We often deal with protecting our nation against the ideology of Islam. I have often told you that we must separate the issue of Muslims, the people, the ones following the religion, from the Islamic issue. They really are two different issues.
Muslims, in themselves, are people, souls, that have been misguided, taught a lie, and they do what they do because of Islam. The problems we have with them is because of their attachment to Islam. Our real problem as a nation is with Islam. Islam is a dangerous ideology, it is against just about everything we in our country hold dear,;freedom, faith in Christ, etc. which are all a threat to Islam, and threatened by Islam.
Islam is a religion and a political system all wrapped up in one package. We must compel our government to do everything it can to protects from the dangers of this ideology.
The Muslim, on the other hand, are victims of Islam. Don’t blame Muslims for Islam. About 80% of the Muslims coming to the West, come to get away from the tyranny of Islam. Who would want to live under it, its despotic and tyrannical. It is a dictatorship that tries to regulate everything in a person’s life. There is very little prosperity. There is no freedom. People are trying to escape it. I would, wouldn’t you?
I often get calls from my listeners that go something like this, “Brother Wallace, I’ve been listening to you for a couple of months, and I must admit that before I started listening to Fortress of Faith, I wanted every Muslim dead. I didn’t want them in my country, much less in my county. I saw them as an enemy and as a danger. Now that I have been listening to you, I get it. Thank you, because now I understand my problem isn’t with the Muslim. I have been addressing all my anger and hurt toward the Muslim, and now I see the the problem is Islam. I am now praying for Muslims to get saved.” When I hear this, I rejoice and praise the Lord because people are starting to understand.
Today I want to share some thoughts with you concerning what God says about how we are to deal with the strangers in our land. The Bible uses the word strangers when we would say foreigners. Let’s look at a few passages out of the Bible.
But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God. (Leviticus 19:34)
Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt. (Exodus 22:21)
Love ye therefore the stranger: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt. (Deuteronomy 10:19)
Thou shalt not oppress an hired servant that is poor and needy, whether he be of thy brethren, or of thy strangers that are in thy land within thy gates: (Deuteronomy 24:14)
II Chronicles 2:17 tells us 153,600 strangers living in Israel.
And Solomon numbered all the strangers that were in the land of Israel, after the numbering wherewith David his father had numbered them; and they were found an hundred and fifty thousand and three thousand and six hundred. (2 Chronicles 2:17)
There is a danger when there is a great host of foreigners in the land. The problem is, the people may start to take on the cultural differences of the foreigners, instead of the other way around. It is true that there is a richness in most cultures. I have lived many years in a European culture, although I am an American, and I think there are some things that Europeans do better than we do. There are also things that Americans to better than Europeans. There are things we can learn from different cultures. That being said, we should expect the foreigners who live in our land to assimilate into our culture, we should not be expected to adapt to theirs.
The Bible deals with this problem. Because Israel followed the ways of the strangers, there were warnings from God
Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the LORD thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed my voice, saith the LORD. (Jeremiah 3:13)
And it shall come to pass, when ye shall say, Wherefore doeth the LORD our God all these things unto us? then shalt thou answer them, Like as ye have forsaken me, and served strange gods in your land, so shall ye serve strangers in a land that is not yours. (Jeremiah 5:19)
When strangers come into our land, it presents an opportunity for us to bring them to our faith. We cannot take the Gospel into Muslim lands, but they are coming to us, and we can share it with them here in our own land. They have the right to make their laws, and to keep us out, but we have the right to make our laws so we can give the truth to them when they come here.
In the Old Testament, when people came into Israel, those who converted were called proselytes. The Hebrew word is ‘gerut’ is used for a Proselyte – which comes out of the Verb lagur – sojourner or foreigner.
Here are some examples:
Esther 8:17 …And many of the people of the land became Jews (Persians)
Doeg the Edomite — Chief Heardsman of King Saul
Uriah the Hittite — Served King David Faithfully in Battle
Araunah the Jebusite
Zelek the Ammonite
Ithmah the Ethiopian
Most famously – Ruth the Moabite (Grandmother of David)
And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, o] to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: (Ruth 1:16)
Ruth converted to Judaism and to worshiping Jehovah, yet she was still a Moabite.
There were many people who came to the true faith and worshiped Jehovah, the true God of Heaven and earth.
In Matthew 7 Jesus said there would be many who would sit with Abraham from the east and the west.
And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 8:11)
This is speaking of the Old Testament saints who will be around the throne in Heaven.
Rituals for Proselyting to Judaism.
There were certain rituals for converting to Judaism. They are not found in the Bible, they were man made rules, written in the Talmud. There were three things expected of males, and two for females.
Sacrifice of Korban
Sacrifice of Korban
The Jewish immersion was symbolic of the washing away of the old faith, and a putting on of the new. This is why it was thought unusual for John the Baptist to be baptizing Jews. Their baptism was for non-Jews becoming Jews. John was calling upon Jews to repent. They were born Jews, but they were not living and worshiping as Jews ought to.
The Korban sacrifice was a clean animal that was offered. The one offering this sacrifice could also partake in this thanksgiving offering.
The New Testament also has instructions for the saints on how to deal with strangers in our lands.
Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers; (3 John 1:5)
Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. (Hebrews 13:2)
Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48)
We will get into these passages tomorrow, but my point is, we are to treat strangers as we would treat ourselves. Remember, it is only by God’s grace that you were born in a nation where the Gospel came to your door. We could have been born in Yemen or Iraq, or some other Muslim nation where the preaching of the Gospel is not allowed.
If you or I had been born in a country where the Gospel was not allowed, and we moved to another country looking for freedom, would we not want someone to bring the good news to us? Shouldn’t we, then, take it to the lost Muslims?