THE OCCULT IN ISLAM
Those who live among Muslims and have close contact with them will encounter situations where the occult is prominent. Any servant of the Lord, who wishes to minister faithfully among Muslims, has no choice but to understand the reality of the unseen powers with which he will be confronted.
We acknowledge the existence of Satan and his limited authority, but our faith is in Jesus Christ. We are united with Him in all He did and taught. We accept what the Scriptures say about his confrontation with demons and spirits. He spoke to them and cast them out, exercising complete power over them. We preach that Christ is the victor. He alone grants true freedom from every bondage of the occult.
1. Occultism Everywhere
Anyone studying the occult in Islam should realize that we also find much occult activity in the West. A recent edition of the German magazine, Stern (“Star”), stated that one third of the German population considers witchcraft a reality. A professional witch made an appearance on German television and described how she operated. She claimed that, through black magic, she was able to kill people. It was incredible that no one from the recording team spoke out against her. This represents a manifestation of demonology and the end of rationalism in these days. The majority of people sense and acknowledge an unseen world and seek to make contact with it through many forms of the occult.
During the time of Hitler, there were more separatists and fortunetellers in Berlin than the combined total of pastors and priests in Protestant and Catholic churches. We cannot know the entire extent of this evil traffic nor how much money was involved.
When we investigate the reasons behind the occult in the West or its powerful force in the Arab world, we should remember what the late Professor Thielecke wrote: “If we show God the front door (that is, want him out), then spirits will enter through the back door, for man cannot live in a vacuum.” Man is not able to live without God or spirit; he must rely on something. If he feels threatened, he will look for someone to help him. If he has no relationship with the living God, he will turn to other powers. At this juncture, the occult in Islam begins.
The Islamic understanding of Allah does not give a Muslim peace and rest, because he stands before an incomprehensible god who, as a dictator, does what he wills. He leads one person aright and sends another to hell. He is not a personal God as in Christianity. A Muslim has no direct relationship with Allah. He cannot say to him, “You are my Father.” Allah in Islam is not a Redeemer or Savior. Therefore, man is forced to search for whatever other powers and assistance he may find; thus, the occult enters into every aspect of Islam.
In Europe, the vacuum in man was created by reason and philosophy during the period of the Enlightenment, which “emancipated” his thinking. In Islam, the void results from the Muslim’s faith in an impersonal, unknowable Allah. This leaves him distanced from his god and continually empty. When a man is unfulfilled, helpless and lost, he will cling to a straw – anything he can lay hold of. Occult in Islam, therefore, fills the vacuum created by the concept of Allah who gives neither personal assurance nor rest.
You can find visible manifestations of the occult in Islam everywhere – even on streets and in names. Protection from “the evil eye” is sought after. On the back of trucks, one can see the picture of an eye with an arrow drawn through it. This means that anyone envious of the truck will not be able to cause an accident to happen to it; the eye of greed will be rendered powerless. Small children often carry protection with them against the evil eye in the form of small blue pearls. Women wear gems to divert the evil eye, so that its glance can do no harm. These items also serve to frustrate the eyes of lust, distracting them. The Middle East is full of such elements, terms and fetishes. You can even find them used among Christians. If you suggest that they rid themselves of these practices, they will find it nearly impossible. They depend upon this and are not willing to abandon it.
Many Easterners believe in the power of the evil eye and its effects on man. If you look at someone from behind or beside, he may sense it quickly and turn to you abruptly, staring into your eyes in a disturbed or shy way. People in the East are more sensitive than Westerners. Their souls are more delicate, receptive and impressionable. The Westerner is bound by rationalism. The Easterner is conscious of the looks of others and wants to protect himself from whatever influence is around him. That is why signs of protection against the evil eye are found everywhere.
Another form of the occult is the mandil or reading in the cloth. This is one of many ways in which secrets are revealed. In a school, a watch was once stolen and all the girls of that class had to go home. The headmaster said that she would not allow the teachers to teach until the watch was found. This went on for two days. On the third day, the parents came and said that they would not agree to this punishment, because it put their daughters under suspicion of having stolen the watch. They resented this, because they insisted that their daughters were innocent. An easy solution to the problem was suggested through a visit to a soothsayer (one with knowledge of the extrasensory world) who lived in the neighboring village. She would be able to reveal the whereabouts of the watch, for she had recently disclosed the exact location of two stolen cows which had been hidden fifteen kilometers away from the owner’s farm. The headmaster of the school did not accept this method.
Fortunetelling in the Middle East is part of daily life. There was a case of a girl who vanished. When a fortuneteller was consulted, all the details of the kidnapping were clearly exposed, including the name of the abductor and the country to which the girl had been taken. The most famous fortunetellers accept military generals, government officials and business people as customers as well as ordinary citizens. All line-up in front of their doors and have to wait their turn.
There is another form of fortunetelling and soothe-saying; namely, predictions as to whether one should marry a particular person and whether the union will be a happy one. Many are involved in these practices and are bound by them all their lives.
In Islamic countries, Qur’anic texts, prayers or curses are sometimes written on small papers, not only for protecting a person but also to actively influence certain people in special situations. A sheikh once said that he was writing verses from the Qur’an that would help a businessman have a successful business trip. Also, a young man wanted to influence a girl to love him, so he asked someone to hide pieces of written texts under her mattress. Merchants who want the businesses and projects of their competitors to fail also practice similar customs.
One may find different forms of sorcery or white magic, the aim of which is only to influence others, not to kill or harm them. Love and desire for money are the main motives in this kind of magic. Also, signs, paintings or sculptures are used as a kind of protection on houses or in rooms. The owners say these items are harmless, but if one suggests their removal, there will be a great outcry or adamant refusal, for they are inwardly in bondage to the use of such items.
Educated people distinctively knock on wood and hope that they will be protected from spirits who listen to their conversations. The flight of birds is also taken into consideration. If a black bird swoops down upon a house, this is considered an omen of the imminent death of a family member. If a bird flies away from a house, this may be a sign that someone will be leaving soon. The reading of stars, likewise, influences the thoughts of many. In many hotels in India, you can find an astrologer who will tell you what the stars predict for you.
