Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Pastor Haytham Abi-Haydar and the Road to Dhimmitude

I'm not surprised when Muslims condemn us, or when Muslims lie about us. Islam commands Muslims to subjugate unbelievers, through violence if necessary, and according to Muhammad, "War is deceit." Hence, just about anything goes in Islam when going after one's enemies, and attacks are to be expected.

What I find shocking is that some Christians employ similar tactics, even against fellow Christians. We've seen this numerous times after our trips to Dearborn. While I suspect that most Christians who attack us do so because they've gotten some false information about us, a few Christians are so consistent in actively spreading falsehood about us that something more seems to be at work. Though we usually ignore Christians in the latter group, a few are worthy of note. In this post, I will address the claims of Pastor Haytham Abi-Haydar.

If you're wondering who Haytham is, he's the man who appears at the beginning of Josh McDowell's video here:



If you followed the news concerning last year's Arab Festival, you might remember Haytham as the Christian leader who consistently attacked both George Saieg's ministry and ours, and did so in the secular media (long before bringing any of his concerns to Nabeel and me directly).

In an interview with Fox News, we read:

[S]ome local Christian leaders have taken issue with Saieg's brand of evangelizing.

"They littered this place with their literature," the Rev. Haytham Abi Haydar, who heads the Arabic Christian Alliance Church, told FOXNews.com.

Yes, you read that correctly. Haytham just condemned George's ministry for distributing too many free DVDs, New Testaments, tracts, etc. Haytham goes on to say that George's ideas aren't welcome in Dearborn.

"Just look at the conclusion of these guys -- that Muslims are trying to create Shariah Law in the U.S., [which creates] fear with Christians. But Muslims are not here to radicalize or evangelize the U.S. ... [Saieg's] philosophy and his ideas are not welcome here."

Muslims aren't here to radicalize or evangelize? Well then, let's drop our guard! Pastor Haytham assures us that Muslims aren't trying to spread Islam, and that they're not willing to use violence to do it. Perhaps next Haytham will try to convince us that the September 11th terrorist attacks were perpetrated by the U.S. government!

Not surprisingly, Haytham blames us for the assaults by security last year. The Detroit Free Press reported:

The Rev. Haytham Abi Haydar, a Christian evangelical convert from Islam with Arabic Alliance Church in Dearborn, said that a Christian group called Acts 17 Apologetics caused the problems at this year's Arab festival.

"They put cameras in their faces and were very antagonistic," Abi Haydar said of the group that produced the controversial video that has drawn almost 1.4 million views on YouTube.

Let's review the facts from last year.

(1) Security was harassing and entrapping Christians at the festival. (Once police gave security the authority to stop people from distributing literature, security would walk up to Christians and ask for something. They would say something like, "Hey, can I see that Bible?" As soon as the Christian would hand over the Bible, security would take the Christian to police for breaking the rules. They even tried to do this to me. Thus, instead of merely stopping Christians from handing out literature, security actively stopped Christians who were merely witnessing at the festival.)
(2) While security was violating the Constitutional rights of Christians, Muslims were free to walk around the festival distributing materials.
(3) A Muslim booth that was distributing anti-Christian materials was also distributing pamphlets claiming that Islam is a religion of peace.
(4) The booth invited critics to ask questions.
(5) Nabeel approached the booth to ask a question about Surah 9:29 of the Qur'an, which commands Muslims to subjugate non-Muslims (as was happening at the festival).
(6) The Muslims at the booth gave us permission to record the conversation.
(7) Despite the fact that we were allowed to record the conversation, a Muslim security guard illegally grabbed Mary Jo's camera. (Note: We tend to get angry when someone puts their hands on our Christian sister.)
(8) After verifying with a non-Dearborn off-duty police officer that we were indeed allowed to record, and that security had no right to stop us, we returned to the booth.
(9) When we left the booth, I saw the guard that had assaulted Mary Jo.
(10) I recorded the woman so that we could report her actions.
(11) Security then sent a teenager to snatch something from Nabeel's hand, so that they could accuse us of distributing pamphlets. (Note: It was a pamphlet that had been given to us by Muslims at the booth.)
(12) Security then spent the next several minutes slapping us around and kicking Nabeel's legs. Mary Jo was assaulted several times.
(13) We made a video about what happened, so that people would be aware of what was happening in Dearborn.

After this, Haytham started talking to the media. It didn't bother him that Christians were being harassed and entrapped. It didn't bother him that his sister in Christ had been physically assaulted by security. Instead of condemning the injustice in Dearborn, Haytham condemned us in the media. Mayor John O'Reilly held a meeting about us and asked the local Christian groups to condemn us, and Haytham and others agreed and put together a letter condemning us. They contacted us briefly after composing the letter (it was shocking to finally hear directly from those who were publicly attacking us!) and demanded we apologize. Wasn't happening.

