What Huda likes about the Bible in Arabic with subtitles.
In this clip of “Dr. Cynthia’s Side,” she discusses the place of disillusion with Islam in the process of Muslims leaving Islam and/or becoming Christian from Muslim. The nearly universal presence of violence and human rights abuses in Muslim countries have caused many to become disillusioned with Islam. When Huda was a Muslim, she looked at the Muslim world, its trials and abuses, from the view that since Islam was the true religion, it must be the best. “No country in the world practices true Islam,” she would say. Iran under the Shah before the revolution she felt was the closest to true Islam, because of the more open attitude there at that time.
However, when an Arab evangelist BE, who works with Dr. C, challenged Huda that the teachings of Islam actually reinforce the abuses in the Muslim world, she began to look into facts for herself. In this way, Huda’s disillusion with Islam because of its principles was added to her disillusion with Islam because of its practices. Her example underscores the teaching of BE that in order for a Muslim to have the courage to leave Islam, they must move beyond disillusion with Islam to knowing that it is wrong.
New believers commonly ask, “Where do I start reading the Bible?” This is an important question because the Bible is a very large book, and although every part is important, some places are definitely better for a new believer to start reading that others. For many Muslims a good place to start reading the Bible is the first book, Genesis. In Genesis are the stories of Adam, Abraham, and Noah – characters with which Muslims are already familiar and call “prophets.”
It is also important for seekers and new believers to learn about Jesus. The Gospel of John is great favorite among Christians for its beautiful and spiritual analogies. But the Sermon on the Mount is refreshingly powerful in is message, and Muslims should not miss it, so Matthew is an excellent place to start. And you could start reading the Bible with the Gospel of Mark, which being the shortest gospel is very fast paced and gives a quick view of the life of Jesus. Since it is held to be the earliest gospel, it is one that Muslim critics of Christianity are most likely to accept: yet even it shows the remarkable and unique person of Jesus Christ.
And finally, Dr. Cynthia says you can start reading the Bible based on what is being studied at your church or in your Bible study group.
Jesus or Mohammed? This is a question anyone who compares Christianity and Islam must ask. Who is the true prophet, Jesus or Mohammed? In this video clip Dr. Cynthia interviews Georges Houssney, coming from the Arab world, for his guidance in how we can determine who has the true message, Jesus or Mohammed?
Although Muslims claim that both Jesus and Mohammed are prophets, since they make opposite claims of what is true, how we should live, and how we get to heaven, a sincere seeker of truth must decide who brings the true message, Jesus or Mohammed? Houssney tells us to start with what both men claim about themselves. Mohammed claims to be “only a warner.” Jesus claims to be the Son of God and Savior. Since the difference between the two messages is extreme and impacts our eternal destiny, we must determine which brings the true message from God – Jesus or Mohammed?
How do I find the Truth? In this video clip Dr. Cynthia asks Luke Price for a method we can use to find the Truth. Seeing intense violence and violation of human rights in most Muslim countries, many in Islam are discouraged and doubting. First they doubt Islam, but since they believe that Islam is the final revelation of God with his final prophet, it makes them doubt the existence of God as well. They start to ask, “How do I find the Truth?” This clip is designed to provide tools for them – as well as any seeker – to learn how to objectively find the truth. Price provides us with tools of logic to help us find the truth. We can use these tools to help determine if anything, everything, or nothing is true.
Why is the crucifixion important? This is what Dr. Cynthia asks guest Bob Siegel in this video clip. Siegel, a Christian coming out of a Jewish background, adds to the historical proof that Jesus died on the cross, confirmation from the writings of Jesus’ Jewish enemies of the time, who also document that Jesus died on the cross.
Siegel explains to us that the crucifixion is important because through it Jesus not only fulfilled his prophecy that he would die and arise again, but the crucifixion is important because Jesus’ death was a blood sacrifice in our place. He quotes the apostle Paul in Corinthians about the essential importance of this doctrine in Christianity. The crucifixion is important because without it, the Christian hopes of forgiveness and resurrection from the dead are without basis.
