Several Christians welcome Huda, and all new believers in Jesus into the Christian family. This lesson has testimonies, including Huda’s, and gives advice to help newcomers get started on the Christian walk. It talks about getting and giving “discipleship.” For fun, we take a quick trip to Egypt.Continue reading...
Today’s lesson focuses on an excellent way to explain the gospel to Muslims: The Path of the Prophets. You will also hear a discussion on important differences between Islam and Christianity.Continue reading...
In a reality segment filmed in the early spring, we find Dr. Cynthia and Huda surrounded by mustard flowers. The branches of the walnut orchard are bare. Dr. C points to the bright yellow flowers and mentions how they faithfully return every year as spring begins. This faithfulness reminds her of God’s Faithfulness. Even when everything seems to be going wrong, God is with us and cares.Continue reading...
Today’s lesson is based on the reality of former Muslim Huda’s first Christmas. You will see her expressions as she learns for the first-time things that churched and even nominal Christians have grown up with. It also shows how Christmas can be used as a bridge to share the gospel with Muslims. Other holidays can be used as bridges too.No surprise, we call these Holiday Bridges.Continue reading...
ChristianfromMuslim.com is a comprehensive free video resource for Muslims desiring to learn about the Christian faith, and for Christians who want to help them do it.
Our team of international experts has contributed to hundreds of videos, ranging from short ones on a single question, to full half hour episodes. The videos include: lessons, testimonies, answers to common questions, reality clips from the life of a new believer from a Muslim background, and bonus features like devotional thoughts or travel in Muslim countries.
Muslims come to Christianity with a unique perspective, bringing different questions and needs than those of nominal Christians or skeptics. Our website (ChristianfromMuslim.com) is here with easy-to-watch videos that address both the head and heart needs former Muslims. And we cover important issues, like: the differences between Christianity and Islam, whether Christians should marry Muslims, how a Muslim can become and grow as a Christian, defending the Christian faith, and challenging Islam. In discussing these tough issues we speak the truth in love, as the Bible instructs us to do.
We realize that with hundreds of videos on our website, getting started and finding the best videos for you, could be confusing. Our drop-down “suggested viewing” menu was created with this in mind. Its lists video suggestions for you in the most commonly requested categories.
ChristianfromMuslim.com is the perfect, no-cost resource for Sunday School and focus groups that want to learn proven ways to evangelize and disciple Muslims. Simply play one of our 28 plus half hour episodes or recorded seminars, and follow it with discussion based on our printable study guides.
Whatever your interest in the Christian-Muslim interface, we believe you will find what you need at ChristianfromMuslim.com. Sign up today for news and new videos alerts!
At times, everyone experiences fear. Muslims making the decision to follow Christ may face dire consequences. It is important for these new believers, and the Christians working with them, to be aware of and prepared for fears and possible persecution. This lesson addresses these concerns. It contains interviews people who have suffered real fears or persecution.Continue reading...
This video clip is reality from the life of Huda and Dr. Cynthia. It might seem that it is a frivolous clip, just for fun or showing off. However, this is not the case. It brings to our attention the challenge that finding an appropriate wardrobe is for new believers, from any background, especially Muslim.
Imagine – when you are brought up that it is a sin to expose almost any of your body, sometimes even your eyes or hands, how can you “get a feel” for what is an acceptable amount of skin and/or figure to show now that you are a Christian? At first you might feel odd or “guilty” about showing anything – hair or skin, since you are breaking an ingrained pattern. But does that mean if you are going to feel guilty anyway, that you might as well show everything that anyone in Western culture shows? (See also videos on “Christian Liberty” and “Are there Rules in Christianity?” which address wardrobe and other issues of lifestyle importance to new believers from a Muslim background.”)
In this video, Dr. Cynthia shares reasons that we have found for Muslims returning to Islam after leaving it (technically called recidivism of an apostate).
