Part I on the author’s Mideast visit with other evangelical leaders last April was printed in the previous issue (Mar. 2).
In spite of scheduling confusions and President Sadat’s backbreaking swing through Egypt on a food projects tour, the Egyptian head of state personally arranged to receive the evangelical leaders at his home in Aswan on a Friday, the Muslim day of rest when he normally grants no audiences whatever.
When I asked the President about his contacts with Christianity, he revealed a most significant fact. He said that when he had been a political prisoner early in his career, the one thing that had sustained him had been the books of Lloyd Douglas. To be sure, I thought immediately of the salvatory portrait of our Lord in The Robe; but I thought also of the lesser-known work of Douglas, Magnificent Obsession, in which true happiness and success come to a physician who makes the person and work of Jesus his chart and compass. Anwar Sadat is also a man with a magnificent obsession—a magnificent obsession for peace. Is it too much to suppose that, consciously or unconsciously, he acquired it from his indirect contact with the Prince of Peace?
I had a few moments alone with the President after the television cameras and newsmen were gone. The opportunity seemed ripe to stress the uniqueness of Christ to a man who told us he plans to build a mosque, a synagogue, and a church on Mt. Sinai—thus making Peter’s mistake of wanting to build tabernacles indiscriminately to Jesus and to mere religious leaders (see Matt. 17:1–8). I said: “When you flew to Israel in November, you were willing to lose everything you had—including your presidency—for the sake of bringing peace to others. That makes me think of the center of the ...1
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