Part of an email advising somebody who was being run down by evangelical Christians attacking Islam:
These people actively look for people who are all jittery when it comes to their emotional polemics against the Faith. They can sense who lacks confidence and self-esteem especially in person (body language) and even on the net with the way somebody is interacting.
There’s a lot of psychology behind evangelical Christian missionaries who try to rob Muslims of faith in the Revelation of Allah. They actively look for people who struggle with English because they think they are easier targets for various reasons (i.e. the Christian can conflate the West with Christianity and thus misappropriate secular Western achievement to Christianity, it’s easier for them to dominate and manipulate a conversation if the other person has a weaker command of the language and we both know that there is an undercurrent in the West which portrays people not educated in Western institutes as lesser thinkers), their ideal is those with inferiority complexes – inferiority complexes when it comes to the West and folks who have elements of self hate within them. A great way to deal with these missionaries is to go head on and use the premises in their arguments against them.
For instance, they will talk about the Prophet being involved in war and put it alongside the Jesus of the Gospel (A Jesus who was never the head of a state nor of a group large enough to wrestle control of the region away from the oppressive Romans so it’s the fallacy of false comparisons although if that’s what they want to do, be their guest and compare Prophet Muhammad with Trinitarian Jesus!).
The premise here is somebody using violence and warfare cannot be from God. Point at the Prophets in the OT – Moses – who used violence and warfare (e.g vs the Midianites in Numbers). But go further, talk about the Trinity idea teaching Jesus is the 2nd person of the Trinity thus Trinitarians essentially believe Jesus ordered the killing of women and children (1 Samuel 15:3).
Likewise, for the issue of polygamy, tell them Jesus did not forbid it according to Biblical Trinitarians and appears to allow it (Exodus 21:10) and he even says he GAVE David his wives according to Trinitarians (2 Samuel 12:8). In this instance you can also point to one of the sparks for their breakaway church movement, Martin Luther. Luther is on record saying nothing in Christian scripture forbids polygamy. [It will be a really Westernised Christian who brings the issue of polygamy up and he/she may find this very difficult and thus jump at the One Flesh verse (Gen 2:24) – they believe MOSES wrote such yet he had more than one wife so clearly the author’s understanding of the one flesh verse could not have been a proscription of polygyny].
Let’s talk about female slaves, they will bring this up. They may have even been taught to say Muslims are allowed to rape female slaves. Of course this is a prurient lie as part of their propaganda of demonisation (but the Christian you’re speaking to may not know this, so be gentle). To respond,say, “OK clearly you believe in the rights and well treatment of slaves, especially female slaves, I respect that as that is what we as Muslims are taught. But before I show you our teachings I want to share what Trinitarians believe Jesus allowed with respect to slaves, this may sound shocking so do look it up and think about it when you have some time later on, he allowed the severe beating of female slaves as long as they got up after a couple of days (Ex 21:20-21). Female slaves were taken as captives of war and married in the OT. There are some secularists, and perhaps liberal Christians, who say this was rape in the Bible but for me I don’t believe God allows rape as we are taught in the Quran (Quran 4:36) to treat slaves well and the Prophetic teaching (Sahih Muslim) is that one cannot even slap a slave – clearly rape would transgress those teachings thus cannot be allowed.”
Notice, what we’ve done my dear, we’ve started planting seeds and educating the Christian friend.
Don’t say any of this aggressively to them, say it how an educator would. You’re the teacher here. You’ve got to be the guide here. This Christian is in severe spiritual danger and his reckless elders may have effectively nudged him on to the precipice of leaving Biblical Christianity and the Abrahamic tradition.
Remember, if they come to you, your demeanour is key, you MUST be confident. Don’t be all jittery, they will sense it and that’s what they want to see. Speak with clarity and purpose. Be smart and informed, if you’re not, they will pick up on it and they will not be influenced as much by you, in fact they will take it as a cue to start influencing you! Be sophisticated and focussed, don’t bang on about America bombing Iraq like some emotional wreck – that’s not the time or place. The number of Muslims I see rattling on about Iraq, British and American imperialism in these discussions is staggering, to be honest it’s neither helpful nor relevant. It can come across as cringe-worthy and embarrassing. The Christian did not come to you as a representative of America, in many cases the Christian is not even American and is against Trump, Bush etc.. It’s a theological discussion, not political. There’s a time and place for remonstrating against the bombings of innocent people in Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Pakistan etc. and the contentious issue of Palestine…this discussion is not that time or place.
Take on the role of the educator in the dialogue. The evangelical missionaries have been set up to try and rob you of your faith using secular arguments – their leaders saw how the secularists decimated Christendom in Western Europe and now they have borrowed that polemical style from them because it was effective against their own faith! The only reason why it was effective was because the Christians had been conditioned to think of Western civilisation and Western laws as the pinnacle thus the Church ended up allowing divorce (their teachings do not allow divorce except in the case of adultery), staying silent on sex before marriage and even inviting Bill and Bob, and Jill and Jean, to come into their churches to get “married”. They did all this to appease their congregations who became Westerners at heart rather than true Bible believers.
They’ve lost confidence in their Book. Don’t allow them to try and do the same to you with respect to Islam.
ALWAYS REMEMBER: These evangelical Christians have been conned, they’ve been conned by “Christian” folks who have given them a load of polemics against Islam which, if applied consistently, would mean the Christian would reject Christianity and Biblical teachings. These Christian missionaries, once they wake up and start thinking about what they’re saying, are in danger of leaving the Abrahamic tradition because their Christian leaders was set them up to stumble. The evangelical Christian NEEDS you in this instance. You can be a light for them and a light for their nations. But you’ve got to be smart, sophisticated, educated, confident and concerned. YOU can do it. 🙂
Nafysah @ Knowislam.com.ng.