Rick Warren Is a Bridge-Builder, Even with Muslims

By



Rick and Kay Warren at the PEACE Center

It wasn’t long ago that I wrote a response to critics claiming that Rick Warren endorses “Chrislam.” My frustration then remains my frustration now, namely, that people will follow their first impulse, believe whatever comes up in Google, and assume the worst in the name ofdiscernment, which is ironic since real discernment is about digging for truth instead of believing a first report.

The latest debacle surrounds a partnership between Saddleback Church and the Muslim community of Orange County, as reported by Jim Hinch in the Orange County Register. There are people who are constant critics of Rick and I fully expect, with any major news story, they will highlight minor points and twist them to fit their preconceived idea about Rick as the pseudo-evangelical heretic. God will handle such critics in His own way and time, as He sees fit.

I’m more concerned about the evangelical leaders who, because of those outspoken and overly-harsh critics, will be questioned by their church members every time they quote Rick or refer to him in some way. After the sermon, someone will ask the Pastor, “Are you sure you want to be following a guy who… supports Islam? promotes ‘Chrislam?’ embraces higher mysticism? etc.” To you, who courageously lead your churches and love Pastor Rick, I want to share some clarity.

Theologically, there are two points that surface repeatedly among questioners. One surrounds the verbiage that Christians and Muslims worship the “same God.” This is a rather poor choice in terminology, but the misunderstanding is understandable. What Saddleback really affirms is that both Christians and Muslims are monotheists – that we both worship one God, and that the deities of which we both speak share many similarities. Neither the Christian leaders, nor the Muslim leaders involved in the

discussion have ever affirmed that Jehovah and Allah are the “same God.”

So “we both worship one God” is easily interpreted as “we worship the same God” but wrongly so. There is simply an affirmation that both Christians and Muslims are monotheists. Pastor Warren and Saddleback still affirm, without reservation, that Jesus Christ is the One and only Savior of the world. But the point of the discussion between the two groups wasn’t to point out differences but to point out similarities, not for the purpose of highlightingsameness between the two religions, but rather the ability for the two religions to tackle issues, side-by-side.

You may disagree with this approach. You might feel that Christians shouldn’t work alongside Muslims, even with differences clearly stated, to accomplish common goals. Disagreeing with this approach is acceptable, branding Rick Warren as a false teacher is not. Disagree with Pastor Rick’s methodology if you wish, but don’t misrepresent his theology, which is clearly Christocentric.

The second point with which people have had questions pertains to an agreement between Saddleback and the Muslim community that “we will not try to convert one another.” Leaders have questioned, does Rick not believe in the necessity of evangelism and the Great Commission? Does he not see conversion to the faith as necessary for entrance into eternal life with Christ?

Again, based on Rick’s track record of having spent over thirty years building a church that constantly shares the gospel (the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and salvation in Him alone by grace alone through faith alone), continually baptizes far more new believers than their critics, and having sponsored the planting of churches around the globe, I would assume the benefit of the doubt might be extended to him. But since the question has been raised, let it be understood that Rick Warren unequivocally espouses the necessity of evangelism to the life of Christianity, to the vitality of the church, and to the gathering of all nations to Jesus Christ.

It is the method of evangelism that becomes the important issue. Saddleback is merely challenging Christians to state the truth of their faith, share their story, and demonstrate the love of Jesus. Out of this kind of living, without any manipulative or coercive tactics, people of any non-Christian background will be enticed to ask more questions. Not once has Rick encouraged Christians to hide their faith or obscure the specific nature of their salvation experience. On the contrary, Saddleback regularly trains thousands of individual believers in how to share their faith while believing that the gospel, in an of itself, can be entrusted to a sovereign God to draw and save those who are willing to seek and ask.

In other words, we don’t have to “get people to convert.” Our obligation, according to the Great Commission, is to go and tell all the nations about the gospel of Jesus Christ, leaving the results entirely in the hands of the Holy Spirit. The Great Commission is not about getting people to exchange one religion for another. It’s about sharing the story in both word and deed and demonstrating the irresistible, life-changing power of Jesus Christ.

Any time a leader like Rick Warren steps outside of the comfortable bubble of our evangelical tribe to extend a hand of friendship to a people with such different beliefs, the rest of us feel a little shaky, perhaps even a little afraid of what might happen if we totally opened our hearts and arms to those on “the other side.” Our sense of hoping to preserve the safe distance between us andthem is, perhaps, the greater problem in this story. Jesus once challenged an entire generation of Jewish leaders to consider forsaking their legalistic safety zone to embrace prostitutes, tax collectors, and Samaritans. Maybe He’s still challenging us today…

Source: BrandonACox.com.


Share With Your Friends…

Clip to Evernote
Send to Kindle
Print Friendly and PDF


About Brandon Cox

Brandon Cox has been a Pastor for fifteen years and is currently planting a church in northwest Arkansas, a Saddleback-sponsored church. He also serves as Editor of Pastors.com and Rick Warren's Pastors' Toolbox, and authors a top 100 blog for church leaders. He's also the author of Rewired: Using Technology to Share God's Love.


