Revertion Story of a Former Protestant Pastor, Missionary & Bible College Lecturer
By Khadijah "Sue" Watson
Former pastor, missionary, professor. Master's degree in Divinity Taken from Al Sabr newsletter, Kuwait. Sister Khadijah Watson is presently working as a teacher for women in one of the Dawah (invitation) centers in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
"What happened to you?" This was usually the first reaction that I encountered when my former classmates, friends and co-pastors saw me after having embraced Islam. I suppose I couldn't blame them. I was a highly unlikely person to change religions. Formerly, I was a professor, pastor, church planner and missionary. If anyone was a radical fundamentalist it was I.
I had just graduated with my Master's Degree of Divinity from an elite seminary five months before. It was after that time that I met a lady who had worked in Saudi Arabia and had embraced Islam. Of course I asked her about the treatment of women in Islam. I was shocked at her answer; it wasn't what I expected, so I proceeded to ask other questions relating to Allah and Muhammad Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam. She informed me that she would take me to the Islamic Center where they would be better able to answer my questions.
I went along being "prayed up", i.e. asking Jesus for protection against demon spirits, seeing that what we had been taught about Islam is that it is a Demonic and Satanic religion. Having taught Evangelism I was quite shocked at their approach, it was direct and straightforward. No intimidation, no harassment, no psychological manipulation, no subliminal influence! None of this, "Let's have a Qur’anic study in your house", like a counter part of the Bible study. I couldn't believe it!
They gave me some books and told me if I had any questions they were available to answer them in the office. That night I read all of the books they gave me. It was the first time I had ever read a book about Islam written by a Muslim. We had studied and read books about Islam only written by Christians. The next day I spent three hours at the office asking questions. This went on every day for a week, by which time I had read 12 books and knew why Muslims are the hardest to convert to Christianity. Why? Because there is nothing to offer them! In Islam, there is a relationship with Allah, forgiveness of sins, salvation and promise of Eternal Life.
Naturally, my first question centered on the deity of Allah. Who is this Allah that the Muslims worship? We had been taught as Christians that this is another god. When in fact He is the Omniscient-All Knowing, Omnipotent-All Powerful, and Omnipresent-All Present God. The One and Only without co-partners or co-equal. It is interesting to note that there were bishops during the first three hundred years of the Church that were teaching, as the Muslim believes, that Jesus (peace be upon him) was a prophet and a teacher! It was only after the conversion of Emperor Constantine that he was the one to call and introduce the doctrine of the Trinity. He, a convert to Christianity, who knew nothing of this religion, introduced a paganistic concept that goes back to Babylonian times. This space does not permit me to go into detail about the subject. Only I must point out that the word TRINITY is not found in the Bible in any of its many translations nor is it found in the original Greek or Hebrew languages!
My other important question centered on Muhammad Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam. Who is this Muhammad? I found out that Muslims do not pray to him like the Christians pray to Jesus (peace be upon him). He is not an intermediary and, in fact, it is forbidden to pray to him. We seek blessings upon him at the end of our prayer but likewise we ask blessings on Abraham (peace be upon him). He was a Prophet and a Messenger, the final and last Prophet. In fact, until now 1400 years later there has been no prophet after him. His message is for All Humankind as opposed to the message of Jesus (peace be upon him) or Moses (peace be upon him) who were sent to the Jews ("Hear O Israel"). But the message is the same message of Allah. "The Lord your God is One God and you shall have no other gods before me." (Mark 12:29)
Because prayer was a very important part of my Christian life I was both interested and curious to know how the Muslims were praying. As Christians we were as ignorant on this aspect of Muslim belief as on the other aspects. We thought and were taught, that the Muslims were bowing down to the Kaaba in Mecca, which was the Muslims' god and center point of this false deity. Again, I was shocked to learn that the manner of prayers is prescribed by God, Himself. The words of the prayer are one of praise and exaltation. The approach to prayer (ablution or washing) in cleanliness is under the direction of Allah. He is a Holy God and it is not for us to approach Him in an arbitrary manner but only reasonable that He should tell us how we should approach Him.
At the end of the week, after having spent eight years of formal theological studies, I knew cognitively (head knowledge) that Islam was true. But I did not embrace Islam at that time because I did not believe it in my heart. I continued to pray, to read the Bible, to attend lectures at the Islamic Center. I was in earnest asking and seeking God's direction. It is not easy to change your religion. I did not want to loose my salvation if there was salvation to lose. I continued to be shocked and amazed at what I was learning because I was not what I was taught that the followers of Islam believed. In my Master's level, the professor I had was respected as an authority in Islam yet his teaching and that of Christianity in general is full of misunderstanding. He and many Christians like him are sincere but they are sincerely wrong.
Two months later, after having once again prayed seeking God's direction, I felt something drop into my being! I sat up, and it was the first time I was to use the name of Allah, and I said, "Allah, I believe you are the One and Only True God." There was peace that descended upon me and from that day four years ago until now I have never regretted embracing Islam. This decision did not come without trial. I was fired from my job as I was teaching in two Bible Colleges at that time, ostracized by my former classmates, professors and co-pastors, disowned by my husband's family, misunderstood by my adult children and made a suspicion by my own government. Without the faith that enables man to stand up to Satanic forces I would not have been able to withstand all of this. I am ever so grateful to Allah that I am Muslim and may I live and die as a Muslim.
"Truly, my prayer, my service of sacrifice, my life and my death are all for God the Cherisher of the Worlds. No partner has He, this I am commanded. And I am the first of those who bow to Allah in Islam." Quran 6:162-163