The Bible Was My Lifeline

I could not set this book down: Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi.  It’s an autobiography of a Pakistani-American man’s leaving Islam to follow Jesus.  Qureshi’s journey was (is!) a long, hard, thought-filled, prayer-filled, journey into the Christian family.  The book is well written, respectful of Muslims, a testimony to Jesus the Son of God, and it strengthened my faith in the truths of Scripture.

There are many excellent parts of this book; here’s one section that has stuck with me.  He wrote it after several years of agonizing over the teaching of Islam and the teaching of Christianity.  His past foundation was crumbling, his world was turning upside down, so he put the Bible and the Quran next to each other.  He first opened the Quran:

“[I was] frantically flipping from page to page, hoping for something, anything that would comfort me.  There was nothing there for me.  It depicted a god of conditional concern, one who would not love me if I did not perform to my utmost in pleasing him, one who seemed to take joy in sending his enemies into the hellfire.  It did not speak to the broken nature of man, let alone directly to the broken man in need of God’s love.  It was a book of laws, written for the seventh century.”

“Looking for a living word, I put the Quran down and picked up the Bible.  I had never read the Bible for personal guidance before [Note: he had read parts of it before this time].  I did not even know where to start.  I figured the New Testament would be a good place, so I opened to the beginning of Matthew.  Within minutes, I found these words: ‘Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.’”

“The words were like a current sent through my dead heart, electrifying it once more.  This is what I was looking for.  It was as if God had written these words in the Bible two thousand years prior specifically with me in mind.  It was almost too incredible to believe.  To a man who had seen the world only through Muslim eyes, the message was overwhelming.  ‘I am blessed for mourning?  Why? How?  I am imperfect.  I do not perform to His standard.  Why would he bless me?  And for mourning, no less.  Why?’”

“I continued reading [the Beatitudes] fervently. …I hunger and thirst for righteousness, I do, but I can never attain it.  God will bless me anyway?  Who is this God who loves me so much, even in my failures?  Tears flowed from my eyes once more, but now they were tears of joy.  I knew that what I held in my hands was life itself.  This was truly God’s word, and it was as if I was meeting Him for the first time. …I could not put the Bible down.  I literally could not. …The Bible was my lifeline” (p. 276-7).

Nabeel Qureshi, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2014).

shane lems

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3 comments on “The Bible Was My Lifeline

  1. Truth2Freedom says:

    Reblogged this on Truth2Freedom's Blog.

  2. Reblogged this on The Three R's Blog and commented:
    There are several new books out about Muslim converts to Christianity, and given this good post by pastor Shane Lems, I thought I would simply re-post it. But don’t just take his word for it; find the book and read it for herself. I need to also.

  3. Ken Temple says:

    Reblogged this on Apologetics and Agape and commented:
    I just finished this book, and Lord willing, I will write more on this book later, but here is an excellent excerpt from Nabeel Qureshi’s excellent book, “Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus”.

    Several things struck me:
    1. The genuine friendship that David Wood made with Nabeel and how that was a major factor in getting him to read the Scriptures in context and also how a true friendship of showing true Christian love is key in evangelism.
    2. That Nabeel admitted when he was a Muslim he only knew the verses in the Bible that Muslim apologists were using and he was reading them in their materials. When he started the reading the Bible verse by verse in context, that is when the word of God started really having an impact on his soul.
    3. What a pivilege he had to have meet Dr. Mike Licona and Dr. Gary Habermas and they were able to refute the Islamic polemics against the New Testament and refute the Muslim (and Ahmadi) arguments against the death of Christ on the cross. (Surah 4:157)
    4. While the dreams were vivid and amazing (especially the one of the Cricket eating the Iquana (meaning: Christianity eating Islam); they seem to confirm experiencially for him what he was studying as he studies both the Bible and the problems he found in Islam when he read the Ahadith (traditions of Muhammad, plural of Hadith) and Sira (the life of the prophet Muhammad), and Islamic commentaries for himself. He had a lot of the word of God rolling around inside his mind and soul that the dreams were seemingly icing on the cake. But the cake was the Scriptures and David’s friendship.

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