Category Archives: Islam

Islam: Religion of Peace

Is this true? Kim Riddlebarger points to this article and claims otherwise. I have oft raised the question as it seems that the Muslim you meet next door is friendly enough for our culture to say, “If it works for them…” But I have constantly been thinking, are these Muslims consistent with their teaching? If an imam tells them that it is righteous to kill, and they do not kill, can we legitimately say that Islam is a religion of peace? Here is a great excerpt from Riddlebarger’s post:

The irony is that twenty years ago this threat was not even on the radar.  Who would have thought that American evangelicalism would become so doctrinally wimpy as to be helpless against Islamic growth and ideology?  Seeker-centered worship and vapid felt-need oriented preaching are quickly exposed for what they are in the face of a threat like Islamic expansion.  Islam is growing and expanding in most communities in the United States, probably yours.  And what are you doing about it?

After traveling to the Middle East, I can say that all Muslims are not terrorists. It is foolish to think so. That would be like assuming everyone who goes to church in the United States is a Christ-follower. Just because people who call themselves Christians aren’t living consistently with Christ’s teaching, does this mean we make value judgments on the religion? No. We point to the teachings and show the person that he is inconsistent and he should get his knee bowed to Jesus’ lordship. How long will it take until the imams do the same with their inconsistent parishioners?

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Axis of Islam: Verses of Hate

Although I agree that there are many branches of practice in Islam, I can’t get past verses like the following. I spoke with a friend of mine today who is a Muslim from Senegal and he told me that Senegalese Muslims are not like Middle Eastern Muslims, they are much more tolerant.

I loved our conversation today, but I am intrigued by the verses below that seem to contradict a passive/tolerance of non-Muslims. Help me understand. I am not trying to propagate hatred of Muslims, but am trying to inform what the Qu’ran teaches.

A lengthy post at Pedestrian Infidel is helpful in understanding what the Qu’ran does teach (well worth the time to read).

Sampling of verses found at Pedestrian Infidel’s site:
Qur’an 9:123 “murder them and treat them harshly”
Qur’an 3.28 Let not the believers take the unbelievers for friends rather than believers; and whoever does this, he shall have nothing of (the guardianship of) Allah, but you should guard yourselves against them, guarding carefully; and Allah makes you cautious of (retribution from) Himself; and to Allah is the eventual coming.
NOTE: By ‘guarding carefully’, a Muslim should deceive the infidel. Acting as a friend is fine as long as it is to benefit the Muslim and protect Islam.

Qur’an 3:56 “As for those disbelieving infidels, I will punish them with a terrible agony in this world and the next. They have no one to help or save them.”

Qur’an 4.89 They desire that you should disbelieve as they have disbelieved, so that you might be (all) alike; therefore take not from among them friends until they fly (their homes) in Allah’s way; but if they turn back, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them, and take not from among them a friend or a helper.

Qur’an 5:51 “Muslims, do not make friends with any but your own people.”

Qur’an 5:72 “They are surely infidels who say; ‘God is the Christ, the Messiah, the son of Mary.”

Qur’an 8:12 cp. 8:60 “Instill terror into the hearts of the unbelievers”; “smite above their necks and smite all their finger-tips off them”

Qur’an 2:191 “…kill the disbelievers wherever we find them”

Qur’an 9.33 He it is Who sent His Apostle with guidance and the religion of truth, that He might cause it to prevail over all religions.

Qur’an 2:193 “And fight with them until there is no persecution, and religion should be only for Allah”

Qur’an 8:71 And if they intend to act unfaithfully towards you, so indeed they acted unfaithfully towards Allah before, but He GAVE YOU MASTERY OVER THEM

Qur’an 8:55 Surely the vilest of animals in Allah’s sight are those who disbelieve.

Qur’an 22:19-22 “fight and slay the Pagans, seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem” “for them (the unbelievers) garments of fire shall be cut and there shall be poured over their heads boiling water whereby whatever is in their bowels and skin shall be dissolved and they will be punished with hooked iron rods”

Qur’an 48:13 Those who “believe not in Allah and His Messenger, He has prepared, for those who reject Allah, a Blazing Fire!”

