June 2016 Prophetic Observer
For printable version, click here.
London’s Islamic Mayor
By Alan Franklin
London’s first Islamic Mayor beats his Jewish rival to City Hall—as London buses prepare to carry posters promoting Allah.
London has voted for its first Islamic mayor, Socialist Sadiq Khan, the son of a bus driver. Coincidentally, London buses and those in other major cities are to carry an advertising campaign praising Allah.
Khan defeated his Conservative rival Zac Goldsmith, who is Jewish, by 1,310,143 votes to 994,614, gaining the biggest individual mandate in British political history.
The bitter battle featured Mr. Goldsmith and Prime Minister David Cameron repeatedly raising Mr. Khan’s alleged past ties to extremists. Mayor Khan was helped when Tory rival Zac Goldsmith’s campaign was called “racist” by some in his own party after he said the Labour Party “thinks terrorists are its friends.”
Khan, a former human rights lawyer, defended Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan in a court case although this is, in law, no indication of support for extremist views. But the London electorate wasn’t swayed by any alleged past links with extremists. It is estimated that up to 1.5 million Muslims live in London, where large swathes of the city are mainly Islamic. Mayor Khan has made appearances alongside Sulaiman Ghani, a radical cleric who said he was a supporter of ISIS.
London’s MailOnline newspaper said:
MailOnline also revealed this year that in 2009 he supported groups promoting Islamic extremism and gave a speech while the “black flag of jihad” was openly flying in the hands of children.
This week he apologised for calling moderate Muslim groups “Uncle Toms” on Iranian-backed Press TV, also in 2009, a slur used by black people to suggest that members of their community are subservient to whites.
Despite this the father-of-two has himself suffered death threats from Islamists who hate him for being too liberal, especially because he voted for same-sex marriage.
London’s Sun newspaper commented:
London’s Mayor faced fresh questions … after it emerged his ex-brother-in-law was a hate preacher. Mr. Khan claims to have distanced himself from jihad-monger Makbool Javaid, but The Sun can reveal the Tooting MP also had family links to four members of the extremist group Hizb ut-Tahrir.
Speaker-turned-lawyer Makbool Javaid was married to the Labour MP’s sister Farhat from 1989 until 2011—on Friday shocking footage of him preaching anti-western hate emerged.
In 2007 Mr. Khan (London’s new mayor) admitted that he was related to four other men through … Javaid who were members of Hizb ut-Tarir.
The fundamentalist group wanted to turn Britain into an Islamic state under Sharia law.
Mr. Khan’s former brother-in-law also belonged to the notorious Islamist group Al-Muhajiroun and spoke alongside banned cleric Omar Bakri.
Shocking footage shows of him savaging the West during a central London rally in 1997, as the crowd chanted “Allahu Akbar.”
Khan, who says he is a moderate Islamic, told the British press:
I attended mosques and madrassas in [London areas] Tooting and Balham, adding to the knowledge of Islam taught me by my family. From a young age we learned the importance of the five pillars of Islam; faith, prayer, charity, fasting—and Hajj, a pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia, a journey every Muslim must try to make in their lifetime.
What about the sanctioning of wife-beating, Mr. Mayor? This is what the Koran says: “If you fear high-handedness from your wives … when you go to bed, then hit them” (Sura 4:34). Mohammed sanctioned wife beating. Why should any woman ever become a Muslim?
Khan is not the first Islamic big-city mayor in Europe: Rotterdam, Holland, where Muslims comprise roughly a quarter of the population, elected its Moroccan-born Islamic mayor in 2009.
The second shock to Britain’s Christians was news that London’s famous red buses and their counterparts in other big British cities are to carry the Allah campaign.
This comes months after cinemas in the United Kingdom banned an advertisement featuring the Lord’s Prayer being recited by churchgoers throughout the nation.
Hundreds of buses will carry posters bearing the words “Subhan Allah,” which means “Glory be to God” in Arabic, for an ad campaign paid for by the charity Islamic Relief. The posters will appear on the sides of buses in London, Manchester, Leicester, Birmingham, and Bradford.
