Category Archives: Islam

#1 Post of 2014 – What Role Does Polygamy Play in Islam? Part 2

William Tucker, in his book Marriage and Civilization: How Monogamy Made Us Human, traces the links between Islam, polygamy, and violence. In part 2, we look at how polygamy coupled with Islam has continued to breed violence up to this very day.

Tucker describes the Islamic Turks:

Like Mohammed , the invading Turks, who founded the Ottoman Empire in the thirteenth century, ignored the Koranic limitation of four wives and collected palaces full of concubines. Indeed, the emblem of Ottoman rule for the European imagination was always the sultan and his harem. In order to avoid dynastic wars among the numerous potential heirs, the Sultan chose a successor, then locked all the others in a special prison on the fifth floor of the Topkapi Palace where, when the heir reached maturity, they were all strangled.

Tucker moves from the Turks to the Wahhabi Movement.

The Ottomans, of course, were not the only Islamic power practicing and promoting polygamy and its attendant customs. The Wahhabi Movement, born at the time of George Washington, rallied Sunni tribesmen of the Arabian desert to the banner that, once again, the Islam being practiced in Mecca was not the “true Islam.”

They crashed into the Holy City, smashing works of art, and destroying some of Islam’s most sacred shrines, including Mohammed’s tomb. Then they established the version of Islam that still dominates life in Saudi Arabia. The Saudis have spent millions of their oil wealth in spreading Wahhabism throughout the Muslim world via madrasas— schools that teach young boys the version of Islam that we see in al Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood, and the Taliban.

While the Wahhabis are strict Islamists, they are, like so many Muslims before them, liberals when it comes to the number of wives a Muslim man may take. Mohammed bin Laden, one of Arabia’s most successful businessmen and father of Osama, had fifty-four children by twenty-two wives.

So what is it like in modern-day polygamous, Islamic countries?

In such societies, the frustrations of lower-caste Arab-Muslim men fester. Since conquest is no longer really an option, only martyrdom remains. If they cannot practice polygamy in this life, they trust that they will enjoy the fruits of the afterlife with seventy-two virgins.

“But,” it is often objected, “many Islamist terrorists we’ve read about were already married and even had children. What could be motivating them?” This is to judge Muslim men by Western standards. In monogamous, Western society, marriage for a man means settling down, supporting a wife and children, and taking part in family life. But in polygamous societies wives are a sign of wealth. Having only one wife can be a sign of inferiority. There is no Nash Equilibrium in Islamic or any other polygamous society. The demand for women always exceeds the supply and no one ever has enough. For men of modest means, women can seem almost unattainable.

Tucker reports several recent stories out of the Islamic world:

In a 2004 New York Times Magazine article, a graduate student in his twenties described what it was like growing up in Saudi Arabia. He said that he had never been alone in the company of a young woman. He and his friends refer to women as “BMOs— black moving objects,” gliding past in full burkas. Brideprices are steep and men cannot think of getting married until they are well established in a profession. All marriages are arranged and it is not uncommon for the bride and groom to meet at their wedding. Those without money are out of luck.

During the last few years of the Hosni Mubarak administration, the Egyptian government became so worried about couples having to put off marriage that it began subsidizing bride-wealth payments and sponsored mass marriages. In reporting on the early days of the Arab Spring, the New York Times found “the long wait for marriage” to be the second most pressing grievance in Egyptian society, behind only general poverty.

So what happens because of this shortage of women?

Yet because of the shortage of women, young girls have value and families refuse to lower the price of their assets. For this reason, an enormous number of marriages are contracted between cousins so that wealth is kept in the family. The only other avenue, of course, is bringing younger and younger women into the marriage pool.

Muslim countries are the world champions of child marriage. In Yemen, 52 percent of girls are married before age eighteen and 14 percent before age fifteen. Some are betrothed as young as eight. In 2008, a ten-year-old Yemenite girl named Nujood Ali made headlines when she threw herself upon the mercy of a court, asking to be released from a three-month-old marriage to her thirty-two-year-old cousin who had repeatedly beaten her since their wedding.

Obviously there are more and more Muslims living in western countries where polygamy is illegal. We can only pray that monogamy takes hold in this, the second largest religion in the world.

What Role Does Polygamy Play in Islam? Part 1

We’ve already seen, from William Tucker, in his book Marriage and Civilization: How Monogamy Made Us Human, how polygamy breeds violence. The largest religion in the world that endorses polygamy is Islam. Tucker takes a look at how polygamy and Islam have interacted.