  • http://craigcfisher.wordpress.com Craig Fisher

    you have either never read the Quran or you are a traitor or you are delusional

    The Quran consists of 114 chapters of varying lengths, each known as a sura. Suras are
    classified as Meccan or Medinan,
    depending on whether the verses were revealed before or after the migration
    of Muhammad to the city of Medina.

    The Quran contains at least 109 verses that call Muslims to war with
    nonbelievers for the sake of Islamic rule. Some are quite graphic, with
    commands to chop off heads and fingers and kill infidels wherever they may be
    hiding. Muslims who do not join the fight are called
    ‘hypocrites’ and warned that Allah will send them to Hell if they do not join
    the slaughter.

    Unlike nearly all of the Old
    Testament verses of violence, the verses of violence in the Quran are
    mostly open-ended, meaning that they are not restrained by the historical
    context of the surrounding text. They are part of the eternal, unchanging
    word of Allah, and just as relevant or subjective as anything else in the Quran.

    The context of violent passages is more ambiguous than might be expected of
    a perfect book from a loving God, however this can work both ways. Most
    of today’s Muslims exercise a personal choice to interpret their holy book’s
    call to arms according to their own moral preconceptions about justifiable
    violence. Apologists cater to their preferences with tenuous arguments
    that gloss over historical fact and generally do not stand up to
    scrutiny. Still, it is important to note that the problem is not
    bad people, but bad ideology.

    Unfortunately, there are very few verses of tolerance and peace to abrogate
    or even balance out the many that call for nonbelievers to be fought and
    subdued until they either accept humiliation, convert to Islam, or are killed.
    Muhammad’s own martial legacy – and that of his companions – along with the
    remarkable stress on violence found in the Quran have produced a trail of blood
    and tears across world history.

    19. Surah Maryam (Mary)

    35. It befits not (the Majesty of) Allah that He should beget a son
    [this refers to the slander of Christians against Allah, by saying that 'Iesa
    (Jesus) is the son of Allah]. Glorified (and Exalted be He above all that they
    associate with Him). When He decrees a thing, He only says to it,
    “Be!” and it is.

    Surah 4:157 Surat An-Nisā’ (The Women)

    And [for] their saying,
    “Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger
    of Allah .” And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but
    [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over
    it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of
    assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain.

    Surah 9:29 Surat At-Tawbah (The
    Repentance)

    Fight those who do not believe in
    Allah or in the Last Day and who do not consider unlawful what Allah and His
    Messenger have made unlawful and who do not adopt the religion of truth from
    those who were given the Scripture – [fight] until they give the jizyah
    willingly while they are humbled.

    Surah 5:33-34 Surat Al-Mā’idah (The
    Table Spread)

    Indeed, the penalty for those who wage war against Allah and His
    Messenger and strive upon earth [to cause] corruption is none but that they be
    killed or crucified or that their hands and feet be cut off from opposite sides or
    that they be exiled from the land. That is for them a disgrace in this world;
    and for them in the Hereafter is a great punishment,

    Except for
    those who return [repenting] before you apprehend them. And know that Allah is
    Forgiving and Merciful.

    Surah 4:89 Surat
    An-Nisā’ (The Women)

    They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be
    alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause
    of Allah . But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you
    find them and take not from among them any ally or helper.

    • John Elias

      Amen & Amen – Very Well Said Indeed – Maranatha…

      † Galatians 6 : 14 †
      “But God forbid that I should glory,
      save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,
      by whom the world is crucified unto me,
      and I unto the world.”

  • John

    Deleted posts restored here :

    Notice the ESV version has appeared above. This COULD be the reason
    for so many doctrinal issues. Try finding these verses in the ESV :
    Acts 8 : 37 :
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts%208%20:%2037&version;=ESV1
    John 5 : 7-8 (ESV)
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20John%205%20:%207-8&version;=ESVCOMPARED
    WITH :1 John 5 : 7-8 : King JESUS Version (Amen)
    :http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20John%205%20:%207-8&version;=KJVANDMatthew
    18 : 11 :
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%2018%20:%2011&version;=ESVRomans
    16 : 24 :
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans%2016%20:%2024&version;=ESVThe
    full depth of this issue can be studied here
    :http://www.Constellation7.org/Constellation-Seven/The-NIV-ESV-EXPOSED.pdfTHEN
    :http://www.Constellation7.org/Constellation-Seven/NextLevel-CONCLUSION.pdfMIZPAH
    ……. 
    “Go ye into ALL the world and preach The Gospel to EVERY creature”
    This encompasses ALL moslems – Amen : THEN : “Baptizing them In The Name of The
    Father, The Son and The Holy Ghost for the Forgiveness Of Repented SINS In His
    Precious Blood” – ONE Name, ONE Lord – JESUS, The Crucified, Resurrected,
    Ascended ONLY Begotten Son Of The Living God – ABBA (NOT “allah”) If this is NOT
    the Mandate to Convert Lost souls for their Salvation, “We” don’t know what IS
    ??? In ALL Honesty Rick, EVERY moslem on earth is ONLY a couple of steps away
    from being TRULY Saved : 1). Believe The Crucifixion Historical FACT – How will
    they Believe this if no-one Preaches This TRUTH to them? 2). Understand that
    BECAUSE The Blessed Mother Of The Lord, MARY, was indeed a Pure Virgin WHEN she
    gave Birth To Christ, …
    Hmm – NOW the ESV links in the First Post have GONE….