Since Haytham was so vocal in his condemnation of us (and in his support for Muslims who persecute Christians) last year, it should come as no surprise that Haytham wasted no time in condemning us (and defending persecutors) this year as well.

Haytham talked to Christianity Today:

"I think [Acts 17] was fishing for somebody to come attack them," said Haytham Abi-Haydar, pastor of Dearborn's Arabic Fellowship Alliance Church."

I don't know how to break this to Haytham, but if I'm in the middle of 30,000 Muslims, I know how to get them to attack me. I know exactly what to say about Muhammad to get Muslims to assault me. If I wanted Muslims to beat me into the ground, I would rip up a Qur'an, or pull out a Sharpie and start drawing offensive pictures of Muhammad, or start yelling, "Muhammad was a pedophile!" If Nabeel and I were to walk into the middle of a crowd of Muslims and start doing such things, one could fairly accuse us of trying to get Muslims to attack us. But we don't do those things. We have peaceful conversations with Muslims who approach us. The video footage proves this. So why does Haytham keep saying otherwise?

In an article from Mission Network News, we read:

Pastor Haytham Abi-Haydar has been attending the Arab International Festival since 1999, even having been allowed to have a booth at the event. "The community has been very good to us. They never denied us a request. From my perspective, we've never had any incidents."

I wonder why they're so good to Haytham. Could it be that Haytham is the one who cleans up their messes, allowing them to continue harassing Christians? Think about it. Muslim security guards physically assault three Christians, including a woman. Haytham defends the Muslims and attacks the Christians. The next year, police falsely arrest four Christians, including an 18-year-old female convert. Haytham defends the police and attacks the Christians. Yes, Dearborn needs Haytham. I'm sure they'll give him a booth every year, so long as he continues helping them in their persecution.

According to Abi-Haydar, Act 17 challenged Muslims in the crowd. Those challenges seemed to invite a crowd. Abi-Haydar says, "If he thinks that's how to reach out to people and that's how to dialogue with people, I think they are endangering their own lives for no reason."

When did we challenge anyone? After falsely accusing us, Haytham goes on to ask why we can't do things a different way. But considering we weren't challenging Muslims, I'm not sure how to answer him. Notice, however, that Haytham lets the cat out of the bag when he says, "I think they are endangering their lives for no reason." Is Haytham suggesting that Dearborn Muslims are so violent, one's life is at risk at the Arab festival when having discussions with Muslims? Such Islamophobia should be reported to Dearborn Police.

Wood and his organization were asked by many evangelical groups to change their tactics. Abi-Haydar says, "Why can't he go around with no cameras, no intimidating people and ask questions and build relationships with the community and sharing Christ? Why is that difficult?"

I don't recall "many evangelical groups" asking us to change our tactics. Perhaps Haytham can list them for us. But on to a more important question. Why can't we go around in Dearborn with no cameras? We can't go to Dearborn without cameras because people like Haytham are there--people who will invent all kinds of things about us, with no concern for accuracy, honesty, or integrity. Watch this next paragraph:

Abi-Haydar says when Wood was arrested, he was challenging a young Muslim man. The young man was screaming at him. Police asked Woods and his group to disburse. But Abi-Haydar says they didn't. "I know for one fact: if I was the police, I am responsible for the security of the community there and for the security [of Acts 17 Apologetics]. For their own security, I would have forced them to leave the area. And if they would have rejected it, I would have arrested them myself."

It's not about large groups forming, says Abi-Haydar. "It's about too many people yelling at each other. Is that [a good] witness?"

There you have it. The police were just trying to protect us. That's why they threw us in jail and lied about us numerous times in the police report. That's why we're going to court. It's for our protection, you see.

Notice how many false claims we have here. Haytham says that, when I was arrested, I was challenging a young Muslim man. Actually, I never challenged anyone, and when I was arrested, I was quietly recording a peaceful conversation. Haytham says a young man was screaming at me. Actually, no one was even paying attention to me. They were focusing on Nabeel, who was having a peaceful dialogue with Muslims who were asking him questions about the Gospel. Haytham says that police asked us to disburse. Actually, I asked police if we should move, and they said that we were fine where we were. Haytham says that we refused to disburse. Since we weren't asked to disburse, I have no clue how we refused anything. Haytham says that the problem was "too many people yelling at each other." But even a cursory examination of our video footage shows that no one was yelling at anyone. One Muslim had raised his voice during an earlier discussion, but Nabeel quickly diffused the situation, and they shook hands before the Muslim left. I should also point out that Haytham says that he agrees with what police did, and that he would have done the same. I wonder, Haytham, does that include lying about us in the police report?

