Prof. Larycia Hawkins of Wheaton College, Illinois: Muslim hijab controversy : A balanced BIBLICAL analysis
Gordon Wayne Watts·Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Thank you for accepting my friend request, Professor Larycia Alaine Hawkins, and thank you for trying to be a good Ambassador for sovereign King JESUS:
II Cor 5:20 (ESV) Holy Bible:
"Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God."
Since you have taken actions to attempt to show support for treating Muslims with God's love - bravely taking highly controversial actions - I will honour your actions and efforts by an attempt to offer a 'fair and balanced' Biblical analysis. ALL HATERS: Please realise that I'm not taking sides, but rather using the BIBLE as a standard, and, in my religion (Christian) that is appropriate.
Here is what I think: we should turn to the BIBLE for answers - and, believe it or not, there are good BIBLICAL arguments both PRO and CON:
CON: We must not give the appearance of evil, and, to some, this lady is supporting a false religion. (I Thessalonians 5:22 (KJV) "Abstain from all appearance of evil.")
PRO: We must test the spirits, and ask "which" Allah -- or "which" Jesus. -- When a person, such as this lady, uses the word 'Allah' or 'Jesus' in a sentence, while it's important to look at the 'word' she uses, it's MORE important to look at the definition: What does she mean. -- Two examples:
(1) MATTHEW 7:22 (KJV) 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
Here, the people use the word 'Jesus' -- AND do good works, but they're NOT talking about the same Jesus who is speaking to term - and sending them to Hell in this passage (see verse 23 about 'depart' and -- more to the point, see Matthew 25:31-46, where 'everlasting punishment' is mentioned, i.e., Hell!).
(2) When two Muslims are talking about 'Allah' and one mentions a Creator that is against killing 'unbelievers' and the other mentions a 'god' (small 'g') that is *for* killing unbeliever 'infidels,' then one is probably speaking about the REAL God, and the other one is definitely not.
Again, when we discuss this with them, we must test the spirits:
1. SPECIFIC TEST OF RIGHTEOUSNESS: Angel or “Prophet” must be righteous, specifically regarding not denying Jesus: I John 4:1-3
2. GENERAL TEST OF RIGHTEOUSNESS: The general lifestyle of the prophet must be righteous.
3. SPECIFIC TEST OF ACCURACY: The specific “prophecy” or “revelation” must be accurate - 100%. (see Old Testament, which addresses this and has not been overturned by Jesus.)
4. GENERAL TEST OF ACCURACY: The “general” method of contact with the spirit world must be accurate, not prohibited. (I.e., spiritism and occult prohibited).
5. 'MIRACLE' TEST: True prophets (and holy angels of God) often (but not always) perform miracles. (Well, maybe: See e.g., MARK 16:17-18 which DEMANDS we do miracle - yes, you and me!)
6. 'APPLICABILITY' TEST: The prophecy (from either prophet or angel) must not only be accurate but also applicable to do a good work of God. (See e.g., James 1:17)
7. HOLY SPIRIT TEST: There must be a witness of the spirit in the believer, who listens for the check in the spirit. (See Psalms 95:7-11; Proverbs 1:20; John, chapter 10; Hebrews 3:7; Hebrews 4:7) His sheep (us) hear his voice (the Holy Spirit), so we must chill out and listen carefully.)
Gordon Wayne Watts, Lakeland, Florida - (between Tampa & Orlando)
PS / Addendum: Here is another Pro argument:
1 Corinthians 9:19-23 (NIV) Holy Bible
Paul’s Use of His Freedom
19 Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20 To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21 To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. 23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.
Gordon Wayne Watts' translation: To the Muslims, I am become a Muslim.
2nd Addendum: Another pro-argument – Perhaps the only "major" passage I missed and did not mention was the one about Christian women covering their heads (1 Corinthians 11:6)
1 Corinthians 11:6 (NIV) Holy Bible:
6 For if a woman does not cover her head, she might as well have her hair cut off; but if it is a disgrace for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, then she should cover her head.
In conclusion, it appears, on balance, that most Bible passages support Professor Larycia Alaine Hawkins's actions, but, per Ecclesiastes 3 - there is a time for Christians to wear a hijab - and a time to not wear one - and, in some cases, where those whose faith is weak (Romans 14), it might be best to abstain:
Ecclesiastes 3 (NIV) Holy Bible
1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2 a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
6 a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
Romans 14 (NIV) Holy Bible
14 Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. 2 One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. 3 The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. 4 Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.
5 One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind. 6 Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7 For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. 8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.
10 You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. 11 It is written:
“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’”
12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.
13 Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. 14 I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean.
Gordon Wayne Watts' note: The 'unclean' thing might also include the hijab.
15 If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 16 Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18 because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.
19 Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20 Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. 21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.
22 So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves. 23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin
ADDENDUM: Here's further proof that Prof. Larycia Alaine Hawkins is almost 100% correct on theology:
Acts 10:34-35 New International Version (NIV) 34 Then Peter began to speak: “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism 35 but accepts from every nation the one who fears him and does what is right.
