptural arguments being made.

A good resource for knowing the similarities and differences between Christianity and Islam is a coauthored book by Norman Geisler and former Muslim Abdul Saleeb.

Seth McBee said...

By your response...let's be totally honest...nothing would have made you happy about this dialogue, unless it was a debate. Which is not what we were aiming for.

Peace brother.

Michael said...

What you said is not totally honest and that is not my aim when in discussion with people. What I did say was that there were things asserted by the Muslims on the panel that the Christians gave no response to.
And it is also not truth that nothing would make me happy about this dialogue. I have participated in and been in dialogue with people of other faiths that did not lead to a debate. But, if something was said that refuted some of the most basic doctrines of our faith I would ask to give a response and give the Christian view. Leaving things unsaid and allowing lies to be stated without any counter response allows deception to spread.

Again, I refer to the book by Geisler and Saleeb in their book on Islam and discerning how to approach the differences with a peaceful, truth-filled dialog.

But leaving statements from the Muslim panelists about Mohommed being the one Jesus was referring to as the coming Counselor or the statement by another that Jesus could not be God because he doesn't know all things is not faithful to even the title of your blog, "Contend Earnestly".

Jesus is the light of the world, the Word made flesh. Whenever we do not shine the light and infuse truth into dialog, deceptions of the enemy turn people away from the narrow road to life.

When I think of contend earnestly, I think of Paul going throughout the city streets of Athens explaining, teaching, and proclaiming that in Jesus is the only hope of the world and he alone will raise us from the the dead. I also think of Joshua at the end of his life and urged his hearers "Choose this day whom you will for me and my how we will serve the Lord" Or, Jesus who said to crowd of people who were following him for many different reasons "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you."....he was contending for their very lives that they would see Him alone as Messiah, Savior, and Lord. Jesus was rejected by his very own people for making such claims and because of our sin which would desire to have ourselves be god over Him.

I believe the aim of befriending and dialogging with Muslims is a good one. But, for relationships to deepen and become more than just cordial acquaintances chief aims must be shared by both parties. There were many people cordial and friendly with Jesus until started sharing his chief aims. Then his group of followers got smaller before God brought increase. So, letting a crowd of Muslims and Christians know that the chief aim is that Jesus may be seen by them as worthy of worship and praise is not a bad thing at all. It gets out in the open right away.
Tim Keller does this very well. I don't know if you have ever seen him attend panels before or seen him when he has been invited to speak at places that lack any real Christian presence. He speaks with grace but also expresses what his intentions and aims are up front. In this he has not only gained the respect of his hearers, but has also remained faithful to the truth of the gospel.

Michael said...

A much better pattern of dialog of debate is one that was featured on Nightline toward the end of last year. Notice how persistent Driscoll is on being clear with what he believes and who Jesus is.
I am still perplexed on how Michael can give an entire presentation about Who Jesus is and not mention once that He is God; when it is plainly known that this is one of the main areas of contention (another form of the word Contend) between what Muslims believe and Christians believe. Most will also deny that Jesus was crucified on the cross.

The main central tenets of who Jesus is were neglected in the presentation and they were only mentioned in passing later. I find this very sad and unfortunate. Contrast that with this:

Seth McBee said...

How many public dialogues have you had with Muslims about trying to learn from each other's faiths?

Just curious.

Maybe being charitable and patient is another way of handling your critique of such events.

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