    Did you REMOVE
    them in the past 28 minutes ???

    Curious…..

    Guess this IS an
    Issue then…

    Any comments on this Toronto Aiport service video
    :-

    • http://brandonacox.com Brandon A. Cox

      And we delete comments when they go off topic. We publish disagreements, but reserve the right delete comments we feel take things in some other direction.

  • John

    Dear Moderator – WHY did you delete the info provided on the Holy Bible translations?

    Then, allow Scripture quotes to link to the ESV (again).

    With Acts 8 : 37 MISSING from the ESV, clearly something is wrong with your “food”.

    Bad nutrition can lead to an unhealthy Body.

    This is the ROOT of the controversy.

    Woe is me if i Preach NOT The Gospel Of Christ.

    How can the Full Gospel be Preached with some 68,000 + words and 16 whole verses (including Verse numbers) MISSING?

    Again – take a look at what you guys are NOT reading in the ESV and the NIV and others :

    http://www.Constellation7.org/Constellation-Seven/The-NIV-ESV-EXPOSED.pdf

    http://www.Constellation7.org/Constellation-Seven/NextLevel-Conclusion.pdf

    Don’t think this Issue is NOT relevant, it Truly IS.

    moslems say the Bible is changed by Christians and flawed so NOT reliable to be Believed.

    Well as far as ALL the new translations are concerned, they actually DO have a point !!

    This must have touched a nerve with you because you deleted my Posts.

    Any comments?

    Especially in the Light of the above missing VERSE in full HERE :

    Acts 8:36-37
    36 And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water:
    and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?
    ***37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest.
    And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

    With Verse 37 GONE from the ESV, Rick’s gonna have a hard time pointing moslems
    to One Key Belief for SALVATION…..

    • http://brandonacox.com Brandon A. Cox

      The ESV links are provided by a script. If you don’t see them, the script didn’t run. We don’t add or remove them. They’re automated. And as for the Bible translation issue, for us, it’s a non-issue here.

      • John

        Thanks Brandon – understand….

        Yes – figured it was a script. How about changing it to the AV so nothing is missing? Just a thought…

        This point is relevant because many important Revelation’s can’t be read in the new versions.

        Also, don’t want to give islam an excuse to say “See – your Bible is missing verses – it is man-made and NOT Divine” (or words to that effect) which is what they say regarding The Crucifixion.

        Daniel 12 : 11
        And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away,
        and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be
        a thousand two hundred and ninety days.
        Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to
        the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.

  • Pastor Barry E. Knight

    This one guy in a book I read, name Jesus Christ, use to confound the religious socialites by spending time with sinners and He never condemned them for their sins or called them out on the carpet as heretics or demon worshippers.  It’s funny because He even had lunch with them.  I remember reading in this book about Jesus sitting at a well talking to a woman who wanted to give Him a drink of water or something like that.  She wasn’t a Christian.  After He finished speaking with her she went and told everyone about Him!  I don’t know if any of the “Rick Warren” accussers or those opposed to his methodology have ever read this book, but it just might clear up a little of the confusion.  It’s an awesome book.  You guys should read it…ALL OF IT!!

  • John

    “Go ye into ALL the world and preach The Gospel to EVERY creature” This encompasses ALL moslems – Amen : THEN : “Baptizing them In The Name of The Father, The Son and The Holy Ghost for the Forgiveness Of Repented SINS In His Precious Blood” – ONE Name, ONE Lord – JESUS, The Crucified, Resurrected, Ascended ONLY Begotten Son Of The Living God – ABBA (NOT “allah”) If this is NOT the Mandate to Convert Lost souls for their Salvation, “We” don’t know what IS ??? In ALL Honesty Rick, EVERY moslem on earth is ONLY a couple of steps away from being TRULY Saved :

    1). Believe The Crucifixion Historical FACT – How will they Believe this if no-one Preaches This TRUTH to them?

    2). Understand that BECAUSE The Blessed Mother Of The Lord, MARY, was indeed a Pure Virgin WHEN she gave Birth To Christ, WHO then Is JESUS The Son OF ?? Answer : The Son Of ABBA (NOT “allah”) and this Abba IS The ONLY God – THERE IS NO OTHER God – Alleluia & Amen

    Luke 23 : 33 & 45-47

    “And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there
    they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the
    other on the left.”