The new mayor, Mr. Khan, is now responsible for managing London’s transport infrastructure—including the red buses. However, he has not played a role in the Allah campaign as far as is known.
Transport for London (TfL) can ban adverts on the buses it runs if it is linked to a “political party or political cause.” However, there are allegedly no rules against religious advertising. But some religions get more respect than others …
Cinema chains Odeon, Cineworld, and Vue refused to show an advert featuring the Archbishop of Canterbury and members of the public reciting the Lord’s Prayer. They banned the advertisement—which was due to be screened before the new Star Wars film—saying it could offend moviegoers.
Now Christian groups are asking why the Islamic adverts had been approved when the film made by the Church of England was banned by the nation’s biggest cinema chains.
Simon Calvert of the Christian lobbying organization The Christian Institute said he hoped the Allah advert
signals the beginning of a new era of greater expressions of the Christian faith, which seems to have become persona non grata.
… People were surprised by the cinema advertising agenda to ban the Lord’s Prayer—something we all grew up with.
Audiences are capable of hearing expressions of Christian faith without running away screaming in horror.
Advertising campaign organizers Islamic Relief said they hoped the posters, which bear the words “Subhan Allah,” will portray Islam and international aid “in a positive light.”
Organizers added they hoped the campaign will help young Muslims to focus on humanitarian work. This would make a welcome change from many young Muslims round the world hoping to participate in religious-based homicide!
The Turks, who previously ruled over the vast Ottoman Empire, including present-day Israel, want visa-free access for their mainly-Islamic citizens.
Turkey has a population just short of 80 million with a median age of just over 30 according to worldometers. It is a young and fast growing population, which is typical of Islamic peoples. For example, London’s new mayor, whose father was Pakistani, was one of eight siblings.
My last article for the Prophetic Observer, “European Stage Is Set for Antichrist,” clearly showed that while Islam is a growing threat to the United Kingdom and all of Europe, which it once came close to conquering, my belief is that Bible prophecy clearly shows that we will not have an Islamic Antichrist.
The United Kingdom votes on June 23 on whether to continue its membership inn the European Union, which has the last say on most vital matters of government, from law courts to immigration.
Most ordinary people that I speak with want us to leave the EU, not least because of the tidal waves of immigration swamping our shores. On present trends, as I noted before, the US Migration Policy Institute estimates Muslims will account for more than 20 percent of the European Union population by 2050.
I won’t be around then, but then, neither will Islam. Islam is not the ruling spiritual entity in the end times.
The end-times whore church of the Book of Revelation is not Islam, but is clearly based in Rome, where the EU, once called by the innocuous title “The Common Market,” was founded at a Vatican conference in 1957 at the Treaty of Rome. I’ll be speaking more on this in August in Oklahoma City.
“... And Then Revival,” Part 2
by Larry Spargimino
The Lord Jesus Christ, as He is presented in the Bible—the virgin-born Son of God, very God of very God and very man of very man, two natures in one Divine Person—is the only way to heaven. Not only that, He is “the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever” (Heb. 13:8). His power has not been diminished, His plan of redemption for a vast multitude “out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” (Rev. 5:9) has not been altered, and He is still calling, and equipping Spirit-filled disciples who are willing to deny themselves, to walk the way of the cross, and to wholeheartedly acknowledge “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it” (Matt. 16:25).
In Part I of this series I have given what I believe to be evidence that God is softening many in the Muslim world to the claims of the Gospel, and that this softening has already led to dramatic conversions to Christ, and is a harbinger of more such stunning displays of redemptive love on the part of God. But what is the lesson for Christians in the West?
Saints Alive or Saints Asleep?
