Tag Archives: Dawah

Satan The Humble: A Story

Earlier today I came across a Christian man shouting into the face of a Muslim sister. At first I wasn’t sure what to do, but the sister was accompanied by her husband who was able to manage the situation quite well.

I calmly encouraged the Christian to walk away and to talk with me instead. At first he was a little bit hesitant, but this one interaction led to what was perhaps the strangest conversation I’ve ever had. The Christian man was clearly angry, agitated, and upset. As I was walking with him, we both quickly realised that we were Trinidadian (from the same country) and we spoke a little about our shared heritage. I thought we were making progress until his next sentence:

You’re stupid.

I have to admit that this caught me off guard, but I didn’t insult him in return, they are not our teachers in this regard. This would turn out to be an impactful action that led to a good end, keep it in mind as the story continues. Apparently I was stupid because I’m a Muslim. I’ve been called worse before so this was tame in comparison.

He decided that he wanted some coffee so I offered to buy a cup for him and so we began our brief journey to the nearby McCafe. Along the way he asked me why I believed in Islam and why I rejected the ‘truth’ about Christ. I simply let him know that I’ve studied both Islam and Christianity and that I simply find Islam to be more coherent, consistent and considerate than Christianity. He didn’t like this answer, but it was a truthful one. I mentioned that I couldn’t believe in the Bible because of its lack of preservation. He tried to argue that I likely hadn’t read the Bible, so in response I gave a few examples of the surviving New Testament papyri which contained variants affecting his beliefs, specifically that the papyrus containing the earliest text of ‘Doubting’ Thomas’ “my Lord and my God,” was lacunose. He quickly shifted topics to the ‘Qur’ān having 27 versions’. I shut down that argument pretty quickly and he seemed happy to move on from it.

Finally we got the coffee and sat down for an hour long conversation. On multiple occasions he referred to me as “a dumb Muslim”, “a stupid person”, “Satanic/ Satan”, “demonic”, etc. I’m old enough to know that when someone insults you in this way they’re looking for you to validate their perception of us as being angry, hateful people. He was trying to provoke me into confirming his prejudice. Yet, I simply smiled and ignored it. Over time, he stopped the insults. He tried to claim that the Qur’ān stated that Muslims should kill all non-believers, I asked for a reference, he quickly tried to Google an answer but he couldn’t find any verse that made any such claim. One by one his arguments fell apart.

He mentioned that the Qur’ān isn’t in chronological order therefore it can’t be understood, I pointed out that it wasn’t a Greco-Roman bios (like the Gospels), so it didn’t need to be in chronological order, much like the Psalms in the Bible. His next argument was that Muslims want Islam to be the dominant religion, I responded that everyone wants their ideology to be adopted by the masses, nothing is wrong with that. He followed up by saying that only Islam is bad as an ideology because of the violence Muslims commit. I responded by referencing Zechariah, chapters 12 to 14, where forced worship, torture and mass genocide is what happens to non-Christians when his version of Jesus returns, so it would be more rational for me to be afraid of his faith than he should be of mines.

Our conversation was quickly coming to an end, but I had him read for me 2 Corinthians 6:14 to 2 Corinthians 7:1

Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? 15 What harmony is there between Christ and Belial[a]? Or what does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? 16 What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said:

“I will live with them
and walk among them,
and I will be their God,
and they will be my people.”[b]

17 Therefore,

“Come out from them
and be separate,
says the Lord.
Touch no unclean thing,
and I will receive you.”[c]

18 And,

“I will be a Father to you,
and you will be my sons and daughters,
says the Lord Almighty.”[d]

7 Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.

