In a class of 30, at the western edge of the Bible Belt, only a handful knew the biblical belief that we are helpless in our sins and that our only hope lies in God's grace because of Christ's sacrifice. Most students identified Christianity with a set of moralistic rules: Obey them and you're good.
Oddly enough, what they saw as Christianity is more like Islam. Muslims do not recognize original sin. They contend that Allah through his prophet Muhammad laid out the rules for moral living, and that we are naturally capable of following all of them. To quote from one typical and popular Muslim website, 2muslims.com, "A believer . . . has the conviction that there is no other means of success and salvation for him except purity of soul and righteousness of behavior."
Christians say only Christ meets that standard. (This is why "substitutionary atonement" is a crucial doctrine.) Muslims say they can...
Slater, there is much I like about your response, one may have to wonder about "moderate Muslim" Identifying Moderate Muslims sometimes seems to be an impossibility. It also seems that a moderate Muslims can easily turn radical. You have to remember that most if not all of the 9/11 killer Muhammadans were educated, middle-class--as are the present day leaders of these terrorist groups.
Now, Arminians will especially like this commentary, Islam and Christianity-A Comparison. While the commentary may be correct about the results of original sin, it still doesn't capture the idea about the inheritance of original sin.
"people like Samson and Paul..... These individuals had to become aware of their own transgressions and limitations. They had to be broken, because often we don't realize how much we need God until we have no other alternative"
A people and religion which does not "know" sin has to be very dangerous. The muslims think that they can win salvation by obeying the Quran rules. Some of those rules include killing as well as conquering peoples. This is a war which is not yet over a battle which is not yet won. Its not about hearts and minds and moderate muslims. Perhaps it is about technology and oil lasting long enough to keep technology running.....Then??? How many muslims will be living here?