But Haytham isn't finished. World Magazine reports:

Haytham Abi Haydar, a Lebanese-born pastor who has had a ministry in Dearborn since 1999, told me the presence of "four or five video cameras" is "intimidating" in the crowded streets. Haydar has run a booth next to McDowell: "We have not had any problem with the authorities, and we find the organizers hospitable and most attendees polite."

Haydar said Arab Christians who live in Dearborn don't appreciate the disruption brought by outsiders with no ongoing ministry in the city: "They come here once a year and create a problem we have to deal with the rest of the year. It is a waste and leaves the image of Dearborn distorted."

Four or five video cameras? Quite an exaggeration. Last year, when we approached the Muslim booth, we had a single video camera. After security assaulted Mary Jo, a non-Dearborn off-duty police officer said we should bring along a second camera, so that if one camera operator were to be assaulted, the other would be able to record. When security later assaulted all three of us, we had two cameras, but we didn't catch security kicking Nabeel's legs. Numerous people (after watching our video) suggested a third camera from a distance, and we went with this plan for this year. When we recorded dialogues at the festival, we would have either one or two cameras recording near the discussion, and another far off for security purposes. That's quite different from four or five cameras pointed directly into a person's face. But Haytham doesn't seem to be concerned with actual facts.

Finally, let's look at Haytham's comments in Charisma Magazine, a publication that interviewed several of our critics, but apparently wasn't interested in input from us.

"It really discredits us as a Christian when we make claim that Shariah law is being implemented in Dearborn," said pastor Haytham Abi-Haydar of Arabic Fellowship Alliance Church, who has ministered in Dearborn for more than a decade. "Any guy above 50 percent IQ score would know that that's not true. So our credibility in the community is being compromised. Second, we are being perceived as hostile. We evangelical Christians are coming across as [if] we are out to get [Muslims]." . . .

Abi-Haydar, who has evangelized at the festival for more than a decade, said Wood and Qureshi provoked the crowd. He said Wood challenged a young Muslim man, who began to scream at him.

"He started yelling at them, shouting against them," Abi-Haydar said. "The police was concerned because the circle was growing. He told them to break it up. ... If I was the police, for their own safety I would have told them to break that circle and move on."

Thomas More Law Center senior trial counsel Robert Muise, attorney for the Acts 17 missionaries, said his clients were exercising their free-speech rights. "Preaching the gospel on a city street that Muslims may find offensive so Muslims are shouting threats and profanities at the Christians so that's the basis for the police to arrest the Christians? I think not," he said. "The fact that people who are listening to the message that they may object to the message ... doesn't mean you silence the peaceful speaker. Is it provocative for a Muslim to hear message of the gospel? Well maybe it is, but it's protected by the First Amendment."

Abi-Haydar takes issue with those claims, arguing that the First Amendment does not give Christians the freedom to insult others.

"Nabeel and David are not interested in reaching out to the Muslim community, they are interested in exposing Islam," said Abi-Haydar, a Lebanon-born convert from Islam. "I don't have a problem with exposing Islam, but there is a wrong way to do it. ... If a Muslim guy came to our church and started attacking our faith, guess what we're going to do to him? We're going to kick him out. And that's what they were doing to David and Nabeel."

I have no recollection of "insulting others," unless Haytham thinks that peacefully answering questions is an insult to Muslims. Notice that Haytham, like so many others, compares (1) peacefully answering the questions of Muslims who approach us at a public festival with (2) a Muslim entering a church and attacking Christianity. Notice also his admission that, in such a situation, he would kick the Muslim out, and that he therefore agrees with Muslims kicking us out of the festival.

So there you have it. Haytham contends that we were kicked out of the festival for upsetting Muslims, and he completely agrees with kicking us out. Like the police and mayor, Haytham is willing to make things up when he attacks us, and is even willing to deceive the media. Strangely, despite the fact that Haytham's false reports are easily refuted by the video footage, reporters continue to interview him.

Haytham Abi-Haydar is Dearborn's first line of defense when Christians are mistreated. When we were attacked last year, the response was, "But other Christians weren't attacked, so you weren't either." This year, we were falsely arrested, and the response was, "But Christians like Haytham are quite welcome in Dearborn, so how can you say that you were targeted?" Of course Haytham is welcome in Dearborn. The city needs him. The police department needs him. The mayor needs him. Muslims need him. Haytham is a Christian who's willing to defend people who physically attack Christians (even women), falsely arrest Christians, and spread lies about Christians. Haytham even goes the extra mile and spreads lies about Christians who upset the local Muslims.