    “And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst. And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost. Now when the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, Certainly this was a righteous man.”

    Luke 24 : 1-7
    “Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments: And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.”

    This is ALL brother, that YOU need to Explain to the moslem peoples.

    The Holy Spirit WILL Do The REST – Amen & Amen

    Forget all the political correctness and “Be About The Father’s
    Business” In The Most Holy Name Of The Lord JESUS Christ, Alive In
    Heaven NOW, In The Very Same Body that Hung, Suffered, Died, Resurrected
    and Ascended, SOON To Return AGAIN – Amen

    Love and Truth -

  • BOB

    Is the King’s Way document available online somewhere for me to read?

    In my last comment I said that someone should apologize to that reporter for feeding him misinformation and causing this whole controversy.

    This is reported to be from Jim Hitch the reporter who wrote the story:

    1. The primary source for this story was a five-page
    document jointly drafted by Abraham Meulenberg, a Saddleback pastor in
    charge of interfaith outreach, and Jihad Turk, director of religious
    affairs at the Islamic Center of Southern California, a mosque in Los
    Angeles. The document was unveiled at a December, 2011 dinner at
    Saddleback Church attended by approximately 300 Saddleback members and
    members of Southern California’s Muslim community. At the dinner a
    Powerpoint presentation described the document, and the King’s Way
    outreach effort which inspired the document, as “a path to end the 1,400
    years of misunderstanding between Muslims and Christians.” The
    document, which was given to me by a source for this story on condition
    it not be published in its entirety, outlines several areas of
    theological agreement between Christians and Muslims and commits members
    of both faiths to three goals: becoming friends; making peace; and
    sharing “the blessings of God with others.” Here is how the document
    describes the points of theological agreement:

    I. WHO: we believe in ONE GOD:

    1. God is one (Mark 12:29; Muhammed 47:19)
    2. God is the Creator (Genesis 1:1; Al Shura 42:11)
    3. God is different from the world (1 Timothy 6:16; An An’am 6:103)
    4. God is Good
    a. God loves (1 John 4:16; Al Buruj 85:14)
    b. God is just (1 John 1:19, Romans 3:26; Hud 11:45)
    c. God’s love encompasses God’s judgment (1 Peter 4:8; Al A’raf 7:156; Al Ghafir 40:7)

    The Register story based the phrases “same God” and “one God” on the
    phrasing in this document, which states that Christians and Muslims
    believe in one God.

    2. Rick Warren initially posted a comment to the article claiming
    that the article contained “multiple errors.” That comment was later
    deleted, I presume by Warren. After seeing that comment I reached out to
    Warren’s director of communications. On Monday, Feb. 27 a Saddleback
    representative called and told me that while the Register story was
    factually accurate, folks at Saddleback would prefer that the opening
    paragraph read “Muslims and Christians believe that God is one.”
    Following a discussion with a Register editor Saddleback decided to
    withdraw its request for a clarification. At no time has anyone at
    Saddleback said to me or to anyone else at the Register that the story
    contains factual inaccuracies.

    3. Warren states in his white paper that “no one even talked to me
    about that article!” I made numerous attempts to contact Warren, both by
    phone and by e-mail, before the story was published. I was eventually
    told by Warren’s director of communications that Warren was too busy
    with other projects to speak with me or to e-mail a response to the
    story’s main claims, which I had e-mailed to the communications
    director. Instead I was put in touch with Tom Holladay, an associate
    senior pastor at Saddleback. I ran all of the story’s claims by Holladay
    and he affirmed all of them, including the language of the King’s Way
    document and the fact that King’s Way was an effort to build bridges of
    friendship and cooperation, not an attempt to evangelize. During my
    conversation with Holladay I asked whether the King’s Way effort,
    including the December dinner and the theological document, was done
    with Rick Warren’s approval. “Of course it has his approval,” Holladay
    replied. It is neither fair nor accurate to claim that this story was
    published without attempting to solicit Rick Warren’s response.

    4. Warren claims in his white paper that it is “flat-out wrong” that
    either he or members of Saddleback have promised not to evangelize the
    Muslims they are working with in the King’s Way effort. As I stated
    above, that was not what I was told by Tom Holladay. Also, every one of
    the Muslim sources I talked to for this story emphasized that both sides
    promised not to evangelize one another. Indeed Muslims told me that the
    promise not to evangelize was one of the things that enabled them to
    overcome their wariness toward evangelicals and build bonds of
    friendship. Again, no source for this story, including at Saddleback,
    ever told me that the intent of the King’s Way effort was to evangelize
    Muslims.
    This story, obviously, has generated a great deal of passionate
    response. I respect Rick Warren’s desire to make his views and
    intentions clear. However I do not believe it is fair to question the
    accuracy of the Register’s story or the way it was reported. I have had
    several conversations with people at Saddleback following the
    publication of the story, including with the church’s director of
    communications. Everyone I have talked to from the church has told me
    that the story is entirely factually accurate but they wish certain
    phrases had been worded differently. However, since those phrases stem
    directly from a printed document whose authenticity no one has
    questioned, everyone agrees that there is nothing in the story to
    correct.