In many Islamic countries, one can find whitewashed tombs of saints. Dozens of men and women make pilgrimages to these tombs in order to find help. For example, a woman may rub her abdomen against a tomb in hope of becoming pregnant. These actions show the sadness and desperation in Muslims over Allah not providing them with real comfort or satisfactory answers to the difficulties and problems in their lives.
During a special celebration in Indonesia, a French reporter was horrified when he saw people swallowing iron nails and electric light bulbs. He was offered some to eat and was told that he would neither be injured nor feel pain, for they would be dissolved within him; nothing would hurt him. This reporter photographed these practices and wrote a long article in the newspaper, saying he had to admit that there are things that belong to the extrasensory realm, which are increasingly becoming part of society.
Black magic also exists in the world of Islam, through which people try to destroy others. One day, a leader of black magic in Beirut became furious about the State of Israel and asked his students to concentrate together on destroying that country. The next morning, one of his students came to him shivering and asked: “What happened to you? I saw you last night in my dream tied up with iron chains.” Another student said he had had a similar dream. The master confirmed that what they said was true, for somebody appeared to him in a vision, telling him that he should have nothing to do with Israel. They had tried to destroy Israel, but they reached a sphere of higher authority where their power was useless.
We once drove our car along a road in Beirut. Suddenly, we came upon a crowd of people, which we had difficulty passing. We soon learned that the situation involved one of our Lebanese evangelists. We parked our car and pushed through the crowd, inquiring about the cause of the uproar. We were told that the evangelist was accused of practicing magic on a Syrian student who claimed the old man had given him a cursed cake, which robbed him of his sleep for three or four nights. The student said he would kill the evangelist unless the curse was removed from him, so that he could sleep again. We immediately mediated for our brother in the Lord and testified that he never pronounced such a curse, nor had he been involved in magic in any way. They took our word and released him. However, the Syrian student who had accused the evangelist was taken into custody, because he persisted in wanting to kill him. When our brother was released, the student cried out and bent the steel bars of the prison cell. He wanted to rip apart this active evangelist and destroy his ministry, but the Lord protected him.
These illustrations do not fully explain the character of black magic, but it is known that some leading Islamic centers use sorcery against successful servants of the Lord, who work among Muslims. For this reason, we say to every believer: Do not go into missionary work among Muslims unless you have committed yourself totally to the protection of the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. You have no protection otherwise. But the blood of Jesus can completely protect you, and Satan will find no right or power into your life. It is marvelous that you can actually face and go through such experiences with complete confidence and tranquillity. You can even sing with Luther:
And though this world with devils filled
Should threaten to undo us,
His truth to triumph through us.
The prince of darkness grim —
We tremble not for him;
His rage we can endure,
For lo! his doom is sure.
One little word shall fell him.
We need not fear any evil power because Jesus is Lord. His name means power. He is our defender. However, anyone not relying on the protection of the blood of Jesus, even though he be a Child of God, may be subject to much tension, temptation and sins, ranging from lying, sexual immorality, pride and a host of other evils; he may be tempted into financial dishonesty too. This may happen, not because he wants to commit these sins, but because he is simply deceived on the basis of not surrendering entire control of his life to the Lord Jesus Christ. Some half-hearted believers have been knocked to the ground and thrown about, not knowing what happened to them. Others have had car accidents and other mishaps too. It is essential to make sure that Jesus is ruling completely in our lives. Have you reached the point where you can say, “Nothing for me but all for Jesus”? If you have, then you will experience the peace of the Lord in the midst of turmoil. No one stands with one foot inside a lift and the other outside, for he would be torn to pieces if he did. Therefore, we need to abide in Jesus and he will abide in us.
2. The Occult in the Qur’an
The main point of our subject centers on the question: Where do we find the occult, or traces of it, in the Qur’an? We first should read Sura al-Falaq 113:1-5:
I seek refuge with the Lord of the dawn,
From the mischief of those who practice magic (Blow on knots),
And from the mischief of the envious one
As he practices envy.
In these verses, we find Muhammad anxious and afraid. He lived in constant fear, because he had caused the death of many in war and asked his followers to help him get rid of his enemies. Whoever kills others may dream that the spirits of the murdered follow him. Muhammad sensed the influences of evil. He looked at many things created by God with fear because they looked evil to him. Muhammad was afraid of the night and what dwelled in it. He was afraid of sorcerers and women who tried to have influence on others by making knots and blowing on them. Muhammad felt the power of evil spirits in one who had become envious. His fear is often found in the Qur’an and climaxes in a deep fear of Allah.
How different from Muhammad is our Lord Jesus who said, “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; . . . Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). Muhammad had no peace in him. He was a frightened man, torn in his heart, desperate and unhappy. In the depth of his soul he was fearful of night, sorcerers and everything. He was especially afraid of envy. From every side, he saw himself under attack. We notice this in the last Sura of the Qur’an, Sura al-Nas 114:1-6:
Say: I seek refuge with the Lord and Cherisher of mankind,
The king (or ruler) of mankind – The God of mankind,
From the mischief of the Whisperer (Satan) who withdraws (after he has whispered),
Who whispers into the hearts of mankind, And from the jinn and men.
In these verses, we find three sources of fear: man, Satan and demons. Muhammad distinguished all three of them and searched for refuge in Allah who had created them. He sought refuge from Satan who whispered into his innermost being. Muhammad heard voices and was not sure which was from God and which was not. He could not always distinguish the voice of God from that of Satan. Therefore, we even find satanic verses in the Qur’an (Sura al-Najm 53:19-22). Muhammad acknowledged demons and spirits. He met with them and knew of their power. With such words, the Qur’an ends! Not with a word of peace and comfort, but with a cry for refuge in Allah who gives neither assurance nor help. He who fathoms this crisis will feel deepest sympathy for deplorable Muhammad. He was thrown into despair and awful fear, for he was aware of the reality of Satan and of his influences, which constantly pursued him. He experienced that man, while seeking refuge in Allah, can be possessed by evil powers and held by them.
