For the last two weeks we’ve been looking at the difference between
Christianity and other major religions – particularly their teaching
about how to get to heaven. Today we will look at Islam.
Islam is a religion that began with the prophet Muhammad (570-632AD).
Muhammad is believed to have received a collection of revelations from
Allah through the angel Gabriel. They are preserved in the Koran.
Islam teaches that there is a heaven and there is a hell. It also
teaches who goes to which: ‘For the wrongdoers We have prepared a fire
which will encompass them like the walls of a pavilion. When they cry
out for help they shall be showered with water as hot as molten brass,
which will scald their faces. Evil shall be their drink, evil their
resting place. As for those that have faith and do good works, We shall
not deny them their reward. They shall dwell in the gardens of Eden,
where rivers will roll at their feet. Reclining there upon soft couches,
they shall be decked with bracelets of gold, and arrayed in garments of
fine green silk and rich brocade: blissful their reward and happy their
resting-place’ (Koran, Surah 18). The works that Allah requires for your
salvation are summed up by the five pillars of the faith: (i) worship
Allah alone, accept Muhammad as Allah’s prophet and believe in the
Koran; (ii) pray the Islamic ritual prayer at the five prescribed times
per day; (iii) give alms; (iv) fast during the entire month of Ramadan;
(v) make a pilgrimage to Mecca, the holy city at least once in a
lifetime. Therefore Islam is a religion of works: ‘We shall both be
judged by our works’ (Surah 2).
Whereas Christianity teaches that it is not about what you do, but what
is done for you in Jesus Christ at the cross. If you believe in Jesus,
you are saved: ‘For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only
Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal
life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world,
but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not
condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because
he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son (John 3:16-18)’.
Do you simply trust in Jesus for your salvation? Or do you try and earn
your way to paradise by doing good works like Islam teaches?