Terrorist attacks, the threat of nuclear weapons, persecution of Christians, the abuse of women—these are just some of the recurring themes whenever the American news media get around to covering the Muslim world—which isn’t often. It’s enough to tempt you to think that the House of Islam is beyond redemption or hope.
Well, I’m thrilled to tell you that God is doing miraculous things in the House of Islam. David Garrison, a missions expert with the Southern Baptists, has written an amazing new book called “A Wind in the House of Islam,” which describes an unprecedented movement of Muslims into the Christian faith over the last twenty years. I spoke with him about this good news in the latest edition of BreakPoint This Week, which you can listen to atBreakPoint.org.
Upon hearing the increasing stories of conversions recently in the Islamic world, David went on a journey of 250,000 miles to speak with Muslims in West Africa, North Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, the Persian world, South Asia, and the Indo-Malaysia archipelago, asking them the fundamental question, “What did God use to bring you to faith in Jesus Christ?”
His research uncovered that in the fourteen hundred years since Muhammad founded Islam, there have been eighty-two movements of Muslims turning to Christ. As a starting point, he defined “movement” as 1000 Muslims receiving Christian baptism, a public statement of their faith in Christ.
Now 82 movements in 1400 years doesn’t sound like a lot. But David Garrison points out an amazing fact—84 percent of those movements have started in just the last 20 years. There is indeed a new wind blowing!
“We’re seeing a moment in salvation history,” Garrison claims, “that we’ve never seen before in the history of Christianity’s interaction with the House of Islam.”
In many cases, Garrison notes, the Lord is using dreams and visions of Jesus Christ to overcome old barriers and reach Muslim hearts. Those dreams are often followed up by a Christian who points the seeking to the gospel.
The latest issue of Christianity Today tells one of these dramatic stories, and Garrison’s book, “A Wind in the House of Islam,” provides many more.
When I asked Garrison why God might be giving more dreams to Muslims today, his answer was sobering: “My fear,” he said, “is that they may have been having dreams and visions for fourteen centuries, but there was no one there to tell them who Jesus was, no one there to give them a New Testament in their own language to share with them the good news that God loves Muslims.”
Thank God there are more people today, like my friend Paul Filidis. You see, over the last two decades of these astounding Muslim breakthroughs, Paul has led a significant prayer movement, “30 Days of Prayer for the Muslim World,” held annually during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Why Ramadan? “It’s a time of year,” Paul told me, “when [Muslims] are more deeply aware of spiritual matters. A devout Muslim wants to gain access to Allah… and we want to pray that indeed the real God would meet them during that time.” Paul also joined me on the BreakPoint this Week interview where he described his prayer ministry, and how you, your church, your family can join the 75,000 other North American Christians that will be praying for God to move in the Islamic world during Ramadan.
As Garrison says, this fresh wind in the House of Islam centers not on human method but “the reality of Jesus Christ. “They are encountering the living Christ,” he said. “They are falling on their knees, finding in fact that this is the living God who has come into the world—God with us, God among us—who is bringing them salvation that they were never able to find in their Islamic faith.”
BreakPoint is a Christian worldview ministry that seeks to build and resource a movement of Christians committed to living and defending Christian worldview in all areas of life. Begun by Chuck Colson in 1991 as a daily radio broadcast, BreakPoint provides a Christian perspective on today’s news and trends via radio, interactive media, and print. Today BreakPoint commentaries, co-hosted by Eric Metaxas and John Stonestreet, air daily on more than 1,200 outlets with an estimated weekly listening audience of eight million people. Feel free to contact us at BreakPoint.org where you can read and search answers to common questions.
John Stonestreet, the host of The Point, a daily national radio program, provides thought-provoking commentaries on current events and life issues from a biblical worldview. John holds degrees from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (IL) and Bryan College (TN), and is the co-author of Making Sense of Your World: A Biblical Worldview.
Publication date: February 10, 2014