In the Qur’an, we find a unique record of the people of Mecca, before they believed in Muhammad. They considered him to be a disturbed, insane man and called him madjnun (a possessed one) who behaved very unnaturally when he received his revelations (Suras al-Saffat 37:35; al-Dukhan 44:13; al-Tur 52:29; al-Qalam 68:2; al-Takwir 81:22).
Some of his neighbors feared him and whispered that he was a sahir (magician), dealing with witchcraft and influencing people to follow him by his fascinating lies (Suras Yunis 10:2; al-Hijr 15:16; Sad 38:3).
Others claimed that he was mashur (bewitched) and controlled by evil spirits and demons, acting as their medium (Suras al-Isra’ 17:50; al-Furqan 25:9; al-Dukhan 44:13; al-Takwir 81:25).
Several considered him to be a kahin (fortuneteller or soothsayer) who received inspiration by the jinn, revealing secrets to man (Suras al-Tur 52:29; al-Haqqa 69:42).
Finally, they called him sha’ir (a poet) who was guided by a certain jinn that inspired him with enchanting words in enticing rhythms (Suras al-Saffat 37:35; al-Tur 52:30; al-Haqqa 69:43).
Ibn Hisham, one of the early biographers of Muhammad, confirms in his book that the people of Mecca continually used these accusations before they surrendered to Islam, when forced to do so.
Muhammad, when asked by his followers about his meetings with the Angel Gabriel, answered several times: “When he approaches me, I hear the sound of a ringing bell or banging metal. Then, I step quickly down from my horse or camel and cover my head. He then presses so hard on me that I think I will die. When he speaks, I can never forget his words which I reveal to you.” During the revelations, his followers witnessed that his face became pale or red, his lips moved silently, and he sometimes became unconscious.
In summing up these terms and reports, we can say objectively that Muhammad did not appear as a normal man during the time of his revelations, but looked very disturbed and similar to one who was possessed. Many feared him.
Some orientalists and professors think that Muhammad was an epileptic, but Muslims reject this idea fiercely, claiming that Muhammad unmistakably received dictated inspirations by the Angel Gabriel directly, over a period of 22 years.
Even though Muslims insist that Muhammad received revelations from God, we must state that the voices that Muhammad claimed to have heard were not real inspiration. The Father of our Lord Jesus would never have sent the Angel Gabriel to Muhammad in Mecca, 600 years after the birth of Christ, to prove to him that He, God, has no Son. It is written in the Qur’an more than twenty times that God has no Son. As long as Muslims claim that these verses are divinely inspired, we must say No! These voices did not come from the true God, but originated from an evil spirit who misused the Arabic name for God. As long as Muslims insist that Jesus was not crucified and that he did not really die on the cross, we again must affirm that it was not God who revealed these verses to Muhammad. This revelation originated from a satanic spirit who merely claimed to be God!
We must stop thinking that Muslims and Christians believe in the same God. The difference between the two religions is not only a matter of dissimilar names, but also a matter of totally different, opposing spirits. The Spirit speaking in the Gospel is contrary to that in the Qur’an. The spirit in Muhammad was an anti-Christian spirit; it is not the Spirit of Jesus. If anyone doubts this reality, he need only open to Sura al-Tawba 9:30. There, it is written: “The Christians say: Christ is the Son of God. That is only what they say, conforming to the unbelievers before them. May Allah kill them! How they have turned away!”
When Muhammad and his community came under severe persecution, 83 of his followers who had no protection emigrated to Ethiopia and took refuge within the Christian state. Muhammad, under increasing boycotts and pressure, went through a time of weakness and accepted a compromise by acknowledging the existence of three goddesses alongside Allah: Lat, Uzza, and Manat. The account of this is in Sura al-Najm 53:19-22:
Now tell me about Al-Lat, Al-Uzza,
And Manat, the third one, another goddess.
What! For you the males and for him the females!
That indeed is an unfair division.
This indirect confession of polytheism, with the statement that Allah was involved with female goddesses while Muhammad and his people were left with men, was cynically discussed by author Salman Rushdie. He made the impure account even more obscene. Therefore, all Muslims regarded his book as blasphemous.
When the inhabitants of Mecca heard the confession of Muhammad about the existence of the ancient goddesses inside the Ka’ba, they immediately revoked their ban on him. Those who had emigrated to Ethiopia started to return home after hearing about Muhammad’s confession and the changes in Mecca. But when they arrived, they were shocked to hear that Muhammad regretted his confession and considered it as his falling prey to the whispering of Satan. Thus, Islam considers Sura al-Najm 53:19-22 as the satanic verses, rejected by Muhammad later on. Salman Rushdie did not invent these verses, they have been in the Qur’an since its inception.
In Sura al-Hajj 22:52-53, Muhammad confessed his mistake, supposing that all prophets were tempted by Satan who inspired them with his verses, as if they were revealed by God. But later on, Allah abrogated these satanic verses with new revelations and judges his people according to them. Allah in Islam permits such demonic inspiration to test weak Muslims or to cut off those with hardened hearts.
The true, vital issue about the satanic verses in the Qur’an is: If Muhammad was once unable to distinguish the voice of Satan from that of God, can there be other verses in the Qur’an which Muhammad assumed were from God, but were really from Satan? Maybe the whole Qur’an is of satanic origin, despite Muhammad’s conviction that it was Allah who revealed the suras to him by the Angel Gabriel.
