Britain’s highest-ranking man of the cloth, the archbishop of Canterbury, said Christians should not share their faith with Muslims and other non-Christians unless they are asked.
Archbishop Justin Welby made the comment last week at an interfaith event that included Islamic and Jewish leaders. He insisted Christians should not actively “proselytize” non-Christians, the Express reported.
The comments come as Britain is increasingly being Islamized, with 5.6 percent of its population now identifying as Muslim, dozens of churches being converted to mosques, and the city of London recently electing its first Muslim mayor, Sadiq Khan.
Almost every major city in Britain has a Muslim enclave and the country is taking in at least 20,000 Syrian refugees.
Welby said Christians should be more concerned about “respect for the other,” and start by “listening before you speak.” They should offer “love that is unconditional and not conditional to one iota, to one single element, on how the person responds to your own declaration of faith; and of not speaking about faith unless you are asked about faith.”
Evangelical leaders rebuked the archbishop’s comments as unbiblical, saying they negate Jesus’ own words in the Great Commission of Matthew 28: 18-20 and many other teachings of Jesus and his disciples, the early church fathers and the Anglican church itself.
In the Great Commission Jesus said, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
“Christianity has never merely been an intellectual acknowledgement of some particular set of doctrines,” said Bible teacher and evangelist Joel Richardson, author of “When A Jew Rules the World,” “The Global Jesus Revolution” and “The Islamic Antichrist.”
‘Shut the hell up…’
Richardson said James, the brother of Jesus, made it clear that “faith” without resulting action is a false faith.
“Christians who do not share their faith, may very well not even possess a genuine faith,” he said. “The message of the world to the Church today is essentially this: ‘Shut the hell up and go feed the poor!’ The spirit of the age is well pleased when Christians engage in productive social action but remain quiet concerning the reality of sin and the need of all men and women to repent.
“They rage when we say, as Jesus so clearly did, that He alone is ‘the way, the truth, and the life and no one comes to the Father except by [Jesus].’ The exclusive message of Christianity drives the world nuts. When Christians withhold the gospel, the message that reveals the only way to life, they are actually placing their stamp of approval on the other’s spiritual death certificate.”
“This is the most hateful act. Those who are genuine disciples of Jesus will not shut up (about the gospel message),” Richardson added. “The blind guide archbishop of Canterbury needs to repent himself and begin rightly shepherding his flock or resign.”
Evangelizing Muslim refugees ‘verboten’
The archbishop is not the only Christian leader teaching that Christians should keep their faith to themselves when engaging with Muslims.
Pastor Gerhard Scholte of the Reformed Keizersgracht Church, who also heads up the refugee task force of combined Amsterdam churches in the Netherlands, told the Daily Beast that his church does not promote conversions of non-Christians.
Thousands of Muslim migrants are walking into Europe’s churches and seeking to convert to Christianity. Astonishingly, this is not “good news” to Pastor Scholte and others working to resettle the refugees. They would apparently prefer the converts remain Muslim.
“Conversion to Christianity is not promoted in our church, so we see very little of it,” Scholte told the Daily Beast. “Everyone is a child of God,” whether Christian, Jew or Muslim. “Faith should not be conditional,” he said, echoing the comments of Welby.
The distaste for reaching out to Muslims with the gospel is also alive and well in the American church.
In fact, the nine major volunteer agencies or VOLAGs that contract with the U.S. government to provide refugee resettlement services are required to sign an agreement stating they will not proselytize any of the refugees in the process of helping feed, cloth and shelter them.
Among the primary VOLAGs contracting with the U.S. government to provide aid to refugees are agencies affiliated with the Catholic, Lutheran, Episcopalian and evangelical Christian faiths, as well as the Jewish faith.
Many liberal church pastors participating in interfaith associations with imams also frown upon proselytizing Muslims.
This falls in line with what Islamists regard as the “Pact of Umar,” who was Islam’s third caliph and conqueror of Jerusalem. He established a set of rules and regulations setting the conditions under which Christians and Jews were supposed to relate with Muslims. The Muslims were to rule supreme over the Christians and Jews, who were allowed to practice their own faith as “dhimmis” under the leadership of Islam.
This has been a tenet of Shariah law ever since, said Dr. Mark Christian, a former Muslim imam who converted to Christianity in his late 20s and emigrated from Egypt to the U.S.
“Umar did not come up with these rules on his own, it’s the Shariah law of inter-relationships between the three faiths,” Christian told WND.
