Arab Spring brings little change; Muslims still seeking

By August 31, 2011

International (MNN) — The uproar in nations across the Middle East and North Africa during the first half of 2011, in particular, included marches against oppression and petitions for democracy. The Arab Spring, as it's come to be known, was full of demands, violence, and in some cases, real change.

But Fouad Masri, founder of the Crescent Project, says despite the fact that coverage of the Arab Spring has waned, many nations have yet to resolve major issues.

"In Syria, we're now at almost 2,000 dead. Libya is in a mess of civil war. Tunisia hasn't settled down. Morocco is having some issues. We're noticing that it really hasn't settled, and change hasn't really come," observes Masri.

Of course, some nations appear to be making strides. Egypt has made an effort to revamp government, but even that, says Masri, has actually changed little from an evangelistic perspective.

"Right now, none of these things have changed any laws," explains Masri. "Even when you say there was a change of government in Egypt, the laws have not changed concerning Christian-Muslim relations. The laws have not changed concerning Muslims being able to read Scripture or being allowed to be baptized."

The lack of any new freedoms may be disconcerting, but on the other hand, Masri says, the Arab Spring has swung doors wide open for the Gospel. As people have not only had a chance to question their lifestyles, but also the opportunity to see via internet, social media and more the way the world is run elsewhere, questions are starting to emerge.

"That [globalization] is, in many ways, helping people ask questions: ‘Is it true that Islam is the only way? Is it true that Islam is the perfect religion? Is it true that Islam solves all the problems? Is it true that the political structure of Islam is the only structure?' And they're finding out it's not true," says Masri.

As Muslims make this realization–especially throughout the month of Ramadan which ended yesterday, they are more ready than ever to embrace change. Once they realize that even what is supposed to be a new government is not making great changes for them, they are looking for hope elsewhere.

Crescent Project is making the most of this openness. With their Give-A-Gospel Campaign, the ministry is encouraging believers to help Crescent Project train Christians who will reach out to Muslims.

Crescent Project focuses specifically on the 7 million Muslims that live in the United States, but Masri says even in reaching out to Muslims who live far from Arab Spring nations, the effects of sharing the Gospel reach thousands of miles.

"Whenever a Muslim becomes a believer in Jesus, now they're shining in their household, with their neighbors, with their countrymen," explains Masri. On several occasions, people trained by Crescent Project have shared the Gospel with Muslims foreign to the U.S. who have later gone back to their own countries and boldly proclaimed the Gospel there.

Give-A-Gospel funding goes toward materials to be handed out at festivals, trainings, and campaigns, but it also goes toward equipping believers with the proper tools to reach Muslims at this vital time. "It's important that people are equipped before they start the conversations with a Muslim, for the sake of Christ's glory and effectiveness in communicating the Gospel."

Millions of Muslims in the United States, in the Middle East, in North Africa, and elsewhere are hungry for Truth. If you want to help share Christ's love with them, visit www.crescentproject.org/give and click the "Give-A-Gospel" category.

 

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