Why does Haytham do this? Is he seeking the approval of Muslims? Does he think that he's in competition with other ministries, and does he therefore attack them in order to strengthen his own position? We can't really know. But one thing is certain. Haytham's approach, if unchecked, will lead to further persecution of Christians, further assaults, and further arrests. I wonder if there's any point at which Haytham would draw a line. If Muslims had killed us, would Haytham speak out, or would he say we deserved it? If Muslims start raping Christian girls in Dearborn, as they are doing regularly in Egypt and Pakistan, will Haytham say something, or will he continue defending Muslims?

Hopefully, we will never see the answers to these questions. If those who are bravely standing for freedom are successful in Dearborn, Sharia will never be established, and those who assault and falsely arrest Christians will face justice.

***UPDATE*** It seems that Pastor Haytham may be testifying against us in court! It should be interesting, since our video footage refutes his claims. Haytham even went to police in an attempt to strengthen their crumbling case against us. The latest edition of the police report adds:

Haytham stated he is the pastor and founder of the Arabic Fellowship Alliance Church in Dearborn and also had information that he felt the police should be made aware of. Haytham stated that he also has heard and seen on the internet several negative comments made by David Wood and Nabeel Qureshi regarding the City of Dearborn, the Mayor, and the Chief of Police, that he didn't believe were true. Haytham stated that he witnessed the arrest of the four subjects at the Arab Fest. Haytham was in a booth no more than 20 to 30 feet from where the arrest occurred. He also stated he witnessed Nabeel Qureshi having a volatile conversation with one of the young arab male patrons at the festival. According to Haytham, he believed the arrests were justified by the police.

30 comments:

warrior4truth said...

I really don't understand Haythem. He seems genuinely interested in reaching Muslims, but on the other hand he is set on bashing other Christians who also reach out to Muslims. I want to know what's going on inside his head.

Fisher said...

This pastor belongs to the same denomination as my church. How sad. :-(

Zack_Tiang said...

This post should go viral... start sending links to this post everywhere... emailing.. etc..

Then the truth will prevail.

MikeAndDebbiesCorner said...

GOOD JOB DAVID!

MikeAndDebbiesCorner said...

GOOD JOB DAVID!

Bartimaeus said...

Once again I saw what I saw, the videos tell the story of what happened. It is unfortunate that there are some in Fearborn oops I mean Dearborn think to openly challege Muslims is somehow unloving and unkind. I suppose they think the Apostle Paul was unloving and unkind on Mars Hill.

DD Ra said...

By preaching hate against Islam, you are far from the way of Jesus, because Jesus is love.
Some Islamists are preaching hate, as you are as a christian, but most people in Islam and most christian are peaceful and loving.
Should all the haters undersand they cannot dictate to others what they have to do or think, it would be paradise on earth.

Sam said...

Warrior, it may be a bit of jealousy that David Wood and Nabeel Qureshi are getting all the attention for making a difference for Jesus and taking a loving stand for the Gospel. I don't what else it could be. Remember what Paul said about such people (cf. Philippians 1:12-18).

Nabeel Qureshi said...

@DD Ra:

How do you define "preaching hate"?

Bartimaeus said...

DD Ra
First Islam is a religion of hate Allah only loves those that love him compared to what the bible says that here is love not that we loved Him but He first loved us.

Calling people to faith and repentance is hardly a message of hate but it is biblical. Again the message of the bible is not God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life but rather repent of your sins and believe the gospel.

Theology Matters

Bartimaeus said...

I wonder if Josh would have gotten all those hugs and had been so well recieved if had given the kind of message James White gave on ABN on the meaning of the cross.

jem said...

Hello, David.... it's a big mistake to be making the assumptions your are makig.....

you said,... "that they're not willing to use violence to do it. Perhaps next Haytham will try to convince us that the September 11th terrorist attacks were perpetrated by the U.S. government!

That's the kind of rhetoric... Hitler used against the Jews.....
early colonist used to propagate slavery....the KKK used to continue to perpuate hate for minorities (i.e.black, latinos, jews are all inferior races), and the kind of rhetoric almost got a man to be attack at, "Ground Zero," just because "he looked like a muslim......"

Let's not repeat the past and make generalizations...which can have negative repercussions.....

I dare not think the outcome if than man would have been attacked..
all because of ignorance......