“We have the cross and the Star of David and who gets upset and is sensitive to any symbols like that? It is the Muslims,” Christian said. “Jews and Christians have been living next door on the same streets for years with no problems but history tells us that Muslims are very sensitive to everything, whether it be Christian proselytizing, crosses or even pork in the grocery stores.
“The reality is it is not about sensitivity it’s about making a statement — ‘we are supreme.'”
A sign of Christian apostasy?
Carl Gallups, a Florida Baptist pastor, radio host and author, said this is a sign of the apostate church foretold of in the biblical book of Revelation. They talk about love, but withholding the truth of Christ is hardly a loving thing for a Christian to do.
“These are the days of apostasy,” said Gallups, author of “Final Warning” and “Be Thou Prepared: Equipping Christians for Persecution and Times of Trouble.”
“Can you imagine Jesus ordering His disciples or the church to ‘keep your faith quiet?’ I guess this archbishop has never read the seven letters to the seven churches in Revelation?” he said. “Wow. It’s here folks…”
Richardson said Welby needs to repent and do some soul searching on how he could be willing to throw out such a basic Christian tenet as evangelism.
“If he does not (repent), faithful Anglicans throughout the world need to remove him,” Richardson said. “Yes, we Christians will care for the poor, the needy, the outcast, and the afflicted, but we will not shut up. If we remain silent, the very rocks themselves will cry out.”
The Church of England recently launched a campaign to reverse decades of declining membership. How the archbishop’s ban on proselytizing Muslims fits into that strategy is mind-boggling, said Gallups.
Gallups said that to eliminate or downplay the importance of Christian evangelism is to give a slap in the face not only to Jesus but all of his disciples who have gone to their graves as martyrs over the centuries while spreading the gospel in unfriendly places.
“Paul was beheaded, Steven was stoned, Peter was crucified and countless Church fathers were martyred for steadfastly obeying Christ’s command to share the good news of the gospel,” Gallups said. “This archbishop makes a mockery of their lives.”
Another former Muslim who is now a Christian pastor, Iranian-born Shahram Hadian, told WND that Pope Francis has put forth the same unbiblical ideas about keeping one’s faith hidden.
“You saw the pope go to the Hagia Sophia (in Turkey) and bow down to pray toward mecca,” Hadian said.
“We have the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops saying the same thing, that we want to love the refugees and bring them here, feed and clothe them but when you ask them if they have a plan to share the gospel they have no plan to share it because they feel like it’s offensive,” Hadian said.
He said this philosophy is proving “disastrous” in Europe, and plays right along with Islamic law.
“Europe has already passed anti-defamation of Islam laws and now in fact the archbishop comes out and says ‘don’t share your faith unless they first ask you.’ That’s not going to happen for the most part,” Hadian said. “Christians are getting orders to keep their faith silent and it’s unbiblical, absolutely unbiblical.”
Surrendering to Islamic subjugation
Hadian, pastor of Truth in Love Christian Fellowship in eastern Washington, said he has talked to many Christians involved in the refugee resettlement movement who say “the exact same thing” espoused by the archbishop of Canterbury.
“They say ‘we are going to wait until they ask us, we don’t want to push our faith on them.’ It really is a surrender,” he said.
“Christians, not Christianity but Christians, are surrendering to Islam. When you’re afraid to actually share the gospel, which the Bible says offers the power of eternal life, you are really surrendering ground to this other faith, which is Islam,” he continued.
“True Christianity will never surrender to Islam. But it’s the Christians, or the ones pretending to be Christian, who are surrendering to Islam and it’s not biblical. These are not representatives of the gospel. The spirit of God does not retreat, does not surrender ground, the only time it retreats is when Christians give it up.”
Paul McGuire, a pastor, author and former radio host in Southern California, said Archbishop Welby was betraying the gospel and entering a dark place spiritually.
“What is the difference between the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Webby and the Lord Jesus Christ and the original apostles? The difference is that Jesus Christ and the original apostles were faithful to God, whether men liked it of not,” McGuire said. Rev. Welby’s teaching that a Christian should not talk about their faith unless asked, is a teaching that Satan would have invented to prevent men and women from being saved by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. By biblical definition, the Archbishop of Canterbury is a ‘false prophet’ and a wolf in sheep’s clothing teaching his flock the doctrine of demons.”
Correction: An earlier version of this story said the Tri-Faith Initiative in Omaha, Nebraska, would not allow the church there to erect any large crosses or Christian symbols on its exterior but the pastor of that church said this is false, and the church will have more than one large cross on its exterior.