(Including Muslims who believe wrongly!)
UPDATE: After I posted this note, Jessica Margaret Taubert, a fellow-Christian who saw some of my comments and note here, said that “God does not accept anyone based on their "heart" apart from faith in Christ. That would be works salvation. You keep posting that Acts 10:34-35 passage out of context.”
She is correct, on this point of theology. Perhaps I did not emphasize enough the need for faith in Christ, but this seemed implicit when I initially quoted II Cor 5:20, naming us ambassadors for Christ - which is possible only if we have faith. (I'd love to update my note - and may, but I'm busy with many things.) However, in my defense, I did cite Luke 12:48 which does not let a person off the hook on faith in Jesus- it merely lowers the standard. Also, my 7-point method for testing the spirits (in my original note, which has been updates a few times - and may be again) includes a test by the Bible, which - of course - demands faith in Jesus, and not works.
But I’m not making excuses: I’m updating my note to reflect that faith in Jesus is a requirement of any believer, even if (per LUKE 12:48) some have more hardship and thus have less expected of them. However, all people (even Muslims in countries where it’s hard to reach them with the Gospel) will have a chance to exercise faith - and some will believe - and some won’t. (Just like some angels fell - about 1/3rd many believe - just like some humans -- many, who travel the wide path - just like some unborn babies who die before the age of accountability will accept - and some won’t. Faith in Jesus and his completed works is required for ALL believers: For more on the babies, see e.g., http://www.amazon.com/When-Babies-Die-Full-color-Edition-ebook/dp/B008J8RTOK or http://GordonWatts.com/theology/WhenBabiesDie.html or: http://GordonWayneWatts.com/theology/WhenBabiesDie.html for further information -FREE and at no cost to you. Many Muslims do get a chance to hear about Jesus, be it preaching or through a personal visit from Jesus, like Paul the apostle: See e.g., http://www.MoreThanDreams.org for examples.)
Further proof to show God accepts honest Muslims: Romans 2:13-16 New International Version (NIV) 13 For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. 14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.) 16 This will take place on the day when God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.
Of course, they must accept Jesus as Saviour, but if they know little about Jesus, then little is required – PROOF:
LUKE 12:48a (NIV) “But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows...”
So, Many -- perhaps most -- Muslims & Christians worship the same God (most, but not all) -- she is almost 100% correct - but not totally correct. Judgment begins at the house of God, and tho her mistake was much smaller than Wheaton's, she should be the bigger person & admit wrong - and they'll likely admit her back in -- but if they don't, this will expose their double-standard. What double standard, you ask? THIS one:
See this article by Professor Volf - the best part - is this excerpt showing a clear double-standard:
[[""What is theologically wrong with asserting that Christians and Muslims worship the same God, according to Hawkins’s opponents — and mine? Muslims deny the Trinity and incarnation, and, therefore, the Christian God and Muslim God cannot be the same. But the conclusion doesn’t square. And Christians, though historically not friendly to either Judaism or the Jews, have rightly resisted that line of thinking when it comes to the God of Israel.
For centuries, a great many Orthodox Jews have strenuously objected to those same Christian convictions: Christians are idolaters because they worship a human being, Jesus Christ, and Christians are polytheists because they worship “Father, Son and the Spirit” rather than the one true God of Israel. What was the Christian response? Christian theologians neither insisted that they worship a different God than Jews nor did they accuse Jews of idolatry. ""]] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2015/12/17/wheaton-professors-suspension-is-about-anti-muslim-bigotry-not-theology
"Wheaton professor’s suspension is about anti-Muslim bigotry, not theology," By Miroslav Volf, The Washington Post, December 17, 2015
CONCLUSION: The small percentage of Muslims who are terrorists worship the same ‘god’ as those so-called ‘Christians’ in Matthew 5:21-23 and Matthew 25:44-46 who are sent to HELL by Jesus!
Additionally, the Muslims who are honest and fear God and obey His commandments to love others (many, even if not all, Muslims) are INDEED accepted by God, if we believe Acts 10:34-35, and thus they worship the same God as true Christians.
So, no matter whether you’re talking evil Muslims vs. fake Christians or honest Muslims vs. True Christians, Professor Larycia Alaine Hawkins is mostly (but not totally) correct: Most, but not all, of both groups worship the same God (or ‘god’ as the case may be) AS PROVEN BY SCRIPTURES IMMEDIATELY ABOVE.
Now, if you are claiming that the 'God' described in the Koran is NOT the 'same God' as the 'God' described in the Bible, then, yes, I'd have to agree with you, but that's not what Dr. Larycia Alaine Hawkins’ accusers at Wheaton College are saying: The 'God' described and the 'God' worshiped are #TwoDifferentThings -- #KnowTheDifference
Gordon Wayne Watts, Lakeland, Fla., US//
Wayne Watts, editor-in-chief,
www.GordonWayneWatts.com / www.GordonWatts.com
BS, The Florida State University, Biological & Chemical Sciences;
Class of 2000, double major with honours
AS, United Electronics Institute, Class of 1988, Valedictorian
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