As a leader, you have great responsibility.......so dont be part of the problem rather be part of the solution.....by the way I personally know many Muslims that
I consider my friends and neighbors....and one of the things we talk about is, "One cannot judge all followers of a religion based on the actions of others...."

I ask G-D almighty to change your heart......so that you can reach people of other faiths with love.

ps
I agree with DD Ra...and for Nabeel preaching hate is doing what David is doing........

Best regards,


jem

David Wood said...

Jem,

Let's see if I've got the summary correct here.

David: "Haytham makes a blanket statement saying that Muslims don't try to spread Islam (despite the fact that they're commanded to do so), and that Muslims have no intention of subjugating unbelievers (despite the fact that they're commanded to do so). What's next, telling us that 9-11 was an inside job?"

Jem: "David is like Hitler for saying this. It's hate speech to say what's true."

That about right?

Jem, are you really saying that Muslims aren't trying to spread Islam? Then why do I have boxes full of tracts, pamphlets, Qur'ans, CDs, DVDs, etc., given to me by Muslims trying to convince me that Islam is true? Are you really saying, like Haytham, that Muslims will never use violence to spread their views? And do you really think it's hate speech to point out the obvious and indisputable fact that there are Muslims who try to spread their beliefs, and who are willing to subjugate unbelievers?

I really think you're being deliberately annoying just to waste everyone's time.

minoria said...

Hello David:
Haythem is certainly not well in the head,any impartial person would see you are right.I doubt he is a true Christian.Jesus said:"Be as innocent as doves,and as sly as foxes."Be good,but do not be stupid and he shows neither by refusing over and over again to admit the evidence shows him he is wrong.Knowing the ways of the world,either he is not well mentally or he is receiving money from Muslims to carry a smear campaign.One of the two,no sane person would hold his views.
And as to you DDRa,if you think it is "HATE" to say Islam teaches,and most Muslim scholars agree,that Mohammed had sex with a 9 year old girl called Aisha when it is REALITY then it is "hate" to say the KKK taught black people were inferior.So,do you that is also "hate"?

Ryan S said...

Jem/DD Ra

Could you kindly read Luke Ch 4 and expound on the reason the Jews may have wanted to sieze Jesus and toss him over a cliff.?

Which cause was it?

1. Jesus preached "hate"?

2. Jesus told the Truth ?

Zack_Tiang said...

DD Ra,

Love to know what you define as 'preaching hate'...
and how David or Nabeel preached 'hate'.


Jem,

Love that you're praying...
Not loving what you're praying about.

Seriously, people... Did you all actually watch the videos and see what was happening in them?
I can't believe you or anyone (after watching) still thinks David or Nabeel were 'preaching hate'..
or being confrontional.. and so on...

The only place I can think of them possibly 'preaching hate' was when they were entering the festival and having a introduction of sorts between the two of them (with the 'rowdy boys' following behind them)...
And that even wasn't like.. 'Hate the Muslims', 'Kill the Muslims'...

But was more 'The Quran taught this', 'Muhammad did that', 'Muslims are doing this', etc.
How is that 'preaching hate'?

Benjamin said...

@ Minoria
"I doubt he is a true Christian."

I know Haytham personally and have attended his church. I have heard him speak on multiple occasions and have no doubt that he is a true believer in Jesus Christ.

As to his motives in this matter, I can't seem to grasp what he is doing. I do, however, believe that he loves Jesus and loves his Muslim friends and neighbors and longs for them to know Jesus as we know Him.

@David

Have you initiated reconciliation with Haytham according to the biblical guidelines? If not, I would urge you to do so, albeit that this most recent post will significantly hinder your and his ability to come to peace on this matter in the foreseeable future, except by the Grace of God. I don't recall that the biblical guidelines condone public engagement of an obvious conflict without certain steps being taken. If you have not taken them, and he not taken them with you, then you are not following the biblical model relating to conflict among brothers in Christ. And saying that "he hasn't initiated" does not give you the liberty to expose your grievances to the world before trying to reconcile with him first.

The Berean Search said...

Jem disappeared the whole time the videos were being posted that showed footage of what really happened in Dearborn, and now Jem is suddenly back just in time to say Acts17 is just like Hitler and the KKK.

Do you have a nightly comedy show somewhere Jem? If so, where can I attend?

(Might I suggest perhaps, a mosque? Beating Christians over the head with accusations about Hitler and the KKK usually goes over like gang-busters with the devout mosque crowd...Seriously, since you claim you aren't a Muslim, I can only conclude that you borrowed the brain of an indoctrinated Muslim to come up with such logic.)

jem said...

Hello David, once again you completely miss the point....I'm rather surprised a man of your intelligence and knowdlege....

