Following the road signs of a
Hajj from ancient Sumer to Mecca


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by Stephen Van Nattan-- 1995
(and HTML code in 2001)
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Steve Van Nattan, born in Los Angeles, California, grew up in Tanzania and Kenya during the 50's. He attended missionary boarding school, and lived behind barbed wire during the Mau Mau terrorist uprising. His parents' missionary activities brought him into contact with people from all over the world, and he learned to relate to Africans, Indians from India, and Arabs. Steve's childhood home was always busy with social and spiritual hospitality.

Steve delighted in getting entangled in the cultural affairs of the emerging "Third World." This included visits to labor union offices to attack Marxism, as well as long hours drinking orange soda and discussing life-- and Eternal Life-- with Muslims, Indian Seikhs, Africans, and Hindus from India.

After finishing at Biola University in California, Steve, and his wife Elizabeth, went to Ethiopia as missionaries where they worked in youth ministries under the Sudan Interior Mission. There again, they became immersed in the Ethiopian Semitic culture, as well as the Islamic Galla culture. They were forced to flee Ethiopia during the Marxist Revolution in 1974.

Steve and his family returned to Kenya, where they worked with the African church, while maintaining contact with Ethiopians and Indians from India. Steve helped plant churches, direct a Bible Institute, teach in public schools, and train Christian teachers. He was instrumental, with Pastor John Gichohi Ndegwa, in founding the Evangelical Bible Churches based in Eldoret, Kenya, which are today nationalized and thriving in the Holy Spirit.

After returning to the USA in 1976, Steve pastored a church in the Mojave Desert of California where he was used of God to build a cross-cultural fellowship. Two more churches were pastored in Michigan, where the whole family became involved in the Middle Eastern community near Detroit.

While witnessing to Arabs and studying the Scriptures with them, Steve came to see that he had to resolve an urgent question, "Is 'Allah' the Arabic name for Jehovah?" After long hours of research in several universities, Steve saw the need for a book addressing the issue of Allah's origins.

Steve and Elizabeth, his wife, are now retired in the Hill Country of Texas. Steve is a piano tuner on the side, and he enjoys exploring the INTERNET. A walk in the woods and tending his garden and greenhouse are great diversions, but Christian hospitality is his favorite past time. If you are in central Texas, drop by for a cup of Arab coffee and some conversation.

Steve is now working on an historic missionary novel, Hanriki, which is now "in the works." This will include some of his real-life experiences in East Africa. It tells the story of a German missionary in Tanganyika during World War II who was going to be sent to a prisoner of war camp by the British, simply because he is German. He flees to Arabia, is attacked by Arab pirates, struggles to witness to Islamic Mullahs, and... No, let's wait for that.  Keep in touch, and you will eventually get to read it, God willing. 

Of course, the door of opportunity which Steve most eagerly recommends is the Muslim and Middle Eastern people who have settled in the United States of America, Europe, and the United Kingdom. American Christians need to understand that, like the Jews, God still has his mind on the sons of Ishmael, and they will come into Christ's family again during the Kingdom Reign of Messiah Christ. We talk about that in this book.

If this book you are about to read seems blunt or personal in places, it is because Steve wants you, the reader to become, like father Abraham, the "Friend of God" by faith in The Lord Jesus Christ.  To you the Christian reader, Steve wants you to be more strongly committed to a reasoned and biblical faith, even if you disagree with the author.

The Bible, Galatians 4:18, "But it is good to be zealously affected always in a good thing, and not only when I am present with you."

Scroll to the end of this page to go back to the TABLE OF CONTENTS, which is missing here.


Don H_____-  He drove me to Dearborn, Michigan to see the Arab Muslim community for the first time.  There, my zeal was fired up for the five million Muslim people in the USA.

A gentleman in Colombia Bible Church in Pennsylvania- He asked, "When you witness to Arabs, are you going to call God 'Allah'?" I told him there was no problem with that, and I promptly forgot the man, but from that point onward God began to exercise me that Allah and Jehovah of the Bible are not the same. Thank you, brother, for asking the quest speaker a blunt question, and NO sir, I shall not call Jehovah by the name Allah!

Randy C_______ in California- He asked me to go to the university libraries to search for bibliography to back up claims regarding Allah made by the publisher for whom he worked. Their claims were very correct. Randy helped, in real ways, to see that the work went on.  I must commend them for taking a stand that Allah is not the Name of the God of the Bible.

The Little Remnant Church and Independent Bible Church- I pastored there as I was researching and writing this book. They stood with me the whole way through in prayer and patience.

Many friends who encouraged my family to go to Dearborn, Michigan as missionaries- Their confidence in God's leading has now been confirmed. I would never have written this book if I had not started down that path to Dearborn and been deflected into this task by my Lord.

Wes and Frances _________- They saw to it that I had an up to date computer to use to shorten the writing process. Frances was a great proof reader.

My family- They helped me through those discouraging and hard moments when Satan attacked me very overtly.

Mike__________-  He saw me through many a computer crash. He helped me learn my way through PC programs and apps which baffle me still.

Mick O____ and David L_____-  These men both ran up horrible phone bills while encouraging me onward when I dragged down under the massiveness of the research.

Many others prayed and encouraged- David C_____, Joseph E________, George P______, Jack C ____, the W______ Egyptian evangelist brothers in Florida, and many more I ought to remember...... Thanks very much.


