Day 5: Islam 101 – The prophet
By Jordan Rowley, spiritual coordinator, Climbing For Christ
The Kaaba (or “The Cube”) is a building at the center of Islam’s most sacred mosque in Mecca, al-Hejaz, Saudi Arabia. It is the most sacred site in Islam, considered the “House of Allah.” One of the five pillars of Islam, which include Ramadan, requires every Muslim who is able to make the hajj pilgrimage once in their lifetime.
Islam’s most revered prophet, Muhammad, began receiving his supposed revelations from Allah at the age of 40, in the year 610 A.D. These visions would change his life – and the world.
Although Muhammad initially doubted whether or not these revelations were, in fact, from god, he was eventually convinced, largely by his wife, that he was in fact rasul Allah – or “god’s messenger.” By 612 A.D., he began to proclaim his message and even gained a number of followers throughout his home of Mecca. Over time, and in spite of frequent opposition, his following grew. However, by the year 622, they were forced to flee from Mecca north to Medina. For years thereafter, Muhammad’s followers battled regularly with the people of Mecca until eventually, in 630, Mecca was conquered by the Muslims. Every shrine and idol temple was destroyed, except the Kaaba, which still exists today as the most holy place on earth for followers of Islam.
After this huge conquest, Muhammad was able to stretch his reach and influence throughout most of Arabia – often through use of force. For the next two years Muhammad ruled as religious and political leader from Medina, until his death in 632 A.D. Afterward, his followers took Islam, often by sword, to Asia, Africa and even Europe.
The Hadith: Although the Qur’an refers to Muhammad by using a number of different images, like: prophet, messenger, servant of god, announcer, witness, bearer of good tidings, warner, reminder, one who calls unto God and the light-giving lamp, the vast majority of what Muslims believe about him comes from a collection of writings compiled by his followers many years later. These writings are known as the Hadith.
In about 1,400 years, the religion of Muhammad has become a global religion with nearly 2 billion adherents. Today, followers of Islam are found throughout the world, still honoring the life and teachings of their prophet Muhammad. Although many in-roads have been made among Muslim people groups, millions of followers of Islam have no Christian witness in their own culture. In other words, there is no one in their people group – no one who intimately understands their culture and customs and possibly even language – who can share the Good News with them.
Join us in prayer:
- Today, let’s pray that God would raise up laborers to go out into His harvest. May the people of God be willing to reach the hard places for Christ.
- Pray that the Lord of the harvest would open doors for our Muslim neighbors to hear from a true messenger of God about the true message of salvation in Jesus! May many have hearts to turn from following the message of Muhammad, to the beautiful and saving Gospel truth.
“… He asked His disciples, saying, ‘Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?’ So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets. He said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ Simon Peter answered and said, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’” – Matthew 16:13-16 (NKJV)