David: "Haytham makes a blanket statement saying that Muslims don't try to spread Islam (despite the fact that they're commanded to do so),

I didn't even address this point b/c I agree with you.....My point rather is direct to your comments,

David:"Willing to use violence to do it.

Are you saying all Muslim use violence to spread Islam? Are you saying all Muslims are responsible to 9-11? Are you saying all Muslims are terrorist?

Once again, let me remind that earlier this week an innocent man was almost attacked by a mob at, "Ground Zero," b/c he looked like a Muslim. He had to be escorted out by police officers for his own safety; despite the fact he kept proclaiming he wasn't a Muslim. My point, making generalization, like you are doing can potentially put lives in danger.

Jem: "David is like Hitler for saying this. It's hate speech to say what's true."That about right?

David not only are you putting words in my mouth but you are 100% wrong..... David's, "rhetoric," can pontentially cause hate and lead to violence...just as it did with Hitler...... and not it is not hate speech if your speaking the truth (the condition being that it must be the truth) which is why I ask you the questions above.

David: "are you really saying that Muslims aren't trying to spread Islam?
No.

Are you really saying, like Haytham, that Muslims will never use violence to spread their views?
Once again are you assuming all Mulsims will use violence to spread their views.

And do you really think it's hate speech to point out the obvious and indisputable fact that there are Muslims who try to spread their beliefs, and who are willing to subjugate unbelievers?

David in all religions, whether it be Hindus, Muslims, Jews, and yes even ChristianS...religious fanatics in the name of G-D all mighty will commit atrocities...


David: I really think you're being deliberately annoying just to waste everyone's time.

The reality, David, is that you deflectand twistmy words instead of addressing the truth.

FYI: An innocent cab driver in NY was stab on Monday by his passenger. The passenger asked him are you a Muslim, when the cabbie said yes, the passenger proceeded to stab him... the passenger is currently facing attempted murder charges...... So once again are you saying "all Muslims" are: terrorist, caused 9-11, and use violence to spread Islam?

I wonder what's your opinion (how do you feel) regarding Nabeel and Negeen parents', extended family, and friends that remain to be Muslims?

Best regards,

jem

Charis kai Eirene said...

@ Benjamin: Matthew 18 is referring to private disagreements, but Haytham is the one who brought his false accusations to the public media long before David "brought his grievances to the world."

I wonder at your admonishment, "this most recent post will significantly hinder your and his ability to come to peace on this matter in the foreseeable future, except by the Grace of God," since publicly slandering someone as Haytham has done significantly hinders peace far more than defending oneself against such false claims as David has here.

The way that you present the matter, you seem to place equal responsibility upon Haytham and David for the situation. Haytham has wronged David, Nabeel et. al. by his lies to the press and to anyone else who will listen. It is necessary for David to defend Acts 17 and co. so that the work of the Lord is not discredited.

I can see how on one hand, we might say, "Well exposing Haytham's falsehoods publicly will perpetuate the conflict," but if we examine Haytham's pattern of behavior we will find that he has been relentless in his desire to attack them since last year's festival. A strong rebuke before witnesses appears to be necessary in order for Haytham to be brought to repentance and move forward in peace.

jem said...

Hello David, you are deflecting and twisting my words...rather unusual for a man of your knowdlege and intelligence. My comments were directed towards making generalizations and assumptions, not whether Muslims want to propagate their religion.

David: "is like Hitler for saying this. It's hate speech to say what's true."

David's rhetoric can lead to hate crimes, intolerance and further violence. I never said you are like Hitler; I merely stated that Hitler conviced the masses by making negative generalizations regarding the Jews. How you understand that to mean you are like Hitler is beyond me?

David: "are you really saying that Muslims aren't trying to spread Islam?

No, we are sharing the truth with them and they are sharing what they perceive to be the truth.

David: "Are you really saying, like Haytham, that Muslims will never use violence to spread their views?

David every religion in the name of G-D have used violence to propagate their views, agenda, and way of thinking...

David: "And do you really think it's hate speech to point out the obvious and indisputable fact that there are Muslims who try to spread their beliefs, and who are willing to subjugate unbelievers?

It isn't hate speech if what is being said is true..(the condition being it must be the truth). So are you saying all Muslims are terrorist, all Muslims are spread their religion by violence, all Muslims caused 9-11?

As a leader, you have great responsibility and here are two incidents that I am aware of......
that will maybe make you reflect.....on Monday in NY city, a cabbie was stabbed by his passenger. The passenger asked him (cab driver) are you a Muslim?
When the man answered,"yes," the passenger proceeded to stabbed him.
Passenger is currently being held for attempted murder.