When the talking heads pop up on the television and the Internet, the average viewer believes he is seeing a god speaking to him. For a big news item the networks will bring on a talking head with a PhD from Harvard, Yale, or Pootwaddle Tech, and it matters not that the "expert" is wrong. He got in front of the camera and microphone first, so what follows is supposed to be pure truth. This book is based upon other sources, and you will have to re-think some assumptions.

I have gone to the gold mines of our university libraries, and there I found the record of the past which was carved in the rocks of the Middle East. Inscriptions, and cuneiform writings in clay tablets, may not be the absolute truth, but they at least take us back 5000 years to other more believable sources. By using the Bible to examine these sources we see the larger picture.

The treck from the plains of Shinar to Mecca has been both exciting and fearful for me. I have found all sorts of Satanic peril along the way. I have found that there were cultures, far more evil than ours today, which fill the mind with profane images. Yet, I have found that people were a lot the same throughout history. They were all born in sin, and they did the works of their father, the devil.

They also worked hard in their gardens or they starved, they liked to conquer their neighbors in their own little "Desert Storm," they worshipped gods of all sorts in the vain hope of keeping out of trouble and securing a pleasant place in eternity, and they were often far ahead of us in cultural arts and skills. Today, the white race, descendants of Noah's son Japheth, think they are the center of the world and the pinnacle of civilization. I found otherwise when I learned that the Sumerians, in 3500 BC, knew how to bond dissimilar gems, glaze pottery better than the Greeks of 2000 years later, and the Babylonians had petroleum street lights in 1500 BC.

As we examine ourselves, our first priority still is, "what must I do to be saved?" The Bible, Acts 16:30. To deny that man wants to know how to survive spiritually now and in eternity, is to deny all of the historic evidences of the past. Every past tribe and culture developed a religious system in order to gain favor with their gods, and Atheists like Richard Dawkins did not exist back in the ancient times. A born-again Christian is one who, by repenting of his sin and by faith in the death and resurrection of The Lord Jesus Christ, has made his peace with his God. We make no apology for this presupposition as we begin this study.

But, here and now, this Faith in Christ and His Word is the measure of all things, so we dare to examine the past with the Word of God in our hands. Our only Bible is the King James Bible. Isaiah, the prophet of God, spoke for God when He said, "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." Isaiah 1:18.

The faith of the Bible is a reasoning faith, so we are not fearful to go beyond our own faith and examine Islam. We measure their beliefs by our yardstick first, that is, the Bible. Secondly, we use the scriptures of Islam, and the Hadith of Mohammed, to learn if Islam is truly life-changing and has eternal authority. Thirdly, we use history, science, and ancient inscriptions to instruct us. Samuel Zwemmer, the prolific writer on Islam and the Middle East, said, "It is to this conclusion that we are also led by the evidence of anthropology and the explicit witness of the Scriptures; the origin of religion is not by evolution but by revelation." ( FOOTNOTE 1:  230 / 237 / 1664 See "Footnotes" below for an explanation of footnote codes.)

So we shall examine Islam. We want to trace the heritage of Allah and see how he came to Mecca. We want to examine the life of Mohammed in the model of the great prophets of the Bible eras. We want to see if Dar ul Islam (the house of Islam) is truly a house of great faith and light, as the Mullahs would have us to believe. We will also examine the Koran and the Hadith (sayings of Mohammed). May I invite you to join me in the greatest adventure I have ever enjoyed in the Lord and in the study of history?

To my American and European readers, this book is meant to give you a correct understanding of the Islamic faith, but more important, I pray that you will see that the Muslim people are dearly loved by the Lord Jesus, and I intend to stir your zeal to reach out to them in His love. I have tried to write with the American, Commonwealth, and European reader in mind, so kindly bear with my writing style if it at times departs from your idiom or grammar.

To the Arab Muslim and Arab Christian reader I make this request. Please hear me out. I do not write this book to injure you. I have given the first two chapters to show that I agree with Jehovah God in his love and care of the Arab people. The chapters that follow will press you hard in some areas, but I am praying that you will accept the truth as of God. I am at your service to answer questions, and my bibliography is open to you by mail. Nothing is hidden.



The footnote system is designed to take up minimum space in the book, yet you can use it to order any item you need as proof. Each Part of the book starts over in numbering to avoid large numbers. To bring up the footnote in the registered copy, click on the colored number in the text. The number in the footnote will look something like this with other notes added in some footnotes:

218 / 361, 368 / 1588

218-   The first number:  Author's number in my bibliography.                                                                

361, 368-   Second number:  Pages in the author's book providing cited information.

1588-   Third number:  Page in my bibliography index.  This helps me to find proofs you request.

The first number in the example, 218 above, is the number of the Author. Turn to the back of this book to the Bibliography, and you will find the author by matching the number which appears in front of his name. The second number, 361, 368 above, is the page in the author's book. This will help you to find the book in a large city library or at a university. Or, to get the bibliography pages footnoted directly from me, give me the complete number set (including the third number, 1588 in the example) by E-mail, and I shall send you the bibliographical material of the footnoted item.

Donation helpful for postage and copying.  Cost basis for research material.

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QUOTES: All quotes from the King James Bible, Al Koran, and Al Hadith of Mohammed are in bold face print in this book. My comments may appear in the flow of the quoted texts, but they are always in plain print and, where they follow proof texts,  usually in parenthetics.

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 On to Chapter One