USA (MNN) — You've heard the stories. The attempted SUV bombing in New York City. The underwear bomber. A group of young men from Virginia traveling to Pakistan to join militant groups, only to be stopped by their parents. All of these stories have one thing in common: someone became radical. How does this happen?
Founder and President of the Crescent Project Fouad Masri helps Christians learn how to love Muslims and eventually lead them to Christ. Masri says, "Many times, people say Islam teaches peace. Many times, people say 'we don't want to be like the terrorists.' What's happening to someone who is a moderate, then suddenly they are a militant?"
Masri says it's part of the Muslim religion called Jihad. "The teachings of Jihad that are in the Quran, in the Hadith, and in the religion of Islam, is what makes people radical in terms of allowing people to kill."
Masri explains the concept of Jihad: "God will allow you to kill Jews, Christians, or non-Muslims, for his name. And then once you do that, you can attain heaven or a better relationship with God."
Most Muslims are peaceful, says Masri. "Most Muslims are not in the act of Jihad. The struggle most people need to address is the terrorists who were moderate before they took up Jihad."
The Crescent Project believes Muslims will change their view of Jihad if they just find out more about Jesus, who they consider a holy prophet. Masri says the best way to do that is to get them to read the Bible. "The Quran says God sent the Bible. So we're telling Muslims, 'If you consider yourself a Muslim and you consider the Word of God the Quran, then you should follow what God says and read the Bible.'"
The Crescent Project is in the process of printing the Injil, or the New Testament of the Bible, which Masri says will help stop radicalization altogether "because they see that Jesus, who's considered a prophet in Islam, does not agree on these things. So that helps. And some of them might want to follow Christ and decide they don't want to do Jihad at all."
Islamic leaders are concerned today. "They cannot define the concepts of jihad. Some say we have to practice it today. Some say it no longer applies. So it's spinning out of control."
Islamic leaders are also concerned about the great number of Muslims turning to Jesus. Masri says, "Muslims are getting excited about the teaching of Jesus, and you will see more as people change their value system, change their behavior as they read the words of Christ."
The Crescent Project is helping Christians share the message of Christ. They have a number of great resources and seminars to help. You can help supply them with New Testaments to hand out to Muslims. Click here to get connected.