Failure to understand this basic fact blinds many Western leaders to the overall goal of Muslim leaders who take their religion seriously. Some Muslims, predominately Shiites, believe in a coming Islamic messiah whom they refer to as the mahdi, meaning "Guided One." This mahdi, they believe, will lead Islam to what they believe to be its rightful place as the dominant religion over the entire world, with followers of other religions either forced to convert or put in subjugation to Islam.
Though such religious fervor seems far-fetched to those in the largely secular and irreligious West, some Islamic leaders are quite open in stating this as their belief and ultimate goal. For example, in his last three speeches before the United Nations General Assembly (2009, 2010, 2011), Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad expressed his ultimate desire for the world—a new age in which the mahdi would come and establish Islam as the religion for all mankind in a world governed by the Koran. Notice these excerpts:
• UN speech in 2009: "Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the universe, and peace and blessings be upon our master and prophet Muhammad . . . O God hasten the arrival of Iman Mahdi" (Sept. 23, 2009).
• UN speech in 2010: "The Holy Qu'ran [Koran] is the Divine book and the eternal miracle of the Prophet of Islam [Muhammad]" (Sept. 23, 2010).
• UN speech in 2011: "A promising future for humanity . . . will be built when humanity initiates to [tread] the path of the divine prophets and the righteous under the leadership of Iman Al-Mahdi, the Ultimate Savior of mankind . . . The creation of a supreme and ideal society with the arrival of a perfect human being who is a true and sincere lover of all human beings, is the guaranteed promise of Allah" (Sept. 22, 2011).
The Bible, however, presents a very different picture. The apostle Peter said of Jesus Christ: "Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). The perfect human being, without sin, came to this earth some 2,000 years ago. To learn more, request or download our free booklet Jesus Christ: The Real Story.