Well, at least not officially. In order to officially become a Muslim, a person must say the Shahada (the Muslim profession of faith) in the presence of 2 witnesses. But the recent words of the Reverend Graham regarding Duke University, seem to indicate that he is at least thinking about converting. Let me explain in light of what the Lord Jesus Christ says in Matthew 7:16,20-
Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
I love the Reverend Franklin Graham and I have supported much of what he has said in recent years. Our church participates in the wonderful ministry called Operation Christmas Child. I will even go as far as to say that my emotions and concerns concur with his regarding the suppression, oppression and even slaughter of Christians in so many, so-called, “Islamic” countries. To this day, Saudi Arabia does not allow the construction of churches in its peninsula… (Oh, but how we love their oil and they our money!)
I also share the concerns of my beloved brother, the Reverend Graham, regarding the second class status of Christians and other minorities in many Islamic countries. It is an indisputable fact that anti-Christian persecution is more predominant in many Islamic countries than in other societies.
In his recent protestation, my brother the Reverend Graham, spoke against the use of the bell tower of the chapel as a place from which the Adhan (Muslim call to prayer) could be proclaimed on Fridays by Muslim students. After calling for donors to stop contributing to Duke University on his Facebook page, my brother, the Reverend Graham is quoted to have said:
“My problem is using the chapel that was built to be a house of worship that worshiped Jesus Christ as the Son of God…”
Well, isn’t the BASEMENT of the chapel part of the chapel? Muslim students have been praying there for years! Actually, Hindus pray in that chapel, as so do many other students who represent a myriad of Christian denominations that do not even believe that Jesus is God incarnate. So the effort of attempting to reclaim a building for the exclusive glory of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, falls flat on its emotional, small-minded face.
The reality is, that the 700 Muslim students at Duke University were given dhimmi status by the crusade incited by my brother, the Reverend Franklin Graham. Duke University is NOT a “Christian” university, in spite of its connections with the United Methodist Church. A quick glance at the Religious Life webpage of Duke, will give you a rational picture of how “non-sectarian” Duke University is.
Actually, this is what Duke’s Religious Mission page says:
Duke Chapel continues to be a Christian church of uniquely interdenominational character and purpose. Through its tradition of inspiring worship and music, and a calling to walk with people of all faiths and circumstances, Duke Chapel acts a beacon of grace on campus and in the community. All are welcome to take part in worship, learning, dialogue, and service.
I am afraid to say that it seems that the Reverend Graham, my brother, just incited a version of the dhimmitude that we Christians so vehemently disdain. The 700 Muslim students pay the same tuition as everyone else, yet cannot use the facilities of a non-sectarian chapel like everyone else! Is Duke University now going to impose regulations on Muslims in the spirit of the Jim Crow laws?
By default, we “Christians” have imposed a second-class tax (or Jizya) upon those 700 Muslim students as a penalty for not converting to one of the over 40,000 Christian denominations in America alone.
I am nauseated with the statement of my brother, the Reverend Graham, who in an emotional and irrational charade, connected the 700 Muslim students of Duke University with the “raping, butchering, and beheading (of) Christians, Jews, and anyone (else) who doesn’t submit to their Sharia Islamic law.”
I don’t get it… Are the 700 Muslim students of Duke University “raping, butchering and beheading” Christians? To associate these innocent, young persons who seek the Creator within the tenets of their tradition (many of the them born American citizens) is reprehensible. It is UNAMERICAN. It is UNCHRISTIAN. Actually, it is stupid.
The Church of Jesus Christ should know better.
The foundation of the Church of Christ is LOVE. And if its true that these 700 Muslim students are potential terrorists who are part and parcel of a religion that “rapes, butchers and beheads” Christians, then should we not have used this opportunity to EDUCATE these young persons through our example of CHRISTIAN LOVE?
Instead of inciting further persecution and dhimmitude of Muslims in America, the Reverend Graham should’ve used this opportunity to plant the seeds of love and tolerance among these young, Muslim students. Perhaps Muslims in the Middle East, will hear that Christians in America are…not that bad after all!
We Christians are so STUPID- that instead of making allies with the Muslims against the ever encroaching secularism and blatant immorality that is eroding the Western Church at its core, we choose to plant the seeds of future enmity by means of our discrimination against them.
If Christianity in America wants to survive and thrive, it must let go of the irrational emotionalism that so divides us as a people. If Muslims are our enemies, then are we not called to LOVE THEM?
The Reverend Graham incited the abandonment and utter rejection of Christ’s injunction to his followers found in Matthew 5:44-
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.
My brother’s actions seem to indicate that he desires the further persecution of Christians in Islamic countries. Did not Christ say that we should “DO to others what we would have them DO TO US”? (Matthew 7:12)
The Reverend Graham, my brother, should use his pulpit in order to clean OUR house first, before we go out and tell the world how they should live or worship. The Church of Jesus Christ is in chaos… a house that is divided cannot stand. (Mark 3:25) But the fact is, that if we Christians cannot LOVE AND TOLERATE one another, how then can we LOVE AND TOLERATE those that we choose to see as our enemies?
For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? 1 Peter 4:17
By this means, I want to apologize to the 700 Muslim students at Duke University for the outlandish comments of my beloved brother, the Reverend Franklin Graham. I want for them to know that not all Bible-believing, traditional, conservative ministers of the Christian Faith (like myself) are so easily swayed by the opinions of a good man, that at this time in his life, is not thinking before speaking on behalf of the Christian Church. The Reverend Graham has no power to proclaim “Fatwahs” on behalf of the Christian Church.
I want to tell my Muslim friends at Duke University- that many of us, Bible-believing Christians, LOVE THEM! That although we believe that Jesus Christ is the apex of God’s revelation to humankind, that we respect their faith and their right to worship the Creator however they see fit.
I am sorry that you have been linked by proxy to Islamic Terrorists because of your Muslim faith. I am so sorry that you have been discriminated against for sins that you have not committed. I am sorry that like many ignorant Muslims in the Middle East, we also have many ignorant Christians who do not understand the value of planting the seeds of Christian love and who do not put into practice the injunctions of our Lord. Actually, in our worship of the Crucified, we’ve become experts in Crucifixion.
You shall know a tree by its fruit. The fruit of Christianity is LOVE. The Reverend Graham, my brother, should know this.