Christian News from Scotland

News stories from Scotland and beyond

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

End Times Theology

Although "End Times Theology" may be a bit of a mystery to many "Christians" in Scotland and beyond, it is a subject which is increasingly in focus in many parts of Christ's Church. But Christians are not alone in having an "End Times Theology".

Middle East experts say that Muslim beliefs about the "end times" are fueling the conflicts in the region.

Scholar William Wagner, a professor at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, says, "Both Islam and Christianity have a very well-defined eschatology, or period of the last days. Both of them cannot be correct."

A majority of Muslims believe the "12th Iman" or Mahdi, an Islamic messianic figure, was placed in hiding until the day of judgment.

There is much dissent among Muslim factions as to who this saviour figure will be and where and when he will return. Through time, various Muslim leaders have already claimed to be Mahdi.

Some factions even believe this Mahdi may be Jesus. Famous muslim historian Ibn Khuldun quotes Anas ibn Malik that the prophet said, "لا مهدي إلا عيسى بن مريم", literally meaning: No Mahdi but Jesus son of Mary.

However, almost all Muslims agree that in order for this day to arrive, Israel must be destroyed.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been cited by various news sources as not only believing in the eventual return of the Mahdi, but that the return is near and that it is the responsibility of the Iranian government to prepare the country for his return.

To this end, Ahmadinejad has vowed to rid Iran of Christianity and all other offensive non-Islamic influences and practices. Persecution against Christians has increased under his direction.

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