Where Is Islam Taking the World? – Program 4

By: Dr. Ergun Caner, Dr. Emir Caner; ©1995
Do Muslims believe Jesus will return at the end of time? Are they looking forward to his return? What do they think they need to do to bring about end time events?

Islamic Eschatology

Introduction

Every 24 hours, 68,000 people in the world become Muslims and begin to follow the teachings of Muhammad and learn about Islam’s surprising view of end time events. Islam teaches that Jesus will someday return to Earth to prove to the world that He is a true Muslim, that He will fight in the last great war of Armageddon, the battle for Jerusalem, and bring about the final Islamic defeat of all Christians and Jews. These beliefs greatly affect all aspects of Muslim life today.

Dr. Emir Caner: And so it is the ultimate jihad, it’s the ultimate picture of what will happen at the end of time, that Jesus defends Muhammad’s character. Jesus defends the Qur’an. Jesus defends everything it is to be Muslim. And Jesus defends that He is merely human, as chapter 5 of the Qur’an says, and is no more; and that those who say so, whether it’s Christians who say that He is the Son of God, or those who have corrupted it as Jews have done by eating swine or by corrupting the text, these people of the book are finally put in their place.
Today on the John Ankerberg show, my guests are two former Muslims who turned away from Allah and placed their faith in Jesus Christ.
Emir: We worshiped a false god, which was given to us by a false prophet, which gave a false hope, through a false word, until one day we were introduced to a true and living God, who was triune. And the son sacrificed His life for our sins, and the Holy Spirit, He indwelt us.
These men went on to get their Ph.D.’s and now Dr. Ergun Caner is president of Liberty Theological Seminary at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia and Dr. Emir Caner is Dean of the College at Southwestern on the campus of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. They are best-selling authors of Unveiling Islam and More Than a Prophet and are writing the first major commentary on every verse in the Qur’an from an evangelical Christian perspective.
Dr. Ergun Caner: This is for the Muslim, this war that is taking place now, eschatological. This is a prophecy for them, but they believe as they fight they are fulfilling the final days when Islam will take over and the world will be Islamic. And when the world becomes Islamic, Allah comes for judgment.
Join us for this special edition of the John Ankerberg Show.