  • BOB

    CONFUSION REIGNS SUPREME

    QUOTE:

    What Saddleback really affirms is that both Christians and Muslims are monotheists – that we both worship one God,
    and that the deities of which we both speak share many similarities.
    Neither the Christian leaders, nor the Muslim leaders involved in the
    discussion have ever affirmed that Jehovah and Allah are the “same God.”

    So “we both worship one God” is easily interpreted as “we worship the
    same God” but wrongly so. There is simply an affirmation that both
    Christians and Muslims are monotheists. Pastor Warren and Saddleback
    still affirm, without reservation, that Jesus Christ is the One and only
    Savior of the world. But the point of the discussion between the two
    groups wasn’t to point out differences but to point out similarities,
    not for the purpose of highlightingsameness between the two religions, but rather the ability for the two religions to tackle issues, side-by-side.

    Even the language that you use here in an attempt to clarify your position creates confusion.

    By stating that we both worship one God and affirming that Musllims are also monotheists; doesn’t that create the impression that you accept the idea that Allah is in fact another God who also exists or imply that their acts of worship to their God are valid?  So “we both worship one God” is easily interpreted as “we worship Jehovah and you worship Allah” and we affirm your belief in one God.  Is that what you meant to say?

    I understand that Islam is a monotheistic religion but the “god” that Muslims worship does not exist.

    If Mohammed was a true prophet of God and the Koran his final revelation to man then we all need to become Muslims.  If Mohammed was not a true prophet sent by the one true God then the Koran is either Mohammed’s personal fantasy mixed with bits of ideas plagiarized from the Old & New Testament or a record of what was planted in his mind by Demons.

    When Muslims turn to face Mecca and bow down to offer their prayers to Allah is that an act of worship or is it an act of idolatry?  What is Saddlebacks position on that point?

    • http://brandonacox.com Brandon A. Cox

      Bob, precisely why I went on to name both deities and explicitly clarify that Jehovah and Allah are not the same, and further clarified that Jesus Christ is the only Son of the only living God. To worship any other God than Jehovah is an act of idolatry, of which the whole world is guilty. This is why it’s so imperative that we love people and share Jesus, so that the world might be redeemed from the penalty of idolatry and sin.

      • BOB

        Then why doesn’t Saddleback officially affirm that Islam is idolatry rather than saying something that is so easy to misunderstand?  Why even bother to state that you AFFIRM that Christians and Muslims are monotheists?  That creates confusion.  Why not affirm the fact that Muslims and anyone else who doesn’t worship the one true God are all idolaters. The world doesn’t understand that concept.  We live in the age of Pluralism.  All paths lead to God!

        How else would you explain how that reporter got the wrong message?  Especially when so many other churches are actually proclaiming the message that we all worship the same God.

        http://www.donotbesurprised.com/2012/03/chrislam-musical.html

        Don’t be surprised or frustrated by the response you get.  It stems entirely from how you present your message. If you really believe that to worship any God other than Jehovah is an act of idolatry then why did you say “the deities of which we both speak share many similarities”? 

        Are you saying that Allah a deity???  I think that most people, especially non-Christians reading that would get that impression.

        All of this confusion is the direct result of what Saddleback has said, or not said on this topic.  Someone should apologize to that reporter for feeding him misinformation and causing this whole controversy. 

        My suggestion is to say what you mean and mean what you say. 

      • http://communicatingacrossboundariesblog.com/ Marilyn Gardner

        As someone who has lived a long time in the Muslim world, from 3 months of age to 18 and then as an adult for 10 years, I applaud this article and feel I need to correct some misinformation from commenters. The word “Allah” in Arabic is simply the word “God”. That’s it. One could argue, and I would say rightly so, that because the characteristics and view of God are so different then there is a completely different understanding of God. But Allah is God. Period. Christians in some countries refer to Allah as God but also use the words “Ya Rab” which means “Oh God, or Oh Lord” I would ask the skeptic “Who did you pray to before you became a believer?”  Did you pray to God – yet did not have a full understanding based on Christ as Saviour? Well then….as Muslims pray, are they not praying to “God” but without full understanding.  There is one way to God…but there are many ways to find His son. God in all his creativity uses millions of ways to bring people to an understanding of Salvation. As far as Islam being idolatry – that thought process won’t build the bridges necessary to move forward in relationship. 