He didn’t want to read these passages out loud, in fact he tried on multiple occasions to avoid discussing it. I stuck to my course and kept returning to these few verses. I remarked at him, look at the derogatory way in which it refers to ‘unbelievers’, look at how it says we’re unclean, that we can’t be touched, that we must be segregated! He didn’t enjoy this at all, his demeanor had changed, he was no longer boisterous. He had lost his gusto. He then tried one last argument, that it’s only Muslims that force their faith on others. Somehow this ended up with him wanting me to touch the cross he was wearing, I made it clear that I didn’t want to touch an idol. So he proceeded to touch me with the cross. I don’t think it hit him, the irony of the situation, until I pointed it out. I had expressed that I didn’t want to touch it and yet he forced it upon me. Once the realisation hit (that he was forcing his beliefs on me), we decided to end the conversation and he promised to be in contact with me.

On our way back to the street, he actually said I was very ‘humble’, that I didn’t shout at him or insult him in return, he confessed that my reactions to him were puzzling. In fact, he specifically mentioned that it’s likely I am Satanic because of how good my behavior was as a non-Christian, especially given the heated situation underwhich we met. As we were about to part ways, he walked up to his Christian buddies from Christ Forgiveness Ministries and made a comment about me, what he said I couldn’t hear but when he returned to me, I was in the company of the sister he initially was shouting at. Surprisingly he came with a smile and said that I was his ‘buddy’ who was very ‘humble’ and pleasant to talk with.

It’s amazing what good adab can do. Da’wah isn’t only about explaining what we as Muslims believe but it’s also about our behavior, mannerisms and etiquette:

“Invite ˹all˺ to the Way of your Lord with wisdom and kind advice, and only debate with them in the best manner. Surely your Lord ˹alone˺ knows best who has strayed from His Way and who is ˹rightly˺ guided.” – Qur’ān 16:125 (translation: The Clear Quran, by Dr. Mustafa Khattab).

If you would like to support the work we do, please try to help by donating:

https://www.paypal.me/ijazdawah

and Allah knows best.

The Qur’an on Communication

One of the more fascinating verses of the Qur’an is found in Surah 3, Verse 64:

“Say, ˹O Prophet,˺ “O People of the Book! Let us come to common terms…” – translation from The Clear Quran by Dr. Mustafa Khattab.

In this passage, the Qur’an gives us a methodology to employ in da’wah, namely to come to a common agreement, or common terms from which a fruitful relationship can develop between Muslims and non-Muslims. Tafsir Maa’riful Qur’an comments on this passage:

“This verse unfolds an important principle of Tabligh (preaching) and Da’wah (preaching Islam). The principle requires that a person, who desires to carry his call to a group which holds beliefs and ideas different from his own, should follow a particular method. That method is to induce the group to unite only on what they both can agree to…”

This passage effectively harkens back to the very definition of the word “communicate”. To communicate is to literally have something common with other people, to share a common idea, thought or belief. As Prof. Adler would describe it, to communicate is to have a “meeting of the minds”. The Qur’an (and therefore God) is encouraging us to effectively and sincerely communicate with others about Islam.

This takes us to the 3 C’s of communication.

  • Confrontational
  • Conciliatory
  • Concessional

The Qur’an is not calling us to be confrontational (and therefore aggressive), nor is it calling us to be concessional (to give up our beliefs and stances) but to be conciliatory (literally, to form a bridge or to “come together”, again a “meeting of the minds”)

This is why it is important for Muslims to learn how to communicate properly when inviting to Islam, because it is a command from God. We should also then realize that a failure to live up to this standard is to reject a teaching from Allah. So what are some of the criteria for which a Muslim must live up to?

We are called to “avoid false statements” as found in Qur’an 22:30, the Qur’an also states in 49:11 –

“O believers! Do not let some ˹men˺ ridicule others, they may be better than them, nor let ˹some˺ women ridicule other women, they may be better than them. Do not defame one another, nor call each other by offensive nicknames. How evil it is to act rebelliously after having faith! And whoever does not repent, it is they who are the ˹true˺ wrongdoers.”

In conclusion, da’wah is not a game and should we want to effectively call to Islam, then we must obey the Qur’an’s guidance.

and Allah knows best.

