I didn’t know that there’s a Festival of Sacrifice until I come to know about Eid-al-Adha. I heard of it but didn’t put much attention on it because it doesn’t ring any bell to me. I’m a Christian and this is a Muslim feast. Yes, it’s being declared to our country – Philippines but that’s it. It’s basically to show respect and promote tolerance within our country especially we have Muslim brothers and sisters.
When I was in the Middle East, Eid al-Adha was exposed! As a Christian Believer, I was amazed of what is it all about and this is what I want to share to you today.
Festival of Sacrifice – Abraham’s Sacrifice
What is Eid al-Adha and how is it being celebrated?
I found that Eid al-Adha is a feast in remembrance of Abraham sacrificing his beloved son to our God Almighty. You will see this story in the Bible in Genesis chapter 22 when Abraham was tested. I was curious about it because as a Christian, we know this story, but we do not celebrate it.
In Islam, Eid al-Adha is the second main Muslim festival after Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting. In Islam, it is believed that Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham) was tested by God Almighty who commanded him to sacrifice his first-born son, Ismail (Ishmael). Without a doubt, Ibrahim followed this commandment. But God Almighty saw the pure humility and submission of Ibrahim to Him thus, God Almighty provided him a lamb to sacrifice instead.
Muslims celebrates Eid al-Adha in remembrance of this important account. Muslims performs extra prayers in the morning, mosques are being visited by worshippers attending sermons and performing prayers, and they sacrifice animals – goat, sheep, or cow. Sacrificed animals are used for festive dinners and or giving it as a gift or charity to those who are in need.
Pondering about Eid al-Adha and the meaning of Abraham’s offering
As a Believer, I started thinking about Abraham’s offering. Why will God command him to do it? Why he needs to be tested? What’s in it for humanity? Do I need to celebrate it too as a Christian? These were just the few questions fluxed in my mind.
John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Romans 5:8 – But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
These two passages explained to me the meaning and importance of Abraham’s offering. It was a clear preview of how our God Almighty performed His love to his creations – humanity. The faithfulness, loyalty and love of our God Almighty to us, His servant, His children, is unmeasurable. God Almighty sacrificed Jesus Christ for us to have rights to Him.
There are huge differences in terms of concepts and ideas when we talk about Eid al-Adha (Abraham’s Sacrifice) in terms of Quranic and Biblical aspects. But the focus here is the importance of the message and the question “how much sacrifice you are willing to do for your Lord?”
It’s time for us to do sacrifices for our Lord, God Almighty. Everyday we are given a chance to be near to His proximity. Let’s grab that opportunity. Let’s continue to strive hard, seek for His words, fight to our lower selves, and follow the teachings of our prophets. It may sound hard work, and yes, it is. But with the guidance of our Lord, I know WE CAN DO IT and WE WILL DO IT.
My heartfelt greeting to our brother and sisters in Islam. All the blessings of Allah be with us always and forever! Alasam Alaikum Wallahi Wa-Barakatuh!
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