Through the Koran and the Hadith (thousands of pages of commentary by people who knew Mohammed), Islam regulates the daily life of the believer as few religions have ever done. Among these rules are rules governing polygamy. Mohammed sanctioned the practice, but tried to limit it by prescribing that a man could take only four wives and had to support all equally.

He did not, however, abide by this rule himself. All told, Mohammed had an estimated thirteen wives, with perhaps eleven at one time. His inner circle also took numerous wives.

Tucker then asks the key question: “What happens in a society, like Islamic society, where men at the top can accumulate multiple wives and men at the bottom are left with nothing?”

The answer:

Well, holy war, jihad, was part of Islam from the beginning. After conquering the Middle East and North Africa, Muslim armies pushed into sub-Saharan Africa and the Caucasus in search of slaves. In the West, slavery was about work. When Western merchants shipped slaves to the New World, male slaves outnumbered females two to one. In Islamic countries, female slaves outnumbered male slaves by the same ratio. These “slaves” were in fact extra wives and concubines.

Even the steady supply of women slaves from conquered lands did not solve the problem. Tucker continues:

Despite the supply of women from conquered provinces, there was always a shortage, and the most common reaction of lower-caste Islamic men deprived of women became the desert retreat where dissident sects plotted the overthrow of the regime.

Of these perhaps the most extraordinary was the “Assassins,” a Shia sect founded in Egypt in the eleventh century that became the scourge of rulers all over the Islamic world. The Assassins established themselves in the Castle of Alamut, a mountain redoubt in northern Persia that is still difficult to reach today. There they set up an early version of al Qaeda, training young recruits to plant “sleeper cells” around the Middle East and insinuate themselves into the circles of the prominent officials they wanted to assassinate.

The famous traveler and explorer, Marco Polo, in 1273, described what he saw when he passed through this same area:

The Old Man kept at his court such boys of twelve years old as seemed to him destined to become courageous men. When the Old Man sent them into the garden in groups of four, ten or twenty, he gave them hashish to drink. They slept for three days, then they were carried sleeping into the garden where he had them awakened.

When these young men woke, and found themselves in the garden with all these marvelous things, they truly believed themselves to be in paradise. And these damsels were always with them in songs and great entertainments; they received everything they asked for, so that they would never have left that garden of their own will.

And when the Old Man wished to kill someone, he would take him and say: “Go and do this thing. I do this because I want to make you return to paradise.” And the assassins go and perform the deed willingly.

Tucker puts this into perspective:

So began the familiar Islamic pattern: young men with very little hope of rising in society are offered enlistment in a dissident sect that sanctifies violence, promises revolution, and offers martyrs a prize of seventy-two virgins. This is how polygamous societies end up at war with their neighbors.

A shortage of women means a volatile male population. Lower-status males are either turned into eunuchs or formed into slave armies (the Mamluks of Egyptian history) or molded into assassins and terrorists and sent off to holy war. Seventy-two virgins await in heaven— a reward it should be noted, that does not have any particular appeal to the female half of the population.

More on Islam and polygamy in part 2 of this post.

How Does Paul’s Testimony Compare to Muhammad’s Testimony?

Post Author: Bill Pratt

In a previous blog post, I was quoting from historical scholar Mike Licona on the importance of the apostle Paul’s testimony about Jesus’ resurrection.  There are skeptics, however, who want to discount Paul.  One such skeptic is atheist Michael Martin, who questions why Christians accept Paul’s testimony, but not Muhammad’s testimony about the angel Gabriel.

Mike Licona picks up the challenge in his book The Resurrection of Jesus:

Martin cites as a primary source of revelation the conversion of Muhammad from polytheism to monotheism based on an appearance to him of the angel Gabriel.  According to Muhammad, Gabriel directly communicated revelation from heaven: the Qur’an.  So why accept Paul’s testimony while rejecting Muhammad’s?

Martin’s point has some weight.  Muhammad’s testimony that Gabriel revealed the Quran to him appears four times in the Qur’an. Accordingly, both the Qur’an and Paul may qualify as providing eyewitness testimony.  However, Martin overlooks some very important differences.

What are the differences between Paul and Muhammad?  There are several that need to be examined:

First, the overall sources for the event are far from equal in quality.  Outside of the Quranic texts, the appearance of Gabriel to Muhammad is found in the early biographies and hadith, all of which were written more than two hundred years after Muhammad’s death.  These are secondary sources that are, in a sense, similar to Luke’s accounts of Paul s conversion.  However, Luke’s accounts are much closer to the time of the events they purport to describe and may even be provided by a traveling companion of Paul, whereas the Muslim sources are more than two hundred years removed from Muhammad.

