There are many ways to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania: the Shira, Lemosho, Machame, Umbwe, Mweka, Marangu and Rongai Routes. But only one way to heaven: Jesus Christ.
My Muslim friend stood on the trail and pointed to the summit looming ahead. “There are many ways to the top of the mountain,” he said. “You may take one route and I may take another. We will end up at the same place together.”
The meaning behind this conversation was much deeper than the way to the top of one of the Seven Summits. This was about heaven and hell.
“Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” – John 14:6 (NIV)
My Muslim friend saw Jesus as a prophet and a good man. But not the Son of God.
He continues to view the direction his great prophet, Muhammad, led him (and millions of others) as the true route. Like the compass that greets us on Middle Eastern airlines, perpetually pointing toward Mecca so Islamists can pray in the right direction.
This is the way.
The wrong way.
Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, told His followers: “But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:14, NIV). He invited us to “enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many enter through it” (Matthew 7:13). He warned us, “Beware of false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves” (Matthew 7:15).
Heading in the right direction?
Like many others professing Islam (as well as a few other world religions), my man-of-Allah friend sees us heading to the same destination. To The Summit. He does not understand that he has been misled; that he is on the path leading to destruction.
I have lovingly shared and prayed for him for years, and will continue to do so. I invite you to pray with me.
Today is the first day of Ramadan. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and is observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting to commemorate the first revelation of the Qur’an to Muhammad, according to Islamic belief. This is one of the Five Pillars of Islam.
But Muslims cannot even agree on the start of this holy month because it is based on the lunar calendar and dependent on the sighting of the moon on the 29th night of each month. Muslim-majority countries rely on the testimonies of “local moon sighters,” and a judicial committee then rules on the official start of the month.
For that reason, the start varies by geographical location. This is not important to us; what’s important is that we pray for our Muslim friends, neighbors (wherever you reside and to the ends of the earth), even strangers.
For the next 30 days, Climbing For Christ is going to provide a prayer guide through the holy month of Ramadan. We ask you to join us in lifting the Muslim people to the God of the Bible, “not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).
We are hoping many will be re-directed during this holy time. We are praying for the ascent that leads to life eternal.