The Straight Path
Channel: Yusha Evans
File Size: 11.12MB
Sheikh Yusha Evens, a Former Christen Youth Minister giving a lecture at University of Missouri-St. Louis during “The Straight Path” conference. Sheikh talks about what led him to Islam.
Episode Transcript ©
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The message. And even though Okay, we are all inherently sinful, I understood that I understood that teaching, All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God that Adam sinned, therefore, mankind is inherently sinful, and that sinful nature could not be
that way through the law was the reason that Jesus didn't come up. I understood that. But this just stuck out to me very often, that no one would be seen in this position. And not only will he be seen in this position, that somebody apparently apparently was one of his two sons, because they were the only ones who saw felt that they needed to just tell this story to so many people that eventually became part of God's revelation.
In the thought to myself,
how could it be that God's Prophet and Messenger could be seen in this type of of predicament?
Because this would lead to some detriment in the message. Because we know that alcoholics, you know, people who get highly intoxicated, they do a lot of weird things, a lot of weird things. And I don't tend to be to experience it, just take it from people who have experienced it, you get truly intoxicated, a lot of things can happen to you. So people can use the very clear excuse that Wait a minute, no. Are you sure that is God that is speaking to you? Is it one of your little special times when you were dropped on the floor? That God was speaking to you?
and speak to you and you're super, super intoxicated, you can think anything happens. So this could bring some detriment to the message. So I want to put himself in this predicament, okay, he's a human being, let it go. He's a human being. God is showing me that he can even use sinful people. You understand? I'm pushing myself to this understanding. God can use even simple PE. And no, it just got maybe he didn't even know that was gonna get him that will give him that that much. So we go a little bit forward.
The story of life comes along, how many of you have heard of love,
and I don't think we got a minute. Elisa. In the Bible is not referenced as a prophet, I give credit where credit is due. Most biblical scholars do not refer to a lot as a product.
And I'll just leave that when you leave the Prophet hood to the side law was apparently important enough for God to make a major story about him in his book, so apparently not is a very important individual that God
law was sending the people of Sodom and Gomorrah, whether he was sent or you just happen to be there, wherever you want to put that whole idea of messenger and messenger, profit and nonprofit.
He preached against the sin of homosexuality practiced by the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. Eventually, it got to a point where God just decided, look, there's no more talking to these people. We're just going to destroy them. And God destroyed the people of Sodom and Gomorrah, and c'est la vie. There's another story about a lot. But realistically, Do we have anybody in here, we have a child in the bank, I have to change the way I tell the story. I can't tell it to you raw, uncut, I can't give you an uncut version, because we have sensitive ears in the room.
So I have to find a way to get another way to worry. There's another story about his two daughters. And the story was that it was an old man, and he had no son, he had no son.
If a man has no son, he has no way.
No lineage, no lineage that carries on. And also, he had his daughters have no protection after him. They have no one to look after them. When their father is shown in logic, don't worry about this. Father's gonna die without someone to take care of us with no money, basically. So we decided to fix this problem for the public got to two.
And they didn't do it by getting married and finding a wife. No, they decided to fix it amongst themselves. And the way they did it was that the oldest daughter got her father. He agreed. And she laid with him so that hopefully she can have a summer. And then the youngest daughter did the same thing the next night.
And all of these stories, I can tell you page and verse and chapter, but
I want you to be a little bit you look for yourself. I want you to doubt your little bit GO GO GO chain.
This really made me stop for a second. Because I said okay, hold on a second. Maybe not is not a prophet. But why in the world when a story like it is be in the body.
Because this is not a story to tell your children before language.
This is not a story that you would see preached from the pulpit on any Sunday. The story is just a and there is no there is no say moral to the story afterwards. It's just a story this day. So I'm going to ask Benjamin, hold on a second. You know what is going on? He is a little bit of oddity coming along. He told me just keep reading. That's the
The point was to read. I said, Look, I really but I'm not grasping. Why is this he said, Don't question just read. The point wasn't a question everything the point was to read, so I can't read. And I saw a whole bunch of other things. And every time I'll go back to me with the key really, finally I got to these two stories, which I'm going to try to wrap it up. The two stories that really, really put a halt on my whole lifespan was the stories of Solomon, and the stories of David,
David, Solomon, father and son. How many of you in here believe in David and Solomon, Muslims, we believe in
The story of Solomon is that Solomon was one of the great kings of Israel, and I've had all this debate about Oh, he's not referred to as a prophet in this. Let's just forget about that crazy. Solomon is one of the great key prophets of Israel.
