Monday Morning Insights

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    Should churches rent their space to Muslims for worship?

    Should churches rent their space to Muslims for worship?

    Steve Stone from Heartsong Church in Cordova, TN is under fire.  You see, he recently invited a local muslim congregation to use their sanctuary as a makeshift mosque during Ramadan while their new Islamic Center was under construction.

    Seems that Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Arlington, VA is doing kind of the same thing... inviting a local muslim congregation to use church space for their Friday prayers.

    According to Cathy Lynn Grossman, the religion editor for USA today, both pastors say that this is a way of 'living out the way of life Jesus calls Christians to live.'

    Not everyone thinks this is a good idea, including Pat Robertson (who publicly spoke out against it) or Jason Hood, who wrote a column condemning this over at Christianity Today.

    Here's a bit from the Christianity Today piece:

    Both of the pastors allowing Muslim worship on their property appeal to the love required of Christians as an authoritative guide for their decision-making.

    The theological issues at play come down to whether Jesus' love command also requires leaders to avoid causing undue stumbling; or, as Wesley put it, the command to do good works includes avoiding causing or leading others to harm, whether they are believers or unbelievers. Does facilitation of false worship violate the love command?

    What do YOU think?  Is this stepping over the line?

    Does your church allow outside groups to use your facilities?

    Non-Christian groups?  (like boy scouts, AA, weight watchers, community groups)

    What would your reasons TO ALLOW or NOT TO ALLOW a group of muslims or jehovah witnesses from using your church?  Or a meeting of the Benny Hinn fan club?

    I'd love to hear your thoughts...





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    1. Pastor Lee B on Mon, January 10, 2011

      Welcoming Muslims into a house of Worship is no small matter and while some have commented here that they are not at war—Islam is at war as a part of their doctrine—thank our Lord Jesus many do not follow or understand their own religion. Perhaps a look back at the Old Testament would be in order for those that feel that our houses of Worship to God are “Just Buildings.” Seems another group had that same issue—consequences? Have a read!  Here are just two doctrinal positions from Islamic sources—Not Christian sources. Money or God? You can not serve two masters.

      Surah 4 verse 157
      Christians and Jews have corrupted their scriptures. (�l ‘Imran 3:74-77, 113) Although Christians believe �Isa died on a cross, and Jews claim they killed him, in reality he was not killed or crucified, and those who said he was crucified lied (An-Nisa� 4:157). �Isa did not die, but ascended to Allah. (An-Nisa� 4:158) On the day of Resurrection �Isa Jesus himself will be a witness against Jews and Christians for believing in his death. (An-Nisa� 4:159)

      Surah 9-29 Fight those who believe not in God nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by God and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.

    2. Pastor Lee B on Mon, January 10, 2011

      I actually realized there were pages of comments and found more after my last post—I wanted to point to the post by Kim as a great example of double-minded thinking. “I’m not interested in getting in to a biblical argument with you. smiley face” Same post from her “The words and teachings of Jesus are generally good enough for me…”

      My question to Kim is, “Where do you find the words and teachings of Jesus?” We don’t need to guess what Jesus would do because His Words and teachings tell us. Have a look at Jesus “Tolerant” approach to the money changers in the temple.

      For us all…Either we believe in Scripture and follow it—follow Jesus or we’re making it up as we go.

      If you think Muslim’s and Islam are playing around, just watch the news and read the papers. May our Risen King have mercy and reveal Himself to so many confused about His ways and Word in Scripture.

      Thank you for allowing me to post my opinion and comments here.

    3. Kim Aliczi on Mon, January 10, 2011


      Jesus didn’t preach or exhibit tolerance - he preached and exhibited love.  Big difference.  Plus, the money changers in the temple aren’t exactly a logical argument in this case, because it was their motivation He was going after.  Use this argument for churches that allow their worship leaders and pastors to sell their music and books from the platform during worship, that would be a bit more accurate.

      Jesus died for Muslims, too.  I’ll never second guess what someone else might think, only God knows what’s in a person’s heart, so if the local mosque burned to the ground, and our church had a room available, I’d be inclined to want to reach out in Jesus’ name.

