The Cross

Friday, March 30, 2018

Today we remember Jesus’ crucifixion, the only means by which we have eternal life. Islam rejects the fact that Jesus died on the cross. The Quran states that he was never crucified, that he never died, and that instead, God lifted him up alive to heaven. Muslims reason that God would not let Jesus, the good prophet, die such an ignominious death on a cross for sins that others committed.

Muslims do not see the seriousness of humans’ sinful nature, so they rule out the need for redemption. For them the cross is foolishness (1 Corinthians 1:18-25).

Prayer

God Almighty, our loving Heavenly Father, we acknowledge you as our eternal Redeemer. We come humbly, awed by your love and Jesus’ sacrifice at Calvary. What shame and pain he endured to save us from sin and doom! The Lamb of God died to give us life. Thank you.

My Muslim friends do not understand that Christ’s death on the cross was your supreme gift to sinful humans. Help them realize that they are sinners who need redemption. Show them the power of the cross that saves us from sin and transforms our lives from darkness to light and from the kingdom of Satan to the Kingdom of God.

Convict them of their serious sin of rejecting the cross. May they believe your Word and accept the Gospel. I plead for Muslims. Help them believe that Jesus died to redeem them from their sins and rose to justify them. Remove the veil from their minds. Open their eyes. Capture their hearts with your love.

All praise and glory to you, crucified and risen Christ, the First and the Last, the Living One who died and who is alive for ever and ever. Amen.

Promise

For the message of the cross is sheer nonsense to those who are lost, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God (1 Corinthians 1:18, SAB).

Muslim Cities

Friday, March 23, 2018

This coming Sunday, Western Christendom celebrates Palm Sunday. What happened on that occasion 20 centuries ago was totally unexpected. It shook the city and caused the authorities to shudder.

An outsider riding into Jerusalem on a donkey to celebrate Passover was not an unusual sight. Yet, on this day, large crowds gathered around a particular rider to give him a royal welcome. Some threw their clothes on the road, while others spread tree branches as welcome mats! They shouted his praises joyfully. They called him Son of David. Yes, the rider was Jesus!

That is how Jesus was welcomed into the capital city on Palm Sunday. It is our prayer that many Muslim capitals will welcome him today.

Prayer

Hosanna to the Son of David! …Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest! (Matthew 21:9; Luke 19: 38). Almighty God, for a million cities, towns and communities teeming with Muslims, I plead with you that they will welcome Christ the King.

You alone are Almighty. You divided the Red Sea before the children of Israel, and they passed through on dry ground (Nehemiah 9:11). By your divine power you direct the hearts of kings as streams of water (Proverbs 21:1). Grant us the freedom to preach the cross in Mecca, the place designated by Muslims as the holiest site on earth. May Jesus Christ reveal his glory there.

I am worshipping at the throne of Almighty God. I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to do far more than I could ever dream (2 Timothy 1:12). This is my hope and my faith.

Praise and honor and glory and power belong to the one sitting on the throne and to the Lamb for ever and ever (Revelation 5:13, SAB). Amen.

Promise

From the ends of the earth we hear singing: “Glory to the Righteous One” (Isaiah 24:16, NIV).

Mosques in My Town

Friday, March 16, 2018

The Bible tells us clearly that the greatest blessing God intends for people is to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, believe in him and follow him. The presence of mosques in many communities around the world is a reality today. A mosque is a Muslim place of worship. Are we open to ask the Lord to pour out his ultimate blessing on the individuals who worship in those mosques?

That means we ask God to bring people who pray in mosques to put their faith in Jesus Christ: yes, those who do the call to prayer, who lead the prayers, who preach, who serve as janitors and guards, and all who go there to pray. Is that possible? For Almighty God, all things are possible (Matthew 19:26).

Prayer

O Lord, our God, you alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth. You have incredible things in store for us—great things have we have never dreamed of. I believe that you, Lord, will help some of us to preach in mosques in Muslim capitals: in Mecca (Saudi Arabia), in Cairo (Egypt), in Najaf (Iraq), in Kum (Iran), in Fes (Morocco), in Islamabad (Pakistan), and on and on.

