Thursday, May 5, 2011

My Reasons for Converting to Islam, part 2.

Okay, continuing on with my story.

What about people who change their religion (ex. Go from being Muslim to Christian, etc)?

You were given the freedom to choose whatever religion you wanted, be it Islam, Christianity, or other. No one, not even Muhammad (PBUH), could force someone else to be a Muslim.

29:18 “If you reject the truth, then indeed nations before you rejected it, and nothing is incumbent upon the messenger except the delivery of a clear message.”

88:21-26 “So remind, for you are but a reminder. You have no power over them. Except for he who turns away and rejects. Then God will punish him with the great retribution. Indeed, to Us is their return. Then to Us is their judgment.”

The foolishness about killing apostates is a load of garbage. The Qur’an says that Allah (SWT) is our judge and that He will judge between us and clarify for us that in which we differed, and punish those who didn’t believe in Him. So who are we to try to usurp God’s place as judge?

In fact, if people don’t believe, we are supposed to leave them alone. Not harass them, abuse them, stone them or kill them.

43:88-89 “And it will be said: “O my Lord, these are a people who do not believe.” So disregard them and say: “Peace.” For they will come to know.”

Nor are we forbidden to be friends with Christians, Jews, or anyone else, especially if they don’t obstruct us in practicing our religion. In fact, we are instructed to be kind and fair to them.

60:8 “God does not prohibit you from those who have not fought you because of your system, nor drove you out of your homes, that you deal kindly and equitably with them. For God loves the equitable.”

Why does God allow so many different religions if only one really leads to Him?

2:148 “Everyone has a direction to which he turns. Hasten then to outdo each other in everything good. Wherever you may be, God will bring you all unto Him, for verily God has power over all things.”

5:48 “For each of you We appointed a law and a way. Had God desired, He would have made all of you a single community, but He wished (instead) to try you in what He has given you; therefore, compete excelling one another in goodness; to God alone is the return of all of you; it is then that He shall declare to you that wherein you differed.”

22:17 “On the Day of Judgment, God will decide between those who believe, those who are Jews, the Sabians, the Christians, the Magians, and the polytheists; verily God is witness over all things.”

God’s forgiveness extends to all, not just Jews or Christians:

5:18 “And the Jews and the Nazarenes said: “We are the children of God, and His loved ones.” Say: “Then why does He punish you for your sins?” No, you are merely human beings which He has created. He forgives whom He pleases, and He punishes whom He pleases. And to God is the sovereignty of the heavens and the earth and all that is in-between, and to Him is the destiny.”

9:27 “Then God will accept the repentance of whom He pleases after that. God is Forgiving, Merciful.”

42:25 “And He is the One who accepts the repentance from His servants, and He forgives the sins. He is fully aware of what you do.”

And so, after two long, confusing, stressful years I gave in to the truth of what I’d learned and the longing in my heart and became a Muslim. I know that it won’t be easy to tell my family, but what person has been given faith and not been tried in that faith? Inshallah, trials will only make my faith stronger.

In closing, I leave you with these verses.

1 Timothy 4:10 “We struggle and work hard because we have placed our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all and especially of those who believe.”

28:70 “And He is God, there is no god except He. To Him belongs all praise in the first and in the last, and judgment belongs with Him, and to Him you will be returned.”

30:60 “Be patient, therefore; verily the promise of God is true, and let not those who have no belief in God make you despair of His promise.”

Alhamdilullah! May we all be together one day in Paradise , enjoying the reward of God to his faithful. Ameen.


  1. What about the idea that earlier verses were abrogated by later ones?

    One can make the argument that the verses warning against taking Christians or Jews as close confidants (friends) was situation specific, but then you have the issue of deciding which instructions were specific to the events at hand, and which were meant to be eternal.

  2. Amber: If they were abrogated, they wouldn't be in the Qur'an, because that would be a contradiction and cause confusion, right? Honestly, I think that the verses about being friends with Christians and Jews are totally applicable forever. Leave if you're persecuted, but stick around and be nice if you aren't. :)

  3. have ayah 60:8, but there still exists 5:51 - O you who have believed, do not take the Jews and the Christians as allies. They are [in fact] allies of one another. And whoever is an ally to them among you - then indeed, he is [one] of them. Indeed, Allah guides not the wrongdoing people.

    Now, I understand the historical context of this verse, and it makes sense as a situational command. However, it is in the Qur'an, which is meant to be a guide for people of all times and places, right? So either one verse overrides the other (abrogates), one is situational and time restrained while the other is eternal, or there's a contradiction. At least that's how I've been able to figure it out.

