Friday, March 26, 2010

Christian Response to Islam: A Struggle for the Soul of Christianity, Azumah

From the Lausanne World Pulse March 2010 issue:

One of the crucial issues facing Christians around the world today is finding the right balance in our response to the various challenges posed by Islam and engagement with Muslims. The quest for an appropriate Christian response to Islam and engagement with Muslims has sadly polarized Christians along evangelical vs. liberal, truth vs. grace, or confrontational vs. conciliatory lines.

As an African, my own struggle is the way these positions are presented as absolutes in either/or categories. In the wake of the 11 September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City (9/11), the Iraq war, the Madrid bombings, etc., the division among Christians has deepened. Reflecting on the situation, Joseph Cummings talks of a titanic struggle going on in the heavenly realms—a struggle not between Muslims and Christians or between Islam and the West, but “a struggle within Christianity itself, a struggle for the soul of the Christian faith.”

What Cummings is suggesting, and I couldn’t agree more, is that Islam per se is not necessarily the greatest challenge facing Christians today, but rather how Christians choose to respond to Islam…

The conclusion:

A Ghanaian proverb counsels that if someone deliberately breaks wind into your face and you muster all your muscles to take revenge, you could end up soiling yourself with stool. However we choose as Christians to respond to Islam, the question that should guide us is: What witness are we likely to leave behind in our response, and how will it serve the course of the gospel and our mandate as witnesses to that gospel?

Read the whole thing. (3 pages)


No comments: