Comedy mgith

How History Helps Reach Muslims

Beloved friends in Christ,
Often as I share in churches about the most effective ways to bring the gospel to Muslims, I can safely expect to be asked two questions: Timothy, were you a Sunni or a Shia’a/ Shiite? And what’s the difference between them anyway?
First, I used to be a practicing Sunni Muslim and I used to preach their teachings in mosques as well as in the morning sermons I delivered every morning before we went into our classes at school. 
Second, the division between Sunnis and Shiites dates back to the year 632 and the death of Muhammad, which resulted in a struggle for the right to lead Muslims that, in a way, continues to this day. Sunnis are the majority among Muslims - it is estimated that approximately 90% belong to this current - and see themselves as the most traditional and orthodox branch of Islam. In fact, the name of Sunni or Sunni comes from the expression "Ahl al-Sunna": the people of tradition. In this case, the tradition refers to practices derived from the actions of Muhammad and his companions. Thus, the Sunnis venerate all the prophets mentioned in the Koran, but particularly Muhammad, who is considered the definitive prophet. They use the Quran as their sole authority, more or less the Protestants of Islam, while Shia’as are more like the Catholics of Islam who build on the authority of the household of Mohammed. The Shiites began as a political faction: literally "Shiat Ali" or Ali's party. The Ali in question was the son-in-law of the prophet Muhammad and the Shiites claim his right, and that of his descendants to lead Muslims. Ali was killed as a result of the intrigues, violence and civil wars that marked his caliphate. And his sons, Hassan and Hussein, were denied what they considered their legitimate right to succeed him. It is believed that Hassan was poisoned by Muawiyah, the first caliph - that is, leader of the Muslims - of the Umayyad dynasty, while his brother Hussein died, along with several members of his family, on the battlefield. These events are behind the Shiite concept of martyrdom and its mourning rituals. Like Catholics, the Shiites also have a “hierarchy of clergy” who practice an open and constant interpretation of Islamic texts. Rather than explaining the Christian doctrine or what it means when we as Christians say that Jesus is the Son of God, we begin to think about Spirit-led ways in which we attract them to the person of Christ, we bring them face to face with His person, that is, an actual encounter with the person of Christ and getting to know the One who is altogether lovely, and trust Him to prevail upon their hearts and get into a relationship with Him, and He takes care of the rest from there as He shines His own light in the seeking heart, and lo and behold everything is crystal clear and as bright as day from there. We depend on the Holy Spirit to do the work as we all come before the throne of Christ.
We are grateful to you for partnering with us in our ministry and making it all happen through your intercessory prayers and gracious support that takes many different shapes and shows us how much we are loved and never alone in this. Very blessed merry Christmas to you! We love each one of you so very much. 
In the name of Christ our King who has sent us,
Timothy Abraham
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