One of the great kings of Israel established the temple mountains, which was a place of worship of the one true God, which on the Temple Mount, there is still a place for worship the one true God, don't even get me going down that that that cycle will be here for a while.
Solomon was one of the great kings, and he said about Solomon that he had many wives, 1000 wives, a lot of concubines consoles, whatever happened. And one of these wives, or concerts or events was an idolatrous, she worship islands, going way back in the history of the children of Israel and the people of Egypt. And her attachment to Solomon softened his heart. And she enticed him to worship idols. And so he started worshipping idols along with him. Not only this, but he began to build temples to worship, these items, began to build temples to worship these items. Now, this does take a little bit of a deeper pause, because now we have not only a conflict but a conundrum, a conflict
or a conundrum, because Solomon was sent by God to preach the message to the children of Israel, the law of Moses.
But weren't the children of Israel commanded to obey the prophets and messengers? Yes, they were. But it wasn't the first law of Moses, thou shalt have no other God with me.
Okay, so what do we do here? Do we continue to worship God, as it was revealed to us by through Moses? Or do we follow our Prophet as was also taught to us by God? And do we worship idols? And hey, if I follow someone and worshipping idols, and I stand before God, and say, Look, hold on a second, how can you be upset with me when the very person who you sent to us was doing
what he was doing? Therefore, how could not blame us? So we have a conundrum? Is God deliberately leading people astray? Is this some weird text? Or do I misunderstand God's sending profits? For some reason? This is a point where I had to say, hold on a second, wait a second, don't tell me this key really thing? Because this is serious speedboat.
What are they supposed to do with you?
You know, Benjamin told me something very beautiful. And it's something I want to buy to the day I die. And it's very, very true. He didn't realize how true it was at that time. He said,
sometimes you don't understand the story, until you finish it. Sometimes you don't understand the story until it's finished. How many of you guys have ever watched CSI? Come be real now? Seriously? NCIS? You ever read a mystery novel?
How many times during that novel or that show? Did you think you know who did it? Probably three, four times, right? He did it for sure. No, no, she did it for sure that it was standing, what ends up happening. At the end, if it's a good, it's a good screenwriter, it's a good story. At the end, it will be none of them. It'll be somebody completely different that you would have never seen in a million years. So sometimes the story doesn't make any sense until you get to the end. He told me so if you get to the end, and it still doesn't make sense, then we can talk about it.
And I'm scratching my head like you know, because they are starting to phone and I see I feel these cracks. But this is all I know. I have to find a way to make this work. So I continue to read and I get to the next story, the story of
how many of you know that is
a very beautiful story. The story of David and Goliath even in the Bible of the story is very beautiful the way that David approached Goliath, with such severe belief in God intended to believe in God. And
there is a story about David
There is one of the worst of all when it comes to Caleb. Solomon's was the greatest of all because he broke the cardinal commandments. But they that goes a little bit deeper into degradation of character. There is a story about David and a woman named Bathsheba.
But Shiva was known as a very beautiful woman, gorgeous. And they would starve on one day, and said to his helpers, workers, slaves, whatever you would call it go greener to me. And so they went, and they had a rock today. And David decided that this woman was so beautiful, he could not resist him. So he had.
The problem is that Bathsheba is already married. She is married. So as David so David is committed to a cardinal sin, called adultery, which is punishable by what's in the law of Moses. Dang.
It actually the punishment for stoning is more forceful and severe in the Bible than it is in Islam. Because then in the Bible, it says, stone Live and Let your hand be the first to strike.
So David's committed the sin of adultery, which is also breaking one of the cardinal commandments into Moses, Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife.
So they didn't realize he has committed a sin a problem, I have a problem. He has the issue now. So he decided to fix it. And even though it shows in the songs, he became remorseful and resentful in all of these things, that's not the attitude he took right now that actually took right now is to fix the problem. And the way he fixed the problem was he called for, but she was, he was a man named Uriah, who was part of his army, he called him back from the frontlines. And the first thing he told her, or he told Uriah, go be with your wife. Why, because if there's a child can attribute that child to you, right? It wasn't me.