For example, Luke is reporting events in Acts that allegedly occurred between A.D. 30-62 and is writing between A.D. 61-90.  He is writing 31-60 years after the events and may have personally known some of the subjects.  In the case of the biographies and hadith, the earliest sources are more than two hundred years removed from the subjects and could not have had any first-, second-, third- or fourth-hand acquaintance with them. Accordingly, although the biographies and hadith probably contain some traditions that go back to Muhammad, those traditions are not of the same historical quality of the traditions preserved in the New Testament literature.

Second, Paul’s experience is in a sense corroborated by other eyewitnesses who claimed that the risen Jesus had appeared to them.  Friend and foe alike reported that the resurrected Jesus had appeared to them in both individual and group settings.  On the other hand, Muhammad is the only one who claimed to have been visited by Gabriel in connection with the rise of Islam.

Third, Muhammad’s dissatisfaction with the paganism and idolatry in his society existed prior to his alleged revelations.  Thus no conversion from polytheism occurred as a result of his religious experience, even according to Muslim sources.  On the other hand, Paul seems to have been quite content with and extremely sold out to his strict sect within Judaism.  Indeed, he was on his way to arresting Christians on his own initiative when his experience occurred.  Muhammad’s experience confirmed his views, while Paul’s opposed his.

Perhaps most important of all, however, is that historians need not deny that Muhammad had an experience that he interpreted as a supernatural being appearing to him.  They are at liberty to support an alternate explanation to Muhammad’s for the experience just as they do for the experiences of Jesus’ disciples.

There you have it: a quick and concise summary of some key differences between the testimony of Paul and the testimony of Muhammad.  I consider Martin’s challenge answered.

Are You Muslim Because You Were Born in Morocco?

Post Author: Bill Pratt

A couple months ago I attended a debate between a Christian scholar and an atheist scholar at a local university.  At the conclusion of the debate there was a Q and A session and one of the atheist students stood up and asked something like the following to the Christian scholar: “How do you explain the fact that where a person is born is highly predictive of what religion they will believe?”

When I’ve heard this question before, the inquirer is usually making the point that religious belief is merely the result of cultural conditioning.  You don’t come to your beliefs through thought or reason; your religion is merely a reflection of where you were raised and what you were taught as a child.  Similar to your speaking accent, you “pick up” your religion through your parents and friends.

First, I must say that there are certainly people who merely inherit their religious beliefs from their culture.  There is no doubt about that, but what conclusion can we draw from this data?  Can we conclude that all religious believers are merely socially conditioned, that they don’t have any good reasons for what they believe?

Timothy Keller, in his book The Reason for God, quotes Christian philosopher Alvin Plantinga as he answers those who claim religious beliefs are merely culturally conditioned.  Speaking of Plantinga, Keller says:

People often say to him, “If you were born in Morocco, you wouldn’t even be a Christian, but rather a Muslim.” [Plantinga] responds:  ‘Suppose we concede that if I had been born of Muslim parents in Morocco rather than Christian parents in Michigan, my beliefs would have been quite different.

Plantinga then points out that the same goes for the person making the charge.  For example, if the atheist student had been born in Morocco, then he probably would be a Muslim, not an atheist!   Does it follow that his atheist beliefs are merely conditioned by his parents or peers?  Keller concludes, “You can’t say, ‘All claims about religions are historically conditioned except the one I am making right now.'”

The atheist wants to claim that he is exempt from the cultural conditioning that everyone else is subject to, but this won’t fly because even he is influenced by his upbringing.  Even so, he would never want to say that his atheism is merely the result of cultural conditioning.   If the atheist can escape his culture, then so can everyone else.  Just look around.  There are people who hold minority religious views all over the world.

Once I go down the road of claiming that those who disagree with me only believe what they believe because of their culture or upbringing, I have ceased giving their position any respect.  I am simply patronizing them and fruitful discussion ends.

Is the Qur’an Wrong about Jesus? – #9 Post of 2010

Post Author: Bill Pratt

It may surprise some Christians that the Qur’an, the holy book of Islam, speaks about Jesus.  In fact, the Qur’an speaks of Jesus as a great prophet of God and records some of the miracles that Jesus performed.

