Christians often place incredible pressure on themselves to have all the right answers and to say just the right thing in evangelism. I often think that kind of pressure is a mixture of godly desire to help others and a serious lack of faith in God’s ability to use what we do know to minister to others. Consequently, many Christians never begin to reach out to their Muslim neighbors and friends. We doubt our own ability and doubt that God can use us.
We may fail to realize that conviction of sin is God’s work (John 16:8). He is pleased to ordinarily use people like you and me. But, ultimately, the Holy Spirit takes responsibility for making people aware of their sin and its heinousness. We simply need to be faithful to raise the topic of righteousness and sin, to discuss the issue openly and honestly. Sometimes a basic question such as “What do Muslims think about sin and judgment?” may open the way. At other times, describing true virtue in others may expose the corruption of a person’s heart.
The Holy Spirit takes responsibility for making people aware of their sin.
Through the Scriptures, we know more about the Muslim and all non-Christians than they know about themselves. For example, we know that “the wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them” (Rom. 1:18–19). In other words, God tells us that people “suppress the truth” about God in unrighteousness. They know the truth of their godlessness and wickedness, and they suppress it. Our task becomes to lift the hands of suppression so that what is really known may rise to the surface.
Thus, in our evangelism to our Muslim friends, we do not have to begin by convincing them of new truth. We can begin by drawing out their knowledge of sin. We can then point them to the knowledge of God and the judgment that God has already placed inside their hearts. This part of evangelism is more like mining the truth already buried than planting the truth in fresh soil.
Effective evangelism requires we call our Muslim friends and coworkers to respond urgently to the danger and corruption of sin in their lives. As long as a person believes that Allah is not affronted by their sin, motivation to repent and confess their sin will be lacking. They need to see that the Bible calls sin a rebellion against God, which incurs God’s wrath.
 J. Budziszewski, The Revenge of Conscience (Dallas: Spence Publishing, 2004).
by Thabiti Anyabwile
There are over three million Muslims living in the United States today. Soon, if not already, you will have Muslim neighbors and coworkers....
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