But then no DNA testing at this time.
And then after that, David writes a letter to the commanders of his army. And that letter says that when the battle becomes fierce, and he went abandon your eye on the frontlines, so that he dies, he folds it up, David has just committed another sin. Murder, because conspiracy to commit murder is just the same as murder.
And to be even more deceitful, he takes the letter and hands it to you, it tells him Do not open this, but deliver it to your commandments. He makes sure I take his own letter, sealing his own faith, and he delivers. And your eyes killed this man. Now, this is the point where I said, Alright, enough is enough. This is good.
This is ridiculous.
Because first I thought it was a message to at least be decent people. They didn't have to be perfect because none of us are perfect, but
these people have a decent
my six year old son along with no falling or rolling around the floor drunk is not going anywhere near my daughter, I killing myself. I can't let David even come to my home because he sees my wife is in
jeopardy. What kind of religion is this
type of religion that God was sending out with, you know, a logical person will say, you know what, keep that away. You keep that away.
At least overcoming the metals and things of that nature. You guys are killing everybody.
In the name of
who was sent by God.
This is many Nivea fans. So I told Benjamin Graham having a real a real trial of
a serious caliphate. The devil is on me like, you know, like cornbread on cactus you I mean?
I don't know what to do.
He took me to the past. And when I told the pastor what my problem was, he told me I shouldn't be doing the youth ministry anymore.
And then he told me you need to fix yourself, you need to spend some time alone. And he told me said look, you you're wrapping too much of your life around this Old Testament, this old covenant. This is the covenant that is coming on. This is a covenant was for the children of Israel. It was based on the law, which the law as Paul teaches us is his fault itself is fraud. The last step my daughter's fall. I don't know how I ever grasp that concept. But the law was flawed because it did never lead one to dismiss. The only thing that could lead to righteousness, salvation to the blood of Jesus, if you want to look at that pristine example, but if you want to find that pristine
example that you're looking for, go to the lightning Christ. You know, realistically The first thing that came to my mind was why did it take so long to send the right one
Nevertheless, if you want to go into the life of Christ, so I decided, you know what I can't. That's all I knew. If I leave Christianity that's like leaving going in
not only the fact that I will get healed at home. So I pushed forward and tried to just block out all of these things that are running through our mind, and get through the Old Testament. So hopefully, I can get some sense made out of my life through the gospel of Christ. So I finished the New Testament Old Testament. But you know,
there are a few things about the Old Testament, even amongst some of this craziness that were crystal clear, without a shadow of a doubt.
And the first most crystal clear, crystal clear
thing about the Old Testament was who God is, there is no ambiguity about this. There is no ambiguity about who God is. And the Old Testament, God is Barry blade, point blank, clear who he is, here, O Israel, the Lord your God.
And you should worship me like that. The first commandment, thou shalt have no other God was me.
And one thing that was very clear was the oneness of God. And that is something that I
I can't wrap my head around how people who who especially understand linguistics can look at the statements that are made attributed to God in the Old Testament and not grasp this idea. The oneness that God uses in the famous first hero is your either your garden and more than the Hebrew word that is used is not the Hebrew word for the number one, it is not, it is not used. God does not use the singular number one.
He is a very beautiful word. That means a unique oneness, a oneness all of its own. And it's the exact same word
in connotation that we see when a law describes themselves through the whole load.
Because if we take the other language, and this is a site for all of our brothers and sisters, hopefully is a tip that you can share with someone else. When you want to say one and don't ask for one if something was the word that you use. What
you want, why you want one, you're one that no one everybody knows, that's one of them.
But if I take that, number one, and I add it to another, number one, what do I get?
It's not simple math. One plus one is to
Allah when describing himself uses good old low 100. Beautiful, pristine, beautiful. What does that mean? Right? It means one, specific one.
But if you take it and you try to add it to it, what would you get?