In Islam, the Angel Gabriel is regarded as the Holy Spirit. For Muslims, no Holy Spirit, as described in the Gospel, exists. They believe that the Spirit of God was created like angels and demons, with a beginning and an end. There is no God the Holy Spirit in Islam, and therefore no guidance by the Spirit, no comfort, no everlasting life and no Spirit of Truth, because the Holy Spirit is considered to be the Angel Gabriel only. The spirit in Islam, therefore, is not a divine one, but a spirit of the flesh or a demonic spirit effecting deep devotion, regular worship, many prayers, fasting, almsgiving and pilgrimage. But there is no Holy Spirit, no life, only death (Galatians 3:1-5).
The god of Islam is a demon who appropriated for himself the name of Allah. This Allah, by means of a deep religiosity and devotion, has bound more than a billion Muslims, barring them from salvation in Christ. Indeed, he vaccinates them against understanding the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
When Muhammad’s first wife, Khadija, and his uncle, Abu Talib, died in the same year, Muhammad lost his protection and tried to find refuge in Taif, a village high above the hills of Mecca, but he was rejected harshly by the inhabitants of this village. Muhammad was helpless and in deep despair, so he escaped into the desert where Jinn (demons or spirits) met with him while he was reciting the Qur’an. Many scientists view this Sura with a smile. Scholars have rejected it as nonsense. Others have portrayed the jinn as good and helpful spirits. Let us examine the two sermons of the jinn written in the Qur’an, which are claimed to have been revealed to Muhammad by the Angel Gabriel (Sura al-Jinn 72:1-15):
Say: it has been revealed to me that a company of jinn listened
(To the recitation of the Qur’an).
They said, ‘We have indeed heard a wonderful Recital.
It gives guidance to rectitude.
We have believed in it: We will not associate anyone with our Lord.
Exalted is the Majesty of our Lord: He has taken neither a wife nor a son.
The fool among us uttered extravagant lies against Allah.
5 And we thought that men and jinn would never speak a lie against Allah.
Truly, there were some among mankind who contacted persons connected
With the jinn. They increased them in vileness.
And they thought as you thought, that Allah would never raise up anyone.
We tried to enter heaven; but we found it filled with terrible guards and shooting stars.
So we used to sit in (hidden) stations, to hear the secrets of heaven;
But anyone who listens now will find a shooting star thrown at him.
10 So we do not know whether evil is intended to those on earth,
Or whether their Lord intends rectitude for them.
Some of us are righteous, and some the contrary:
We follow divergent paths.
Nor can we frustrate Him by flight.
When we listened to the Guidance, we believed in it;
And any who believes in his Lord shall fear neither triviality nor vileness.
Among us are some that have surrendered and some that have deviated.
Those who surrendered sought rectitude
But those who deviated have become firewood for hell.’
The second Sura dealing with the same event is Sura al-Ahqaf 46: 28-32:
Behold we turned towards you a company of jinn listening to the Qur’an.
When they stood in its presence, they said, ‘Listen, be silent!’
When the recitation was finished, they returned to their people to warn them.
They said: ‘Our people! We have heard a book sent down after Moses
Confirming what was before it: It guides to the truth and to a straight path.
O our people, answer to Allah’s summoner and believe in Him:
He will forgive you some of your sins and protect you from a painful chastisement.
If any does not listen to Allah’s summoner, he cannot frustrate Allah on earth.
He will have no protectors besides Him:
Such men are in manifest error.’
The Qur’an recognizes the fact that Muhammad had actual contact with the jinn. With the Gospel as our plumb line, let us examine what these demons in the Qur’an say to Muhammad, as revealed by Allah.
In Sura al-Jinn 72:1-3, we read, “We have indeed heard a wonderful Recital.” According to the Qur’an, these spirits have the ability to listen to what has been said in public or secret and are able to differentiate in peoples’ matters. They can declare whether a recital is good or bad. Here they testify that the Qur’an is wonderful and that it guides men to rectitude, to the right way of life in doctrine and ethical standards. They confess, “We have believed in it.” This means that some of these spirits and demons understood the Qur’an, found it helpful, accepted it, and bound themselves to it. They quickly confess the main point: “We will not associate anyone with our Lord.” Some commentators say this means idols or pictures of idols. However, in the next sentence, we recognize that this opinion is insufficient, for the sermon speaks directly against Jesus: “He has taken neither a wife nor a son.” In the Qur’an, the word walad (son) is often used in relation to Jesus Christ, and the demons testify that God has no Son. This, according to 1 John 4:2-4, is an indication of an antichrist spirit. The Bible answers clearly to the rejection of the Fatherhood of God and the Sonship of Christ with condemnatory consequences.
Jesus stated that no one is good except God; therefore, jinn are not good, even though they call themselves righteous. They are not merely goblins but anti-Christ spirits that work against the Fatherhood of God and the Sonship of His Christ, testifying that God has no Son. They claim that everyone who says God has a Son is a liar.
In verse four, we read, “The fool among us uttered extravagant lies against Allah.” Muslim scholars indicate that the foolish one among the jinn is Satan personally. He is considered to have invented the unforgivable lie of God having a Son. By this trick, Satan even accepts the title of al-Safeeh (the foolish one) if he can jeopardize the Sonship of Christ, and vaccinate all Muslims against it. According to the Qur’an, it was not God who revealed Jesus as His Son but rather Satan who, in his foolishness, uttered the lie of the incarnation of Christ to mislead all Christians to hell.
The jinn reject the Sonship of Christ as a lie and a blasphemy. They try to create hatred against the Son of God in all Muslims and seek to immunize them against his salvation, claiming: “We thought that men and jinn (demons) never speak a lie against Allah.” But according to the Qur’an, it is the lie of lies when Satan confesses Jesus as the Son of God. Consequently, the jinn called the head of all liars (Satan) an impudent fool; he revealed the truth in the form of a lie, and thus his words vaccinate all Muslims against the truth. This is utter perversion, and it confirms what Christ said about Satan being a liar and the father of lies.
The jinn confess with astonishment that there are men who search for guidance, along with those who are in contact with them. They wonder why people would make contact with demons, as was the case with Muhammad himself. The demons shake their heads and say, “Would you believe that some men could be so senseless as to seek contact with spirits, believing in the lie of Satan that God has a Son?”
