Sunday, May 17, 2015

Sunday Reflections

I was just browsing around looking for news articles on Malays in Malaysia leaving Islam for Christianity.  Sadly, the majority of the articles that I found were depressing. The converts were denied their right to practise their new-found faith, and for others, detention and torture in rehabilitation centers. Those that continue, they are constantly faced with death threats.

I also came across a 2014 article on Christianity Today, on the ban on the use of the term "Allah" by a Catholic paper.  The only comment to the article caught my attention.


james mcilwraith
The god of islam is very clearly a different spiritual creature to the God of the New Testament. Christians should never confuse people by using the term Allah unless they are referring specifically to the creature that inspired Mohammed.

I agree that the god of Islam is not the same as the God of the Bible, however, for those of us who know no other term than "Allah" to refer to God Almighty of the Bible, we are never confused.

There are many Christian families in Malaysia who have members that have converted to Islam (mostly due to marriages to Muslims and the law says the non-Muslim party has to convert), and when the Christian and Muslim members get together there is never any confusion on which religious book belongs to whom when those two books are placed side by side.

There is hope. Our Lord is showing Himself in dreams and visions to the Muslims, calling them to Himself and inviting them to partake of the Bread of Life and drink the Living Water that only He possesses.


Readings:




Monday, February 23, 2015

Facebook Submits to Blasphemy Laws

Read the following article from Faith Freedom. No truer words have been written with such clarity! And shame on Facebook!
Muslims are not what is wrong with Islam. This is what has been nearly impossible to communicate to most Liberals today. The problem with Islam is the Prophet Muhammad. According to Islamic scripture, in other words, what mainstream Muslims are taught to believe, the Prophet Muhammad was a slave owner, a rapist, committed mass murder, hated Jews with a passion, wanted homosexuals punished, killed his critics, stripped women of all rights and had sex with a nine year old girl, whom he married when she was six, named Aisha. 
If the Prophet Muhammad was a Republican Senator from Kentucky, Liberals would oppose him vehemently. But as I have stated before, within the Liberal mind there seems to be a perceptive disability. When I say “Islam” they hear “Muslim”. Such is the nature of the Collectivist mind. 
But Muslims are a symptom and not the source of the problem. The problem is the Prophet Muhammad. If he were alive today, Amnesty International would certainly have a problem with his followers obeying his laws, which demand that certain people have their limbs amputated and their nose cut off. The Democrats would have him in their crosshairs as being at the forefront on the “war against women”. The New York Times would certainly seek to expose him and any whistle blower in his ranks would be celebrated as the next Julian Assange.
Read the article in its entirety here.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

"Allah" Exclusively for Islam

biru2000
You do not need to do extensive research to determine that the word Allah is not an integral part of the Christian faith. The Pope doesn't use it, the Christian Archbishops, Cardinals and Priests in the western world do not use it and they will never use it. None of their original Bibles and Scriptures have mentioned Allah as their god. So we fail to understand why the Malaysian Christians are so obstinately adamant to use the word. 
They say they have been using the word for more than 100 years. So what? Have they ponder for once, that maybe, they have been using the wrong word to refer to their god. Have the East Malaysian Christians do extensive research to find out why their forefathers somehow or other got attached to this word? Maybe at that time their forefathers are blinded by the Christian missionaries who are so desperate to spread the Christian faith, that they do not care what name the natives refer to their god, as long as they embrace the religion? 
I suggest that the Malaysian Christians organize an international conference inviting all the learned Christian scholars and leaders in the world and debate among themselves what name they should call their god. Unless they have decided on one, they should not be talking about constitutional rights.
The above is a reader's response to the debate in Malaysia where the Appellate Court has ruled that the word "Allah" is strictly for use by Muslims and that the weekly Catholic paper is banned from using "Allah" to refer to God in their Malay language section of the paper.

"Allah" is used to refer to God in the Malay language Bible as well as in the Bibles of some native languages of Malaysia in the same way that the English Bible uses the term "God" to refer to the Almighty.

It is hard to argue with the likes of biru2000.  Allah, as used in some Christian Bibles, is merely a term to refer to God. It is a name that came into the Arabic language from the Syriac.  Allah is not the name of  the God of the Bible.

The Allah of the Bible may share the same name as the Allah of the Quran, the Allah in the Sikh scriptures, and the pagan Allah of the Kaa'bah in the city of Mecca, but are they one and the same? Of course not! Each of them does not share the same attributes and neither the same message. The message of the Allah of the Bible is grace and salvation through the death and resurrection of the Messiah, Jesus Christ!




References:
http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2013/10/14/allah-remains-exclusive-for-muslims/
http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/court-of-appeals-findings-on-allah-issue-unnatural-says-malaysian-bar/

Saturday, May 01, 2010

We are too easily pleased

Of all places, I found the following quote by C.S. Lewis at a photography forum. It was a tag line of one of the participants.

"We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us.... We are far too easily pleased." C.S. Lewis

Isn't that so true!

We look for today's gratification of the flesh, something that satisfies us momentarily. And then we wonder if there is more to life then the drinking, the eating, the quest for a better paying job, the desire to be liked and approved ...

God promises that He will be found if someone seeks him with all his heart. And to the person who finds Him, He promises

  • guidance Psalm 32:8
  • deliverance in the day of trouble Psalm 50:15
  • help Isaiah 41:13
  • to show great and mighty things Jeremiah 33:3
  • showers of blessings Ezekiel 34:26
  • the person will find what he seeks, and receives what he asks for Matthew 7:7-8
  • rest and refreshment Matthew 11:28-29

There are many more promises to the person who surrenders himself to God, and these promises from Matthew 6:31-33 are a good reminder why eternity should be our focus while we live this short life on this earth.