You can't. The very word Ahad itself describes a oneness that cannot be added to a oneness that cannot be subtracted from a oneness that is unique, all by itself. Very beautiful. And this is the God of the Old Testament. This is how he describes himself. I am one uniquely all along on my own, you can add to me You can subtract from
there was another thing very crystal clear about the Old Testament. And that's what God wanted from human beings, what he wanted from human beings to be worshipped, and to be obeyed that assembly what God wanted, he wanted to be worshipped. And he wanted to be obeyed.
And what was also crystal clear about the Old Testament was what you would do if you made a mistake. Let's say you did not worship God, like he was supposed to be worshipped, and you did not obey him like he was supposed to be obeyed. What do I do?
God was very clear about that to your opinions. You repent, you turn to that God whom you sinned against, and you ask for forgiveness. And then there was some rituals, such as the burnt offerings and the sacrifices etc. But for anyone who gets too wrapped up in that, that old God hole, he had to have a sacrifice, who says God needed a sacrifice.
God didn't need a sacrifice.
The sacrifice was only an outward reflection of what was in the heart. Because if you sacrifice the burnt offering for forgiveness, and you really didn't feel fulfilled repentant in your heart,
there's no forgiveness, the forgiveness had to be here. It wasn't the blood of the and ashes that God wanted wanted the repentant heart that was willing to obey him again. Repentance followed by obedience, led to God's forgiveness. And there was a very beautiful verse that came at the end of the Old Testament and I'm going to breeze through and finish on Shawn. There was a very beautiful verse at the end of the Old Testament in a book called malikai, which is the last book of the Old Testament.
This verse God says something very clearly to the children physical kind of like a farewell message in the Old Testament. It says, and this is supposedly God in the first person, I do not change.
I do not change. Therefore, the sons of Jacob, meaning the children of Israel are not destroyed.
God is telling the children visualize don't change. That's why I have not destroyed all of them, for your rebellion against me, because we had a covenant. And I am a holding my end of the covenant.
Very beautiful verse which we see a very similar verse in the Quran, and the Sunnah of Allah, there is no
change, there is no change. And it's very beautiful, this covenant that God made of children, I realized that long after becoming Muslim, that God has always upheld His covenant with the children of Israel. Even in the Koran in the very beginning of so called buffer, Allah reminds you to remember a covenant that I made with you, Ally's reminded that even in his final revelation, I am still right here, upholding my end of the covenant with you, it's us is broken, it's
broken. But God is still saying that he's still willing, I was telling them, I'm still wanting to apologize to the company. If you come back, you come back to the company still here with you.
So I began the New Testament, with this understanding of all of these weird things smashed together in my mind. And I wanted to look at the life of Christ. But I didn't want to look at what so and so said, so and so said, I wanted to see what Jesus Himself saying, What did Jesus Himself say, I want to see the man himself. So I was reading looking heavily at the red letters, which the red letter edition Bible is coded to be the words of Jesus, supposedly.
And since I don't have enough time, I'm going to summarize for you.
When I looked at what Jesus taught and preached, I did so in a completely new way, rather than trying to tell the Bible what it should say, and interpreting the Bible, according to my understanding and making it say what I wanted to say, I decided to let it speak to me. I decided to let Jesus speak to me, tell me what to do.
And you know what i found?
First and foremost, Jesus speaks two ways throughout the entirety of the New Testament, two ways. And realistically, I have to apologize when I tried to say that Jesus said, because I can't go every time and tell you that Jesus supposedly said, which we can never know. Because the Bible that we read now is in English, translated from koine, Greek and Syriac and Latin, which are three languages. When Jesus himself did not speak. He's speaking a language called Aramaic, which there is no document written, automatic, and it's a language that almost doesn't exist. So we don't really know what to say. So I'm just going to send you to send me the New Testament quotes. And so
Jesus is reported to have spoken in two ways. He speaks explicitly and implicitly, throughout the entirety of the New Testament.
And this is where all the all the craziness happens. What does explicit mean? Somebody come, please, because I want to make sure that I'm not confused.
clean, clear, explicit is clear, unambiguous. For instance, this podium is brown.
podium is brown.
When does implicit meaning.
metaphorical implied, implied meaning up to interpretation?
People can interpret it how they wish for instance, if I say this podium is dark colored. That's an implicit, I'm implying that is dark colored, but what did I really mean? Somebody could say he meant it was black to my dream.