Monday, June 16, 2008

So, 4 Imams and an Evangelical Go ...

A fellow by the name of Bruce Fisk received what four imams considered top flight Islamic "evangelization". If you read his account, pay close attention to your feelings as you are winged so high above the ground by their arguments that you feel it isn't safe to jump.

Should he have argued with them from his Evangelical point of view?

How would one talk with them about the need for a Savior? Grace? Forgiveness? A Divinity who is perfect love and does not welcome the bloodshed of unbelievers? [h/t: New Advent]


David Nybakke said...


I have been reading St. Francis of Assisi and the Conversion of the Muslims and in it Frank Rega writes of the early rule of 1221, chapter 16

􀂄 “The brothers who go among the Saracens and other unbelievers can conduct themselves among them spiritually in two ways.

􀂄 One way is to avoid quarrels or disputes, and be subject to every human creature for God’s sake, so bearing witness to the fact that they are Christians.

􀂄 Another way is to proclaim the word of God openly, when they see that it is Gods will, calling on their hearers to believe in God almighty Father, Son, and Holy
Spirit, the Creator of all, and in the Son, the Redeemer and Savior, that they may be baptized and become Christians, because unless a man be born again of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God” (5-7).

This was significantly modified in the later rule due to the sober reality that so many Franciscan missionaries were martyred (even during the lifetime of St. Francis - after having tried the #2 way to go among the Saracens).

If our friend, Bruce Fisk wanted to live another day to tell the story he did, he was probably wise in not being too evangelical for his Christian faith. Unless he, like brother Francis, had a strong desire for martyrdom.

I think your question (to someone addressing Muslims) is just as pertinent for someone addressing other Christians (and Catholics). There are vast numbers of so-called Christians that could use lessons (or on-going formation) on why they need a Savior, Grace, Forgiveness, and a Divinity who is perfect love and does not welcome the bloodshed of unbelievers.

Athos said...

Belloc says in Great Heresies (I think) that Islam grew, obviously, as one and outside the biblical faiths, then "evangelized" by brute force.

My intuition is one you share, Aramis. If he'd said, "And you expect me to be convinced by THAT?" and started laughing, the "honor" and shame-based conventional cultural bells would have rung and Mr. Fisk would have become a marked man (read: potential victim fodder).

As is, his silence may still mean to them acquiescence and they will expect him to continue toward conversion to the Scimitar. He now, IMO, must tred carefully or boldly.