Laylad al-Qadr means ‘night of power’. It is a very special time for Muslims as it specifically commemorates the giving of the first verses of the Qur’an to Muhammad.
No one knows the exact date of Laylat al-Qadr, but it is thought to be one of the odd dates towards the end of the month. It is most commonly observed on the twenty-seventh night of Ramadan, which is tonight*.
What and why
The Qur’an states that Laylat al-Qadr is ‘better than a thousand months’. Good deeds and prayers are said to be magnified on this night. Hope of forgiveness and God’s blessing increases, leading some to spend hours praying at the mosque.
Although Muslims only pray to God, they do not expect a response. They see God as distant and unknowable. They believe in sin, but not in original sin that requires the kind of sacrifice Jesus Christ made. They strive to be accepted but they can only vaguely hope that when the time comes they will be rewarded for their obedience.
As Christians, we believe there is only one way to be accepted by God, which is through Jesus. Salvation is a gift that cannot be earned or added to. Only Jesus brings real hope. You cannot be forgiven if you cannot accept that Jesus died for you.
We are certain, though, that God can reach anyone, anywhere. Those who are genuinely seeking to please and honour him tonight may be more receptive to the Holy Spirit. So this is a key time to pray for their eyes to be opened and for Satan to be kept at bay.
What to do now
We ask that you would pray throughout this evening for Muslims seeking God’s favour on this special night. It might be useful to set an alarm on your phone to remind you later on. Pray as you feel led and encourage your friends to join you. No fancy words are required; just ask God to set people free and to remove their doubts.
Make a comment below or use social media to let us know your thoughts and prayers for today. Use the hashtag #RethinkingRamadan.
*In Islam, a day begins at sunset, meaning tonight is the twenty-seventh night of Ramadan.
Tomorrow, as we reconsider, we’ll be thinking about hope for the Arab world.