        • John

          Hi
          Marilyn,
          Please note very carefully : “allah” is a proper noun, an ACTUAL name. The sad truth that few are saying is simply that “allah” was a pre-mohammaden Sabean MOON DEITY, (an IDOL) worshipped by pagan Arabs a VERY long time before mohammad’s great grand parents were even born. “allah” is NOT Arabic for GOD. allah is a NAME. So, when this name of IDOLATRY is uttered, this is simply “a god”, no different to molech, bel, merodach, nebo, chiun, buddha, ram, vishnu, krishna, kali, shiva; ALL the names of the Egyptian idols; the North American totems; the Hawaiian tikis; the idols of the Aztecs and the Mayans; the Norse gods; the Greek gods; the Roman gods; the Chinese idols (the general, kwung yam and other multitudes); the Celtic and Druid standing stone ‘gods’; WOW Marilyn, there are THOUSANDS of them littered down through history.

          As to THIS “allah”, i Prefer personally, IN Tongues, “AH-lucifer” or, put another way, “allah-shiva” = “ALL WHO SUFFER”

          lucifer WAS the Original Idol and STARTED the whole satanic mess, BEFORE this earth Was Created, perhaps during a Thousand Year Period AFTER God Rested on His Seventh Day, but WELL BEFORE Adam was Created, just after 4000 BC – Amen
          SEE HERE
          (Past Tense) :
           

          Revelation 12 : 7 “And there was war in
          heaven:”

          http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Revelation%2012%20:%207-9&version=KJV

          SO, this allah is just another trick from HELL.

          ACTUALLY, (poor moslems), this satanic invention has them BOWING DOWN five times a day TO THE LARGEST IDOL ON THE PLANET – mecca ITSELF and the kaaba – END OF STORY.

          Here is The Holy Bible Prophecy below ALL ABOUT islam and its FINAL DEMISE – Last Verse – Alleluia :

          http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Daniel%2011&version=KJV

          Daniel 11 :
          45″And he shall plant the tabernacles

          of his palace between the seas in

          the glorious holy
          mountain;

          yet
          he shall come to his end,

          and
          none shall help
          him.”

          The Prophecy Above (Written around 534 BC) refers to “mosques”, and, IN PARTICULAR, that foul “dome on The Rock” which IS “THE Abomination That
          Maketh DESOLATE”.Love, Hope & Truth IN JESUS Christ ALIVE – Now – Amen
          John

          ================================================

          REFERENCES TO ASSIST : “It should
          not come as a surprise that the word “Allah” was
          not something invented by Muhammad or revealed for the first
          time in the Quran. 

          The well-known Middle East scholar H.A.R. Gibb has pointed
          out that the reason that Muhammad never had to explain who
          Allah was in the Quran is that his listeners had already heard
          about Allah long before Muhammad was ever born (Mohammedanism:
          An Historical Survey, New York: Mentor Books, 1955, p.38).

          Dr. Arthur Jeffery, one of the foremost Western Islamic
          scholars in modern times and professor of Islamic and Middle
          East Studies at Columbia University, notes: ‘The name Allah, as the Quran itself is witness,
          was well known in pre-Islamic Arabia. Indeed, both it and its
          feminine form, Allat, are found not infrequently among the
          theophorous names in inscriptions from North Africa’
          (Islam: Muhammad, and His Religion, New York: The Liberal Arts
          Press, 1958, p. 85).

          The word “Allah” comes from the compound Arabic
          word, al-ilah. Al is the definite article “the” and
          ilah is an Arabic word for “god.” It is not a foreign
          word. It is not even the Syriac word for God. It is pure Arabic.
          (There is an interesting discussion of the origins of Allah, in
          “Arabic Lexicographical Miscellanies” by J. Blau in
          the Journal of Semitic Studies, Vol. XVII, #2, 1972, pp. 173-190).

          Neither is Allah a Hebrew or Greek word for God as found in
          the Bible. Allah is a purely Arabic term used in reference to
          an Arabian deity. Hastings’ Encyclopedia of Religion and
          Ethics I:326, T & T Clark, states:

          ‘”Allah” is a proper name, applicable only
          to their [Arabs'] peculiar God. ‘

          According to the Encyclopedia of Religion:

          ‘”Allah” is a pre-Islamic name . . .
          corresponding to the Babylonian Bel’ (Encyclopedia of
          Religion, I:117 Washington DC, Corpus Pub., 1979).

          For those who find it hard to believe that Allah was a
          pagan name for a peculiar pagan Arabian deity in pre-Islamic
          times, the following quotations may be helpful:

          ‘Allah is found . . . in Arabic inscriptions prior
          to Islam’ (Encyclopedia Britannica, I:643).

          “Pagan Arabs, before the time of Mohammed, accepted
          and worshipped, after a fashion, a supreme god called
          Allah” (Encyclopedia off Islam, I:302, Leiden: E.J.
          Brill, 1913, Houtsma).

          “Allah was known to the pre-Islamic . . . Arabs;
          he was one of the Meccan deities” (Encyclopedia off
          Islam, I:406, ed. Gibb).