Earlier this week a man was attacked by a mob at, "Ground Zero," just b/c he looked like a Muslim...despite the fact he kept proclaiming he was not a Muslim. Police had to escort him out for his own safety.....

David I wonder how you feel (what your opinion) regarding Nabeel and Negeen: parents', extended family, and friends that remain/continue to be Muslim?

Hold yourself accountable before the LORD calls you into account..

Best regards,

jem

jem said...

Hello Minoria, you said,
"to say the KKK taught black people were inferior.So,do you that is also "hate"?

Well, not only did it lead to subjugation of a group of fellow brethren, it also led to church bombings, lynchings, hate crimes, and suffrage.... The negative generalization, Blacks aren't smart, they are lazy, nothing good comes from them....

I wonder did they (KKK and other groups similar to them) -believe the hatred they were spuing was the truth??? Just food for thought.....

Zack_Tiang said... But was more 'The Quran taught this', 'Muhammad did that', 'Muslims are doing this', etc.
How is that 'preaching hate'?

Please read my post....to David.


The Berean Search said...
Jem disappeared the whole time the videos were being posted that showed footage of what really happened in Dearborn, and now Jem is suddenly back just in time to say Acts17 is just like Hitler and the KKK.

I didn't disappear, I've been commenting as time permits.....

But look at you, raising a falsehood against your brother...not what I expected.. but then again it doesn't surprise me....brother look at my post...read and re-read....I ask the LORD to give you understanding.

Just to re-interate making negative generalizations can lead to intolerance, hate crimes, violence, and discrimination....

Do you have a nightly comedy show somewhere Jem? If so, where can I attend?

I can tell by your sarcasm you never had to face racism, discrimination, violence, hate crimes due to somone else's ignorance and intolerance...perhaps this explains why its a joke to you....

(Might I suggest perhaps, a mosque? Beating Christians over the head with accusations about Hitler and the KKK usually goes over like gang-busters with the devout mosque crowd...Seriously, since you claim you aren't a Muslim, I can only conclude that you borrowed the brain of an indoctrinated Muslim to come up with such logic.

Only G-D almighty knows what is in our hearts....if slanderinf me makes you feel better then do it.
I only ask that you read by comments and dont assume or misinterpret what I say.


Best regards,

jem

Benjamin said...

“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.
But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector."

@ Charis
I don't see where Jesus qualifies this instruction with "private disagreements." It appears to me that there is need for peacemaking between brothers in Christ (Haytham and David). No matter what the stage, public or private, Jesus words on this are clear about the proper way in which to address a sin against another brother.

David is saying that Haytham is lying. That is a sin against a brother, thus Jesus instruction should be followed, no matter what the prior "public-ness" of the sin. It appears to me that David should initiate the process in this instance.

The degree of grievance, public or private, or the length of time passed does not afford the offend party to skip steps. I see no such qualifiers in the scriptures. So, taking it into the public arena is out of line when the other steps have not been taken.

To your third paragraph, I agree that I do place equal responsibility on both of them for taking the matter to the public rather than talking with each other. At the first instance conflict felt from either side, they should have gone to the other party. Haytham is just as responsible as David in initiating resolution.

4th paragraph-you skip steps in reconciliation. If David and Haytham love Jesus, they are both bound to follow Jesus' teaching on this matter. I truly believe that they should strive for peace. What is happening right now, in the public eye, doesn't project Christ's humility, love or service to fellow men. It continues to perpetuate finger pointing, bitterness, hurt, and sin.

jem said...

Ryan S, said.....
Which cause was it?

1. Jesus preached "hate"?

2. Jesus told the Truth ?

Please read my post.....and pose the same questions to you:

Are all Muslims terrorist?
Do all Muslims use violence to spread Islam?
Did all Muslims cause 9-11?

Answer the questions above...and we can continue to talk.

Best Regards, \

jem

Charis kai Eirene said...

What I mean by private disagreements is that Matthew 18 is referring to interpersonal conflict as we read: "if your brother sins against you..." but Haytham's sin is more than simply slandering David, Nabeel, Paul, and Negeen as well as Mary Jo Sharp, who was recording at last year's festival.

My concern about Haytham speaking against these people publicly is not simply that it damages their individual reputations but that it also sins against the "public" because he has deceived and misled them and allowed them to become partakers in spreading slander. Haytham has repeatedly demonstrated a pattern of attacking other Christians, such as Pastor George Saieg of Ministry to Muslims even prior to any interactions with Acts 17.

