Friday, December 24, 2010

God's Grace vs. Allah's Justice

I've been reading Mosab Hassan Yousef's book Son of Hamas. In this book, Yousef - a son of one of Hamas' founders - discusses his devotion to Allah, and then his subsequent exposure to Christianity. In the book, He becomes a follower of Jesus and leaves the Islam of his fathers behind. From the very first moments when the Christian evangelist enters Yousef's life, I haven't read a page of the book without finding myself wiping tears away. Being a Calvinist, myself, and just seeing God sovereignly drawing Yousef to Himself as Yousef tells the story is truly remarkable. People get saved every day, and yet there is nothing common about each and every individual having their heart softened by the Gospel and experiencing the grace of God for themselves, one person at a time.

What follows is the passage where Yousef describes first meeting Jesus in the pages of the New Testament:
I understood that we all share the same common enemies: greed, pride, and all the bad ideas and the darkness of the devil that live inside us. That meant I could love anyone. The only real enemy was the enemy inside me. Five years earlier, I would have read the words of Jesus and thought, What an idiot! and thrown away the Bible. But my experiences with my crazy butcher neighbor, the family members and religious leaders who beat me when my father was in prison, and my own time at Megiddo [a prison] had all combined to prepare me for the power and beauty of this truth. All I could think in response was, Wow! What wisdom this man had! Jesus said, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged” (Matthew 7:1). What a difference between him and Allah! Islam’s god was very judgmental, and Arab society followed Allah’s lead. Jesus rebuked the hypocrisy of the scribes and Pharisees, and I thought of my uncle. I remembered a time when he received an invitation to attend a special event and how angry he had been that he was not given the best seat. It was as though Jesus was talking to Ibrahim and every sheikh and imam in Islam. Everything Jesus said on the pages of this book made perfect sense to me. Overwhelmed, I started to cry.

Mosab Hassan Yousef
in his book Son Of Hamas
I recommend this book very highly. Although I have not finished reading it yet, I know that the church needs to hear Yousef's story.

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