          “Ilah . . . appears in pre-Islamic poetry . . .
          By frequency of usage, al-ilah was contracted to Allah,
          frequently attested to in pre-Islamic poetry”
          (Encyclopedia off Islam, III:1093, 1971).

          “The name Allah goes back before Muhammad”
          (Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, I:41, Anthony
          Mercatante, New York, The Facts on File, 1983).

          ‘The origin of this (Allah) goes back to
          pre-Muslim times. Allah is NOT a common name meaning “God’
          (or a “god”), and the Muslim must use another word
          or form if he wishes to indicate any other than his own
          peculiar deity” (Encyclopedia of Religion and
          Ethics, I:326, Hastings).”

          MORE HELP HERE : 

          http://www.biblebelievers.org.au/islam.htm

          http://www.chick.com/catalog/books/0171.asp

          http://tafj.org/2008/05/26/is-allah-truly-the-arabic-word-for-god/

          http://www.Constellation7.org

          http://www.TheSevenThunders.org/Genesis

          • http://www.Constellation7.org/ John

            PS : Sorry, forgot to say that The Holy Spirit THROUGH the Apostle St.Paul, founded a THRIVING Church in Arabia in the First century AD. From that time through to around AD 612 the Arabian peoples (and the Sabeans) had FULL ACCESS to The REAL Name Of God IN HEBREW – Amen

            AND His Divine Son, Christ, JESUS, The Lord, WITH The Full Salvation Message Of The Perfect Gospel – Alleluia.

            AFTER the satanic rampage of mohammad’s followers, by systematic annihilation, the UNHOLY koran was finally pieced together from around AD 666 thru to around AD 766.

            During THIS EVIL SEASON, The True, PRONOUNCED Name Of The ONLY Living Holy God, was EXPUNGED from the language and satan substituted “allah” for ABBA.

            The rest is VERY SAD HISTORY, so to speak…

            TODAY, we have FULL ACCESS TO THE WHOLE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH, So Help us JESUS – Amen

            Preach This FULL TRUTH and NOTHING else – Alleluia

            Daniel 12 : 4
            “But thou, O Daniel,
            shut up the words,
            and seal the book,
            even to the time of the end:
            many shall run to and fro,
            and knowledge shall be increased.”

            Amen & Alleluia

            THE Holy Scripture for ALL of islam :

            1 Corinthians 2:2

            “For I determined not to know any thing among you,
            save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.”

        • http://craigcfisher.wordpress.com Craig Fisher

          You might have lived in a Muslim country but your knowledge of Arabic is found wanting. Allah does not mean simply God. It comes from two words Al meaning the and derivative of El which means god or a god in both Hebrew and classical Arabic. When Muhammed uses Allah he means “The God” the only god, not god of Israel or god of christians but the only god of Islam.

        • John Elias

          Dear Craig & Marilyn :

          † TRUTH POINTS † : allah IS a pre-muhammadan Sabean MOON DEITY (AN IDOL) worshipped by PAGAN Arabs, way back in time, long BEFORE muhammad MET SATAN in its DARK little cave.

          THE CHURCH, Founded by the Apostle Paul in Arabia, [† GALATIANS 1 : 17 † (Around AD 37) : http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Galatians+1:17&version=9

          WAS later ALMOST wiped out by muhammad's DEVIL WORSHIPPING, mass murderer followers (around AD 666 onwards).

          IN TONGUES : allah - WITH its followers - Translates Precisely As Follows, When Orally Pronounced [Try This Out By Speaking ALOUD] :

          ALL-AH-WHO-SUFFER : ALLAH-SHIVA : AH-LUCIFER !!

          So Be It !!!!!!!

          † 1 John 4 : 20 †
          “If a man say, i LOVE God, and HATETH HIS BROTHER, he IS A LIAR: for he that loveth NOT his brother whom he HATH seen, HOW CAN he Love God whom he hath NOT SEEN?”

          Fuller Details Regarding ALL of the ABOVE [As Seen Also In The Three Vision Pictures BELOW] CAN be Further Gleaned through writing a Book Review for THE OPPOSITE IS TRUE [Brand New Coast to Coast Live Release - April 15th AD 2014 - FIRST Blood Moon Day] and THEN Emailing the Same to the Author Mz :-

          https://www.TatePublishing.com/bookstore/book.php?w=9781631223440

          Your REVIEW will then be Published ONLINE, and you will be sent a Free E-Book : PDF Value US$16.00

          In JESUS’ Holy, Precious & Mighty Name – Amen & Amen

          The FIRST Blood Moon Day Washington Post write up is WELL WORTH a “prophetic” Read HERE :

          http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/religion/blood-moon-sets-off-apocalyptic-debate-among-some-christians/2014/04/15/00b76502-c4be-11e3-9ee7-02c1e10a03f0_story.html

          † DO BE Inspired IN This New Crucifixion, Resurrection AND Ascension Season AHEAD – Amen & Amen

          † God Bless you ALL – Truly In JESUS Alive – Alleluia

          † With ALL Blessings, Love, Hope & Truth …….

          † Maranatha & Mizpah …

          † Luke 23 : 46 †
          And when JESUS had Cried with a Loud Voice, He Said, “FATHER, into Thy Hands I Commend My Spirit:” and having Said THUS, He Gave Up THE GHOST. †

      • James Black

        What makes me wonder about Rick Warren is the fact that he works with or for the Council on Foreign Relations,that scares me along with his dealings with Islam.

  • danny7995

    I think it is sad that Pastor Rick Warren is even associating with the Muslims considering what they have done to this country. I really hope Pastor Rick comes to his senses.

    • http://brandonacox.com Brandon A. Cox

      Danny, I’m not even sure if any response to that statement is necessary. I think Jesus addressed the issue of associating with lost people quite well.

      • Bostero

        Pastro Brandon, you did not respond to the fact that you called Allah a diety  and putting this false god in the same catagory of diety as our one true Lord.

        • http://brandonacox.com Brandon A. Cox

          It should be obvious by now that we do not put Allah, as presented in the Qu’ran in the “same category” as Jehovah of the Bible. I use the word “diety” to refer to the object of someone else’s worship, not to assign the attributes and character of God to that object. 

          I think a bigger issue is how we pick each other’s words apart. Yes, we should be careful with our terminology, but for too many people, we cannot be precise enough. There will always be a “so you’re claiming…” in response.

          The God of the Bible is God alone. Period.

          • Bostero

            Number one, it is awesome that you dialogue and try to meet everyones concerns.  I applaud you for that. But I can’t help but to continue to look at the life and ministry of our Lord Jesus.  As I understand Him, He did not come to build bridges.  In fact He said “do you think that I came to bring peace on earth?  No I tell you, but division.” Luke 12:51.  Also in John 4, when Jesus encounters the Samaritan women at the well, she tries to share their commonalities by saying ” Are you greater than OUR father Jacob”.  And then she states their differences by saying that “our farthers worshiped on this mountain, but the Jews claim that we must worship in Jerusalem.”  But Jesus, without hesitation, lets her know beyond a shadow of a doubt that she and her fellow Samaritans worship what they do not know “for salvation is from the Jews.”  Jesus was not interested in finding common ground, He was interested in the woman finding Truth.  Now amazingly, the women does not humor Jesus by saying; “Oh, isnt that nice that you believe what you blelieve and that I believe what I choose, so lets be friends.”  No, her life is tranformed so dramatically that she evangalizes her whole town!!!!  Because it is the Holy spirit that prepares the heart to recieve the King of Kings, I think it is not only futile to “build bridges “, but a slippery slope into mediocrety.  Paul states in 1 Corinthians 15:33: “Do not be misled; “Bad company corrupts good character.”  I am not implying that all followers of Islam live immoral liives, but 2 Corinthians 6:14-16 states; Do not be yoked together with unbelievers.  For what do righreousness and wickedness have in common?  Or what fellowship can  light have with darkness?  What harmony is there between Christ and Belial?  What does a believer have in COMMON with an unbeliever?  What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols?”  Yes we are to love our neighbor and pray for those who persecute us,  but Jesus never tried to build bridges with the Pharisees and Sadducees or any other sinner. His only mission was and is today, to transform peoples liives and to BE THE BRIDGE from death into life.  And our mission should be the same, not to build a bridge of “world peace” that only leads to eternal damnation.

              Again thank you for caring enough to read and respond to the blogs.   

          • http://brandonacox.com Brandon A. Cox

            I understand what you’re saying, and it’s a perspective that deserves consideration. We all have to make tough choices at times about how we’re going to relate to people or what ethical direction we’ll take on an issue. Passages such as the one you’ve mentioned are good guides as we navigate those tough choices. Thanks for the perspective.

          • John

            Amen & Alleluia

            THE Holy Scripture for ALL of islam :

            1 Corinthians 2:2

            For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

  • Bob

    The real problem is that Islam is a political organization whose goal is world dominion by any means necessary, disguised as a religion.  It is dangerous to not acknowledge this reality. Calling itself is a Trojan Horse. 

    • Bob

      Meant calling itself a religion is a Trojan horse

    • http://brandonacox.com Brandon A. Cox

      Bob, you may be right in terms of many of the governments of the world that do not acknowledge the difference between state and religion, but the average Muslim may have purely religious motives for being Muslim. 

Receive Rick Warren's Weekly Toolbox Newsletter for FREE!

Like the content you see at pastors.com? Why not receive it weekly in your inbox, plus bonus material too. It's free!

  • Weekly wisdom from Pastor Rick Warren.
  • Helpful articles on every aspect of church leadership.
  • Practical insights to move you forward.
  • Occasional subscriber-only freebies.
Close This!


BONUS! Subscribe now and receive the free eBook, 7 Keys to An Effective Ministry, by Rick Warren.

We hate spam too, and will never sell your email or send you unwanted stuff.