For Christians working with Muslims, it is always a difficult to see a former Muslim returning to Islam. But this is not new trend. It has been happening since the early days of missions to Muslims, when it actually happened at a very high rate of up to 70%.
One of the reasons for recidivism, returning to Islam, is that the new believer from Muslim background came to the faith for the wrong motives. Maybe they were getting something in exchange for converting – food, increased status, marriage, acceptance, etc. In that case it is very doubtful as to whether or not they ever sincerely believed in their heart, or if they were simply making a bargain which lost its appeal in the long run.
A common reason for returning to Islam is fear and intimidation. When a Muslim leaves Islam, they are automatically under a fatwa for death, which extends all the way back to the time of the Prophet Mohammed. It does not need to be specifically pronounced for each of them. Although new converts to Islam don’t always know, those raised in Islam know the fatwa is on the head of an apostate, and any Muslim is justified in killing them anytime. Before execution takes place, if it actually does, there is usually a period of reindoctrination and reflection recommended for the apostate. In reality, this becomes intimidation and attempted brain washing. Only by great strength of will power or the Holy Spirit is someone able to withstand these pressures.
Another reason for returning to Islam is because of missing family and cultural support. Anyone leaving their family and culture is prone to miss it, and Muslims especially so. Why? First because Muslim culture is much more socially interconnected than Western: more group than individual. Secondly, because being disowned and shunned by one’s family is a painful thing for anyone. And thirdly, Islamic culture is intimately entwined with their religion. The Muslim has been programmed to base their year around the events of Islam. The special foods, the activities, the ceremonies which formerly made their lives rich are now gone.
Economic survival is another reason for returning to Islam. Muslim economies are typically not strong and without government safety nets. The safety nets are based on family, clan, and the mosque. When one leaves Islam, they not only loose family, but often their job and any means of survival. The Qur’an tells them that apostates should face hardships in this life. Not everyone faces starvation and privation willingly. In the short run it is easier to submit to Islam and eat than starve and go to heaven.
In America, thankfully economic survival is not tied to religion, so here that is not such a factor. However, in the current economy it is not easy for even well-educated English speaking Americans to find a job; how much more difficult for immigrants, even international students, to compete with Americans. Dr. Cynthia has seen examples of Muslims who return to their home nation for economic survival, where they then face all the above pressures to return to Islam.
Sometimes, she has found, former Muslims are so repulsed by Islam that it is not Islam that attracts them to leave Christianity. If what attracted them to become Christians was freedom from the bondage of Islamic Law, then they might be attracted to become secular. They become and more entangled in the ways of the world until they are scarcely different from anyone in Western culture, and scarcely have any faith at all.
Dr. Cynthia tells Christians working with Muslims that they can assess what kind of risk Muslims have of returning to Islam by finding what most attracted them to Christianity. And in any case, it is advisable for Christians discipling Muslims to provide for them emotional and social support to help make up for what they have lost in leaving Islam.
Mark Vyka is facing insecurity. In fact, he is dying of cancer. In this video he shares what has helped him face the insecurities of life.
Many in the Muslim world are facing insecurity. With the economies of most Muslim nations being weak, people wonder about finding jobs and supporting their families. Women especially face insecurity: what if my husband divorces me? What will happen to my children? If I struggle to study will my husband become angry at my new independence? To whom will my father marry me? Will I be beaten tonight?
When facing insecurity, Mark recommends that we read the Bible and look for a verse that encourages us, then “camp on it.” By this he means that we would think about it, meditate upon it and even memorize it. He encourages us to seek God first, because when we do, everything else falls into place (Matthew 6:33). If we walk in faith, God will provide for us what we need and a way to escape from our fear, temptation or problem (Genesis 22:14, I Corinthians 10:13).
This video is in memory of Mark Vyka 1957-2016.
Muslims think that since Christians are saved by grace that they are authorized to do anything – including immoral activities.
