Diary: Muslim Response to Christian Challenge
The Light & Islamic Review (US), May/June 1992 Issue (Vol. 69, No. 3, p. 15)
Various Church of England leaders have designated the present decade as the
“decade of evangelism”,
and in this connection one of them has announced that
“the call to win Islam to Christ is on the agenda”.
Referring to this, the Muslim periodical The Message (January–February 1992, p. 20) reports that British Muslims have launched a
“decade of Islamic Revivalism”
in order to quell Muslim anxiety about the Christian campaign of proselytisation. Dr. Zaki Badawi, Principal of the Muslim College, London, has initiated this Muslim response, one reason for it being
“to allay Muslim fears about possible conversion attempts by Christians”.
It may be noted that the Ahmadiyya Movement has for several decades not only been combating Christian missionary efforts among Muslims all over the world, but also spreading Islam in Christian lands such as Britain. To do so successfully, there is not only the obvious requirement of having extensive knowledge of Islam, and indeed of Christianity, but it must be the right kind of knowledge enabling one to dispel the common misconceptions about Islam, particularly those wrong notions held by Muslims themselves which are exploited by Christian evangelists.
There is, for example, the common charge that while Christianity is the religion of love, gentleness and meekness, Islam is founded on coercion and intolerance. But our Muslim co-religionists themselves reinforce such allegations by holding erroneous beliefs such as the death penalty for apostasy. Then there are the popular misconceptions about the life and works of Jesus as found in Islamic sources, due to which he seems to be above and beyond the laws which apply to all other human beings and all other prophets. Are the Muslim religious leaders prepared to correct these ideas, many of which they know to be false, but cannot rectify for fear of being associated with the Ahmadiyya Movement?