      The Bible is my source for Truth.  Not the newspaper or the evening news.

      There’s no double-minded thinking.  Jesus said and did lots of things that were pretty controversial.  Talking to the Samaritan woman, allowing Mary to pour perfume on his feet and wipe them with her hair, healing a man on the Sabbath, etc.

      You can’t ignore these examples from Jesus’ life in favor of one of two others that you think might better support your views.

      From what I’ve read at MMI over the years, I’m fairly confident that all of us here believe the Scriptures and seek to follow only Jesus.  Just because we happen to disagree with one another on various interpretations and issues doesn’t change that, it just means we disagree.

      Again, I don’t know with 100% certainty what the “right” answer is.  You feel you do, good for you!  For me, I’m still working that out.

    4. Pastor Lee B on Mon, January 10, 2011

      Thanks for your reply and the opportunity to answer you for the benefit of others reading.

      “Jesus didn’t preach or exhibit tolerance” Thank you for restating my point. I was using sarcasm when I stated that Jesus was “Tolerant” of others defiling the temple. But let’s stick with your example of motives—what are the motives of Muslims who have a clear and stated agenda (Whether or not they claim to understand or follow it individually—Islam has an agenda that does not allow for any other belief system) to rid the planet first of the people of the book? The motive is to occupy and make use of a temple dedicated for Christ Glory as God. If you are having trouble defending Christ honor then you are having trouble interpreting scripture.

      “he preached and exhibited love” You falsely accuse me of ignoring examples from Jesus life with regard to items that have nothing to do with making use of a temple of worship and defiling a holy place dedicated to His honor while asserting that the only preaching or exhibit Jesus gave was love. Do you believe that Jesus was present in the Old Testament or is he limited to actions only in the N/T for you? If he is eternal, you may want to review some of the actions of the Angel of YWH. You are in error to think that the only teaching or preaching Jesus exhibited was love as you state.

      “Jesus died for Muslims too” Where do you get your theology from? You make the assertion that Muslims are a different people group than sinners. Jesus died for sinners and those who were given to him. Some of those are indeed Muslims but not all Muslims just like not all sinners—if you disagree with my assertion then please explain why people perish. Why will some people end up separated from Jesus forever?

      “The Bible is my source for Truth. Not the newspaper or the evening news.” You really didn’t think this one through. This entire discussion is a result of a report—from the news—that a church may rent space. I never asserted that anyone—you included—believed the news was their source for truth. What I said was, “If you think Muslim�s and Islam are playing around, just watch the news and read the papers.” My point is that you seem to be “Open” to allowing Muslims to worship Allah, the god of the Qur’an under the same roof where our glorious King Jesus is worshipped. If you will take the time to review the history of Islam you will find that Islam has a history of co-existing until they are in control—once they have enough power or control—there is no acceptance of other religions. This may be why others here are trying to get you to understand that there is a history we can review. We must reach out to Muslim’s I do—but we must not be deceived into thinking that ISLAM teaches tolerance.

      “From what I’ve read at MMI over the years, I’m fairly confident that all of us here believe the Scriptures and seek to follow only Jesus.” NOT sure at all why this comment is relevant to Muslims worshipping Allah in a house of the Lord dedicated to His Glory but OK.

      “Again, I don’t know with 100% certainty what the “right” answer is. You feel you do, good for you! For me, I’m still working that out.”

      The question is, as I understand it, “Should Christians allow Muslims to worship the god of the Qur’an-Allah in our houses of worship—share temples.

      If we are referring to a public space that Christians “Share” in the first place then there is no debate—anyone can use it. If we are talking about a Christian church that has been dedicated to Christ Glory and where someone stopping by for prayer or worship might wander in on one of the five prayer services held each day instead of a Biblically based worship service—where we are stating by opening the doors—not to loving Muslims—but opening the doors to allow foreign fires to be placed on our “Altars” to another god—where someone looking for a Christian answer may show up and find an Islamic answer—then my answer is that opening our doors to making Islamic worship on holy ground is not loving to my first love—Jesus!