Ankerberg: Welcome. We’re talking with two former Muslims that became Christians, left Islam, placed their faith in Jesus Christ. Family disowned them. They went on in their education to get their Ph.D.s, and they’re teaching in two different seminaries. They’re best-selling authors. And today we want to talk about what they were taught as Muslims about end time events. And guys, did the Qur’an, did the Hadith, did the teachings in Islam, did they talk about Jesus Christ actually coming back, returning at the end of time, and if so, where and what happens?
Emir: Well, it of course begins with chapter 4 of the Qur’an where Jesus is not crucified, so what happens to Him? And the central verse in the Qur’an is chapter 43 and verse 61, where it speaks of Jesus and that He shall know, there’ll be the knowledge of coming back.
And so here is Christ when Allah tells Him that this mere messenger, this human being, Jesus, will come back to earth and will battle the Dijjal, the Anti-Christ, and will defeat the Anti-Christ, and then he’ll destroy what is sacred to false religions. He’ll step on all crosses, kill all swine. Finally showing His humanity, He’ll pray beside other Muslims, because He was always a good Muslim. He will get married, according to traditions in Muslim’s Hadith, in Dawood’s Hadith, and these two sources of Islamic jurisprudence, and finally will one day, after 40 years, die. And so Islam is in many ways medieval forms of what we see in The Da Vinci Code, as Ergun argues that it’s a medieval form of Mormonism, because here is Jesus, who the Hadith says in Volume 4 is a spiritual brother of Muhammad.
Ankerberg: Pick that up. Talk to us about that.
Ergun: We always get this in churches: “Oh, well, you know, it’s the same God.” Or, in the media, it’s always the same God. Or how do we understand Islam, because you know, it doesn’t seem to filter for us. They call themselves the sons of Abraham.
And the easiest way that anyone can teach about Islam, easiest way that anyone can teach in their church and explain what Islam basically is, is it’s medieval Mormonism. Everything that Joseph Smith did in the nineteenth century, Muhammad did in the seventh and eighth century. Everything that Islam developed was later copied.
Think of it. Number 1, they both said that all the world was corrupt, that Christianity was corrupt, and there was no true religion on the planet when they both came. Joseph Smith said this, Muhammad said this.
Both of them said they received a revelation from an angel: Moroni, or Angel Jibrael, Muhammad said.
Both said they received the revelation from tablets: golden tablets. Both of them are preserved, buried in Mormonism, but in Paradise in Islam.
Both of them taught that Judaism was true but lost it; Christianity was true but lost it, and now they were here as the final word.
Both of them teach that Jesus was a prophet, but not God. Both of them teach that Jesus said that He would send a final prophet: Mormonism said Joseph Smith, Islam says Muhammad.
Both of them teach that salvation is all works.
Both of them have Jesus as a celestial brother; that is, sort of a “one of us” type of position, but not God in any sense.
Both of them teach that women, in eternity, will be sexual servants: in Islam a woman is a houri, she is one of the virgins waiting on the martyrs; and in Mormonism she’s eternally pregnant, a celestial bride.
And so, when you explain this, sometimes the light goes off in somebody’s eyes and they go, “Oh!!”, because it’s not new. The devil has no new lies. He just keeps rehashing the same things.
Ankerberg: Alright. Fascinating stuff. You rolled by that one so fast. Jesus is going to come back, He’s going to knock off all the false religions, and that includes the swine, which would be Judaism, the crosses, which would be Christianity. And you’re going to see that He really was the good Muslim who was serving Allah, bringing Allah’s message, but He’s just a servant, and Muhammad is the great prophet, He’s just one of the prophets. He’s not the son of God, and He’s certainly not pushing Christianity. Anything else that you can pick up on there?
Emir: Well, it’s the key that you either, at that time of eschatology, stand with Muslims, or you’re killed. And so it is the ultimate jihad, it’s the ultimate picture of what will happen at the end of time: that Jesus defends Muhammad’s character. Jesus defends the Qur’an. Jesus defends everything it is to be Muslim. And Jesus defends that He is merely human, as chapter 5 of the Qur’an says, and is no more; and that those who say so, whether it’s Christians who say that He is the Son of God, or those who have corrupted it as Jews have done by eating swine or by corrupting the text, these people of the book are finally put in their place.
Ergun: Islam has this tendency, this is the irony for us, there’s really about eight of us who are former Muslims who are now professors. Emir is the Dean of the College, I’m a President of the Seminary. We constantly run into Muslims who have converted to Christ who hate Israel. They are believers in Jesus, but they are replacement theologians. They say the only way they can deal with Israel is make the Church replace Israel.
Ankerberg: Yes. Some time ago you came out with an article called “The Dirty Little Secret.”
Ergun: Yes. And the irony for us is that this is eschatological. We believe in Israel. We came to the point where, I mean, we were taught that the Jews drink the blood of Palestinian children and etc. Then we got saved and then we start reading through Romans and then we start reading Revelation. And we discover that all this eschatology we’d been taught was a lie. And that Israel is not replaced. They are still the children of God. This is one of those issues that almost splits churches. Because we stand with Israel; we stand with the Jew. We stand…
