Merritt calls on Baptists to fast & pray on last day of Ramadan
Posted on Nov 26, 2001 | by Todd Starnes
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--The president of the Southern Baptist Convention is calling on all Southern Baptists to fast and pray on Dec. 16, the last day of the Muslim month of Ramadan.
"I call on all our Southern Baptists to pray and fast that God will miraculously and supernaturally reveal himself through Jesus Christ to Muslims on that day," said James Merritt, president of the SBC and pastor of the Atlanta-area First Baptist Church, Snellville.
During Ramadan, observant Muslims abstain from eating, drinking, smoking and sex between sunrise and sunset. The month, which officially began Nov. 16 in most Arab nations, commemorates the time when Muslims believe God began revealing the Koran, their holy book, to the prophet Muhammad.
Merritt said the last day of Ramadan is particularly important for Muslims because that is the day they believe God speaks to them.
"We need to fast because we do believe that Christ is the only way to heaven," Merritt said. "Just as they can pray and fast, we want to pray and fast that they will find the true way to heaven, and this is through Jesus Christ."
The SBC president said he is concerned about religious pluralism in American society.
"There is this idea that we all worship the same God at these interfaith meetings, and we do not," Merritt said.
"If Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven, the only true religion therefore must be Christianity," he said. "Every other religion gives a false hope of having a relationship with God. That's not what I say, that's what Jesus says."