Agonizing Over a Decision

I am agonizing over a decision. It is hard for me to say NO to an amazing opportunity and privilege in 2019, and it is very hard for me to say YES.

Mateen Elass

For many years, I have taught an intensive course on Islam and the geopolitics of the Middle East at several seminaries in the United States and Canada. I continue to teach that course at Columbia International University, in Columbia, SC and at Denver Seminary. Since June 2016, I started teaching this course, free of charge, to non-seminarians who are eager to make more sense of Islam and the Middle East. Those who take the course do some required readings and attend 44 hours of class time, which we cover in five days and a half. In this course we cover most of these topics:

Sharia in practice

There has been a great deal of discussion regarding the Sharia or the Islamic law. Christians in the West are usually fearful, suspicious and confused. What if Muslims in various parts of the world begin to demand the application of the Sharia. In my blog of October 26, 2017, I presented the argument of a Muslim scholar on the subject. Today I would like to consider a Christian perspective on the subject coming from Nigeria. Why Nigeria? 

Computers and the YouTube

In addition to spending time with our sons and their families during Christmas 2017, my wife and I enjoyed watching videos of flash Mobs (where people sing songs in a shopping mall or in an airport) on YouTube. Our favorite by far was the Hallelujah Chorus. Then I discovered that YouTube has a great deal to offer in terms of documentaries and favorite songs in Broadway musicals. 

Is Sex Slavery Legal in Islam?

In 2008, Jayson Casper took my course on Islam and the geopolitics of the Middle East at one of the seminaries where I teach on regular basis. At that time, it did not cross my mind that Jayson and his family will end up living in Cairo, Egypt, a city where my family and I lived for fifteen years. Over the years I have appreciated Jayson’s perspective and writings.