Ankerberg: Because you’re saying a lot of the fellows that have converted out of Islam like yourself, still hold to some of the teachings that Islam said, and they still hate the Jews!
Ergun: Oh, yes. Vestigial hatred, I call it.
Ankerberg: Okay.
Emir: And in Syria there was just a media release of a survey in the Middle East of what is your view of Judaism and in particular the Israel nation. And 100% of Syrians had a distain for Israel. It is encompassed in your blood. It runs through your veins.
But what we understand is eschatology is so important to your faith. For example, with us, why we’re such staunch supporters of Israel is we understand Genesis 12 is an unconditional covenant. That’s the Abrahamic covenant, the promise to the chosen people, where Jeremiah 31 is the new covenant which is given to us as well. In Jeremiah 31, it is also an unconditional covenant. Thereby, if God can remove an unconditional covenant to the Jews, He can also remove the promise of salvation found in Jeremiah 31 to we who were grafted in who are Gentiles. Eschatology, it’s imperative that we understand it as Christians.
Ankerberg: Alright, let’s slow this down for our people outside. The fact is that, let’s talk about Jerusalem. Why is it important to Muslims?
Ergun: The hatred of the Jew.
Ankerberg: Is that all?
Ergun: Well, let’s take it further. We’re reading through the Qur’an and we come to this teaching of a story that is familiar in Christianity. It is Abraham taking his son to the top of Mount Moriah. When he gets to the top of Mount Moriah, he lays his son on an altar, he is about to plunge his knife into his son’s heart. And at the last minute, the Qur’an says, that Allah saves the life of the son, gives a substitute.
Except in Islam it’s Ishmael. That Mount becomes Temple Mount, the threshing floor that David buys that Solomon builds. They say, “No, no, no. This is where Abraham sacrifices Ishmael. If it’s sons of Ishmael, sons of the older brother of Isaac, we get two thirds of the land.”
There are three things that have changed in the last four years in Israel that have made this war exponentially worse. Number 1, this growing hatred of Israel that encompasses other free nations that we know. This Palestinian myth.
Ankerberg: Yes, yes, we’ve got to stop right there, just don’t lose that thought.
Ergun: I won’t.
Ankerberg: He said the survey was taken, what, Syria?
Emir: Yes, and across the Middle East.
Ankerberg: And across the Middle East. Now, folks, have you ever had a survey where 100% voted no? I mean, there’s nothing, there’s no survey I’ve ever seen that said 100% said a no.
Emir: That’s right.
Ankerberg: But you’re saying 100% of those countries, the population of those countries, said, “We hate the Jews.”
Emir: And what they do is revisionist history. Not only that they replace Isaac with Ishmael, but they make Ishmael a Muslim.
Ergun: Yes.
Emir: And though he was considered a wild dog, he was a Jewish man, not a Muslim. The first Muslim is none other than Muhammad; and then his wife Khadijah; and then his financier and best friend, Abu Bakar. That is, Islam does not begin until the seventh century. But they revise history and again, something that is part of medieval Mormonism, they’ve revised the history and the text that is there, they add to the revelation, they subtract from Jesus Christ. They multiply what it is to be saved. All false religions do so. Islam just beat them out by about a thousand years.
Ankerberg: Okay, so they actually say that “we’re the children of Ishmael, and he’s the one that actually got the Temple Mount and that’s why it’s valuable to us, and it belongs to us. Also, we conquered it back there in the Middle Ages, so it still belongs to us. And we’ve got to take that back.” What other reasons do they have?
Ergun: The second thing that is different is that now you have a hatred of Israel that includes not just men. There used to be a doctrine of jihad, the Qur’an is explicit, the Hadith is explicit: women do not fight jihad. A woman, her hadj is her jihad. And yet now we see women bombers. So what’s changed is, it used to be that there were civilian differences, you know. Now a woman who looks pregnant may be carrying a bomb.
Third difference is what we call the doctrine of the sacred places – that there was sort of a tacit agreement: Muslims will not bomb or will not destroy Christian sites, or Jewish sites, and we won’t do it to yours. And yet what have we seen? A return to Crusade in the last four years, where they charged the church in Bethlehem, the Church of the Nativity. They take over and defecate inside and ruin the altars.
This is for the Muslim, this war that is taking place now, eschatological. This is prophecy for them. The difference in Armageddon is fascinating to me, because in Armageddon for the Christian, as we read the Bible, the only one who carries a weapon is Jesus, and it’s the sword of the Lord.
In Islam, they are the, if I may use the phrase, they are the “stayed behind” series, because they believe the great honor is to be left here on earth to fight this last battle. So for them, you know, people say, “Well, they’re just doing it to earn eternal security.” That’s a component, yes. But they believe as they fight they are fulfilling the final days when Islam will take over and the world will be Islamic. And when the world becomes Islamic, Allah comes for judgment.
Ankerberg: Alright, we’re going to take a break. When we come back we’re going to ask the final question here: Does Islamic end time events, eschatology, their prophecy, depend upon the Muslim conquest of the world? Okay. We’ll hit that question when we come right back.