On a WorldNetDaily promo for the new Joel Richardson video, The Global Jesus Revolution, Richardson argues that the return of Christ is near. He calls for a new spirit of emboldened Christianity, with believers willing to bravely promote Christ’s message as an alternative to Islam. “I am convinced that the only kind of movement that can meet the explosion of global radical Islam is an equally committed movement of believers who make actual biblical discipleship, following Jesus, embracing the cross, and laying our lives down our highest priority.” The film definitely is not for the faint-hearted, but “for those who are ready to return to the Gospel, to actually following Jesus, to actually embracing the cross, to plunge themselves headlong into the battle fray, to die with their boots on.”
If Christians today will but surrender themselves to Christ as committed disciples, and will yield themselves to unashamedly follow the Lord’s leadership, they will be partakers of the joys and blessings of being God’s instruments of a great ingathering of souls.
In his book, Revolution in the Church: Challenging the Religious System with a Call for Radical Change, Michael L. Brown writes what should make the “churchianity crowd” squirm with discomfort.
God’s people missed their opportunity, but gay and lesbian activists did not miss theirs. And while we were trying to overcome our shame and convince ourselves to stand up and be counted, groups like STAR, the Street Transvestite Activist Revolution, made themselves heard. For this we should feel ashamed. Without a Bible to guide them, without a Holy Spirit to lead them, without eternal life to encourage them, homosexuals birthed and carried forth an ambitious agenda that changed an entire generation. Whatever became of our agenda? (p. 30).
“Oh,” someone says, “Isn’t Christianity supposed to die out—even in the land of the Bible? Doesn’t the Bible teach that the world is going to get worse and worse?”
Few would doubt that there is a lot that militates against the expansion of Christianity. The “New Atheism,” as it is called, is the old atheism on steroids—much more aggressive and “in your face.” America and Europe are seeing a massive influx of Muslim refugees, many bringing their religion with them. However, the common assertion that Islam is outpacing Christianity needs to be reevaluated. Dr. Rodney Stark, a noted researcher based at Baylor University reports:
As recently as April 2015, the Pew Research Center declared that Muslims will soon overtake Christians by way of superior fertility. They won’t. … Islam generates very little growth through conversions, while Christianity enjoys a substantial conversion rate, especially in nations located in what my colleague Philip Jenkins describes as the “global south”—Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America. And these conversions do not include the millions of converts being gained in China. Thus, current growth trends project an increasingly Christian world (Triumph of Faith: Why The World Is More Religious than Ever, p. 19).
This testimony is supported in a number of ways. For example, Muslims in Media reports that an Al-Jazeerah interview with Sheikh Ahmad Al Katani, the president of the Companions Lighthouse for the Science of Islamic Law in Libya, states that “there are now [in Africa] 1.5 million churches. In every hour, 667 Muslims convert to Christianity. Every day, 16,000 Muslims convert to Christianity, Every year, 6 million Muslims convert to Christianity in Africa alone.” The discussion has an air of despair in it as these men talk about stopping the dangerous “Christian missionary octopus.” Google the words “Al-Jazeerah: 6 million Muslims convert to Christianity a year in Africa” for a viewing of the discussion. Al-Jazeerah has taken the online report off the web, but Muslims in Media, and orthodoxytoday.org has kept the report, as well as the video of the interview.
A genuine work of the Holy Spirit, however, is not without challenges. Increasing evangelistic outreach and growing congregations are factors in prompting Muslim rage and violence against Christians, as in Eastern Uganda, where a 32-year-old Pentecostal pastor was hacked to death by angry Muslims who felt that their religion was in jeopardy. This was less than a week after members of a Bible study group were poisoned in another area of Eastern Uganda. The Bible study took place in the home of Hajii Suleiman Sajjabbi, a recent convert from Islam who had begun the study with eight family members who had become followers of Jesus because of his witness. Sajjabbi was in a coma after someone put a pesticide into the groups’ food. Four relatives had already died. Police are searching for the suspect, Isa Sajjabi, 32, one of Sajjabi’s sons. The young Sajjabi had opposed leaving Islam for Christianity and had distanced himself from his converted relatives (Israel My Glory, March/April 2015, p.9).
