The Psychology of Islam

The psychology of Islam differs from that of Christianity. “Salvation is Obtained by Human Works. It is characteristic of religious Moslems that they are proud or self-righteous to such a degree that it is extremely difficult to get the Christian Gospel of sin and redemption across to them.” (p. 65, Vos)

‘”Why is Islam so successful? How can its rapid spread be explained? And why is it so hard to win Moslems for Christ? A Moslem student once asked the present writer why Islam is so much more successful than Christianity. After a moment’s thought the reply was given that Islam is an easier religion than Christianity to live up to; it makes less difficult moral demands upon people. There is nothing in Islam to lead a man to say, “O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” or “I know that in me, that is in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing.” A religion with reasonable attainable objectives fosters self-confidence, complacency and spiritual pride—it leads inevitably to self-righteousness, but it does not give the sinner the anguish of a guilty conscience nor the frustration of trying without success to attain in practical living the requirements of an absolute moral standard. In brief, Islam makes a man feel good, while Christianity necessarily first (and often thereafter) makes a man feel bad. The religion of the broken heart is Christianity, not Islam.’ (pp. 66, 67, Vos)

J. G. Vos, A Christian Introduction to Religions of the World, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1965.