Missionary Mishap: Christians Cannot Lie

As the fall out from the debate I had with Joseph Jay Smith continues, a peculiar comment was made on my video that simply had to be addressed. The comment you are about to see, exemplifies the type of Christian that is following Joseph Jay Smith.

cc-2018-mm-jaysmithcannotlie

According to this Christian fellow, Joseph Jay Smith is a Christian, and as a Christian he cannot lie. Which means that whatever Joseph Jay Smith says, will always be true. This is the kind of intellect that Jay’s rhetoric appeals to, one of deifying humans and discarding basic logic altogether. Isn’t this what cults do? You can’t question Jay, whatever he says must be right because he said it.

Amazing.

and God knows best.

Upcoming Debate: Br. Adnan Rashid and Dr. James White

cc-2018-sitenews-adnanwhitedebate

Details:

  • Debaters – Br. Adnan Rashid and Dr. James White
  • Topic: Do we need the cross for salvation?
  • Date: January 17th, 2018.
  • Time: 7 pm.
  • Livestream: No.

As of yet there is no confirmed livestream of the event, however if this changes we will be sure to update the general public.

The general reception to the words of the published topic are mixed. The cross, literally, is not needed for salvation in Christianity and so it is understood that a more accurate interpretation of the topic itself would be along the lines of, “Do we need the crucifixion/ sacrifice of Jesus/ blood of Jesus for Salvation?” Nonetheless, this is a debate that boils down to soteriological differences between Islam and Christianity. Debates between Muslims and Christians on this topic or those similar to this topic have not seen much progress beyond the overused argument of, “there is no justice in Islam for sin if no one is punished”.

As was done for the debate between Br. Zakir Hussain and Dr. James White, I will publish a bingo card of key phrases/ arguments to be used by the Christian debater. It received a great reception last time around in London, and one can hope the same for this upcoming event. The intent behind a bingo card is not to mock or demean anyone but to encourage the introduction of new argumentation, to move beyond repeating old polemics, it also becomes a fun way to see if it’s possible to predict what argument a speaker would use.

and God knows best.

Spending Time with Dr. Shabir Ally

Over this summer I had the opportunity and privilege of learning from and teaching alongside Dr. Shabir Ally.

To be honest it was quite a surreal experience. Here is someone I had been learning from for a number of years and now I stood beside him with his approval to teach on subjects that he had mastered decades ago. I had not yet had the opportunity to pen my thoughts on the da’wah training, but suffice it to say that it went extremely well (alhamdulillah). During the month of November I also had the opportunity to meet him a second time for the year, where we took a few photos and did a few videos together:

What a lot of people don’t know is that I believe I’m actually tiptoeing in the video! Dr. Ally towers over me quite easily. Needless to say, I’m often asked about his persona, his mannerisms, his views on his debate opponents. Who exactly is Dr. Shabir Ally? Is he in any way different from the man we know on the debate stage?

The answer may shock you. He’s exactly as you see him. I don’t have a single bad word to say about the man. He has always been pleasant, loving, kind and respectable. Behind the scenes, he is the same man that you see on the debate stage. His persona does not change. Sometimes I’m asked if Dr. Ally holds negative thoughts or remarks about his previous debate opponents and I can honestly say that he does not. He speaks of them as if they were in our company, that is to say that while he may disagree with his debate opponents he does not manifest any hate for them, he is truly a man of good and reputable character.

While most will know him because of his interfaith events, he’s even more well known locally for the work that he does for Muslims in Canada. Everywhere I’ve gone, regardless of which Shaykh or scholar I’m sitting with, they’ve always had a good word to say about him. I believe that his Islamic Information and Da’wah Center represents who he is as a person. Permit me to explain myself. His center is very eclectic in terms of ethnicities. People from all walks of life, from all ages and all races, speaking in so many different languages, seek out and come to his center to keep up with their Islam. Attending Jumm’ah Salaah (Friday Congregational Prayers) is an experience that is difficult to forget. In essence, it’s equitable to a micro-Hajj, with so many different people around you. At first it may be overwhelming, but there is something quite special about seeing the diverse collection of Muslims at the center.

