You Cannot Read this Book and Be Unchanged.

Cover of Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus, showing man silhouetted in an archway

Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus:  A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity by Nabeel Qureshi, Zondervan, originally published in 2014, available in a number of formats.  I heartily recommend the audio version, as it is read by the author.  See also Qureshi’s many videos (link is to the Google page) and his website. (Sad update: Qureshi has since died of stomach cancer.)

My Filofax organizer has a section for notes that I take on sermons and on the lectures at Bible Study Fellowship,  The top of the page often has additional ideas that come to me during the course of the talk or are mentioned as an aside by the speaker, often ideas for blog posts or suggested books to read.  I don’t want those ideas to be lost in the body of the notes, so I insert them where they’re obvious.  (At some point, like about now, those pages need to be transcribed in some way, as the section in the organizer is full.)  So, at the top of the notes for the March 30 BSF lecture is the note “Seeking Allah Finding Jesus.” There was some mention of this book elsewhere recently, which reminded me of this note.  As always, I first looked in the library.  Yes, it was indeed available on Hoopla, one of the free audiobook providers mentioned last week.

Here’s how this book will change you:

1.  If you are afraid of Muslims in general, thinking that they’re somehow all nascent terrorists or jihadists, you will find out how wrong you are.  You will become personally acquainted with Nabeel and his wonderful family, seeing their love for each other and their love for America that goes along with their love for Islam.  (Nabeel’s father was an high-ranking officer in the U.S. Navy.)2.  If you are Muslim, you will agonize along with Nabeel as he explores the historical roots of his faith and makes the decision to follow Christ.  You may question his decision and disagree with it, but you cannot question his sincerity and his willingness to sacrifice his relationship with his beloved family. Pages of this book are written with his tears.

3.  If you are a Christian, you will be challenged never to take your faith for granted and never to assume that your friendship, kindness and love can’t make a difference in the life of someone who believes differently from you.  Nabeel would never have become a Christian without his relationship with his friend David and a whole circle of other believers who patiently listened and responded to him over a number of years.  Yes, years.

Nabeel has written two other books that I plan to listen to or read:  Answering Jihad:  A Better Way Forward and No God But One:  Allah or Jesus?  His passionate voice, his call for love and understanding even as he devoutly follows his faith, his concern for the proper airing of differences in the public forum:  all are personally challenging to his readers and an antidote to the toxic atmosphere being generated in this election year.  I beg you to go along with Nabeel on his journey to faith.

Note: Nabeel died of cancer, at age 34, in Sept. 2017. Here’s a great article about him that ran in the Washington Post:
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