Then they come to the point: Those (misled people) thought that Allah would never raise up anyone, (nor send anyone). This is a reference to Muhammad’s claim of having been sent by Allah. In Sura al-Baqara 2:14, the spiritual leaders of the Jews are referred to as Satans. Also, Khomeini called the Americans and Russians, greater or lesser devils. About the Jews it is written, “When they meet those who believe, they say: ‘We believe;’ but when they go privily to their Satans, they say: ‘We are with you; we were only mocking.’” This verse states that there were Jews who resisted and opposed the Qur’an. Muhammad thought that demons and devils must have influenced them; that was the reason why they could not believe that Allah had sent him. For Muslims, all who reject Allah’s Qur’an and Muhammad have most likely been influenced by demons and led astray.
After this, we find a surprising (and almost true) statement by the jinn: “We tried to enter into heaven, but we found it filled with (protected by) stern guards and shooting stars.” They were unable to storm the heavens. This is another instance in which the jinn are revealed as demons and not as holy, superior angels. Demons have no admittance into heaven. They claim they tried to enter heaven by force, but found it shut against them and defended by fierce guards. Thus, they encountered the angels of God who drive unclean intruders away.
The Muslim spirits in the Qur’an continue: “So we (previously) used to sit in (hidden) stations to hear the secrets of heaven. But anyone who listens now will find a shooting star thrown at him.” These jinn tried to spy out what was going on between heaven and earth, but found impenetrable opposition. Like Muhammad, they confess that they are not sure whether Allah had planned evil for mankind or wanted to lead them in the right way – whether to heaven or hell. The jinn do not know the will of God.
There is a noteworthy statement in verse 11 which speaks of some jinn claiming to be good: “Some of us are righteous and some the contrary: We follow divergent paths.” This statement in the Qur’an makes it clear that Satan has a divided house, where everyone fights the other. Some think they alone are good and that all others are bad.
Verse 12 continues: “We thought that we would never be able to frustrate Allah throughout the earth, nor can we frustrate him by flight.” They tried to escape from the holiness of God, but were unable to do so. His authority reaches everywhere.
Verse 13 says: “When we listened to the Guidance, we believed in it. And any who believes in his Lord shall fear neither triviality nor vileness.” They believed in the message of the Qur’an and used the term vileness in their confession to show that they overcame the vileness of the Sonship of Christ, which they rejected in verse five.
Then, in verse 14, they say: “Among us are some that have surrendered (to Allah and became Muslims)....” This is an extraordinary confession, because some jinn in the Qur’an claim to be Muslims, submitted to Allah. However, according to the Christian Scriptures, all that deny the Son of God will never enter the kingdom of heaven. The verse continues: “...and some that have deviated. Those who surrendered (to Allah as Muslims) sought rectitude.” They claim to have found the true way. But, according to the Qur’an, the unjust who believe that God has a Son are “firewood for hell.”
In Sura al-Ahqaf 46:29-32, we find an additional statement from the jinn as they plan to support the spread of Islam. When they heard Muhammad’s recital of the Qur’an, they said, “Listen! Be silent!” When they had finished listening to it, they accepted the Qur’an and suggested returning to their people to warn them about the “truth” of Islam. By this Qur’anic statement, it is implied that every jinn and demon has a particular area for which he is responsible.
Some of these jinn may have returned to Yathrib (Medina), whispering into the hearts of their people, “We have heard a book (in Arabic) sent down after Moses, confirming what was before it: It guides to the truth and to a straight path.”
They continued according to Muhammad’s preaching: “O our people, answer to Allah’s summoner and believe in Him: He will forgive you some of your sins and protect you from a painful chastisement (when you accept Islam).”
Verse 32 says: “If anyone does not listen to Allah’s summoner (Muhammad), he cannot frustrate Allah on earth. He will have no protector besides Him. Such men are in manifest error.” The jinn in the Qur’an warn everyone to believe in the message of Muhammad, and they deny the mediation of Christ on the Day of Judgment for those who believe in him.
Shortly after Muhammad had met the jinn, a number of the pagans in Medina believed in Islam. After two years, there were 73 men who had become Muslims there, without Muhammad ever having visited the town. This may have come from the intervention of demonic spirits who influenced their people to believe in the Qur’an. Basically, the Qur’an acknowledges that Islam spread with the help of jinn and that not only people can be Muslims, but also jinn.
We must recognize that Muslims believe in the reality of spirits. Two sermons of the jinn are revealed in the Qur’an, presented as an integral part of the revelation. The words of the demons fit the words of the Islamic Allah; both agree in rejecting the Son of God and climax in denying the divinity of Jesus. The jinn admit to being banned from heaven. Anyone who wants to understand can recognize the significance of that fact. Muslim spirits are not allowed to enter heaven!
3. Black Magic in Islam
While Muhammad was ruling in Medina, a delegation of about 60 Christians from the Najran Valley in North Yemen visited him. A bishop and his scholars wanted to know what kind of spirit Muhammad had. They disputed with him in an investigative dialogue for two or three days in the mosque at Medina. Muhammad tried to compromise with the Christians to a great extent in order to win them for Islam, but ended up maintaining the principles of his faith. He accepted essential facts from the life of Christ, yet rejected his divinity and crucifixion totally. One can read the basic answers of Muhammad to the Christians in Sura Al Imran 3:33-64.
The delegation from Najran was not ready to compromise with Muhammad in the denial of the Son of God nor in the Islamic rejection of his atoning death on the cross. Muhammad was upset and said that Christians and Muslims should be exposed to the judgment of Allah immediately. We read in Sura Al Imran 3:54:
Come now: Let us call our sons and your sons,
Our wives and your wives, ourselves and yourselves.
Then let us pray, and so lay Allah’s curse
upon the ones who lie!
