In Support of Dr. Ergun Caner has been under attack by extreme Muslims and others who have challenged his integrity and character, claiming that he was not a Muslim, let alone a devout one, and that he intentionally made false statements related to his Muslim background and conversion to Christianity. While Dr. For those times where I misspoke, said it wrong, scrambled words, or was just outright confusing, I apologize and will strive to do better. The attackers first attempted to prove that Ergun and I were never Muslims, a lie that was easily exposed. Then, their bitter efforts alleged we were never devout Muslims, an attack that even took cheap shots at our father, his devotion to Islam, and his devotion to his family.
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Even though I lived in a very conservative Muslim society I grew up in a somewhat of a liberal Muslim family. So I can honestly confess, that I have had first hand experience of every aspect of contemporary Islamic movements. I personally did not consider myself very religious. However, throughout all this time I never doubted the fundamentals of my religious faith. My view of other religions especially Judaism and Christianity was that although they were fundamentally the same since they had all been revealed by one God, they were all inferior to Islam because all of them had to various degrees corrupted the original message of their founding prophets, something that we as Muslims have not done.
My religious views were radically challenged when I left my country because of its civil turmoil and went to Europe for the continuation of my studies. By the providence of God and because of various circumstances, I ended up enrolling in an International Christian School.
I asked my question after sitting in my first class about some of the teachings of the Bible. How come your word of God says one thing and our word of God says something different?
That brief encounter forced me to start on a journey, engage my Christian friends in hours of cordial discussion and debate about the truthfulness of the Christian faith. Like almost any other Muslim, my original reaction to the claims of Christians about Jesus Christ was that of utter shock. These claims not only seemed like plain blasphemy but also quite nonsensical.
How could any rational being believe such things about an honored prophet of God? Despite my fundamental theological differences with my friends, there was something about their life and faith that impressed me a great deal. There was a sincerity in their relationship with God and other people that I had not encountered among my own Muslim people. So I would often tell them that I did not want to deny their faith but I just wanted to find a compromise so that I could hold to the truth of Islam and they could continue to hold to their faith.
However, I was in no doubt that their belief about Jesus was based on statements that the prophet Jesus had never actually claimed for himself. My difficulty in understanding Christian belief was very much along the lines that have historically seperated Islam from Christianity. First, there was the issue of the deity of Christ. How can anybody believe that a human being was actually God incarnate?
How can that be logically possible? The second obstacle was the doctrine of the Trinity, an issue closely related to the first problem.
Again, this Christian belief seemed to me was a logical absurdity and grossly compromised the belief in the Oneness of God. Finally, I did not grant in any way that the Bible, especially the New Testament documents, were reliable when it came to reporting the words of Christ.
My spiritual journey went on for months. One particular passage that troubled me, especially in light of my good friendship with many Christians, was in Sura Take not Jews and Christians for your friends and protectors; they are but friends and protectors to eachother. And he amongst you that turns to them for friendship is of them.
Verily God guideth not a people unjust. I began to sob with great sorrow and shame. The response that I received to my letter from one of the most prominent religious leaders in my country was that I should just continue my secular studies and not focus too much on religion. On the other hand, as my understanding of the Bible was increasing many of my questions were beginning to get answered. Even as a Muslim I came to believe that the crucifixion of Christ was an undisputable historical fact that no honest person that deals with evidences of history could deny.
The character of Christ himself, as manifested for example in his beautiful Sermon on the Mount, was gradually making a great impression on me. But for me, the most impressive factor about Christ, were the multitudes of Old Testament prophecies about the coming of the Messiah.
I was very attracted to Christ and yet I could not deny my own tradition and past. Becoming Christian seemed a definite betrayal of my own family and Islamic heritage. The tension in my life was so strong that I felt torn asunder between these two faiths. But I still could not bring myself to accept that Jesus was anything more than a human being. Surely the incredible statements attributed to Jesus were invented by later church and put in the mouth of Jesus.
In the midst of all this anxiety of thought, I woke up one morning and was suddenly struck by the meaning of a verse written by the prophet Isaiah in his ninth chapter. I had read this verse several weeks prior to that morning, but I had never understood its meaning. In Isa. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. The fact that the Messiah was not going to be just a prophet but Mighty God himself, was therefore a truth that had been prophesied seven hundred years before Christ in the Old Testament, and not something that had been made up by Christians many years or centuries after Christ!
I came to trust in Christ, the next day on January 20, I cried uncontrollably as I was praying and turning to Christ in faith. I did not know why, and though I had never felt much burden of guilt, I was feeling a great sense of peace and relief from the burden of my sins. A greater satisfaction was the sense of rest in finally finding the truth about God and His revelation of love to mankind in Jesus Christ. Soon after my own conversion, I decided to dedicate my entire life to promoting the Good News of Christ among Muslims and especially the people of my own country.
I later came to the United States and received my undergraduate and graduate degrees in Biblical and Theological Studies. This offer was open in but probably not open any longer.
Shelves: master-s-degree This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Introduction Islam is the worlds second largest religion, boasting more than one billion followers. The events of September 11, , and the fact that there are currently more Muslim Americans than Methodists combine to make Islam even more relevant to todays American Christians. In Answering Islam, Norman Geisler and Abdul Saleeb outline Islams fundamental beliefs, respond to them, and prevent a positive case for the Christian counterclaim. The Basic Doctrines of Orthodox Islam Though there are many rival sects within Islam orthodoxy, most Muslims agree on six basic doctrines. The foundation of all Muslim belief is the absolute unity and sovereignty of God.
Answering Islam: The Crescent in Light of the Cross