In the video on “Are there Rules in Christianity?” we discuss religious disciplines of things that do not save, but can benefit believers. In this related video on Christian Liberty, Dr. Cynthia and Rev. Georges Houssney discuss how much liberty we as Christians have. Can we do anything we want to and still be Christians? What about dressing scantily, drinking alcohol, moral behavior, or going to R rated movies?
The Bible tells us that although all things may be permissible for us, not all things are beneficial (I Corinthians 6:12). Houssney says that yes, we have freedom, but we are told not to misuse it. We must live in a way that loves others and considers their good. We should not put a stumbling block before someone else, to encourage them to sin (I Corinthians 8:9 & Galatians 5:4-6).
A particular problem for the practice of Christian liberty that Dr. Cynthia has run into is in the area of dress. This is especially a problem for women leaving Islam. Imagine – when you are brought up that it is a sin to expose almost any of your body, in some places even your eyes or hands, how can you “get a feel” for what is an acceptable amount of skin and/or figure to show now that you are a Christian? At first you might feel odd or “guilty” about showing anything – hair or skin, since you are breaking an ingrained pattern. But does that mean if you are going to feel guilty anyway, that you might as well show everything that anyone in Western culture shows?
Houssney reminds us that although people look on the outward appearance, God looks on the heart (I Samuel 16:7). True beauty comes from the inside, as we are told in both the Old and New Testaments (Proverbs 31:30 & I Peter 3:3,4). We should let our internal beauty flow out. In that way, we should care about what others think.
A high ranking Imam told Dr. Cynthia that if a man sees a woman and lusts, the sin is the woman’s. This sharply contrasts with what Jesus taught (Matthew 5:28,29). Dr. Cynthia expresses concern that if women worry too much about how men see them, they can be reduced to covering their faces and hands with gloves, as in strict Islam. She says there has to be a balance between a woman’s rights and a man’s lust. Houssney agrees. He quotes, “If we dress sexy we will get sex, if we dress lovely we will get love.”
In the end, Houssney and Dr. Cynthia agree that guidelines for Christian dress could be to:
- try not to be a stumbling block
- reflect well upon the Lord, and
- generally follow how a conservative person in Western culture might dress, in terms of how much of their body to show
Are there rules in Christianity? There are in Islam. Islam is a tremendous system of rules and laws. By following these laws one obtains points, or thawab to gain favor with Allah at the Day of Judgment, and a better chance to enter paradise. One of the things which often attracts a Muslim to Christianity is our freedom in Christ. The fact that we are loved and accepted by God without good deeds is a refreshing change from being burdened with heavy labor.
But the Christian life does contain disciplines. In this video Dr. Cynthia asks Rev. Georges Houssney, if there are rules in Christianity. She explains to him the challenges she has faced in encouraging new believers from a Muslim background to grow in disciplines like Bible study and prayer, without making them feel like they have simply entered another system of rules.
Houssney affirms that yes, Christians are saved by grace (Ephesians 2:8,9), not by our good deeds. However, if we want to grow as Christians we need to follow certain things called disciplines. We are not obligated to do these for salvation, but if we do not, we will not fully live in Christ. For example, to live we need to breath, eat, and drink. Similarly, to live spiritually we need to read the Word of God and pray. The fruit of the Spirit of self-control enables us to do these things (Galatians 5:22). (See also videos on “Christian Liberty, with Georges Houssney” and “Disciplines of the Christian Life, with Mike Licona.”)
George Saieg, an expert in Islam from a Muslim country, shares with us in this video some of his ideas of why a Christian shouldn’t marry a Muslim. Islam does not allow Muslim women to marry Christian men, so usually the situation that arises is that of a Christian woman tempted to marry a Muslim man. This is allowed in Islam. But the Bible teaches us that Christians should not be united to unbelievers (II Corinthians 6:14).
Saieg also draws our attention to the status of women in Islam as a practical reason that a Christian woman should not act upon temptation to marry a Muslim. Two of the many examples he gives us are the way women are described as a possession in Islam (Qur’an 2:223 & 3:14 and commentaries), and the fact that according to Mohammed most of the people in hell are women (El Bukhari 7:124, 1052). Saieg says English translations of the Qur’an are soft, and that Western women would never marry a Muslim if they could read the Qur’an in Arabic.