Perhaps Muhammad remembered the judgment of Yahweh against Korah and his men, during the days of Moses (Numbers 16:1-35): The earth opened up and swallowed the rebels. However, there are some basic differences: We no longer live under the Law of the Old Covenant but are confirmed in the Covenant of Grace by our Lord Jesus Christ.
Muhammad also altered the reason for the judgment of Yahweh against the fierce rebels in an Islamic way, speaking against peaceful inquirers, “Let us pray and so lay the curse of Allah upon the ones who lie!” This is a destructive prayer, provoking the curse of Allah. Muslims implement prayers in the form of black magic to injure others, to damage, to kill, and to destroy enemies. This is in complete contrast to the command of Jesus: “Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you” (Matthew 5:44).
The curse of Allah dissolves before all that live fully under the blood of Jesus. It is essential to remember that Muhammad did not suggest the curse of Allah against the bishop and his men alone, but aimed it at their sons and wives too! Islam tries to harm not only the evangelists, but their families as well. It is important for everyone serving among Muslims to deliver all members of their family fully to Jesus every day, in order to prevent their having accidents or falling away from the faith.
The bishop and his delegation did not accept the suggestion of Muhammad, because Jesus taught us not to tempt God (Matthew 4:7). But this challenge of Muslims against Christians, according to the Qur’an, continues even today. Such a prayer duel was renewed in Berlin in 1989! Long letters of curses and even threats of killing sometimes reach those who serve among Muslims. The hateful spirit of Islam is contradictory to the Spirit of Jesus; yet, the love of Christ encompasses even the Muslims in their bondage.
The different Spirit in Christianity is also evidenced in the words of the Apostle Paul in Galatians 1:8-9: “Even if we or an angel from heaven (like the supposed Angel Gabriel in Islam) preach any other gospel to you as we have preached to you, let him be accursed! . . . If anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed!” Paul did not curse unbelievers or inquirers, nor did he hate opposing Jews or Gentiles. He wanted to save them all, even when they cursed or stoned him. What Paul was fighting against was every evil spirit that tried to bring the Church under the Law again or which sought to diminish the truth of grace by faith. The spirit of Islam is a power which, by the revelation of the supposed Angel Gabriel, has brought more than a billion Muslims under the Islamic law, after Christ atoned for every one of them and opened the door of grace for all. These words from the Apostle Paul can be understood as a curse on the spirit of Islam, not on the Muslims themselves, but on this evil spirit – to drive it out completely!
4. The Occult in Islamic Worship
Islam means surrender or submission to Allah. Muslims think that they have yielded themselves to the true God. Some of them serve him with all their heart, even fighting for the victory of Islam; but they have submitted themselves to an evil spirit.
Submission is organized pragmatically, through obligatory worship into five complimentary divisions that comprise the Five Pillars of Islam: the witness, prayer, fasting, almsgiving and pilgrimage. These are main religious duties of Islamic Law. By this practice, the Muslim surrenders to the spirit of Allah; his whole life is nothing other than submission to Allah.
1. In his witness (al-Shahada), the Muslim says,
“There is no God but Allah.
Muhammad is his ambassador.”
In this confession, a Muslim is stating with all his will, according to his knowledge: “Jesus Christ is no God and the Holy Spirit is no God. Allah exists as the only god according to the revelation of Muhammad.” This witness is the basic doctrine of Islam. Everyone who confesses this testimony twice in front of witnesses is considered to be a Muslim. All who do not confess it are deemed as condemned infidels. This witness cuts every Muslim off from Christ and binds him to Allah as his slave. A Muslim is not allowed to leave Islam and must be killed if he backslides and remains in that condition. Through this witness, the continual surrender in Islam begins.
2. During the five prayer-times (al-Salat), a Muslim surrenders himself to Allah anew. He magnifies Allah as the Almighty (al-Kadeer) 102 times during his 17 prayer-rounds and submits to Allah by fixed words and determined actions. Through this worship, his subconscious is geared totally to Allah. He can no longer tolerate any other religion. When he prays, he kneels down and prostrates himself to Allah 34 times a day, as if he were saying: “I fall before you like a slave. I am at your disposal. You can do with me as you wish.” This daily prayer-order confirms the binding of the Muslim to his Allah, which is deeper than we realize. For the normal Westerner with his rationalism, this is virtually incomprehensible.
3. Accompanied by fasting (al-Sawm), prayer becomes more intense and concentrated. Muslims fast during daylight hours (as long as the sun shines, according to Islamic law) during the month of Ramadan (the ninth month of the Islamic calendar) in order to obey Allah in a non-rational action, a deeper way of surrendering themselves to this spirit. Muslims often do not know for what reason they fast. When you ask them why, they say that Allah wants it. It is an act of blind obedience to Allah, confirmed by an empty stomach and a dry mouth for those living in hot climates. Actually, Ramadan is meant to commemorate and welcome the coming of the Qur’an, because the Qur’an is supposed to have been revealed in it. One of the feasts during the month of Ramadan is consecrated to the night that is better than 1,000 months (Sura al-Qadr 97).
4. Muslims give their alms (al-Zakat) or religious tax as a material surrender to Allah. Words are cheap but sacrifice costs. Few Christians are prepared to separate themselves from their money, giving it away for the sake of Christ, because they depend on it. When one has really begun to give sacrificially and not just a trifle, he can understand what this offering in Islam actually means. It represents a total faith in Allah’s supplying needs and rewarding any sacrifice. A Muslim gives about 5% of his total income for the sake of Allah, which amounts to billions of “petrol-dollars” from the Islamic countries with oil reserves.
Almsgiving, fasting, prayer, pilgrimage and the witness are not ways of free-will worship, but are obligatory, commanded by Islamic law. Every act of obedience has a justifying value, because good deeds in Islam cancel out the bad (Sura Hud 11:115). Islam is a religion of self-justification based on a businesslike approach. Even faith, surrender, memorizing the Qur’an by heart, and circumcision are considered to be justifying acts (Sura al-Fatir 35:29-30).