Just as people seek Dr. Ally, so do people also seek out his center. People understand that the Islam Dr. Ally practices is not something to be afraid of, but something that makes them feel safe. This is why non-Muslims and people of non-Islamic backgrounds find conversation with him and interaction with his center so beneficial. Dr. Ally treats people with kindness and respect that is based upon the Prophetic Sunnah. His simple and genuine acts of love, really do impact the people he interacts with and the community where his center is located. Even if one were to disagree with with Dr. Ally, his demeanour does not change. He’s okay with folks disagreeing with him, but he does not escalate those disagreements into antagonistic personal issues.

I have a sincere and genuine love for Dr. Shabir Ally, I have sat and learned from him so many times, but each and every time I do so, it certainly feels as if I’m meeting the man for the first time. At the end of the day, I think there’s one anecdote I can leave that sums up the man, the myth and the legend that is Dr. Ally. Some 24 years ago, one of my colleagues had come to Canada as an immigrant. They used to attend the Masjid where Dr. Ally performed the Friday Congregational Prayers. What they found was that people from all backgrounds came to listen to his Friday sermons (what we refer to as a Khutbah), in those sermons, they found comfort and love, to the point that they began to invite one and all to hear Dr. Ally speak. It’s been 24 years since then and they still hold him as someone special and monumental in their lives. It’s been almost 3 decades of hard work from Dr. Ally and I pray that Allah continues to bless him and his endeavors, ameen.

and Allah knows best.

Is There a Reason for Christian Animosity Towards Muslims?

Question:

Why are so many Christians focused on preaching against Islam, some of them even devoting their entire lives to this cause. What is the reason for this behaviour?

Answer:

When Islam first came into contact with the Western Judaeo-Christian civilizations, their understanding of Islam is what primarily explains their animosity towards Muslims today. John of Damascus, possibly our earliest written source of a Christian’s understanding of Islam saw Muslims as heretics of the Judaeo-Christian worldview and not necessarily of a distinct religious worldview in itself. Islam therefore was a form of Judaeo-Christian heresy, and just as they referred to as other heretical Christian sects by the names of their founders (Basilideans from Basilides, Marcionites from Marcion, Arians from Arius etc ), Muslims were therefore known as Mohammedans and our religion was not Islam, but Mohammedanism. Christians then, from their first interaction with Islam saw it as a threat to the orthodoxy of their faith and not as a distinct religion from their own. This would be the beginning of the theological disputes between these two Abrahamic faiths.

Islam by itself in Qur’aan Surah 112 (al-Ikhlas), directly disputes with the view that God is triune, or that God is begotten. Some Christians have not simply viewed this as a disagreement with their belief system, but they treat it as a polemical statement against their most precious beliefs. Their focus on “defeating” or “responding” to Islam, can also be attributed to the understanding that God could bring a Prophet from the Arabs, the descendants of Ishmael, referred to as the wild man who Jews believe had no covenant with God. Why would God raise a Prophet from an illiterate, pagan, backward, people? The succession of Prophets according to Biblical literature has always focused on the children of Israel, and so, since the Arabs are not from them and they are not God’s chosen people, a true Prophet could not have come from them.

This is despite their beliefs that the Gentiles are now included in the Judaeo God’s worldview for salvation, it’s a bit of a contradiction but this is neither the time nor the place to explore this issue in great detail. Regardless of how certain sections of the Christian community continue to view Islam, as Muslims we are commanded to accept them as the Ahl al Kitab, the People of the Book, and as such – we should not and we must not imitate them in their animosity or hatred. Rather, we should continue to treat them with respect, for they are also the children of the Prophet Adam ‘alayhi as salaam, and our deen does not  encourage us to mimic the behaviour of the disbelievers, regardless of our emotions or of their treatment towards us. I encourage the Muslim community to engage with the Christian community in a respectable and kind manner, especially towards those of the community who hate Muslims. The only way we can change how these certain Christians treat us, is not to imitate their behaviour but to follow the Prophetic example of Muhammad salallaahu ‘alayhi wa salam:

“The Prophet said, “Be patient, till you face them and invite them to Islam and inform them of what Allah has enjoined upon them. By Allah! If a single person embraces Islam at your hands (i.e. through you), that will be better for you than the red camels (most prized possession).” – Saheeh al Bukhari, Book #52, Hadith #192.

and Allaah knows best.