However, the Qur’an denies one important event in the life of Jesus, his crucifixion.  According to the Qur’an, Jesus was never crucified by the Romans.  He was taken straight to heaven without being executed.

Herein lies a couple of significant problems, it seems, for Islam.  First, virtually every professional historian who has studied the events of Jesus’ life agrees that he was killed by crucifixion.  This fact is just not debated by any reputable scholars, as far as I am aware.

Second, we have another problem, what Jesus scholar Mike Licona calls the “Islamic catch-22.”  You see, Jesus predicted that he would die a violent death, predicted it several times.  According to Licona, “We find this reported in Mark, which is the earliest Gospel, and it’s multiply attested in different literary forms, which is really strong evidence in the eyes of historians.”

So what?  How is that a problem for Muslims?  Licona explains:

If Jesus did not die a violent and imminent death, then that makes him a false prophet.  But the Qur’an says that he’s a great prophet, and so the Qur’an would be wrong and thus discredited.  On the other hand, if Jesus did die a violent and imminent death as he predicted, then he is indeed a great prophet – but this would contradict the Qur’an, which says he didn’t die on the cross.  So either way, the Qur’an is discredited.

If the Qur’an, which Muslims claim is perfect, contains an error as egregious as denying the crucifixion of Jesus, it simply cannot be trusted to be a reliable historical document.

What Did Thomas Aquinas Have to Say about Islam?

Post Author: Bill Pratt

Between AD 1258 and 1264, Thomas Aquinas wrote Summa contra Gentiles, a book at least partially aimed at arguing for the truth of Christianity against the falsehood of Islam.  Recall that Islam was founded and spread in the seventh century, about 600 years before Thomas wrote.

In an interesting section of book I, Thomas argues that the veracity of the miracle accounts in the Bible are supported by the successful spread of Christianity around the world.  In essence, he is saying, “How else could Christianity be so successful unless the miracle accounts were true?”  Here is Thomas in his own words:

This wonderful conversion of the world to the Christian faith is the clearest witness of the signs given in the past; so that it is not necessary that they should be further repeated, since they appear most clearly in their effect. For it would be truly more wonderful than all signs if the world had been led by simple and humble men to believe such lofty truths, to accomplish such difficult actions, and to have such high hopes. Yet it is also a fact that, even in our own time, God does not cease to work miracles through His saints for the confirmation of the faith.

Thomas points out that given the humble roots of Christianity, it would be more miraculous for the religion to have spread without miracles than with them.  The miracles of Jesus and his apostles provide a reason for the initial spread of Christianity.

Thomas then goes on to differentiate the success of Christianity with the success of Islam.  He argues that Muhammad offered no miracles to prove he was from God, and that his sole appeal was based on the carnal pleasures he offered his followers, including military power.  Here again is Thomas:

On the other hand, those who founded sects committed to erroneous doctrines proceeded in a way that is opposite to this, The point is clear in the case of Muhammad. He seduced the people by promises of carnal pleasure to which the concupiscence of the flesh goads us. His teaching also contained precepts that were in conformity with his promises, and he gave free rein to carnal pleasure. In all this, as is not unexpected, he was obeyed by carnal men. As for proofs of the truth of his doctrine, he brought forward only such as could be grasped by the natural ability of anyone with a very modest wisdom. Indeed, the truths that he taught he mingled with many fables and with doctrines of the greatest falsity. He did not bring forth any signs produced in a supernatural way, which alone fittingly gives witness to divine inspiration; for a visible action that can be only divine reveals an invisibly inspired teacher of truth.

On the contrary, Muhammad said that he was sent in the power of his arms—which are signs not lacking even to robbers and tyrants. What is more, no wise men, men trained in things divine and human, believed in him from the beginning, Those who believed in him were brutal men and desert wanderers, utterly ignorant of all divine teaching, through whose numbers Muhammad forced others to become his followers by the violence of his arms.

Thomas makes some important distinctions between Islam and Christianity based on their respective beginnings.  It is paramount for all of us to understand these differences as we increasingly dialogue with the world about Islam.

Why Don’t We See Miracles Today? – #5 Post of 2009

Post Author: Bill Pratt

Many people wonder why we don’t see miracles such as the parting of the sea, the raising of the dead, and people walking on water.  It seems like miracles were pretty common in the Old and New Testaments, but today nothing like that seems to happen.  Why?

