Jesus at Work in the Muslim World
By: John Ankerberg Show
|By: Tom Doyle, Kamal Saleem, General William Boykin; ©2013|
|In our first program we will take you into the chaos of Egypt where Tom Doyle tells us powerful stories of Jesus appearing to Muslims. Kamal Saleem shares how he was raised as a young boy to become a hate-filled terrorist. He explains how he learned at his mother’s table that his highest calling was to die as a martyr while killing infidels. General Boykin explains the biggest misconceptions Americans have about Islam.|
John Ankerberg: Welcome to our program. We have three very special guests that you’re going to want to hear today, and you’ve heard their introductions. We’ve got General Boykin. We’ve got Kamal Saleem. We’ve got Tom Doyle. And, Tom, I want you to start us off and frame this for us. You’ve been working in the Middle East for 18 years. You’re a bestselling author. And along the way you started hearing stories from Muslims in different countries, and I want you to tell what you’ve discovered.
Tom Doyle: Well, you know, John, we certainly weren’t looking for it and I had never experienced this here in America, but as we met Muslims that were now following Jesus, there seemed to be something that just kept popping up. And about one out of three of them would share that their journey to the cross began with a dream about Jesus. They weren’t expecting it. All of a sudden they had a dream, and they were motivated. Some of them had multiple dreams, some 30 nights in a row, and they wanted to know more about Jesus. And that’s how it began for them.
Ankerberg: Yeah, I want to give us a real live illustration of this, an example. And we all know there’s commotion going on in Egypt right now, and we don’t know how this is all going to turn out. But take us to Egypt and there’s a man that had a fascinating story that was related to you. His name was Hassan, and I want you to tell us what happened to this man.
Doyle: Well, you know, throughout the Muslim world there’s a great underground. We hear about underground in many different contexts, but there’s an underground church. And when it comes to someone that was a former Muslim, they probably will worship in the underground. And Hassan was a part of that in Cairo, which is one of the spiritual capitals of Islam. And so Hassan one night wakes up—he’s a former Muslim—wakes up in the middle of the night with a hand across his mouth and he looks up. There’s a man with a black hood over his face with a gun and says, “Get dressed, and come with me.”
Now, Hassan was an underground church planter. As he leads people to faith in Christ, he disciples them. They meet in the middle of the night in small house churches; former Muslims. Hassan starts to follow this man, gets his clothes on, starts walking through these streets in Cairo. It’s kind of the old section of Cairo, not far from some of the areas like Al-Azhar University. We’re talking about right in the middle of it. And finally this man; he’s not talking to him, just leads him through these streets, and says, “We got to go in this building.” So he says, “Alright,” so he climbs up these stairs to the top of the building. And the man looks at him and says, “Now we’ve got to get a running start and jump from the top of this building to the top of this building over here.” And Hassan says “Well, I don’t think I can do that.” And he said, “Yeah, I do that all the time. You can do it. You’ve got to do this.” Points the gun at him. So, okay, I’m either going to fall to my death or get shot to death. And so he gets a running start and runs and jumps, tumbles over onto the other building.
The gunman comes; he lands right next to him. And he says, “See that hatch? Open it up.” So he opens up the hatch, climbs down a ladder and there’s 10 men sitting in circle around a candle. And the gunman climbs down, pulls off the mask and he looks at him and says, “We’re underground believers. We’re all imams that have studied at Al-Azhar University and we started to have dreams about Jesus. We didn’t know what to do. And the Holy Spirit led us together. We found a copy of the New Testament, but we need some help. And so I’m sorry I had to bring the gun and threaten you, but I knew you wouldn’t follow me unless I did. We want to know more about Jesus. Can you teach us?”
Ankerberg: Unbelievable stuff, unbelievable stuff. And, General, what is the biggest misconception? We’ve got the good and we’ve got the bad going on back and forth here, okay. God is working in the Muslim world and in these countries like Egypt and Pakistan. We’re going to hear more about all of these countries. But let’s look at it from your point. You led Delta Force. You were in charge of Special Forces all around the world. You were at CIA. You were Under Secretary of Defense for four years. You know what’s going on around the world. What is the biggest misconception about Islam that you think our American people have?
General William Boykin: Americans need to understand that Islam is not purely a religion. The First Amendment was written with Christianity and Judaism in mind. And although we protect all religions, Islam is more than a religion. Only less than 20% of Islam is a religion. The rest is a geopolitical system, a legal system called Sharia, a financial system, and even a dress code and moral code. But we have a tendency to want to protect it under the First amendment, and this is totally different from Christianity, because less than 20% is actually religion.