So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

First translations of the Malay Bible


Source:Here.

To the willfully ignorant, facts do not matter.

When the Bible was translated into the Malay language as far back as 1612, the term "Allah" was used to describe Almighty God.

And yet today, many Malaysian Muslims are accusing the Catholic Church in Malaysia as having a hidden agenda when they insist that they have the right to use the term "Allah". These Muslims do not understand that the Catholic Church is not the only one that uses the term. Christians from other protestant denominations in Sabah and Sarawak too use the term "Allah" in Bibles written in their native languages.

Just think about it. Is it an issue in the Arab speaking world when Christian Arabs use "Allah" in their publications and worship? Is it an issue in Indonesia, the country with the most Muslim population, when Christians use the term "Allah" in their worship?

Only in Malaysia is it an issue! An issue drummed up by the religious, political and race-baiting opportunists.

The fact is, the term "Allah" has never been the sole domain of Islam's and it will never be.

So deal with it! evil

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

"Allah" as used in the Bible

“This is because ‘God’ in other religions is translated as “Tuhan” in Bahasa Melayu or Arabic, not ‘Allah’. Allah’ specifically referred to God in Islam. If they understand that, they would use the word ‘Tuhan’, not ‘Allah’.

“I accept the term ‘Allah’ had been used in Sabah and Sarawak before the two states joined Malaysia, but it is difficult to stop them from doing so now ... but in the peninsula, we have not heard of such practice.” .. Mahathir Mohammad as quoted in the Malaysian Insider.

Mahathir Mohammad is merely expressing what many ingnorant Malaysian Muslims believe about the usage of "Allah" by Christians in Malaysia, especially those in Sabah and Malaysia.

Those who understand the context and concept of "Allah" as used by Christians know that the word predate Islam and has been used by Christians in the Middle East long before the dawn of Islam. It is a term with definite meaning and not easily substituted with the word "Tuhan" which also means God (but used differently in the Bible) as suggested by Mahathir Mohammad.

I doubt many Malaysian Muslims, and that includes Mahathir Mohammad, know that the word "Allah" has been in continuous use in the Malay language "first, in the printed edition of the Matthew’s Gospel in Malay (Ruyl, 1629); then, in the first complete Malay Bible (Leijdecker, 1733), and in the second complete Malay Bible (Klinkert, 1879) and the translations since." (Bible Society of Malaysia)

Christians in Malaysia are not trying to inflame the sensitivities of Malaysian Muslims, as charged by certain Muslim quarters, when they insist on maintaining their right to use the term "Allah" in their Bibles and publications. It is the Muslims themselves, who are only now aware that the term "Allah" (a term that has been used for over 400 years in that part of the world!) is being used by people other than Muslims, and are getting all worked up and making accusations against Christians that have no basis in facts!

Accusations of the term being misused for proselytizing. Accusations of denigration of Islam. Claims that by allowing the term "Allah" to be used by non-Muslims as endangering the sanctity and status of Islam in the country! Oh my.

When a Christian uses the term "Allah" to refer to Almighty God, there is clearly no confusion in his/her mind that he/she is worshiping the Christian God and not the Muslim God.

There are people who suggest that both Christians and Muslims worship the same God "Allah" and why quibble over the name of the God that both are worshiping? But for many Christians, especially in the Western world, the use of "Allah" to refer to the Christian God is an abhorrence because to them Allah the Muslim God is a false God.

But using the term "Allah" to refer to Almighty God, the Father of heaven and earth is not an issue in the Arabic speaking world and neither is it an issue in Indonesia.

Muslim writers have been using Allah in their quotations of the Christian Bible since the ninth century. Jewish scholars have also been translating elohim and elah as Allah since the earliest known Arabic translations of the Torah in the ninth century until today. (Joshua Massey in Allah in Bible Translations)

In Malaysia, through ignorance and politicking by political and religious opportunists, the usage of the term "Allah" has become a source of religious and racial tension.

Should Malaysian Christians be the ones to pay the price for easily inflamed ignoramuses and political opportunists?

I say, "NO!". In the words of Rev Hermen Shastri, general secretary of the Council of Churches of Malaysia, "Malay has borrowed from Arabic, just as it has from Sanskrit and Portuguese. We have maintained the community has the right to use the word [Allah]."

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Sanctity of Life

This weekend, President Obama will deliver the commencement speech at, and will receive an honorary law degree from Notre Dame University, a Catholic university, in South Bend, Indiana.

Obama's presence at the university has caused quite a controversy because of his stance on abortion. To practicing Catholics, abortion is not merely a sin but an injustice as well. An injustice to the unborn who has no say in the evil that is done to it.

Protecting the unborn and preserving the sanctity of life, should be one of the top social issues for anyone who calls himself/herself a Christian. The abortion debate is a difficult one for many Christians and one of the best resources I have found for compelling arguments for protecting the life of the unborn can be found at Stand to Reason.
Abortion involves killing and discarding something that's alive. Whether it's right or not to take the life of any living being depends entirely upon the answer to one question: What kind of being is it? The answer one gives is pivotal, the deciding element that trumps all other considerations.

Let me put the issue plainly. If the unborn is not a human person, no justification for abortion is necessary. However, if the unborn is a human person, no justification for abortion is adequate.

That quote from Gregory Koukl of Stand to Reason sums up the crux of the abortion issue.

Where do YOU stand on this issue?

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For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
Psalms 139:13-16: