Channel: The Deen Show
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After going to three kradic graduate schools,
including Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, Jerry Paul will school, the pharaoh Farwell, you went to his, his college Christian College. We got married at Thomas Road Baptist Church, Jerry Falwell's church here at the famous Jerry farewell Have you ever met him? Oh, many times he used to take me with him on his private plane to fly to different meetings. Oh, so you're good friends with Jerry Farwell, he passed away about 10 years ago. Yeah, his son took over correct. His son was until recently, always thought it more and more good people had concealed carry permits, then we could end those Muslims. I've seen one of your talks before you give an example of how you were feeling. And
this is how many people feel like, oh, if you go over there, they're gonna cut your head off. Can you share that with us?
Well, you, you know, I was scared to death when I stepped off the plane here.
I came from a background in Annapolis, Maryland. I was on the city council, there was the head of the Democratic Party. When I got on the plane to come here. Some students from the Naval Academy close friends were coming to me and saying Don't go Don't go on. They were showing me videos of people being
decapitated. I was horrible people being kidnapped. And here I am stepping off the plane into what I what they told me would be harm's way.
But when I arrived here, it was a totally different story.
When I'd go to the supermarket, people would come up to me and they say, Where are you from? At first, I would hesitate. But eventually I would say I'm from the United States. And then people would begin to
they would hug me. And they would say Alan was solid, well cup. I wasn't expecting this.
It was the hugs in the love of Muslims in Saudi Arabia that brought me
completed my trip to Islam. That's quite a different picture from what the media portrays of Islam and Muslims.
Yeah, well, the media is distorted and an educated in many cases, I think it's getting better. But
we have to help change the media. For every negative or you know, 1% of every religious group. It doesn't matter whether they are Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, all religious groups, one or 2% are crazy.
They do horrible things. They're in it for themselves, they want to make the evening news. So the best way to make the evening news is to kill somebody and make headlines. We've seen that in the last month in the United States.
for every evil act, we have to do 100 good acts to overcome it. And this is our aim with Muslim voice for peace and reconciliation, an organization that a cell has seen and I started here in Jeddah, and it's based in Washington DC.
I shall law tell us now you went to john Jones. This is a Christian High School. And then from Bob Jones, Jones Academy, fundamentalist Christian High School in Greenville, South Carolina. You see, my mom raised me in the Baptist Church. Bob Jones is predominantly Baptist. But my mother would take me to church on Sunday, and she would, at the end of the church service, she would take me to the church library. And there were all kinds of children's books. And she'd let me pick one out. And the one that I got over and over again, was called the God of Abraham. And he had beautiful color pictures of camels and desert.
And she take me home, she'd put me in her lap.
And she would open the book and start reading to me.
And she would tell me the story of Abraham to say, Sammy, Sammy, Look into my eyes.
When you're older, you have to pray to the God of Abraham, or Abraham. Excuse me, Abraham, there's only one God.
that stayed with me all my life. I went to Christian Academy, and I got to the Academy. You know, of course they were teaching Trinity. And I asked my Bible instructor I said, I'm confused about Trinity. I don't know how to rationalize this. Think about it. And
He would tell me, well, it's sort of like an egg. The egg has a shell. It's an egg yellow egg quiet. It's one egg. And I said, but you mean God is like an egg? Oh, no.
God's no egg. So I went to university or Christian College, Sheldon college. I asked my theology teacher said, explain Trinity to me. He said, Well, he had a banana on his desk, he peeled the money. And in size, he squeezed the yellow part of the banana, and it came apart in three parts. He said, You see, it's three parts, but it's 1%.
I mean, it's God is like a banana No.
Though, I'm just trying to explain Trinity to finally I got to graduate first graduate school, I went to a theological seminary, also fundamentalist, Presbyterian seminary.
And I asked theology teacher there, please explain the Trinity to me.
And he said,
We can explain
It's an it's a mystery.
And then I, so it was always a question in my mind. And I kept hearing the words my mother, believe in the God of Abraham, there's only one God is not three parts.
And so that's been me until I arrived in Saudi Arabia and I,
I didn't convert to Islam. I've been a Muslim.
All my life.
And I discovered it. When I arrived here.
Many people don't know when you say the word Muslim, that simply translates into one who has submitted his or her will to the one as you keep repeating to the one and only true created the heavens and earth, the same God that Jesus worship Moses in the last and fundamental problem, have a piece of blessing be upon them all. You are actually on your way as Is this correct, Samuel, Pat, as Pastor Samuel at that time, going to help with something with the Quran?
it's a longer story than that. Because after graduating from Fayetteville after going to three kradic graduate schools,
including Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, Jerry Paul wells school,
and then on to California Graduate School of Theology. Wait, the last one. You mentioned Jerry, for Farwell, you went to his, his college Christian College from the
the Graduate School of liberty Baptist. That's the seminary, correct? Yes. Okay. So you went there. Wow.
And then I went on my wife and we got married at Thomas Road Baptist Church, Jerry Falwell's church. My wife is from Czechoslovakia. She She emigrated to the US we were married at Dr. Falwell's church. Have you ever met him and died Jerry? Jerry, the famous Jerry Farwell. Have you ever met him? Oh, many times. He used to take me with him on his private plane to fly to different meetings. Oh, so you're good friends with Jerry Farwell. Wait, wait, do you have the senior? The senior longer living? He passed away about 10 years ago? Yeah, his son took over correct. His son was until recently always thought it more and more good people had concealed carry permits, then we could end
those Muslims before they before they grew up.
Jerry Falwell Jr. May be out as President and Chancellor of Liberty University. After reports he submitted his resignation letter today, the son of one of the most influential TV evangelists of all time. Yeah.
The president of liberty Baptist schools. Yeah.
Wasn't he somewhat of a he was advisor to many of the the presidents are one of
the senior many of the servant of presidents. He was the head of Moral Majority.
His son sort of did that in.
Dr. Falwell had a big
and he had a big wide
influence in the United States, Moral Majority, many other organizations. It influenced me. I was at a meeting that he was at in Washington, DC I see. for 25 years I lobbied the US Congress on human rights 25 years. Wow.
I did that I worked with Canadian and British Parliament's.
Head of Christian solidarity international on during that time in Washington DC.
I would organize congressmen to travel with me abroad, to meet with foreign heads of state to intervene on behalf of Christian prisoners of conscience twos, as well as Muslims in Romania, for instance. And we would meet with Ceausescu family, we would give them a list of prisoners, and we do everything within our ability to get these prisoners released. We got 150, or more than 150, released at one time, by using pressure on the Romanian government. But we did this in the Soviet Union throughout South America, Nepal. I know,
members of parliament and members of Congress would travel with me. After I
sort of retired from the human rights work, I moved to Annapolis, Maryland, why became the head of the Democratic Party for Annapolis, and eventually was elected to the city council eventually ran for mayor of Annapolis. I thought, you know, if I can be mayor of Annapolis now my
hubris is taking over, I am going to be I'm such a great man. You know, politicians, when they go door to door they pass out literature, and they write that literature and the literature says, You can't live without Sam Trump's your home the best.
And I thought if I could be mayor of Annapolis, I could be governor of Maryland and in it but you know, I lay read later in the Quran, man plots.
Allah is a better plotter and he does amazing things. When I was running for mayor of Annapolis, I lost that race. If you had told me then no, say
you're gonna you're going to lose.
You're going to be living in a mosque as a Muslim and stuff.
You would never have guessed that.
I would have said you You're insane.
From from flying from flying in a private jet with with Jerry Falwell to and going to where you guys going to different conferences to get what were you doing? Again, we're forgetting the different speaking engagements he had in Philadelphia in different places. So it was speaking engagements with Jerry Falwell in the private jet to now being in the living next to the in the mosque. You would have never guessed that in 1000 years.
Yeah. And after I came here to I was here for about five years.
And I was very interested. I was involved in environmentalism in Annapolis, Maryland, working on cleaning up the Chesapeake Bay.
But after being here for a few years, I met Dr. Mohammed, Alhaji Hussain, who is an environmentalist, you're in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
And he invited me to his home for dinner.
And he explained to me he had six sons, five of them were sitting at the table. And I said, Mashallah, Dr. Muhammad?
Wow, this is incredible. No daughter's just sons. And I explained to him
I have one child only I have a daughter. Her name is Jenna. I love her so much. But I've never had a son. I've always wanted a son. And I was joking. I said, Give me one of yours.
And he was joking, too. He said, take Jesus aisa.
So he and I became very close friends. He was entering university, King Abdulaziz University studying Islamic Studies. He had an American passport, a Saudi passport, spoke fluent Arabic and English. He went with me. Every he travels with me everywhere. We've been in over 50 countries together, talking with Christians and Jews and peoples of other faiths, about Islam. And what are we experienced here in the mecca region?
So I thank God, I mean, if you'd told me 10 years ago, living in a mosque, a Muslim with a son named Jesus.
Amazing. Do you remember? Have you ever met him? Jim, it comes to mind since you mentioned some of these people such as Jerry Falwell. How about Jimmy Swaggart? Do you remember him? Did you ever meet him or other people like I never I never
Met Jimmy Swaggart, no, I you remember him to saw him in TV a lot? And did you ever watch? I'm a d dot center in South Africa. I'm there, been down there three times speaking. And, of course
I'm at d dot let
he debated for a while. So tell us what was your father like I never really knew him.
My father was a pilot. He died as a result of a plane crash three months after I was born.
But he's the one that named me Samuel after prophet Samuel.
And he would even take me as my mother.
They were Baptist and my mother moved back to North Georgia, her home area. About when I was three years old, she took my two brothers and sister with her. We all moved to North Georgia, little town called Jefferson. And there we were attending First Baptist Church of Jefferson.
How the how now since you accepted Islam, and I really like to define these words, because I think many if many people just knew a lot of the words that we use the definitions, they would even gravitate more toward they see the commonalities like Islam just simply means, you know, to acquire peace by submitting yourself, you know, to the Creator, to submit to God's will to do God's will and not your desires. Pretty much So now, how do Christians what kind of relationship do you have now when people learn? You know, when the when the Jerry fall foul wells that he get the news back then, was he still alive? When you accept what took your Shahada when you accepted Islam? What was his
reaction or other people like that some of these big names, small names, you know, the Christian community? Well, how do they How do they react? Well, I can tell you a lot of my Bob Jones friends, they still, many of them are still in touch with me, they're watching.
I meet with other Christian friends, and they're telling me you have to come back to Jesus, come back to Jesus, Sam. And I tell him,
I never left Jesus. I love Jesus today, Jesus, the Messiah, the Christ of God, Jesus, the one who did many miracles, who was born in the Virgin Mary, I love Jesus who ascended into heaven, and he was gonna come back. I love him more today, as a Muslim than I ever loved him as a Christian. And
they have a hard time understanding that, because they never many of them don't even know that Muslims believe in Jesus, or that they believe that he's one of the greatest prophets that ever lived. That's amazing. I mean, now when you're talking to many Christians, and other people of other faiths, and then you break down the six articles of faith, and are you amazed that almost all of them agree with it, it's just like they're agreeing with everything, Islam, the whole message of Islam. But now there's so much distortion out there. There's so many misconceptions that are blocking it's like a Islam is this beautiful treasure. And and Shakedown has done such a good job to
cover with all this muck and dirt people have to kind of give to dig, dig, dig deep, you know what I mean? And really test your sincerity. But give us that example, when you're talking to Christians and others, and you start to go over the articles of faith, how most almost 100%, they agree with
the main message of Islam with Jewish and Christian groups around the world, I tried to organize as many as I can. We've had up to 101 meeting. And we put a project behind us on the wall, the Six Pillars of Islam.
And I asked them, I'm facing them is that how many of you here today using Christians? How many of you believe that there's only one God? And everybody raises their hand? I don't go into detail. I will come back later through question and answer. How many of you believe in angels, everybody raises their hand?
How many of you believe in holy books, let's say Bible, Old Testament, New Testament.
Everybody raises their hand, or the Jews only believe in the Old Testament.
But how many of you believe in prophets, messengers God sent to Earth, he sent them with a message for his people, to call people to faith. And everybody raises their hand.
I said, amazing. How many of you here today, believe that there's going to be a great judgement day it's coming. And we're all going to stand before God and he's going to judge us for all the good things and the bad things we've done in this life. And everybody raises
And I say, how many of you believe in predestination or that God has predestined certain things in your life in my life in our lives?
And these are going to happen.
Everybody raises your hand.
Amazing. I say, you know, these are the six pillars of faith in Islam. And they're shocked. That's Islam. Yes, that's a slug. And then I say, hey, Jesus.
As he surmised assistant is sitting in the audience. I said, Jesus, this is my assistant, could you come please? He comes and stands beside me. And he's got on a shirt that says Muslim voice for peace and reconciliation.
And I can see them they're looking at
me, still in shock and dismay. Wait, His name is Jesus, they're whispering to each other. He's a Muslim.
And I say yes.
Muslims love Jesus so much, that many of them name their kids Jesus. So this is incredible.
and then aisa speaks to them.
I'm very grateful. Then allies permitting us to present in a very simple way.
Islam to people who don't understand and who have misperceptions.
When you say this word Allah, many Christians, they don't understand that in the Semitic languages in the Arabic language, Christians who are Arabic speaking, they also use the word Allah. I mean, are they just bewildered by that, when you also explain that to them, that this is not a different God? Explain it to them Syrian Christians, Christians in Palestine, they use the word Allah,
they to refer to to God. And
this has been going on for four centuries.
So it's no secret, it's nothing new. This is the way Muslims very often referred to, to God as Allah. Yes. Tell us You were so passionate about getting the Bible to people that you actually got as a true got arrested in Poland and Russian for
trying to smuggle Bibles into there. How did that work out?
been living on the edge of life ever since I was in high school? You know, I've had buy guns pointed at me in the United States. I've been just distributing gospel tracks on the streets of Charlotte, North Carolina with other students from Bob Jones, go back to the car, some guy he pulls a gun on us.
I've traveled in many different parts of the world where people tell me Don't go there, then I make that perks up my interests. And I want, I want to know why shouldn't go so I ended up going. And
it's incredible. We need such interesting people. But I also have faced adversity. You know, before I understood the Quran, and fully
realized that I didn't fully understand many of the things that were in the Bible. Because the Bible, let's face it, as even my college and seminary professors would tell me their mistakes in the Bible.
I've been I was really believed in the Bible. Muslim should believe in the Bible in its original manuscripts. So I wanted to take it to foreign lands, how it smuggle 1000s of Bibles into Czechoslovakia, then I would get as many as I could across the border into the Soviet Union. And that's where I was arrested when I was 21.
In the Ukraine, Ukrainian part of the Soviet Union.
I, the Soviets released me a few days later, told me not to come back. But I got arrested in Poland.
One month, one month later for smuggling Bibles there.
I just keep on going. But God is good. Now we smuggling currents.
Were smuggling currents and we don't even have to smuggle them. We take them everywhere we go. I came here to work on a current project. Then you asked me the question earlier. They invited me here as a Christian as someone who had had studied in graduate school.
to work on this cue project, Quran project, it was
easy to read modern American interpretation of the Quran.
We have the final testament of God.
And do we they asked me just to read it I was brought here to read, just read and to write down questions. So every night I'm reading Quran in modern English. They want me to edit the English. So I would write down questions. What do you mean by this? What does this mean?
I did this for six months. And then I
my life was changed.
changed by reading Quran. That's when I began to realize I Muslim, not Christian.
After being here for six months, I heard as on my grub time.
I ran down the street to mustard taqwa. And I stood knocking on the door, people were opening the door and going in, but I didn't know what to do. I wasn't invited, was a Christian. I know Christians can go to Mecca, Medina, maybe I shouldn't go in the mosque with people. So after the prayer, time was over, people were coming out after Maghrib. I'm still standing, knocking on the door,
and finally Shafi to be or comes to the door. He's the Mullen
and he says, may I help you? And I said, Yes. My name is Samuel structure. I'm a Christian pastor from the United States. Is it okay if I come inside the mosque? And he reached out and hugged me? And he said, Alan was solid. I walked into the mosque and looked around. And I said, Okay, I'm going to come back. And then every day for three days, every, every prayer, called a prayer for three days, I would run down to the mosque.
And I would go in and I would sit in the back because I didn't understand what was going on.
And after three days, I felt God's presence so powerful, and must get darkwa that said to Sharpie, the more than I said, Can you teach me to pray like a Muslim?
He said, Of course, he taught me Al Fatiha. Uh hum de la hero with
iraq man. No, he Maliki all MIDI? Yeah, can I Buddha?
You know, it reminded me of a Christian him we're used to seeing in our church, can you finish who you are, you're beautifully reciting so many Christians and people out there. I mean, they've never got to hear the Quran. Can you go ahead and finish that you're actually reciting the one of the what we recite 17 times a day in prayer that opening the Fatiha.
Where was a Alhamdulillah? Hello, Bill. alameen Rockman aremy Maliki Oh meeting? Yeah, can I Buddha, yuckiness Steen at NASA Apollo Mr. Haines Surat alladhina naantali him in a real
me Don't be lay him. wala na Li Ameen. Needless to say, my life was changed. I said, to sharpy question I do now. He got me in touch with Dr. Sadiq Maliki, who took me to the Islamic education foundation down the road. And I said Shahada.
And then doctors sorry, put me in his car.
He drove me
for 35 minutes over to Mecca.
And we I'm looking at the harder
at the Grand Mosque. We go inside. And he said I want to see the Kaaba, please.
He took me through these 1000s of people through a crowd.
And there it was acrylamide Kaaba. We didn't have time to stay longer. There was someone else with us and he needed to get back to Jeddah but I got to see it.
And I realized that that Kaaba was refurbished rebuilt by Ybor Abraham and initiative.
And then I hear the words to my mother,
you have to pray to the God of Israel, the God of Abraham. There's only one God I fell on my face crying there at the Kaaba.
My life, my faith completed there.
I thank God for a Christian mother. She didn't know anything about Islam. She never heard of Prophet Muhammad probably.
She never heard of Islam.
But she taught me to be a Muslim.
And I'm sure that there are a millions and millions of young people, children, who were told in churches at ages of three and four years old in Sunday school, that there's only one God.
And that they need to pray to the God of Abraham, Abraham.
We need to reach people today through social media.
We try through our website, we try through speaking all over the world.
He said, I've traveled to 50 different countries, one of the most interesting is Cuba, we have time to talk about it. But
many hundreds of people 1000s coming to Islam, including hundreds of Jews have said Shahada in Israel during the last
Brother Sam, you tell us, it reminds me You kept saying and we'll close off with this. You kept reiterating how your mother she was
leaving you with the simple instructions to worship just one god nest us main message of Islam to worship the Creator, not the creation. In the Quran. There's a verse that talks about Abraham, who your mother kept saying worship the God of Abraham, where Allah God Almighty is saying in the Quran that Abraham was neither a Jew or a Christian, but he was a monolith. He is one who worshiped God Almighty alone with our partners. You talked about the Trinity. How don't make sense. It doesn't make sense to a lot of people. And what advice would you give for our Christian friends and neighbors who are out there and anybody, you know, the atheist, you know, the person who just got
this distorted image of Islam, but he's listening to you who had also that distorted image, you thought, okay, if I go over here to Saudi, you're going to chop my heads off. That's what people are telling you. Now you're living in a mosque. You took your Shahada, you went over there as a pastor, and now the whole world this, you'd never even would dream of something like this? What advice would you have for them? They're searching for the purpose of life. They're confused, you know, they want to know, they tune into the deen show. What do you got to tell him?
I'd say first.
Abraham was a friend of God. That's what he's called in the Old Testament of the Bible. In the New Testament, he's referred to as a friend of God. And in the Quran, he's called a friend of God.
And if you want to be a friend of God, study the life of Prophet Abraham.
Wow. You'll you'll see Oh, come to learn a lot. Go back to your childhood if you're Christian, or if you're Jewish, and realize what you were taught as a child.
believe in the God of Abraham, be believe in the God of the prophets, all the prophets, including the God of Jesus.
believe in the God of no and Musab all of these prophets that we learned about when we were children. We studied their stories. We know what the work that they did. I live here next to the Red Sea.
And I go down there sometimes and I take a look across towards Egypt, northeast, Northwest towards Egypt, I'm looking and I'm trying to imagine Moosa or Moses coming to the Red Sea, and parting the waters.
talking about the blockage of the Suez Canal the other day, can you imagine parting the waters
where no ships can get through?
God has done wondrous things. And he's taught us wonderous stories which can bring us closer to him.
I'm very grateful to be Muslim, and very grateful to be able to work with aisyah. And his mice, my co founders of Muslim voice for peace and reconciliation.
I'm so grateful to God, that He can use someone like me, my life was not clean. When I came to Saudi Arabia. I was a miserable sinner.
I was a politician, a lot of politicians drink. I never had alcohol in my life until I started working. I went to Russia in 1991, I founded a nonprofit called Project friendship to help Russian young Russian entrepreneurs who were coming out of communism to start their own businesses.
To help them move away from
socialism to a free market economy.
I learned a lot
the many young people started businesses
Last year, the program wasn't too successful because mafia was everywhere.
And 10 people that we trained in business, were killed by mush. So we moved the program to Lithuania, Latvia, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland. And it became a great success. And we bring young entrepreneurs, to the United States to work in businesses similar to what they wanted to start for the Christians, Jews, people who have a distorted view of Islam, but they like what you're having to say. Yeah. And then I took off on Russia. So let's start it again.
Jews and Christians need to go back to their childhoods.
They need to study the life of Prophet Muhammad.
Jews believe in the Tanakh or the Old Testament.
Muslims believe in it too, by the way, in its original manuscripts if we could get them.
Christians believe in the New Testament and the Old Testament.
The Christian still haven't decided how many books are in the Bible orthodox says certain number, Catholics say a certain number. Christians say a certain number. None, they don't agree. All of them are a few books off.
Someday, maybe they'll decide they'll understand what is right. And then, so we got Old Testament New Testament, I'm asking people to consider the final testament of God. That was came down through the prophet to the Prophet Muhammad through gibreel.
It says in the Bible, gibreel also brought down his most Muslims consider him to be the Holy Spirit he brought down and inspired different writers in the Old Testament and New Testament to write.
In the book of Daniel, all they have to do is look, zebra, or Gabriel.
Just go back to your childhood, study God, and listen to what you were taught.
The God of Abraham, there is only one God. The words of my mother can be your words today. Listen, think and then take a close look at Islam and get a chance. Grab it Quran read through it. If you have questions, you can contact us here at Muslim voice for peace and reconciliation. In vpr dot o RG cork will be glad to answer any questions you might have. Thank you so much. Have you just one last question. I was thinking of some of my good friends one who's down in Medina and he has a similar story. Have you ever met Dr. Lawrence Brown? Ah, we talked on the phone.
Oh, you so you don't mind that? That's my close friend. One of my good good friends. I've met him with him a couple of times in Medina. And he's helped support me here. I'm very grateful to God for Lawrence.
The dear brother a different doctor Lawrence broham.
And did you ever get to meet a doctor of divinity? May Allah grant him Jenna, Dr. Gerald Dirks. He studied in Harvard. He was also an ordained Deacon, and he ended up accepting Islam but he passed away recently. I don't know if you got a chance to ever meet him. Dr. Gerald ducks No, no, no, I didn't get to meet him. Okay, well, I will. I will meet him someday. inshallah. Jenna, we are where we are get to our final destination inshallah. That's where the GPS should be set to destination.
Thank you so much. It was honor to have you on the show. Thank you. Thank you, brother. Thank you for spreading the word I watched the show often. And I thank God for what you're doing. I hope we can meet in sha Allah. In person sha Allah Jazakallah candidate, amin Bless you. And I pray that people will be blessed through this emotion.
I wish him I wish I weren't so emotional, but these
profound changes in my life
Alhamdulillah Thank you Shay. It was really nice talking with you. May Allah bless you does apply and Salaam Liga.