Islam is a religion under the Law, not one of Grace. Justification by works is found in Islam to a large extent. The Apostle Paul wrote that Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us (Galatians 3:10-14). While the Old Testament Law originated from Yahweh, the true Lord, the al-Sharia (Islamic law) has no source in divine revelation. The Sharia binds every Muslim to Allah in various pragmatic ways, and confirms him in his submission to this spirit.
5. During their pilgrimage (al-Hajj) to Mecca, Arabic-speaking Muslims often express their submission to Allah with the word labbeik, meaning: “I am available to you. I give myself to you without reservation.” This is similar to a female slave who waits behind a curtain for the orders of her mistress, willing to fulfill them.
The pilgrims circle the black stone so that any radiation or other influence from it will fill and unite them. People who return from the hajj look different from how they looked before the journey. You can see buses departing for Mecca, with the people joyful, excited and clapping their hands. But when they return, their faces are serious like a stone mask. A believing brother who lives in Mecca wrote, “We need your prayers especially during the hajj. We who live in Mecca feel as if devils are walking through the streets at the time of the pilgrimage. One can almost see and feel the presence of Satan.”
The Five Pillars of Islam are the actual forces uniting all Muslims together and binding them to Allah in spirit. But since Allah is not the True God and the spirit is not the Holy Spirit, we must recognize that the surrender of Muslims to Allah through their religious worship is the practical way by which Allah holds them in occult bondage.
5. Freeing a Muslim from Occult Bondage
A Muslim once murdered his wife. She haunted him in his dreams and gave him no rest. He lived in despair and was willing to do or believe anything simply to find peace. We did not need to talk long about sin. He confessed: “I know that I am a sinner. I should be killed, but she does not destroy me. Rather, she always torments and tortures me.” Here was someone searching for help, and we shared with him the meaning of the blood of Christ. He took in the Gospel like a dry sponge soaking up water. We said, “Why do you not surrender your life to the Lord Jesus and pray to him?” He said, “I do not know how to pray. I have never prayed freely.” So we knelt down and prayed. He repeated every word, confessed his sins, proclaimed faith in Jesus, and severed all relations with the evil spirits. As we got off our knees, the following Islamic witness came from the depth of his heart: “La Ilaha illa Allah. Muhammad Rasoul Allah, (There is no god but Allah. Muhammad is his ambassador.)” The spirit within him had blotted out everything he had just heard and accepted intellectually. He earnestly wanted to be saved, but was not able to free himself from the spirit of Islam. He was forced to repeat the witness and confession of Islam, which he had been uttering all his life. We understood then what it means to be possessed.
You can sometimes recognize when people are possessed. They are full of restlessness, being driven about but finding no peace. They want to listen but cannot. They avoid the quiet. Some were even thrown to the floor or to the ground when they heard messages from Khomeini. They want to read Scripture but cannot really take it in. Like an already-filled bottle, nothing more goes in. They are more interested in Satan than in Christ. There is no easy way for deliverance.
If someone realizes that he has had contact with spirits and is bound, or if he knows that he has inherited such a burden from his parents, grandparents or ancestors, it is necessary for him to cut himself off from these spiritual chains entirely through prayer and to seek deliverance from Islam and its anti-Christian culture. He should completely entrust himself into the hands of the Redeemer, Jesus Christ. It is essential that at some point, in the presence of believing brethren, a prayer of renouncing the past should be made by the one who wants to follow Jesus, so that a complete release from those chains will take place.
Early and continual reading of the Word of God can bring the freedom that new converts need. If a Muslim shows interest in the Gospel, one should guide him personally in studying the Word of God and not occupy him with discussions about the Qur’an. Only the power of the Word of God can make him free, as Jesus said: “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you” (John 15:3). Early and consistent reading of the Word of God is a must, after the prayer of release from the past has been made. The Muslim can become free and receive new life by the power of the Holy Spirit, when the Word of God penetrates his subconscious and fills it.
Muslims do not think in the same way as Westerners. They often learn the Qur’an by heart and seldom analyze what it means. Thus, the texts fill their subconscious and rise into their conscious knowledge and awareness automatically. Their approach is more passive than active and more emotional than rational. Many do not understand the Scriptures through reading or preaching. Therefore, they should be assisted in learning key verses of the Bible by heart, which will build up faith and spiritual life in them. These selected verses, memorized, will become the keys to understanding the Scriptures and a source of enlightenment for their mind and heart.
There has to be a gradual yet final separation from the old spirit and culture, for the whole of Islam is poisoned. A convert must not utter the old prayers any longer nor can he practice the old habits. It is absolutely essential that he hand himself over to Jesus; otherwise he cannot be helped. When the Apostle Paul said, “Jesus is my life,” he meant: “I have nothing else but Jesus. I consider everything else dung. He is my only power and defense. I have ‘put on’ Jesus as a coat. My ‘I’ is dying. It is not I, but Christ who lives in me. I am in Jesus and He is in me.” If this will not become reality with a convert, he will be ripped apart by demonic tensions.
There was once a conference for young trainees in Operation Mobilization. They did not easily accept the idea that Muslims live under a collective bondage, as was explained by an elder missionary. Suddenly, an older lady, sitting in the corner, stood up and said: “Your instructor is right. I was a faithful Muslim and made a personal decision for Christianity. This resulted in severe persecution from my family. I was baptized and became an active member in my church but could never say, ‘Jesus is the Son of God!’” I was not really free. Twelve years passed after my decision. I prayed a lot for my complete deliverance and sanctification. Suddenly one night, I saw a person full of light standing near me. In this light, I could see that my whole body was bound with rusty chains. The person in the light touched me and the chains sprang off immediately. Out of my mouth came the cry: ‘Jesus, you are the Son of God.’ An intellectual acceptance of Christ does not necessarily result in the regeneration of the heart. A personal act by the Savior, Jesus, is necessary for a Muslim to be freed from bondage.
This is true for many Muslims who live in the Islamic world. They have to separate themselves from all binding forces and spiritual roots, and take refuge fully and completely in Christ. He alone can truly set them free.
