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Regarding your first question, there is an “indirect” reference to the rise of Islam in Luke 21:29-31 which reads, “Then He told them a parable: ‘Behold the fig tree and all the trees; as soon as they put forth leaves, you see and know for yourselves that summer is near. So you also, when you see these things happening, recognize that the kingdom of God is near” (NASB). The “fig tree” pictures the nation of Israel, which began to “put forth leaves” when it was officially recognized as a nation again in 1948. I believe “all the trees” symbolize the Islamic nations surrounding Israel. Ever since 1948 Israel’s neighboring nations have also “put forth leaves” by attacking Israel and trying to convince the world that she should be destroyed. Most Muslims who practice Islam are descendants of Ishmael, Abraham’s first son, who hated and persecuted Abraham’s second son, Isaac. This hatred for Israel has been fueled by their belief that the Jews are NOT God’s chosen people. Their prophet, Mohammed, taught that they are the chosen ones and that Israel must be exterminated before “Allah” will bring in His kingdom and rule over the world through them.

The book of Revelation reveals the seven-year tribulation period that is coming, which will affect the nation of Israel AND the whole world.  There will be several prominent figures during that time, including the two “beasts” of chapter 13. In Revelation 13:1 John saw “a beast rise up out of the sea.” He will be a POLITICAL leader who rises out of the “sea of nations” that make up the Revived Roman Empire. In Revelation 13:11 John beheld “another beast coming up out of the earth.” He will be a RELIGIOUS leader in the land of Israel that will be received by them as their Messiah. These two men will form an alliance guaranteeing Israel protection from their enemies. One of the enemies will be none other than the Islamic nations already referred to. They will form an alliance headed up by a charismatic, Islamic leader known as the “king of fierce countenance” in Daniel 8:23. He is also called the “king of the north” in Daniel 11:40, for he will rise to power in a country NORTH of Israel. At one point he and his armies will invade Israel and nearly destroy Jerusalem, as seen in Daniel 11:41, Joel 2:1-11 and Zechariah 14:2.

Our attitude towards Islam or any false religion that promotes violence in the name of God is to LOVE them, to PRAY for them, and to WITNESS to them. They are sinners who need the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord Jesus has given us a mission in Mark 16:15, “Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” Those who practice Islam are spreading a religion of HATRED and VIOLENCE; we have been given the good news of Jesus Christ that reveals the LOVE of God and the PEACE that He offers through His beloved Son. By the grace of God many Muslims are indeed being converted to Jesus Christ, so may we seize every opportunity that we have to witness to them and then pray that God will work in their hearts and save their precious, never-dying souls!  (155.7)  (DO)