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The Faith Next DoorAmerican Christians and Their New Religious Neighbors$
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Paul D. Numrich

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195386219

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195386219.001.0001

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Struggling to Reach Out

Struggling to Reach Out

St. Silas Lutheran Church

(p.68) FIVE Struggling to Reach Out
The Faith Next Door

Paul D. Numrich

Oxford University Press

September 11, 2001, moved a Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod congregation to face the global and local realities of Islam. Although congregational leaders agreed on the ultimate goal of saving Muslim souls, they debated the nature of Islam (does it come from the same God Christians worship or not?) and the best strategy for approaching Muslims with the Gospel (should we emphasize the contrasts or the commonalities between Christianity and Islam?). The issue of religious truth thus came to the fore: Is Islam a true religion, a false religion, or one that is partially true? In addition, St. Silas also sought to distinguish the core claims of the Gospel from cultural expressions of Christianity.

Keywords:   September 11, Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod, Islam, Muslims, Gospel, religious truth, cultural expressions

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