Ankerberg: Alright, we’re back, and we’re talking with two former Muslims that became Christians. They’re professors in some of our greatest seminaries and schools. And right now we’re asking the question about what the Qur’an, what the Hadith, what Islam, teaches about end-time events, about prophecy. What’s going to happen at the end of the world? And my question to you right now is, does Islamic eschatology, end-time events, depend upon the Muslim conquest of the world?
Emir: Consider what war is in Islam. In chapter 9 is “slay the enemies wherever you find them.” And the Muslim reaction is, “Well, that’s in war, that’s defense. But who is that on which they are fighting? Verse 29 says, “Those who do not believe in Allah or the last day.” Therefore, it’s eschatological. They are fighting infidels, kafir, those who do not believe. How long do you fight? Verse 33 of that same chapter says, “till the religion becomes Allah’s.” And it’s prescribed for them to fight in Chapter 2, and that the infidels are open enemies in Chapter 4 verse 101.
Eschatology, for the Muslim, is the now and the not yet. It is the beginning of playing out of history and Islam must win. And that’s why it’s so hard for a Muslim to accept that they could ever lose a battle. That’s why this buffoon who was the spokesman for Iraq was standing in front and saying, “Islam will never lose.” Well, literally, you could watch behind him as American and British tanks rolled in behind. The Muslim mindset cannot comprehend that an Islamic nation would ever lose to the infidel.
Ergun: Our father died in 1999. Our father died believing that the first Gulf War didn’t take place. Because you were taught by your imam, I mean, remember, we are talking about a world where the imam holds almost absolute papal authority. And his imam said there’s no way Islam can lose. And so then they lose, they’re kicked, you know, they’re pushed out of Kuwait almost into Baghdad. How do you describe this? How do you explain this? They simply say it didn’t take place. It is beyond their comprehension that we won as quickly as we did.
And thus, as we fight this and try to import democracy, we’re not trying to import American imperialism, we want them to have a say. 25 million Muslim men have been freed; 25 million Muslim women have been educated and are allowed to vote. What was wrong with what we have done in the last four years? Because the only thing that solves the issue of Islam is democracy, freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, freedom of dissent. That’s the only thing, other than wholesale warfare, the only thing that will stop Islam theocracy is to give freedom of voices.
Emir: And the importance can be seen. Georges Sada, who was in charge of the Iraqi army, who is a Presbyterian and was a three-star general under Saddam Hussein, he not only explains, by the way, where the weapons of mass destruction went – the Sea of Damascus, Syria, and even describes the planes on which they were placed – but he, when I asked him the question in person, “Georges, why in the world do we believe that what we do over there can affect and democraticize and create religious liberty within the nation?” Here’s his answer, “Americans have spilled enough blood that we’re willing to listen.” It would have not been possible unless the American and coalition forces went into Iraq, went into Afghanistan, to create this form of democracy without us doing exactly what we did. And this is why we are so staunch supporters of the war.
Ergun: Think about it this way. For those listeners, and those viewers around the world who ask the question, “Why did America do what it did?” For men such as ourselves, Persians, Arabs and Anatolians, George Bush, more generally, the Coalition Forces, they are our Abraham Lincoln. We had freedom: freedom of dissent, freedom to believe, freedom not to believe.
But freedom in itself, the freedom to not have to be forced to be a Muslim, I mean, I want people to become Christians, but you can’t force faith. A forced faith is an oxymoron. We have, for the first time in history, 1300 years of history, seen Islam exposed to the freedom to disagree without war. It didn’t take place quite right in Turkey. Only one city: Istanbul. You go to Ankara and there is no freedom of dissent. Only one country, where it seems like this could have taken place, and we’ve done it.
Ankerberg: Jump to the Palestinian-Israeli struggle. You’ve got Iraq, you’ve got Iran, you’ve got Syria, then you’ve got the Palestinian Arabs. Give me your thoughts. Where is that going?
Emir: Well, Israel is the beginning and the end of the fight. This is where they built the Dome of the Rock in 691. This is where Ishmael was supposed to be sacrificed. It literally comes down to Jerusalem. And for all of those who want temporal peace, so do we. But the problem is, temporal peace doesn’t fit within what Islamic eschatology is.
Ankerberg: In other words, Islam is not going to change its mind about Jerusalem.
Ergun: No.
Emir: They still do not have Israel on the map. And now, even worse, we have created a government of terrorists within the Palestinian government. These are the same people that call for people to blow themselves up. And now they’re in charge of the weaponry of the so-called state of Palestine. And we’re giving them land so that they can have shoulder launched missiles which can reach some large cities within Israel. We are literally going to an escalation of war if nothing else happens.
Ankerberg: What you’re saying when you say it’s not even on their map, what you’re saying is that they refused to recognize it as being Jewish.
Emir: This is why they hate America so much. Not only because they see us as a Christian nation, which can be only perceived, but because we support Israel. And frankly, ask the very question, “If we did not support Israel, who would?”
Ergun: I often ask the people who want to believe that the PLO deserves its own country, I ask them, “Let me ask you a question: if a Klansman started bombing daycare centers, and more and more Klansmen united with him, and they said, ‘We want part of America. Give us a little part of the country. Give us North Dakota, or something to this effect.’ Would you give it to them?” “Well, of course not. We would stop that immediately.”
Then why are you doing so in Israel? Why would you do this? Think of it as country surrounded by its enemies. Why would you give up more of it? This is not for us a political issue. This is theology. God will bless the nation who blesses Israel.
Now, tie this together with what we are teaching as far as Islam. We were raised with the hatred of the Jew, the swine people. Yes, they call them the people of the book in the Qur’an, but then it just absolutely decimates them in other places in the Hadith. To turn around then and to find out that we had the right and the ability to love those who we once hated, that’s proof of salvation, according to 1 John. [see 1 John 4:20] We add that to the list. I don’t hate the Muslim. I want the Muslim to come to faith in Jesus Christ. I believe that Jesus Christ died so that Osama bin Laden could be saved.

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