Ankerberg: Yeah. Kamal, you were born in Beirut, Lebanon. And my question to you is, how did you become a terrorist from a young age when you start off as an innocent Lebanese boy? And it started early, and it actually started right around your family table with what your mother told you. What did she tell you from the Qur’an? What were the things that you remember?
Kamal Saleem: You see, in my world, in Muslim world like ours, it starts on the table, right there where we’re fed in the kitchen. On the kitchen table I was taught everything. Muslim people in general are very good at heart, you know. And until Islam comes about and the teaching of Islam that came about. And on the table there my mother said, “You will die for the sake of Allah.” My mother said, “If you kill a Jew, my son, you will, you know, you’ll rise before Allah and be handed a light up before the throne of heaven.” My mother’s teaching was so radical. It was from the ultimate empire understanding that her father induced in her. There in that house I was learning the do and the don’ts, you know. And my mother said, “It is our, you know, responsibility to die for the sake of Allah.” The only way to please Allah, you know, is to live and die for him. So therefore, over there she was teaching us from the Qur’an, from the Hadith, from Sira, the Sharia law of Islam. And there I was growing up, all I wanted to do is to please Allah and make Allah happy. And that is to walk in the way of Muhammad; and that is to condemn your enemy to death if they don’t convert to Islam.
Ankerberg: Yeah, it was also the fact; tell me about the scales before Allah at judgment.
Saleem: You know, the teaching in Islam, according to Sharia, according to Hadith by Muhammad—and when we say the Hadith, it is the tradition of Islam—Allah will weigh all your good work and your bad work on a scale. And based on this you either go to heaven or go to hell. In the Muslim walk, if you sin and you ask Allah for forgiveness, Allah will forgive you. But if you fall back into sin, then Allah will double what you’ve done before and now brings everything that was forgiven back upon you. And now, so what happens is your scale would never, you’ll never succeed. So we were doomed from our childhood. And that, you know, we that there’s no exception to come out of that except by two different ways. Number one is to die in martyrism; number two is to encounter the light of Allah in the month of Ramadan, which is on the night of power. These are the two elements that every Muslim looked for to please Allah.
Ankerberg: Yeah, tell me, when you gave up believing that you could have enough good works to please Allah, your mother taught you this story about a bandit, a bandit who was not only a thief, but he was also a murderer. And it was one of the stories that you loved. And you thought he would go to hell and so you thought, why is your mother telling you this story? Finish the story. What did she say about the bandit that was both a murderer and a thief when he came before Allah? Why did Allah let him into paradise?
Saleem: The story was told by Muhammad, prophet of Islam, you know. And the story was about this bandit who killed people, and he, you know, stole the people finances and their lives. But his mother always hated him, and she beat him up and she told him he’s going to go to hell. And one day she had a dream and she saw him, he was sitting in paradise. And she said, “What, you don’t deserve to be in paradise.” And around him there were virgin women. There was food. There was, you know, wine. There’s everything. And he said, “Well, I died for the sake of Allah.” He died in martyrism. So therefore he gave his life in the way of Allah, [Arabic]. And so therefore as he did that, what happened, paradise was his portion.
Ankerberg: Yeah, and so you determined you wanted to be one of those that would die in the cause of Allah.
Saleem: My dream as a child, I always dreamt that one day I will die for the sake of Allah. One night I had a dream. I was dressed in white clothing, white shorts, sat on a white horse, two swords in my hands, and before me stood the enemy of Allah, the Christians and the Jews. And our command is to destroy them. Islam came to destroy the Christians and Jews. So therefore I fought against them that day and I was killed and I rose before the face of Allah. And Allah was laughing because I was trying to put the laughter on his face. And then so therefore I gave myself in death to just make him laugh.
Ankerberg: Alright, you were learning this between the age of four and seven; and about the age of seven the Muslim Brotherhood in Lebanon embraced you. And we’re going to take a break and when we come back I want you to tell the folks how you got into the Muslim Brotherhood, and then how they trained you, and what happened. And we’ll hear from Kamal some more when we come right back. Stick with us.
Ankerberg: Alright, we’re back. We’re talking with General Boykin, Kamal Saleem, and with Tom Doyle. And, Kamal, I want to come back to your story. You’re seven years of age. Your mom and dad continue to have children. And you finally get to about 10 children and all of a sudden the money doesn’t go far enough in your home. And so your dad says you can’t go to school, you’ve got to get a job. He gets you a job, but it’s all the way across town in Beirut. And so you go there every morning, but now you’ve got to get through gangs. And they start beating you up. Why did they beat you up?
