Mark A. Gabriel

Mark A. Gabriel, born 30 December 1957, is a writer on Islamic affairs, who lives in the United States under "religious asylum". He is the author of five books critical of Islam, including Islam and the Jews: The Unfinished Battle and Journey into the Mind of an Islamic Terrorist.

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Biography

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In his first book written in 1997, Against the Tides in the Middle East: The true story of Mustafa, former teacher of Islamic history, Gabriel tells of his birth on 30 December 1957 to Muslim parents in Upper Egypt. His name back then was Mustafa. His parents, wealthy owners of a clothing factory, as well as his six brothers and one sister, were all devout Muslims. Early fears by relatives that Mustafa would grow up as a Christian because he had been nursed by a Christian woman resulted in him being given a thorough Islamic education.

Mustafa grew up immersed in Islamic culture and was sent to Al Azhar school at the age of six. By the time he was twelve years of age, he had completely memorized the Qur'an.[1] After graduating from Al-Azhar University with a Master's degree in 1990, with a graduation thesis on The reign of the heir over the Islamic kingdom in the period of Ammaweya, he was subsequently offered a position as a lecturer at the university.[2] During his research, which involved travel to Eastern and Western countries, Mustafa became more distant from Islam. In his book, he wrote about his view of Islam stating:

[I found Islam's history] from its commencement to date, to be filled with violence and bloodshed without any worthwhile ideology or sense of decency. I asked myself "What religion would condone such destruction of human life?" Based on that, I began to see that the Muslim people and their leaders were perpetrators of violence."

[3]

On hearing that Mustafa had "forsaken Islamic teachings", the authorities of Al Azhar expelled him from the University on 17 December 1991, and asked for him to be released from the post of Imam in the mosque of Anas Ebn Malek in the city of Giza. The Egyptian secret police then seized Mustafa and placed him in a cell without food and water for three days, after which he was tortured and interrogated for four days before being transferred to the Khalifa prison in Cairo. He was released without charge a week later. Following these events, Mustafa lost his faith and went to work as a sales director in his father's factory. However, after a year of reflection on religious texts and discussions with a Christian woman, he "gave his heart to Jesus".[4]

On 4 August 1994, Mustafa was sent by his father to South Africa to establish connections in the clothing materials business. In Durban, he met a Christian family from India with whom he stayed for three days and lived a Christian life for the first time. After returning to Cairo, Mustafa wore a Christian crucifix around his neck for ten days before his father noticed it and demanded an explanation. Mustafa explained: "I received Jesus Christ as my God and Saviour, and I pray for you and the rest of my family to also accept Jesus Christ as your Saviour".[5] Mustafa writes that his father collapsed, but on recovering cried out to his other sons saying: "Your brother is a convert! I must kill him today!". Mustafa escaped to his sister's house. On 28 August 1994, he traveled through Northern Egypt, Libya, Chad and Cameroon, finally stopping in the Congo, where he was struck down by malaria. Following a "miraculous recovery from certain death", Mustafa left the hospital five days later "to tell the people everywhere what Jesus did for him in Africa".[6]

Mustafa subsequently changed his name, taking the Christian name of Mark Gabriel.

Mission

In addition to what he claims about his qualifications from Al-Azhar University, Gabriel has a doctorate in Christian education and a master's in world religion from Florida Christian University in Orlando. He describes himself as founder and president of Hope for the Nations, a "missions organization dedicated to bringing the Good News to the entire world, including Muslims".[7] Gabriel prays "for the entire world, including Muslims, to come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ"[8]

Gabriel's website was run by Bradlee Sargent, an American-born computer programmer who "saw the vital need of evangelizing Muslims in 1983, when he lived in Saudi Arabia."[9] Sargent is a member of the Arabic Evangelical Church,[10] organized by Syrian-born Christian Peter Shadid,[11] which aims to guide the Muslims of Central Florida "away from the teachings of Mohammed and toward Christianity". Gabriel is listed as the owner of the new website established on 24 July 2006.[12]

The books published by Gabriel are promoted by Stephen Strang's Strang Communications. Strang believes that "Y'eshua is getting us ready for his return". He believes that "Y'eshua is getting us ready, all of us, the Gentile church included, for the great influx of believers."[13]

Some Muslim critics believe that Gabriel does not actually exist and that a body-double is being used in his videos. Among these are Basim Ghozlan, a former imam for the Islamic Association of Oslo and editor of islam.no, who denounced Gabriel and his book Islam and Terrorism.[14]

Documentaries

In the summer of 2004, David R. Reagan [15] of Lamb & Lion Ministries conducted two television interviews with Mark Gabriel.[16][17][18][19][20] In 2006 the two interviews were edited together and Lamb & Lion Ministries produced a new DVD called "The Mark Gabriel Story." The DVD covers his life and experiences and draws heavily on the book, Islam and Terrorism.

Works

  • Against the Tides in the Middle East, International Academic Centre for Muslim Evangelism in South Africa, 1997 (published under the name "Mustafa").
  • Islam and Terrorism: What the Qur'an really teaches about Christianity, violence and the goals of the Islamic jihad. 2002, ISBN 0-88419-884-7
  • Islam and the Jews: The Unfinished Battle. 2003, ISBN 0-88419-956-8
  • Jesus and Muhammad: Profound Differences and Surprising Similarities. 2004, ISBN 1-59185-291-9
  • Journey into the Mind of an Islamic Terrorist. 2006, ISBN 1-59185-713-9
  • Culture Clash [21]
  • Coffee with the Prophet: 21st Century Conversations with Muhammad

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Mustafa, 1997, p. 9.
  2. ^ Mustafa, 1997, p. 19.
  3. ^ Mustafa, 1997, p. 20-21.
  4. ^ Mustafa, 1997, p. 54.
  5. ^ Mustafa, 1997, p. 60.
  6. ^ Mustafa, 1997, p. 75.
  7. ^ Gabriel, 2003, p. 220.
  8. ^ Gabriel, 2003, p. 187.
  9. ^ Sharing the Gospel in Arabic, St. Petersburg Times, 2 January 2002.
  10. ^ Directory of Arabic Christian Churches
  11. ^ Florida Baptist Witness, June 10, 2004. (pdf)
  12. ^ InterNIC
  13. ^ Stephen Strang At Messiah’99[self-published source?]
  14. ^ Islam og terrorisme, Av Mark Gabriel. Kommentert av Basim Ghozlan
  15. ^ Ministry Evangelist
  16. ^ Mark Gabriel
  17. ^ Archived
  18. ^ The Mark Gabriel Story: The Truth about Islam
  19. ^ Archived
  20. ^ http://www.ced24.com/tv/marc_gabriel.php
  21. ^ Excerpt from Islamic Terrorist

External links


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