Muslims claim that they and Christians worship the same God. After all, there is only one true God, Creator of the world. We merely have different names for him. Right?
Is that true?
Consider this illustration.
Imagine that you meet an old friend from high school whom you haven't seen in 30 years. You strike up a conversation and then he says, "Hey, remember Rhonda? I heard she lives in Europe now."
You smile and nod. "Yes, Rhonda was great. Sat in front of me in Biology."
You share a few mutual memories and then he says, "I heard she was divorced. Four times. Her last husband hated her long brown hair."
"Brown? I remember Rhonda with blonde hair. Curly and short."
"No, no...She was short, but her hair was really long. And straight."
You scratch your head. "Are you sure? The Rhonda I remember was tall and quiet. Conservative. It's hard for me to picture her being divorced 4 times."
Your friend claps you on the shoulder. "C'mon now, Rhonda was a party girl! The party didn't start 'til she showed up."
Now you're really confused. Suddenly you brighten. "Hey, I've got an old yearbook in my trunk. Hang on a minute. Let me get it." You jog to the car and return with a dusty yearbook. Quickly you flip to the right page and point to the outdated photo.
"There! There she is! There's Rhonda."
Now your friend looks confused. He slowly shakes his head. "No-o...No, that's not her. That's not the Rhonda I remember. Guess we're talking about two different people."
He walks away and you continue to stare at the photo. You were right.This is Rhonda. Photos don't lie.
When we hear confusing babble about Allah = Jehovah =Yahweh = Jesus = Mohammed...even the most devout believer can feel his foundation cracking.
Are we talking about the same God?
Thankfully, God has provided us a yearbook--His Word. We can quickly flip it open and find a picture of Jesus. "If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father," he says. (John 14:9)
When we show that to a Muslim, he recoils. "No, Allah has no Son!" he cries. "That's not God!"
And we can can close the yearbook with the answer we needed.
Apparently we're not talking about the same God, after all.