[by Dean Smith] Prior to his death on November 11, 2004, Yasser Arafat was leader of the Palestinian National Authority and leader of the Fatah party which, along with Hamas, rules Palestine today. He was a Muslim and enemy of Israel.
But he was also friends with RT Kendall, an American-based evangelical pastor and teacher, who according to an interview with Premier Christianity magazine, had met with Arafat several times before he died.
Kendall arranged his first meeting with Arafat in 2002, and then met with him five times after that.
During those meetings, Kendall not only shared Christ with Arafat, but Kendall also prayed for the Palestinian leader and even sat with Arafat, along with many of his aides, as they watched “The Passion of Christ.” According Kendall, Arafat actually cried viewing the movie on the crucifixion of Christ.
In the interview Kendall said:
“I prayed with him five times, anointed him with Oil. I gave him a [salvation] prayer. I’m not saying I know that he is saved; I’m saying I wouldn’t be surprised.”
After the movie, Arafat squeezed Kendall’s hand as he prayed for the PLO leader.
Kendall is a semi-retired author, teacher and evangelist living in Hendersonville, Tennessee.
A Remnant of Edom [Muslims?] will be saved?
In Amos 9, the prophet spoke of a day when a remnant of the gentiles and specifically the children of Edom would become members of the Kingdom of God:
“In that day I will raise up the fallen booth of David,
And wall up its breaches;
I will also raise up its ruins
And rebuild it as in the days of old;
12 That they may possess the remnant of Edom
And all the nations who are called by My name,”
Declares the Lord who does this. (Amos 9:11-12 NASV)
The nation of Edom was made up of descendants of Esau (Genesis 36:1) and as such would also be the descendants of many of the Muslim peoples now living in the Middle East. Many believe this promise made in Amos was fulfilled when God poured his Holy Spirit on the gentiles (Acts 10:45) and they became part of the church (Acts 15:16-18).
Since the remnant of Edom is specifically mentioned in Amos, I suspect we will see a significant moving of God among the Muslims, as appears to be happening in Iran. Is Yasser Arafat also part of this Edom remnant?
Because of the simplicity of faith and salvation, I have always believed we will be surprised by who ends up in heaven and as well equally surprised by who isn’t there (Matthew 7:22-23).