“O Maryam! Indeed Allah gives you the good news of a word from Him, whose name is Masih, Isa, the son of Maryam, a man of status in this world and in the Hereafter and one of the nearest. And he shall speak to the people in the cradle as well as in the middle age, and shall be one of the righteous.” (Holy Qur’an, Chapter 3:45-46)
Muslims have long understood that the Holy Qur’an contains a multitude of verses concerning Jesus, son of the Chaste Mary, his miraculous birth and outstanding character. In early spring of this year, Atlanta-based Grace Fellowship Church began a study effort called “Jesus in the Quran” to introduce Christians to the English text of the Holy Qur’an by reading it alongside their Bibles.
These efforts, along with programs sponsored by organizations such as the United Muslim Christian Forum (UMCF), are taking bold steps to create an atmosphere of open communication and collaboration, built on a foundation of faith in the One Almighty God and His Divinely revealed books. Public Relations Director of UMCF, Muhammad Hasib Haqq, explains, “In these times, it is crucial for Muslims and Christians to come together in collaboration to stop those who advocate a clash between these two great civilizations.”
Outreach minister for Grace Fellowship Church, Jon Stallsmith, initiated “Jesus in the Quran”, which offers programs that address shared values between both faiths. “We want to find peace, reconciliation around a scriptural understanding of Jesus”.
In January 2011, the group will hold its second joint Muslim-Christian celebration of the birth of Jesus, Son of Mary, in Binghamton, New York, open to the public and welcoming speakers of various faiths.