John and Alma Baker, with their daughter, Anya, live on Mayotte where they are involved in church planting and working alongside the expatriate church. We asked them what role the Bible plays in evangelising to Muslims?
When I was in training for ministry in the UK, a well known evangelist came in to talk to us about his philosophy of ministry. He took us through the first few verses of 2 Corinthians 4, then he split us into two groups and made us chant out loudly back and forth across the lecture room: “We proclaim Christ!” “God opens blind eyes!” “WE PROCLAIM CHRIST!” “GOD OPENS BLIND EYES!”
We proclaim Christ
In creation, when God spoke, light flooded into space that previously hadn’t existed. When God chooses to speak to someone today he opens their eyes and light floods in so they can see Christ. It is by God’s ‘creating-speech’ that blind eyes are opened and he gives us ‘the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ’ (2 Cor.4: 6). We proclaim Christ, not ourselves, and our Father opens blind eyes in a miraculous work of new creation.
I remember reading somewhere that very often there are three elements at play when someone from a Muslim background comes to faith. Firstly, a genuine friendship with a believer. Secondly, dreams or visions of Christ. And thirdly, a thorough interaction with the New Testament. I recently saw these exact elements at work in someone’s life.
When God chooses to speak to someone today he opens their eyes and light floods in so they can see Christ.
God opens blind eyes
Mo has a very sick young son. A Christian doctor ‘happened’ to overhear a colleague giving Mo a bleak diagnosis for his son’s future. Filled with compassion, this doctor instinctively hugged Mo and immediately sought to help him with his son’s condition. Over the past few years this doctor formed a very strong friendship with Mo and helped him enormously. Recently Mo started having night time dreams and visions of Christ. These dreams pushed Mo to seek out answers to questions about how to follow Christ. This is where I came into the story. What was my role? I proclaimed Christ. I prayed to God to open blind eyes – and he did!
For many, it would be the visions part of this story that draws the most attention. But it is God speaking by his Word and through his Spirit as I proclaimed Christ from the Bible which amazes me the most. God opened blind eyes. He created life as I proclaimed Jesus to Mo – that is truly a miraculous and gracious thing. He chooses to use us! We who are merely ‘jars of clay’. Why? To show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us (2 Cor. 4:7).