There are Christian missionaries and theologians today who teach that a convert should remain a Muslim as long as possible. They prefer Muslim-Christians instead of lonely converts who fall back, owing to persecution from their families and society. This wave of unbiblical contextualization goes back to the idea that the god in Islam and the Father of Jesus Christ are the same being, having only different names and attributes. How wrong they are! The spirit in Islam is an anti-Christian spirit infecting and possessing all Muslims—some more than others. Only prayer, fasting and faith can drive out this kind of spirit. It is irresponsible to encourage an inquirer or convert to continue to pray in a mosque, to pronounce the Muslim creed again, or to take part in the fasting of Ramadan. This all binds a Muslim again to the spirit of Allah, which is not the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
There is a basic difference between Christians of Jewish background and those of Muslim background: The God in the Old Testament is the Father of Jesus Christ, but Allah in Islam fights against Jesus and hates the Son of God crucified. We should therefore not only discuss occultism in Islam, but also come to the understanding that Islam, as a whole, is occultism. Surely, we have to recognize that not every Muslim is possessed by an evil spirit that throws him to the ground. However, the spirit of the Islamic culture is deeply rooted in the hearts of all Muslims, and it drives them to unbiblical, destructive actions, more than they realize.
Islam is a collective possession in which every aspect of life is penetrated by a ruling and controlling spirit. Even the reverential worship in Islam is actually a prostration to Satan. No doubt, all Muslims think they worship the only true God, the creator and sustainer of mankind. But in reality, they are slaves to a mighty demon who does not want to lose a single one of them.
Islam is considered a theocentric culture and a theocratic political system. But Allah is not the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ; he is an evil spirit. Therefore, we must realize that Islam is one of the strongest forms of occultism which has encompassed one sixth of mankind during the last 50 generations.
We, as followers of Jesus, should not be afraid of the occult power in Islam, nor should we be frustrated by the limited results in our services among Muslims. Let us confess, with the fathers of our faith, that the self-sacrifice of Christ on the cross has legally justified all Muslims too! They only do not know it. Jesus does not have to die again specifically for Muslims. He has opened the door of salvation for all. His blood has the power to redeem every Muslim completely. The blood of Christ is the only way to save a Muslim from the bondage of Islam.
Let us remember that the Lamb of God remains the victorious Savior. Jesus is Lord! His Father is putting all his enemies under his feet as a footstool. Christ came to destroy the works of Satan. He overcame Islam too, when on the cross he cried with a loud voice: “It is finished!”
Jesus taught us to pray: “Our Father in heaven...Deliver us from the evil one.” We often pray these words and do not think much about them. This prayer is also meant for the born-again children of God, after they have been justified and sanctified by grace. They cannot save themselves from Satan. He is older and vastly more clever than we. Having witnessed the actions of men down the ages, he knows all our weaknesses and is full of trickery. We urgently need to use this prayer, so that our enemy will not find might or power over us.
The Lord’s Prayer was not given to us in singular but plural form. This challenges us to pray for the redemption of the Muslims, too. Every true believer has a priestly spirit and should intercede for sinners as Jesus our High Priest mediates for us with His Father. We can fight with God and cling to Him, crying: “I will not let you go until you deliver them from the evil one!”
Dear Reader, if you have studied this paper carefully, you can easily answer the following questions. If you have answered at least eighteen of them correctly, we will enroll you in our correspondence course. Please write your full name and address clearly on the paper as well as on the envelope and send it to the address below.
1. Why does the Islamic understanding of Allah not gibe a Muslim peace and rest?
2. What can we sense about the inner condition of Muhammad from Suras al-Falaq 113:1-5 and al-Nas 114:1-5, and how is this condition different from that of Christ, as revealed in John 14:27?
3. According to the Qur’an, how did Muhammad appear to the people of Mecca and to his followers?
4. Why can it not be true that God would send the angel Gabriel to Muhammad, proving to him that he has no Son that was crucified?
5. In Sura al-Hajj 22:52-53, Muhammad confesses his temptation concerning the satanic whispering. What is the true, vital issue about the satanic verses in the Qur’an?
6. Because Islam considers the Holy Spirit to be the angel Gabriel, what does it lack, compared to Christianity?
7. What insight do we gain from 1 John 4:2-4, concerning the son who is often rejected in the Qur’an?
8. Why does Satan appear to accept the title, al-Safeeh (the foolish one), in Sura al-Jinn 72:4, and how do his words affect Muslims?
9. What do Muslims consider as having happened to those who reject Allah’s Qur’an and Muhammad?
10. What can we understand about Satan and his kingdom, according to al-Jinn 72:11?
11. What may be the deeper truth behind the conversion of the 73 men in Medina to Islam, which is supported by the Qur’an itself?
12. Quote the verse in the Gospel according to Matthew (with its reference) that is in complete contrast to the curse of Allah in Sura Al Imran 3:61?
13. According to Galatians 1:8-9, what must we understand about the supposed angel Gabriel that revealed the Qur’an to Muhammad?
14. When a Muslim says: “There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is his ambassador,” what is he stating with all his will?
15. How do the Five Pillars of Islam influence a Muslim?
16. What do we learn about the value of religious deeds according to Suras Hud 11:115 and al-Fatir 35:29-30, and how is the approach of Islam different from the grace of Christ in Christianity?
17. How should we help those who have contacted spirits or those who have inherited such a burden from the ancestors?
18. How should a convert read the Bible, and what should he do in order to have the Word of God fill his subconscious?
19. What do we learn about a merely intellectual acceptance of Christ from the elderly lady who addressed the group from OM?
20. What are the unbridgeable differences between Allah and the God of the Bible?
21. What must our answer be to the wave of unbiblical contextualization that encourages Muslim converts to continue in Islamic religious practices?
22. How does the end of the Lord’s Prayer challenge us regarding Islam?
23. What did you understand from the subject of the occult in Islam?