      You seem to be working things out—excellent! May I offer some free help, which is worth the price? is an excellent resource where you can learn about Islam’s past - Please note - I refer to Islam and to Muslims - not all Muslim’s know or practice what Islam teaches - the same can be said about Christians - so when we open church doors for worship -my contention is that we are opening them to ISLAM even though some Muslims may practice other traditions - what does Islam teach? This is my question for you and for anyone who believes that ISLAM is a religion. What other religions exist in ISLAMIC states under ISLAMIC law?

      I would be happy to continue to dialog with you. I pray in Jesus Name that I can be of help to others reading who may be helped -not that I know everything but I have studied and taught on Islam for 6 years - others who may be helped by a more complete understanding of ISLAM.

      Blessings in Christ

    5. Kim Aliczi on Mon, January 10, 2011

      It’s interesting to have discussions on blogs & such, because most of the time, you don’t know who the other people are or what their levels of education or experiences are.

      Lee, I apologize if you felt I was accusing or trying to insult you, that wasn’t my intent.

      God Bless you and your ministry.


    6. Pastor Lee B on Mon, January 10, 2011

      I agree Kim and there is absolutely no need for any apology but I thank you for your humble spirit and pray I too exhibit the same.

      My intent here, and in my ministry, is one thing—Glorify Christ and challenge us all to think at a deeper level about our faith and what it looks like to live it out. I am challenged by doing so daily!

      If you have the chance to check out the AI web site I would recommend going to individual authors and then clicking on Author Sam Shamoun. There is a lot of excellent material there on Christianity and how we need to understand what Islam teaches about Christianity. Worth the time investment if you or others are interested.

      Blessings in Christ with thanks for your blessings!

    7. jerry krewson on Mon, January 10, 2011

      I need to respond to you based on your replies to me and then to Pastor Lee, then I will let this go.

      You wrote sun. Jan. 9
      Hi Jerry,

      I appreciate your frustration, but I�m just not interested in getting into a biblical argument with you.  Maybe someone else has the time and energy, but to me, it�s just not worth it, because I�m still exploring the implications of this whole issue.

      Then you write to Lee, mon. Jan. 10

      “The Bible is my source for Truth.”
      —Then you go on to use a biblical arguement to defend your position with Lee. Interesting that you don’t want to talk and examine scripture I cite, and you claim:“I�m just not interested in getting into a biblical argument with you.  Maybe someone else has the time and energy, but to me….”

      Kim, which way is it? You say you don’t want to…, however you go on into the debate and us biblical arguement to defend your postion. A position you say you don’t “know what the right answer is. You tell me no biblical arguement from you, but then you do use biblical arguement with Lee.

      I am going to use your quote to Lee:You can�t ignore these examples from Jesus� life in favor of one of two others that you think might better support your views.

      —-But Kim, you quickly dismissed the scriptures I cited with the innuendo, “I don’t want to talk about it.”

        I am disappointed that you would say one thing to me {but I�m just not interested in getting into a biblical argument with you.}, but you did get into one with Lee.

        Well, enough debate from me. I am going to go get ready to cheer my Mighty Oregon Ducks on tonight.

    8. Kim Aliczi on Mon, January 10, 2011

      Sorry you feel disappointed, Jerry.  In the future, it might be helpful to remember that you can’t make people do what you want.  That way you’re guaranteed to experience much less disappointment from here on in.

      I don’t mean to sound snarky, but I really don’t know how else to respond to your “you won’t invite me to your party, but you invited Lee” rant, LOL.

      I’m also a Ducks fan - the Anaheim kind, though.  And I have three ducks as pets (Daffodil, Donald & Jack, they’re all boys, and Daffodil is perfectly fine with his name, ahem…).  Not that anyone really cares. lol


    9. Steve Long on Tue, January 11, 2011

      There is a small group in my community that are looking for a place to be out of the rain until they have their temple built. I don’t know much about them but they say they worship Moloch. We could really use the rent money…..Just kiddin’. I could see using the community property of a local congregation to help in a time of disaster. Beyond that it seems like things get a bit tricky.

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