First of all, I believe there are indeed miracles being performed by God today, as I have certainly heard many accounts from Christians that I know and trust.  Most of these accounts, however, are hard to verify as true supernatural events, and they are never captured on CNN for the whole world to see.  So even though miracles seem to be occurring today, they still aren’t typically the public displays of supernatural power displayed in the Bible.

I think one reason we don’t see these public miracles is that God is not confirming new revelation today.  You see, the Bible records some 250 miraculous events, but they are concentrated, according to Norman Geisler and Frank Turek, in three time periods: 1) the time of Moses, 2) the time of Elijah and Elisha, and 3) the time of Jesus and his apostles.

According to the Bible, God used miracles as signs to confirm his messengers (prophets)  to skeptical populations.  Read the Gospel of John to see how John records seven miraculous signs performed by Jesus to prove he was from God.  Likewise, consider Elijah on Mount Carmel (1 Kings 18).  One of the ways God confirmed his messengers was through miracles.

There were hundreds of years recorded in the Bible with no miracles, so it is false to say that miracles occurred all throughout biblical times.  They did not.  They primarily occurred when God was confirming a new revelation from his prophets.  By the way, this is one reason why Jews and Christians rejected Muhammad as a prophet of God while he was alive.  He did not perform any miracles (Sura 3:181–184).

So, today we do not have new revelation coming from one of God’s prophets, because Jesus and his apostles were the final revelation from God.  Everything God wants us to know about himself, through his prophets, is recorded in the Holy Scriptures.  Since there is no need for new prophets to tell us new things about God, then the need for public displays of supernatural power is absent.

Can God do miracles today?  Of course.  But we should not expect the same kinds and numbers of miracles today as when Moses, Elijah, and Jesus lived.

Is the God of Christianity the Same as the God of Islam?

Post Author: Bill Pratt 

Imagine the following scenario: two people claim to know the same professional football player.  The football player’s name is Alex and he plays in the NFL.  The first person who knows Alex the football player describes him this way:

He is 6′ 6″ tall, he weighs 305 lbs., he plays left tackle, he is married, and he plays for the Carolina Panthers.

Now the second person describes Alex the football player:

He is 6′ 2″ tall, he weighs 256 lbs., he plays middle linebacker, he is single, and he plays for the Atlanta Falcons.

When when we started out, we were pretty confident that these two people were talking about the same Alex the football player.  Once we asked for more details, though, we quickly discovered that they are not the same person at all, but two different people.  We just needed a little more information about Alex from each person.

This is the same situation with the God of Islam and the God of Christianity.  Both are claimed to be the God of Abraham and both are monotheistic creator-God’s.  If we stop there, we might conclude that they must be the same God.

Unfortunately, there is a slight problem.  Christians believe that God is three persons in one nature, a Trinity.  The three persons are the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Muslims flatly reject the Trinity.  There is only one person who is God, not three.

Second, Christians believe that Jesus Christ is the God-man – he is fully God and fully man.  Muslims completely reject this idea of Jesus as God-man.  They view Jesus as a mere human prophet who is less important than the final prophet, Muhammad.

There are more differences in the God of Islam and the God of Christianity, but we need go no further.  Just based on the differences highlighted above, we are 100% sure that these two Gods are not the same.

One final note.  We must admit that there are some similarities in the God of Islam and the God of Christianity, and when Christians speak to Muslims about God, we can use these similarities as launching pads to share our faith.  However, just because there are some similarities, we must not fall into the trap of papering over the very real and very significant differences.  Closing our eyes to the key beliefs of these two religions doesn’t get us anywhere.

Did the New Testament Writers Record Fact or Fiction? Part 8

Post Author: Bill Pratt

In this series of posts, we have shown that the NT writers claimed to be eyewitnesses or associates of eyewitnesses; we have shown that we have multiple witnesses, and we have shown that the eyewitnesses were trustworthy.  How?  They included embarrassing details about themselves  and difficult details about their subject of worship, Jesus; their accounts contain divergent details, just as we would expect from independent witnesses; and they wrote about historical facts that have been thoroughly corroborated by ancient non-Christian writers and modern archaeology.

There is one final piece of evidence that you should consider, though.  I think it is one of the strongest historical evidences we have.

Here it is.  The apostles, some of whom wrote portions of the NT, were all killed for their beliefs, except John.  According to Christian tradition, Paul was beheaded and Peter was crucified upside down – both of them killed in Rome.  James, the brother of Jesus and leader of the Jerusalem church, was thrown off the top of the Jerusalem temple and stoned to death.  The other apostles met similar fates.    Before they died, they were beaten, stoned, imprisoned, mocked, and persecuted, mostly because of their professed beliefs in Christ.