Dr. Cynthia Summarizes the Bible and the Qur’an. This video clip summarizes the material Dr. C presents in the two more detailed clips on the Bible and the Qur’an. Here the focus is not on which book is true, but the different ways that Christians and Muslims approach the Bible and the Qur’an as their respective holy books. For example, to touch the Qur’an, one must be ritually pure, which is not necessary with the Bible. Non-Muslims, known as “infidels, or “kafir” are considered unworthy to touch a Qur’an in Arabic; whereas Christians are glad to have everyone read the Bible!
Another significant difference between the Bible and the Qur’an is that the actual Arabic words of the Qur’an are believed to have supernatural power in themselves. For Christians, it is the message of the Bible that holds the power, not the words specifically in the original Greek, Hebrew, or Aramaic. So, the Bible has the same power in any language. Not so with the Qur’an! It must be read and memorized in Arabic to count.
These are some, but not all, of the important differences between the Bible and the Qur’an. By understanding these approaches to the Bible and the Qur’an, we can better understand each others’ religions.
How does God speak in the Bible? How God speaks in the Bible is important for everyone to know – especially those coming from a Muslim background. In Islam, almost every chapter begins with a direct claim to be speaking words from God to people (the first chapter, or Fatiha, is a notable exception). So, when a Muslim approaches a holy book, they are expecting everything to be written from that vantage. This causes significant misunderstanding and even offence when they read the Bible. In the Bible, God speaks in several different ways.
In “How Does God Speak in the Bible?” Dr. Cynthia discusses the primary three ways God speaks in the Bible: directly, indirectly, and implied. In this clip she focuses on how God’s voice is implied. The ways God speaks in the Bible is important for everyone to know – especially those coming from a Muslim background. Almost every chapter in the Qur’an begins with a claim to be speaking words directly from God, so when a Muslim approaches a holy book, they are expecting everything to be written from that vantage. This causes significant misunderstanding and even offence when they read the Bible – unless they learn that in the Bible, God speaks in several different ways.
In a few places in the Bible God speaks directly to the people, in other areas it is indirectly through a message given to a prophet. But in many areas God instructs us through examples in the lives of his people. Also, since the Bible shows Jesus to be God, we accept that his words are from God. See also “How Does God Speak in the Bible?”
“Come join us!” says Dr. Cynthia of this quick trip to Egypt. Take a whirlwind tour of the ancient and Islamic sites of Egypt, as you travel from Cairo beyond Aswan to Abu Simbel in only 3 minutes! Besides the remarkable tourist sites of colossal columns and statues, you will peek into Al Azhar University, the ultimate authority of Sunni Islam. Then Dr. C shows you the view out of finely latticed windows of the women quarters of old Islamic Cairo.
What you will not see are the persecuted Christians Dr. C visited with in Upper Egypt. One was literally trembling at the memory of his cousin’s murder. Although Egypt has one of the oldest Christian traditions, extending from the early mission work of St. Mark, (who wrote the gospel so named), and still has about 10% Christians, they have suffered increasing persecution over the last decade. But through the television ministry of Father Zakaria and others, thousands, some say over a million, Muslims have left Islam and are walking into the kingdom of God. After taking this video travel to Egypt with us, take a moment to remember the needs and suffering of its believers.
Barbie is a mature Christian sister with the spiritual gifts of encouragement and evangelism. Because of her inspirational style, she has been a favorite teacher of Dr. Cynthia and many others. Every year for decades Barbie has divided her time between America and various places in the Middle East. Her remarkable story includes backpacking and hitch-hiking from Israel to India, including through Iran and Afghanistan back in the 1960s, when it was still relatively safe for two young women to travel alone in Muslim countries.
Besides adventures around the world, Barbie has also suffered incredible hardships and losses. In this clip she shares with Huda, and with us all, a little about her life and her becoming Christian from an agnostic background. Through Jesus, Barbie has come to have peace. She shares with us the importance of reading the Bible and getting to know Jesus better.
In this video clip Huda personally shares her testimony of what her life was like under Islam, and how it has changed since she became Christian from Muslim. She clearly states that Islam and its rituals brought no peace or comfort to her life. She found life under Islam very hard. As a new Christian from a Muslim background, she has found that although she still has trouble in her life, she has peace, and a sense of presence that lifts her above the world and keeps her safe. She quotes for us II Corinthians 5:17, “If anyone is in Christ they are a new creation. The old has gone, the new has come!” Huda invites us to join her on the real journey of her life as she becomes Christian from Muslim.