Though you do not dwell in temples made with hands (Acts 7:48), we pray that you will manifest your divine power and majesty to the children of Ishmael in such buildings. May tens of thousands of mosques become solemn places for the worship of Jesus Christ, the King of kings and Lord of lords. May all who worship there sense your presence among them and realize that their mosque has become truly the house of God. May they say, “Surely, the Lord is in this place…. Surely, this is the house of God” (Genesis 28:16-17).

I pray because I believe you are able to cause rivers to flow in “barren lands, and springs in valleys.” You can turn the “desert into pools of water, and the parched ground into springs” (Isaiah 41:18). I thank you for answering my prayers. Amen.

Promise

The Lord saw the bitter suffering of the children of Israel… there was no one to help them. And it was not in his purpose to blot [their name] out… so he saved them… (2 Kings 14: 26-27, SAB).

Missionaries to Nominal Christians

Friday, March 9, 2018

Do we believe in miracles? Of course we do; that is why we pray! This week we pray for an outstanding miracle: we want to see Muslims come to Jesus, be filled with the Holy Spirit, get trained in the Word and go out as missionaries to nominal Christians—Americans, Europeans, Africans, Asians and so forth.

Does that mean Muslims who put their faith in Jesus Christ will evangelize Americans and others? Exactly. God is able to do far more abundantly than all we dare to ask or imagine through his mighty power at work within us (Ephesians 3:20). In a spiritual sense, we are claiming the promise to expand our territories and enlarge our borders (Exodus 34:24).

Prayer

Lord God, you created the heavens and the earth. You alone are the Master over all the universe, and you alone rule the kingdoms of this world. We bring you our ambitious request, knowing very well that you can do great things we have never dreamed of.

We pray that you will transform Muslims into vessels of honor to serve the King of kings and Lord of lords. We want to see the day when tens of thousands of them become evangelists, pastors, missionaries and teachers of the Word of the Lord. Indeed, we cannot accomplish such a feat. But didn’t you turn four miserable, rejected, hated lepers into proclaimers of good news? Yes, you did.[1]

Lord, we do believe. Help us overcome any unbelief in us, and increase our faith (Mark 9:24; Luke 17:5).

To you be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Promise

Pray to me, and I will answer you. I will tell you important secrets you have never heard before (Jeremiah 33:3, NCV).

Footnotes

[1] Read the story in 2 Kings 7:1-16.

Lois and Eunice

Friday, March 2, 2018

Timothy was Paul’s colleague and assistant. When he was young, his grandmother Lois and his mother Eunice modeled the true life of faith for him (Acts 16:1; 2 Timothy 1:5).

Nabila, Hoda, Latifa, Farah, Layla, and many others are Muslim women who have seen the light of Christ, received his grace and committed their lives to him. They have held their families together with the bond of love (Colossians 3:14), in the Spirit (Ephesians 4:3), and under the banner of Christ. They have raised their children to fear the Lord and worship him.

We pray that the example of Lois and Eunice will be repeated multiple thousands of times, that Muslim mothers will come to Jesus and, with determination and courage, raise a generation of children who are faithful to Christ and his Kingdom.

Prayer

Lord God our Maker, you created families to be the bricks of society. You designed and gifted mothers to carry babies, give them birth and nurture them. What genius! What brilliance!

We bring to you the millions of mothers in the Muslim world. They need you. They need to follow Jesus Christ, the only Savior and Lord. I pray that they will mirror and reflect your image of love and sacrifice, that they will do what governments and schools cannot do: bring their children to faith in Christ.

May they be like Rufus’ mother, about whom Paul says, she “has been a mother to me, too” (Romans 16:13), and like the mother and grandmother of Timothy. May they be a blessing to their husbands, to their children and to the Church of Jesus (Titus 2:4-5).

Protect their families from failure. May they be a part of your divine plan to bring precious souls to freedom, joy and life in Christ. Amen.

Promise

Your wife will be like a fruitful grapevine, flourishing within your home. Your children will be like vigorous young olive trees as they sit around your table (Psalm 128:3, NLT).

Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her (Proverbs 31:28, NIV).