Lessons Learned from Nabeel Qureshi
by Brian Chilton
During my break from classes, I took time to read the book Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi. Qureshi, a former Ahmadi Muslim from Pakistan, in his autobiography, recounts his incredible journey to his faith in Jesus Christ. Qureshi’s book is both emotionally stirring and intellectually stimulating. Qureshi’s acceptance of Christ did not stem from a fiery altar call. Rather, Qureshi’s journey to Christ was an arduous task bursting with anger, passion, and devotion. This book was one that an individual cannot simply lay to the side. Instead, the work compels the reader to finish the work. Qureshi’s book left me with several important thoughts that I had not adequately contemplated, but two impressions branded my soul.
1. The Importance of Christian Love
Something greatly disturbed me with Qureshi’s testimony. It was not the manner in how he came to faith. Rather, the most disturbing element of Qureshi’s testimony is that few Christians really tried to become friends with Qureshi. In fact, God used one man named David to befriend Qureshi and demonstrate Christ’s love to him. Qureshi writes that “In my case, I knew of no Christian who truly cared about me, no one who had been part of my life through thick and thin. I had plenty of Christian acquaintances, and I’m sure they would have been my friends if I had become a Christian, but that kind of friendship is conditional. There were none that I knew who cared about me unconditionally. Since no Christian cared about me, I did not care about their message” (Qureshi, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus, 121).
Qureshi’s statement hit me like a ton of bricks. Do we demonstrate conditional love towards those not of the Christian faith where we should demonstrate love of the unconditional kind? Do I? Qureshi notes on several occasions how relationships are central to evangelism. However, Qureshi’s point is not an isolated island, but rather grounded in the clear teachings of Scripture. The apostle John denotes that “We love because he first loved us. Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister” (1 John 4:19-21). We cannot truly help others see the truth of God until we first demonstrate the love of God…unconditionally…
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