As a practical example, Saieg cites the case of his own cousin who married a Muslim man. At first he assured her that she would be able to practice her Christian faith freely; however as time went on he continued to pressure her more and more to become a Muslim. (This is a situation commonly reported by Christian women marrying Muslims to him and Dr. Cynthia.)
Ada was in the Middle East while in the military. She met Muslim men who were flattering and attractive and understands why American women might want to marry one. However, she shares with us in this video why she wouldn’t marry a Muslim. Her concerns are based on the difference in the religions’ teachings and following what is true. She draws attention to the loving approach to others that Christians are taught to have (I Corinthians 13:4-8,13) and how this teaching is lacking in Islam. Islam, she says, is false teaching (Matthew 7:15, 16).
Ada reflects on how sad it would be to loose one’s children to a mother-in-law or other woman to teach them a different basis of life than we have in Christianity (in divorce, the father retains ultimate control of the children). Ada reminds us that the Bible teaches we should not be unequally joined to unbelievers (II Corinthians 6:14), which would be the case if a Christian marries a Muslim.
Rev. Georges Houssney and Elias, both of whom were raised in the Middle East, discuss why a Christian shouldn’t marry a Muslim in this video. They present for us their top concerns, but advise that any Christian considering this step spend much time in consultation with a mature Christian advisor. They admit that not everything they share applies to every case.
First, Elias shares that a Christian shouldn’t marry a Muslim because of the lack of common ground they would have. (This actually would apply in every case of true believers.) In 2 Corinthians 6:14, they remind us that the Bible says light and darkness do not have fellowship, and should not join together. A marriage relationship will be strained with such different backgrounds as Christianity and Islam.
Houssney recognizes that Muslim men can be very romantic. It seems like they will do anything to gain the hand of their loved one in marriage; but in his large experience counseling around the Muslim world, this changes after marriage.
Christian women should be aware that they will face two challenges they might not be expecting. First, since the Qur’an gives a man the right to have 4 wives, whom he can divorce rather easily, it tends to put a man in the mindset of always checking out other women as possibilities. Why not? It is their right in Islam (Qur’an 4:3).
The second thing that a woman should be aware of is that in Islam, the father has priority in custody of the children. If separation or divorce happens, you would very likely loose your children to the Muslim family of your husband.
In this reality segment from the life of Dr. Cynthia and some of the friends and former Muslims she associates with we get a glimpse at the wedding of a former Muslim and a Christian. Dr. Cynthia tells us a few intriguing details from the life of this former Muslim. Since the wedding brought together former Muslims and others from or interested in the Middle East, it seemed like a good time for us to interview some of them. You can watch them in the entire episode of “Should Christians Marry Muslims,” or watch the clips separately (Why Shouldn’t I Marry a Muslim? Why I Wouldn’t Marry a Muslim, Why Shouldn’t a Christian Marry a Muslim, An American Woman who Converted to Islam for Marriage.)
In this video, Arabs Georges Houssney and Elias discuss why you shouldn’t become a Muslim. Out of the many reasons that you shouldn’t become a Muslim they select six, as follows:
- The concern that Westerners are being converted to a false picture of Islam. The Islamic concept of taqiyya, dissimulation (adapted from Qur’an Surah 3:26), allows an inaccurate picture to be presented for reasons such as self-protection and proselytism.
- Christian concepts and views of God are being adapted into presentation of something different than Islam is. You might think their view of God is more similar to the Christian view than it actually is.
- Saving relationship with Jesus Christ. Elias wants us to know that what is important is not which religion wins more followers, but that in Christianity you can have a personal, saving relationship with Jesus.