Saleem: You know, in Islam, Islam killed more Islam than Islam, you know, has killed anybody else. Therefore, when we’re going in the Shia neighborhood, or the Kurdish neighborhood or the Armenian neighborhood, therefore—I was Sunni—so I was spotted and I was out of my neighborhood. I was beaten up for that I’m not one of them by their gangs. And so therefore I had to work from sunrise to sunset. And one day I got beat up three times. And because of my background on my family name. And I ran into a mosque to take refuge as I was almost killed that day. I was beaten up severely. And I remember there was several imam, about six or seven. And they rose up and they came. Imam al-Rahman, you know, he came out for me and he stood out for me, even to the point when he knew who my family are—and I’m Sunni, I’m one of them, like the Sufi and you know, and Wahhabi—therefore he said, “We will take care of you.” And he went in challenging the other kids even to beaten them up severely if you touch this man.
Ankerberg: Yeah, he went with you and found their parents and said, “We know where you live.”
Ankerberg: “And if you, if your sons touch our boy here,” talking about you now, the fact is, “we’ll come back.” And they feared those imams. They feared the fellows in the Muslim Brotherhood. And all of a sudden you got protection.
Saleem: Yes, I did. And not just protection, but I got a family. You see, when a family don’t want you, and now they want you to work to bring in the finances, somebody else will adopt you. And I was adopted by the Muslim Brotherhood. They became my family, my source of income, and also knowledge. My madrassa, my school, was there in the Muslim Brotherhood. The inducing, you know of the Middle Eastern society by the Muslim Brotherhood was powerful and they were trying to lure people like me that their family taught them about Islam and now turn to the radical. And this is how I started with the Muslim Brotherhood.
Ankerberg: And they trained you.
Saleem: Yes, it was training in a mosque. The mosque, unlike the church, the mosque is a training place, is a recruiting place, is a launching place. So therefore what happened in and during the mosque we were trained in the jurisprudence of Islam. What is the walk? What the straight and narrow path for the Muslims? Our identity is to advance the great commission of Islam. And that is what Muhammad says, “[Arabic].” I have been commended by Allah to fight and kill the people of the world until everyone says [Arabic], there is no God but Allah and Muhammad his prophet.
Ankerberg: Why are the Christians and Jews so hated?
Saleem: It is the teaching of the Qur’an and the Hadith and the Sira, these three components, these what we refer to as the Trilogy of Islam, these three components create what so called Sharia. And in the teaching of the Sharia, the Jews and the Christians must be destroyed in order for Islam to become the final commission or the last, you know, like you have the Old Testament and New Testament, and now the final testament. So therefore you know, they were condemned even by the Qur’an to killing the Jews and the Christians, and they were not accepted from God. And if they’re to live their life they must be slave to Islam.
Boykin: John, I think it’s important also to understand that the origins of this actually go back to the days of Muhammad when he was rejected by the Jews and the Christians.
Saleem: And the Christians.
Boykin: The pagans were willing to convert out of convenience, but the Jews and the Christians refused to convert, and they therefore became eternal enemies of Islam.
Ankerberg: Kamal, how many people hold to the Muslim Brotherhood view, what most people would call the Islamist or the radical view? How many folks in the 1.5 billion Muslims in the world hold to what you held?
Saleem: Statistic by the Pews Report, it shows there’s about 18% and increasing as this is accelerating. Some statistics showed up to 32%, but I think it’s about, you know, 18-20%; in that area.
Ankerberg: So you’re up to 180, 200 million people.
Saleem: About 300.
Ankerberg: 300 million.
Ankerberg: Jerry, one of the things that people don’t seem to know is that when we have debates with the Muslims, and I’ve had debates with them here on the program, is that they will quote the peaceful parts of the Qur’an and say, “This is what we believe.” People do not know this term “abrogation,” that the latter part of the Qur’an that was given to Muhammad cancels out the prior part. And tell us a little bit about that and what chapters are the last ones and what’s in those chapters.