How Do I Help Christians Understand Why Calling God “Father” is Wrong?

Question:

As a Muslim, how do I explain that calling God Father is actually wrong, and not something respectable to do?

Answer:

Use the synonym of “Daddy” instead. Christians are quick to call God, Father to demonstrate their personal relationship with the Creator. To have them understand that their relationship is farcical, ask them if they’d consider referring to him as “Daddy”, have them say the Lord’s Prayer using “Daddy”:

“O Daddy who art in heaven….”

In response to this, many Christians have said calling God, Daddy, is:

  • cringe worthy
  • unnatural
  • odd
  • strange
  • funny
  • disrespectful
  • heretical
  • disorderly
  • blasphemy
  • informal
  • non-Biblical
  • offensive

Indicate to them, that as Muslims we agree, referring to God as “Daddy”, is all of those things and more. I’ve found this method very useful in having them understand just how dreadful it is to call God “Father”. We can even give them something to think about by mentioning that, as a Son of the Father, if your relationship were strong with him, just as any other son – you should be able to call him Daddy, if not – then you should question your relationship with Him.

and God knows best.

Purpose of Da’wah

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,

It is very important to understand why we as Muslims do da’wah and what our duties are when doing so. As such, Br. Bassam Zawadi has summarized a list from the work, “al-Ahkaam wal-Dawaabhit al-Muta’aliqa bil-Hiwaar ma’a Ghayr al-Muslimeen – (The Rulings and Criteria Related to Dialogues with Non-Muslims)”, by  Dr. Sahl bin al-‘Otaibi.

  1. Clarifying that Islam is the only religion acceptable to God.
  2. Clarifying the principles and teachings of Islam so that others may understand what it is about.
  3. Declaring Islam’s innocence from the false allegations made about it.
  4. Boosting the morale of Muslims who especially live as a minority in countries where missionaries are active in their evangelism.
  5. Supporting the stance of Muslim minorities and help them demand their rights.
  6. Helping create mutual understanding and encouraging peaceful co-existence with the disbelievers living next to us and to prevent fitnah.
  7. Clarifying the reality and truth of other religions through the lens of Qur’an and Sunnah.
  8. Inviting the People of the Book to their true original religion and making apparent the corruption which crypt into their books.

wa Allaahu ‘Alam.

Christian Missionaries on Facebook: Part 2

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,

Missionaries on Facebook love to argue. They will argue with you on the most minute of details, in a pedantic manner and obsessively so. In my time, I’ve realised that instead of arguing with these Evangelicals, what I do is present basic logic to them. They are humans, so I assumed that once I used simple words, with logic that even a child would understand, then I’d get the desired result of stopping a missionary in their tracks. Here is one case of this:

christian facebook

You’d notice that from the Christian’s first reply, that she’s ready to argue; likewise it’s also quote noticeable that she’s not read the chapter, which is relatively short.  As is the norm with most Christians, the first response is always a denial. At first she denies that non-Christians will be ‘forced‘, therefore I took it upon myself to very simply explain what I meant by being forced into worshipping YHWH. It took her 14 minutes, but I suppose she realised that there were no two ways about it. She suddenly turned from a crazed Evangelical Christian, to a Perennialist! In other words, she went from believing that Christ is the only way to heaven (as is the standard Christian position) to instead saying she isn’t certain of her belief and accepting that maybe all religions lead to the same God, so it doesn’t matter what we believe.

The sudden and drastic change in her position seriously stunned me. All it took was two comments, 14 minutes and we’ve achieved one less crazed Evangelical in the world. All praise is most certainly due to Allaah who has opened the hearts of the many Christians we do da’wah to.

wa Allaahu ‘Alam.

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