  4. But other translations render it "protector", etc. Like I said, I think God wants all of us to play nice. If we can't, then we should separate. I agree that, like the Bible, many things in the Qur'an are situational, specifically for a time and place. That's why I'm a Qur'an aloner. :)

  5. Got it. Okay. That makes sense to me. That's sort of the way I view the Qur'an, only, obviously, I don't think Mohammed was a prophet, or I'd be Muslim, wouldn't I? :D

    The whole allies/protectors translation issue isn't really that big a deal for me, because, like I said, I understand what was going on when this verse was revealed, so it's easy to see what was meant.

  6. Amber: LOL! Yep, you would. ^_^

  7. And then the world would come to an end. Boom. *lol*

  8. ROFL! I don't know about that. :)

  9. Pretty sure it's a sign of the apocalypse, is all I'm saying. :)

  10. Praise the Lord

    I am a Christian by choice, and have been for over 30 years. Every time I discuss religion with people of other faiths, I only come away understanding even better why I am STILL a Christian. What strikes me is what is missing from these considerations. What about redemption? What about the fact that there is no place for fear in love, so that the whole notion of punishment and reward has to be removed so that we can come to God for the right reasons? Only one religion offers this.

    But Heather, we have discussed this before in exhaustive detail. I am convinced that it is s serious mistake to convert to Islam, especially when a person already knows Christianity. It amounts to giving up one's redemption. Making it impossible to come to God for the right reasons anymore. And it seems you once upon a time understood that. And yet you have turned your back on it.

    Or maybe you never REALLY understood to begin with. God only knows why. I mean, after all the discussions in this forum about the subject... How can anyone not want redemption? How can anyone not want to have that punishment/reward thing removed so they can really come to God only for Him? Do you really want to spend this life trying to earn by the sweat of your brow something that has already been given freely to you?

    I don't know, it always seems to me that if people don't want this, it ends up being because they do not want to acknowledge that they cannot do it, they cannot earn it themselves by their own works, they need redemption. They want to think that they don't need it. They want to be their own little gods. That's the only explanation that makes sense to me. You can do what you like, but I think you are deluding yourself thinking that this is the right path, and if you or anyone else is interested in the exact reasons, they can read other posts I've made in this forum. One thing I know: As for me, I will serve the Lord.

  11. Caraboska: Exactly. I serve my Lord. No one else. I don't need the "get out of jail free" card of "salvation through Jesus", because God is merciful and forgives whomever He pleases. Saying that He needs Jesus as a sacrifice in order to forgive us is saying that God is incapable of forgiving us without outside help. Preposterous.

    Yes, "the wages of sin is death". But that's if you're not repentant. If the law of God is good enough for salvation for the Jews, it's good enough for Muslims, who follow the same law. Jesus wasn't a Christian, he was a Jew.

    Jesus himself said that the greatest commandment was to worship the Lord your God, and the next to honor your father and mother. He said "Do this and you will live". He didn't say "Believe in me as God and you will be saved." Just to follow the law and you will live.

    It's the exclusivist claims of Christians that turned me off in the first place. You just have to be Christian or you're going to Hell. Well, what about the Jews? They aren't Christians, but Christians don't think they're going to Hell.

    If God can send a prophet and make a covenant with one people, He can do it with another.

  12. I know you're responding to caraboska, but here I go butting in! And I'm not trying to be argumentative! Just having thoughts!

    It's only 'external' help with salvation if god and Christ aren't the same being. Which, I know is your perspective. I'm just saying. From the Christian pov, there was no outside help involved. Though one could point out that god does require that we accept his offer of forgiveness and salvation, which could be seen as a form of help. But that's a different issue and I don't think that Muslims believe they can be saved if they don't believe anyway, so it'd be a silly argument to have.

    Also, what about the animal sacrifices demanded under Jewish law? They were done to cleanse the people of sins. To pay for their sins, correct? So isn't that a form of 'help'? *waves hand* Eh. I think it's a carry over from the polytheistic origins of Judaism anyway.

    We could argue that Jewish law and Islamic law aren't the same thing, but I see what you're trying to say. At the core they're more similar than you would think when you're looking at all the details and they're certainly both legalistic faiths.

    Aren't all the Abrahamic faiths pretty exclusivist? I don't see any of them saying that everybody gets into heaven no matter what. There's always a group that is left out because they're 'not right'.

    And, not that I agree with them, but there are Christians who believe that all the Jews who don't come to faith is Christ as god will go to hell. They don't get a get out of jail free card because of the original covenant. They've (apparently) failed to recognize god when he showed up and started a new covenant with them.

  13. Amber,

    Ran across this just now, a lucky find, lol.

    Islam really isn't exclusive. According to the Qur'an, if you believe in God and do good works, you need have no fear because God will be just and fair. That is why people who know the Qur'an don't say that people of other faiths are going to hell. Islam is even open to the goodness and possibility of salvation in Buddhism and other religions that Christianity disregards.

    I'd answer more, but I'm really not up to a longer discussion tonight. Too sleep deprived! : P