Boykin: Well, it’s important to remember that the Qur’an is written in two eras, or two periods of Muhammad’s life. When he was forming the religion in Mecca it was very peaceful and very passive. Everything that was theoretically revealed to him, which was ultimately captured in the Qur’an, was very passive. “There’s no compunction in religion;” you can force a person. But he was threatened. And as a result of the threats he left and went to Medina. When he went to Medina he formed his army and ultimately, after robbing caravans and becoming a wealthy man, he came back to Mecca, and he literally slaughtered his enemies if they were unwilling to convert. That’s where the Jews and the Christians became his enemies. But what was revealed to him, which is now captured in the Qur’an, in Medina, was all about jihad, holy war; not an internal struggle, holy war. And the concept is called “abrogation.” In other words, everything written in Medina abrogates or supersedes everything written in Mecca. Or progressive revelations as it’s called; in other words, the Qur’an is written progressively, as Allah revealed more things to Muhammad, it abrogates or supersedes. It’s important to understand that the way the Qur’an is put together you can’t tell what was written in Mecca versus what was written in Medina unless you have a reference book. And everything that was written later, which is now the current teachings of the Qur’an, is about jihad.
Ankerberg: Kamal, what else should Americans know, and people in Europe and around the world know, about abrogation?
Saleem: The abrogation in the Qur’an, it’s when you read it says there’s no compulsion to religion. When you read the paragraph under that you’ll find out the exceptions are the Jews and the Christians. So therefore, they are not accepted into this. So you cannot read the phrase by itself, open, close. You have to read the full.
Ankerberg: Alright, take me on some of the raids. There’s one raid that, you’re sent on a raid into Israel.
Ankerberg: Seven years old.
Ankerberg: And you talked on one of those raids, you talked one of your best friends into coming with you and you promised the parents that you would bring him back alive. Tell me what happened.
Saleem: The greatest commodity in Islam are young men. A lot of men have no destiny, no vision. We were recruited by the Muslim Brotherhood. We went to the PLO. I shot my first AK-47 in the PLO camp. Abu Jihad was there. We were taught how to fight. At seven years old we sent all the way to Syria to the Golan Heights, and we manifested through holes in the mountains to Israel carrying weapon caches to the Bedouins, shepherd men, and they took it to the mujahideen, or what’s called the fedayeen at that time, which is killing their self and killing the Jews. The first mission was amazing. The second mission I became a recruiter. And now I’m recruiting young men to go with me. So we went on the second mission the same way. But this time they were waiting for us, and we were slaughtered. I carried my best friend on my back that I promised his mom, Fatima, I told her I would bring him back alive. And that day he became my shield and my life was falling apart from that point on.
Ankerberg: He was taking bullets as you were carrying him so he’s protecting you even though he was dead.
Saleem: Instead of saving his life he saved my life, you know.
Ankerberg: Yeah. We’re going to talk more about your story. And what we want folks to know is the Lord eventually brought you through this horrendous world of terrorism to a personal knowledge of the Lord Jesus. This is, we’re going to tell this story as we go through the weeks. But, Tom, take me back to Cairo for a moment and to the marketplace. Anybody that’s been to Cairo, you’ve been in the marketplace. You see the swarm of people and there was a woman named Noor, who met another fellow by the name of Kamal Assam. And tell me what happened.
Doyle: Well, it’s Friday. It’s the day of prayers so Muslims are going to the marketplace to get their food ahead of time before the day of prayer. And Kamal, you can imagine, pretty special person that can work with the underground church. Kamal’s a man of prayer, feels like the Lord tells him to go to a market. Normally on Friday morning he’s praying. But he goes to the market, the Khan el-Khalili in Cairo, and a woman comes running up to him. She’s covered in her hijab, grabs his arm, which is totally out of bounds, and says, “You’re the one.” And he says, “I’m the one?” She says, “You’re the one.” He says, “What do you mean I’m the one?” “You were in my dream last night. You were with Jesus and I was walking with Him around a lake again, and He had His arm around me and He told me how much He loved me, cared for me, died on the cross for me. And He said, ‘Tomorrow you’ll meet My friend, Kamal, and he’s going to tell you about Me.’ What’s the message that you have for me?”
And Kamal sat down under a tree, very inappropriate, a married woman, unmarried man, he’s a Christian, shared the gospel. And at the end she wasn’t ready to make that commitment to the Lord, because he had to ask her the two questions: are you willing to be persecuted? Are you willing to die for Jesus? And at that point, not ready; but one of these days she’ll come to faith in Christ.
Ankerberg: Yeah, unbelievable stuff. And we’re going to hear more about this. Next week, folks, we’re going to take you into the heart of Islam. We’re going to take you to Saudi Arabia and we’re going to talk about more of these appearances of Jesus to Muslims even around the Kaabah and in the time of hajj and it’s just incredible some things you’re going to hear. And Kamal’s got a very special relationship with sheikh’s in Saudi Arabia that we’re going to talk about and the General’s going to give us his perspective. You will not want to miss this. Join us next week.
Read Part 2
More Articles You Will Love
John Ankerberg Show
Founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America.