Consider what Paul says in Galatians 2. "When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter in front of them all, 'You are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew. How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?..'" Because Peter's action was affecting the church, Paul rebuked Peter "in front of them all." There was no pulling Peter aside and hashing things out privately, nor gathering one or two witnesses, etc., because this was a different situation than what is described in Matt. 18.

I appreciate your desire to see this conflict resolved. I also am distressed by division in the Body and have been praying for the rift among brethren in Christ to be healed. However, I believe that Scriptural principles and examples bear out that David has acted correctly in his rebuke of Haytham.

Zack_Tiang said...

It does make sense... What Charis said.

And plus, Benjamin, if you're to be consistent, you should be rebuking Haytham first... because he should be the first to do what you said should've been done.

Acts 17 misrepresented Christ/Gospel with their 'misdemeanors'; thus sinning against their brothers.

But instead of speaking to Acts 17 personally or privately, he just blabs on and on in the media and spewing more and more falsehoods to the story.. without any consideration of what was rumors and what was the truth of the situation.

I hope Acts 17 team gets more airtime to talk and set the record straight with the public. (not only on ABNSAT)
And with the truth spoken and shown, then I'd say allow God to deal with those who spread falsehood righteously and fairly.

jem said...

Hello, David, well I guess you will not be posting my previous comments....doesn't surprise me...but any way...here's something to think about:

Michael Enright (this is man charged with attemptd murder)volunteered for Intersections International, a group that promotes interfaith dialogue and has supported plans for an Islamic center and mosque two blocks from ground zero.

A group representative, the Rev. Robert Chase, called the situation "tragic."

"We've been working very hard to build bridges between folks from different religions and cultures," Chase said. "This is really shocking and sad for us."

I hope you at least pass the message to your supporters (you don't have to post my comment)...but please don't continue to make negative generalizations b/c they can have to dire consequences....

A father is in Hospital recovery thank G-D, and a young man's life is ruined; in jail awaiting sentencing. Why b/c he believed the rhetoric of hate...

Best regards,


jem

Jabari said...

I can't believe this....

My brothers in Christ are attacking my Acts 17 brothers and sisters in Christ. 1st Hussein Wario, now this guy?!?!

You would think that as a spiritual family we would be united and not attacking each other. Surely this is the work of Satan!!!

jtswift said...

"Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you." (Ephesians 4:31-32) My friends, you are treading on very dangerous ground. God would not have his children address one another this way and exaggerate each other's claims so as to exonerate one's own position. I speak to all sides involved. Our Lord would not have us slander one another. Where is the Word of God in these posts? Where is your tender-heartedness and forgiveness of one another? I understand your desire to see freedom upheld and falsehoods revealed. I live and serve Jesus now in a country where the freedom of speech is not granted. You are right to challenge those who would infringe upon these precious freedoms in the USA where they are supposed to be protected. But at what cost? I also understand the need for strategic Christian presence in Muslim communities for the sake of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. What are Dearborn's Muslims thinking about Jesus as they read these blog posts? Dearborn is my home town. I have lived with and served Jesus among Muslims for most of my life both in Dearborn and in the Middle East. I have known Pastor Haytham for 13 years. I also know that trusting and following Christ nearly cost him his life. When he was saved a family member was about to kill him but didn't follow through with it. Have you faced that kind of persecution? Have you had a family member put a gun in your face because you put your faith in Jesus? You spent a night in an American Jail. But for what cause? I hope it was for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I hope we are all prepared to suffer much more for the sake of the gospel even unto death. No pupil is greater than his teacher. Are we, even in America, greater than our Master, Jesus, who suffered and died upon the cross? My friends, please be careful not to slander your brother who has suffered much for the cause of Christ. Be careful to desire the right things. Be careful to put first and foremost the lordship of Jesus and his love and his grace and his gospel which brings the greatest freedom - freedom from sin. Be careful not to destroy your witness for the sake of upholding freedoms. Be careful not to loose sight of Jesus.

David Wood said...

Hmmm. More hypocrisy from Dearborn. Our friend jtswift says that I shouldn't slander Haytham Abi-Haydar. Perhaps he doesn't know the meaning of the word "slander." To slander someone is to make false, malicious, and defamatory statements about him. Yet everything I've said about Haytham is true, so there's no slander involved. Haytham, however, has made numerous false, malicious, and defamatory statements about us. So why do you condemn us for slander, when Haytham is the one slandering us? Does he somehow get a free pass when he attacks other Christians, or testifies against them in court, or defends a city that persecutes them? Should I look the other way when Haytham lies about us? If it's okay for Haytham to attack us, why is it wrong and un-Christian of us to defend ourselves? Do you really think that you're quoting the Bible justly in your comment?