I was having lunch with a couple of bright engineers a few years back, and we started discussing religions, Christianity in particular.  They challenged my belief in the NT documents by saying that many people have created religions in order to gain fame, fortune, and power.  They thought it was quite possible that the NT writers were merely doing the same.  I asked them if they knew what happened to the apostles after Jesus died, and they did not know.  When I shared the facts above, they became silent.  Fame, fortune, and power eluded all of these men while they were alive.  Their lives would have been far easier if they had just kept quiet.

Maybe the apostles weren’t in it for the money, so to speak.  Maybe they had been lied to or deceived.  Maybe they just died for their false religious beliefs like so many other fanatics do.   Many people die for their religious beliefs, don’t they?  The Muslim fanatics on 9/11 certainly died for their beliefs.  Aren’t the apostles just the same?

No, they aren’t.  There’s a fundamental difference between the disciples and the 9/11 extremists.  The 9/11 fanatics died for contemporary beliefs that reflected someone’s modern-day interpretation of the Qur’an, a book which was written 1,400 years ago.  They had no way of knowing if the source of that book, Muhammad, was telling the truth or not.  They weren’t there to see it.  They believed based on what they had been taught by their contemporary religious teachers.

Not so with the disciples.  They all went to their deaths claiming that they saw Jesus risen from the dead.  But they knew this, not based on information delivered 1,400 years after the fact, but based on their own two eyes!!  If Jesus did not rise from the dead and the NT is a pack of lies, then the disciples knew it.  They were there.

But if they knew Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, then we must explain why they willingly went to their deaths.  Many people die for a false belief, but nobody dies for a false belief they know is false, especially not 12 different people!  The martyrdom of the apostles is strong evidence for the truth of the historical resurrection of Jesus.  There exists no other theory which can adequately explain their behavior.

I conclude this series with an extended quote from Chuck Colson, who is often asked about why he believes that Jesus rose from the dead, which is the central event and miracle of the NT.  Here is Colson:

Watergate involved a conspiracy to cover up, perpetuated by the closest aides to the President of the United States, the most powerful men in America, who were intensely loyal to their President.  But one of them, John Dean, turned state’s evidence, that is, testified against Nixon, as he put it, “to save his own skin,” and he did so only two weeks after informing the president about what was really going on – two weeks!  The real cover-up, the lie, could only be held together for two weeks, and then everybody else jumped ship in order to save themselves. Now, the fact is that all that those around the President were facing was embarrassment, maybe prison. Nobody’s life was at stake.

But what about the disciples?  Twelve powerless men, peasants really, were facing not just embarrassment or political disgrace, but beatings, stonings, execution.  Every single one of the disciples insisted, to their dying breaths, that they had physically seen Jesus bodily raised from the dead.

Don’t you think that one of those apostles would have cracked before being beheaded or stoned?  That one of them would have made a deal with the authorities?  None did.

You see, men will give their lives for something they believe to be true – they will never give their lives for something they know to be false.

The Watergate cover-up reveals the true nature of humanity.  Even political zealots at the pinnacle of power will, in the crunch, save their own necks, even at the expense of the ones they profess to serve so loyally. But the apostles could not deny Jesus because they had seen Him face to face, and they knew He had risen from the dead.

No, you can take it from an expert in cover-ups – I’ve lived through Watergate – that nothing less than a resurrected Christ could have caused those men to maintain to their dying whispers that Jesus is alive and is Lord.  Two thousand years later, nothing less than the power of the risen Christ could inspire Christians around the world to remain faithful – despite prison, torture, and death.

Jesus is Lord: That’s the thrilling message of Easter.  And it’s an historic fact, one convincingly established by the evidence – and one you can bet your life upon.  Go ahead researchers – dig up all the old graves you want.  You won’t change a thing.  He has risen.

From Islam to Christianity

I just saw a fascinating documentary on Fox, called Escape from Hamas,  about an up-and-coming leader of Hamas becoming disillusioned with the teachings of Hamas and radical Islam.  The documentary tells how he, Mosab Hassan, converted to Christianity and is now living in America and hoping to spread the word about the extremism within Hamas and radical Islam, and the hope that he found in Christ.  It is a riveting documentary that you don’t want to miss.

Fox plans on showing it several more times today and tomorrow, so set your DVR to record it.