Posts tagged ‘Ramadan’

August 8th, 2011

Fasting during Ramadan, Muslims and a Skyscraper

Muslims’ month long fast enters the second week. I wrote last week to show how God Almighty did not institute it. You can read my article, which utilizes the Qur’an to arrive at its conclusion, HERE. I discussed how the Qur’an envisaged the Muslim fast to go strictly according to the position of the sun.

Some Muslims have protested. One of them claims in places like Barrow, Alaska, where the sun rarely sets or rises during certain summer or winter months, a Muslim in “Alaska follows Vancouver or Seattle.” He totally dismissed the Qur’an, which clearly shows the position of the sun should determine fasting in Islam. Then came this bombshell out of Dubai where a prominent Muslim cleric issues a fatwa requiring certain residents of Burj Khalifa—the tallest skyscraper in the world—to wait longer to break their fast than the rest of Muslims in Dubai.

Gulf News reports:

Dubai: Muslims residing above the 80th floor in Dubai’s Burj Khalifa must delay their iftar meal during Ramadan by two to three minutes as they see the sunset later, according to the Dubai Islamic Affairs Department.

Those residents should also start their daily fasting two minutes earlier on the grounds that dawn descends on them before those living on lower levels, the Department said in a Fatwa (edict).

“Residents in Burj Khalifa should observe varied timings for iftar, sunset and dawn prayers depending on the level where live,” the paper said, quoting Ahmad Abdul Aziz Al Haddad, head of the Fatwa division at the department.

He said Muslims living on the 80-150 floors in the tower, the world’s tallest structure, should delay their iftar meal by two minutes while those on the 151-160 floors should break their fasting three minutes late.

“Residents on 80-150 floors should also perform evening and night prayers two minutes late and dawn prayers two minutes earlier while those above the 150th level should delay their evening and night prayers by three minutes and bring forward dawn prayers by three minutes,” he said.

“This difference in timing on the 160-storey building is because sun sets later for residents on top floors while these residents are the first to see the sun at dawn.”

I wrote last week about the Qur’an stating that the sun sets “in a spring of murky water.” It tells a story of a man who traveled on a road and “reached the setting of the sun, he found it set in a spring of murky water.” Prophet Muhammad invented the fast during the month of Ramadhan. If Muhammad didn’t invent it, then the “God” in the Qur’an—contrary to all his attributes in the Qur’an—was limited to seeing the sun “going down” into the horizon, hence instituted the fast according to his limited knowledge.

The fatwa in Dubai is another proof the Muslim fast is according to the sun; further proving someone fallible instituted it.

Please pray for Muslims. May the Lord show them His Light so that they break free!

July 15th, 2011

Ramadhan 2011: A Call to Prayer and Outreach

Muslim fast during the Islamic month of Ramadhan is projected to start at dawn on August 1 this year, after the sighting of the new crescent at dusk on July 31. It might end on August 29. Every able-bodied Muslim must fast from dawn to dusk during the entire month of Ramadhan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, for 29 or 30 days because the Qur’an commands it. Muslims who are sick or traveling and Muslim women who are menstruating or expecting are exempt but are required to make up for the days missed. Children before the onset of puberty are also exempt.

Muslims seek God. Christian should pray for them to meet the True God! We should pray for those in our neighborhoods, city, and country. Here is one way to prepare for this task. It is not too late to join Christians who have been praying for Muslim during Ramadhan using a very informative booklet that has been in use for 20 years. 30 Days of Prayer for Muslim World gives overviews of Muslim populations in various countries, profiles of some unreached people groups and contains testimonies of Christians of Muslim background. It also points out prayer needs for each day of Ramadhan. You can buy copies for yourself and or your church from World Christian website here or here.

Don’t just prayer. Venture out. Make an effort to meet your Muslim neighbors. Go to a local mosque and interact with them. Look for opportunities to engage in conversations. I’ll post some questions to ask Muslims in regards to Ramadhan next week.

While Muslims are in festive mood during Ramadhan, this month is a very difficult challenge for Muslims who have embraced Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and still live in their communities. I speak from experience. It is not easy. In fact this is one single occasion that can blow cover for secret believers. Don’t get me wrong. The ensuing persecution is all worth it. Secret believers’ challenge is not “the not eating part” but other activities (communal prayers and meals) associated with the fast. Please, pray for them.

Non-Muslims who travel in Muslim majority countries during Ramadhan also face problems because eating in public is illegal. The police arrested those who violated this law in Egypt in 2009 and Algeria in 2010. Even Dubai, one of the most moderate Muslim cities, has fines or jail sentence for non-Muslims who violate the law for the second time. Please, be careful if you are traveling to these countries in August. Have a blessed weekend!

August 17th, 2010

Ramadhan-One Devil “Breaks” Allah’s Chains

Islamic teachings lack absolutes. Prophet Muhammad said, “When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of the heaven are opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the devils are chained.” Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim—the two authenticated Hadith collections—record at least three times that devils are chained during Ramadhan. All Muslims who know what it means to observe the fast during Ramadhan know of this fact. Allah’s Apostle said it and that should at least guarantee there would be peace at least among Muslims. Sadly, the report out of Iraq today confounds it. The Associated Press reports:

A suicide bomber blew himself up Tuesday [August 17, 2010] among hundreds of army recruits who had gathered near a military headquarters in an attack officials said killed 60 and wounded 125, one of the bloodiest bombings in months in the Iraqi capital.

Bodies of young men, some still clutching job applications and other documents in their hands, could be seen scattered about at the blast site, which Iraqi soldiers closed off. U.S. helicopters hovered overhead as frantic Iraqis showed up to search for relatives.

August, which saw the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, has also been deadly.

What happened to the devils being chained during Ramadhan? What devil broke Allah’s chains and influenced this suicide bomber into strapping that bomb? Perhaps our Muslim friends can help us understand.

August 4th, 2010

Fast during Ramadhan and a Christian

Every Muslim must fast from dawn to dusk during the entire month of Ramadhan (Ramadan), the ninth month of the Hijr calendar (Islamic calendar, lunar), for 29 or 30 days because Allah commands it. This command was given because Allah said the Qur’an was revealed during this month and other prophets before Prophet Muhammad observed it. The sick, travelers and menstruating or expectant women are exempt but they are required to make up for the days missed. Children before the onset of puberty are also exempt.

What should Christians do during Ramadhan? We should pray for Muslims in our neighborhood, city, and country and around the world. We should also make an effort to meet those in our community.

Here is one way to prepare for this task. It is not too late to join your fellow Christians who pray for Muslim around the world during the month of Ramadhan. There is a booklet that has been in use for 19 years. 30 Days of Prayer for Muslim World gives overviews of Muslim populations in various countries, profiles of some unreached people groups and also contains testimonies of Christians of Muslim background. You can get copies for yourself or your church from Mission Network News here or World Christian here. These booklets are very helpful. May God use you mightily as you strive to live the Great Commission!

This year, Ramadhan is projected to start on Wednesday, August 11—at the sighting of the new crescent at dusk with fast beginning at dawn on the 12th—and the last day might be on Thursday, September 9.

I will be writing articles throughout the month, mostly utilizing the Qur’an and the Hadith, to show the CRACKS in the fast. Did God sanction it? Was he an all-knowing God? Stay tuned. May the Lord use you to open the eyes of your Muslim neighbor to the Truth!