[Nederlandse versie]

Paul’s letter to the Galatians, chapter 4, verses 8-11

8 Formerly, when you did not know God, you were slaves to those who by nature are not gods. 9 But now that you know God—or rather are known by God—how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable forces? Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again? 10 You are observing special days and months and seasons and years! 11 I fear for you, that somehow I have wasted my efforts on you.

The cresent is the symbol of Islam, Christians have the cross. In 1 Corintians 2:2 Paul writes that the core of his message was the crucified Christ.

A little fish is also possible. The Ichtus[1] once was used as an identification mark for persecuted Christians. Today it can be a sign of solidarity with Christians who – especially in Islamic countries – have come under oppression.

Is the moon symbol a reference to the moon god Hubal, one of the main deities from the pre-Islamic Mecca? Unacceptable for Muslims! Does the sickle remind of idolatry with the moon in the – by Islamic conqueror’s re-baptised to Istanbul – pre-Christian Constantinople? Should this make us think of the ascending moon, expressing that the Islam will once dominate the world? That is out of the question: Jesus has overcome the world (John 16:33).

We are actually more than halfway through the month and the moon is descending again. Muslims pledge to the moon calendar. The ninth month is called Ramadan. Whether the sun is dead straight above the tropic of Cancer or Capricorn, Muslims worldwide are obliged to abstinence as long as the sun is up, and not under yet. Does God ask that of them? Does God want that we, dependant on the height of the sun, five times a day, on the dot, bow down for Him? It is a form of slavery to ‘miserable powers’ of whom Christ redeemed the world population. The moon has nothing on us. She is ‘just’ there in the sky, reflecting God’s glory.

Does God not make any demands on how we should worship him then? Yes, Jesus aims for a lot MORE than the right prayer direction and regularity. Read John 4: 20-24, Galatians 4:4-7
To sing: Hallelujah, praise Jehovah (hymn based on Psalm 148)

Hallelujah, praise Jehovah,
From the heavens praise His name;
Praise Jehovah in the highest,
All His angels praise proclaim.
All His hosts together praise Him,
Sun, and moon, and stars on high;
Praise Him, O ye heav’n of heavens,
And ye floods above the sky.

Refrain:
Let them praises give Jehovah,
For His name alone is high,
And His glory is exalted,
And His glory is exalted,
And His glory is exalted,
Far above the earth and sky.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGYgBm19iek


[1] Explanation: each letter of the word “ICHTUS”, Greek for fish, is the first letter of a Greek word. Together, those words form the following confession: Jesus Christ, Son of God, Saviour