A Theology of the Cross v. Moralism
Though we may marvel at the bravery and commitment of Christians in other parts of the world who are actually flourishing in the midst of persecution, their example is but the teachings of the New Testament put into practice by obedient disciples who are indeed following Jesus and bearing the cross—even to the point of martyrdom. Because of the centrality of the cross, many modern Christians need to re-think their concept of power and its parallel concept, authority. For some Christians, power and authority is conceived of in terms of human power and authority. They think they can arrive at an understanding of Divine power by magnifying to an infinite degree the most powerful things of which they can think. In light of the cross, however, this understanding of Divine power and authority is the very opposite of what Divine power is all about. Divine power is revealed in the weakness of the cross. It is in His apparent defeat at the hands of evil powers and corrupt earthly authorities that Jesus shows His Divine power in the conquest of death and His authority over all the powers of evil. No wonder Paul could write, “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the POWER of god” (1 Cor. 1:18).
The Corinthian church was a church that was divided. There was quarrelling, pride, and arrogance. However, the Apostle Paul brings up the cross because it not only rebukes quarrelling among the saints, it also condemns arrogance between the brethren. God’s wisdom is seen in His seemingly scandalous choice of a crucified Messiah, a relatively low-status group for His apostles, and a rhetorically unskilled and controversial apostle. The cross deals a death blow to the arrogance and pride that was causing division and wrong teaching.
In the West, and in other places that have had a Christian past, it is easy to become infatuated with the Christian religion, a system of do’s and don’t’s which, if we do and don’t, we will enjoy the favor and blessings of God. Yet the faith that is revealed in the Bible is not a religion, though the temptation is to see it as just that. If we are not careful we will reduce what the Bible teaches to a method of self-improvement, a belief system that is properly known as Moralism. We will be “squeaky clean” and look like good church members, but will we really be disciples who are living the crucified life that Jesus taught?
Moralism is one of the most seductive false gospels in the world, though we often say little, if anything, about it and find some other departure from Scripture to be more damaging and consequently more demanding of a learned dissertation attacking the problem. This false gospel can show itself in any number of political and cultural movements. Nevertheless, the basic impulse of moralism comes down to this: the belief that the Gospel can be reduced to improvements in behavior. “Gospel preaching,” then, becomes more like a health-adviser’s lecture, a regimen which, if followed strictly, will bring great improvements in our behavior.
For the moralist in the Western church, the cross provides us with the ability to live a blessed and happy life. The closest we get to the cross is a decorative ornament. “But,” says Richardson, “if the church is to fulfill its last days mandate it must reclaim the theology of the cross as it was proclaimed by Jesus, the early apostles and the early church.” In this way we follow the example of Jesus Christ who was the perfect paradigm for martyrdom. His image and likeness shines through the heroism of every martyr in history. The martyrs of Islam live and die for the destruction of Islam’s enemies; the martyrs of Jesus live and die for the eternal good of Jesus’ enemies.
Standing Up To a Vicious Global Giant
According to Dalton Thomas, serving with Frontier Alliance International, a Christian outreach ministry in the lands of ISIS, there are 1.6 billion Muslims on planet earth. Even if only 10 percent are radical, there is still much danger. Only 6 percent of the total number of missionaries are ministering to Muslims, meaning there is one missionary for every 1 million Muslims. Thomas asks: “How do we respond to terrorism? Some want military intervention, others total pacifism, still others want to dialogue. All of these solutions will fail,” says Thomas. “Rather, we must give a faithful witness in proclamation and demonstration.”
There is, indeed, a global Jesus revolution in progress. God hasn’t changed His mind about changing lives through the blood of the cross and the miracle-working power of the Holy Spirit. Some Christians deny that there is such a revolution. They talk about Christianity being overrun by the forces of secularism and the church disappearing with a whimper. They almost seem to rejoice in the church’s alleged demise. How do we explain that? Might it be that such a revolution demands that they make a commitment to Jesus Christ that they are not willing to make?