- The Law of Apostasy. You should not become a Muslim because, based on the Qur’an (Surah 9:12 & 4:89) and hadith (El Bukhari 9:57) once you become a Muslim, you can not leave Islam without risking death. Houssney tells us that we should not become Muslims based on this risk. He shares a case with us that illustrates Islamic freedom of religion is to convert to Islam, not from it. (In some Muslim countries, your official religion is part of your official documents.)
- The Truth. We should not become a Muslim because we should believe what is true, not simply convenient. We might be tempted to convert for love, or to fit in with friends, family or culture, or because of racial issues; but before God we must look for and believe the truth.
- Eternal Security. You should not become a Muslim if you want assurance of where you are going when you die. Jesus promises us eternal life (John 3:16 & 20:31), whereas Mohammed himself admits he did not know where he was going when he died (El Bukhari 5:266).
In this video clip Rev. Georges Houssney and young believer Elias discuss the differences between Islam and Christianity. Both were raised among Muslims in the Middle East and know the differences between Islam and Christianity from both study and experience. Although a the differences between Islam an Christianity are many, and a full discussion is beyond the scope of this video, Georges Houssney and Elias present to us the most significant ones from their perspective:
- How we get to heaven. Islam, like every religion except Christianity, offers its followers a system of works. By works and religious practices (deen), Muslims hope to gain Allah’s approval and increase their chance of being accepted into paradise.
- Rules vs. Relationship. Islam offers a system of rules. Christianity offers a personal relationship with God as our Father and Savior. We are to walk in fellowship with Jesus and do the things that he did. (I John 1:7 & 2:6)
- External vs. Internal. Islam strives to improve a person, and society, through external indicators: rules and appearances. Christianity is about internal attitude and heart change.
- Works vs. Grace. In Christianity God saves us by his grace, not by our works, so our salvation is based on God’s power, not ours! Christians are called upon to do good works, but these works are a result of our thankfulness for salvation, not to earn it. (Galatians 5:13,14)
- Salvation is a free Gift. In Jesus sacrificial death, God paid the price for our sins. All we have to do is humble ourselves to receive it. If we confess our sins, God forgives them (I John 1:9).
Houssney tells us to read the Bible to learn more about God.
In this video, Rev. Georges Houssney and Elias, both of whom were raised in Muslim societies in the Middle East, share some advice for those who are considering leaving Islam. First, Houssney lets you know that you are in good company. Millions are leaving Islam: in fact, his statistics show that 350 million Muslims have left Islam in the past 15 years! Terrorism and other harsh results of Islamic laws are pushing many people into leaving Islam.
For many, the steps in leaving Islam are to become irreligious, and then atheist. Islam indoctrinates its devotees that Christians are deceived and live ungodly lives. These thoughts usually keep them from immediately seeking truth in Christianity. Atheism however leaves you empty. But atheism can eventually prepare a person to be more open to other explanations about God than that in Islam.
Houssney and Elias’ advice for leaving Islam is to look for the truth. Ask God to guide you to the truth. The Bible tells us, way back in a book of Moses, Deuteronomy 4:29, that we will find God if we seek him with all our heart. As part of your leaving Islam, seek God, and take a fresh look at the Bible and Christianity!
The Bible tells us that Jesus is the only true way to a relationship with God. Jesus will not leave you empty. He will save you and give you new life! (John 14:6 & 3:16, 2 Corinthians 5:17)
In the West, we can discuss Jesus anywhere freely without fear, even public places like an airport. It is good for people to hear us discussing Jesus and how wonderful he is! Jesus gives us joy (Galatians 5:22). Even though life is full of hardships, he wants us to be filled with his Spirit and delight in the blessings he gives us.
In this reality video, Huda, a new Christian from a Muslim background, shares with us some of the things she finds amazing about Jesus. She mentions prophecies about his birth (Micah 5:2). Dr. Cynthia adds that the Bible tells us it was just the right time when Jesus appeared (Galatians 4:4). Huda tells us that she shares these things with her Buddhist, Muslim and Jewish friends and they are surprised.