Qur’an 3:54 “‘Lord, we believe in Your revelations (the Torah and Gospels) and follow this Apostle (Jesus). Enroll us among the witnesses.’ But the Christians contrived a plot and Allah did the same; but Allah’s plot was the best.”

Qur’an 8:12 “Your Lord inspired the angels with the message: ‘I will terrorize the unbelievers. Therefore smite them on their necks and every joint and incapacitate them. Strike off their heads and cut off each of their fingers and toes.”

Qur’an 8:58 “If you apprehend treachery from any group on the part of a people (with whom you have a treaty), retaliate by breaking off (relations) with them. The infidels should not think they can bypass (Islamic law or the punishment of Allah). Surely they cannot escape.”

Qur’an 8:7 “Allah wished to confirm the truth by His words: ‘Wipe the infidels (non-Muslims) out to the last.’”

Qur’an 8:39 “So, fight them till all opposition ends and the only religion is Islam.”

Qur’an 8:59 “The infidels should not think that they can get away from us. Prepare against them whatever arms and weaponry you can muster so that you may terrorize them. They are your enemy and Allah’s enemy.”

Qur’an 8:60 “Prepare against them (non-Muslims) whatever arms and cavalry you can muster that you may strike terror in the enemies of Allah (non-Muslims), and others besides them not known to you. Whatever you spend in Allah’s Cause will be repaid in full, and no wrong will be done to you.”
Qur’an 9.29 Fight those who do not believe in Allah, nor in the latter day, nor do they prohibit what Allah and His Apostle have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, out of those who have been given the Book, until they pay the tax in acknowledgment of superiority and they are in a state of subjection.

[HT: eyesallaround]

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Islam’s Imperial Dreams

EXCERPT:
When satirical depictions of the prophet Muhammad in a Danish newspaper sparked a worldwide wave of Muslim violence early this year, observers naturally focused on the wanton destruction of Western embassies, businesses, and other institutions. Less attention was paid to the words that often accompanied the riots–words with ominous historical echoes. “Hurry up and apologize to our nation, because if you do not, you will regret it,” declared Khaled Mash’al, the leader of Hamas, fresh from the Islamist group’s sweeping victory in the Palestinian elections:

This is because our nation is progressing and is victorious. By Allah, you will be defeated. Tomorrow, our nation will sit on the throne of the world. This is not a figment of the imagination but a fact. Tomorrow we will lead the world, Allah willing. Apologize today, before remorse will do you no good.

As a historical matter, the birth of Islam was inextricably linked with empire. Unlike Christianity and the Christian kingdoms that once existed under or alongside it, Islam has never distinguished between temporal and religious powers, which were combined in the person of Muhammad. Having fled from his hometown of Mecca to Medina in 622 c.e. to become a political and military leader rather than a private preacher, Muhammad spent the last ten years of his life fighting to unify Arabia under his rule. Indeed, he devised the concept of jihad shortly after his migration to Medina as a means of enticing his local followers to raid Meccan caravans. Had it not been for his sudden death, he probably would have expanded his reign well beyond the peninsula.

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More Questions on Islam

More Questions About Islam [Full Article]

Is there no part of the Qur’an which modifies these violent texts in the way that we would say our New Testament modifies the Old Testament?
In fact the reverse is true. Suppose in our Bible the New Testament came first and the Old Testament came later, that would be the position in the Qur’an. All the peaceful passages that are enjoined on Muslims occur in the chapters written at Mecca. They are tolerant toward Jews and Christians. But when Muhammad gets to Medina and sets up his city/religious state, the tone towards other groups changes rapidly. The statements about slaying the pagans and killing the Jews and others occur there.
Now in Islamic interpretation, all passages that are revealed later take precedence over those revealed earlier. This is known as the ‘law of abrogation’. It means therefore that those passages that enjoin violence are actually the ones which are now acceptable.
What caused this change?
One needs to realise that at Mecca Muhammad is a despised prophet, he needs the help of all communities. But when he gets to Medina, he is now in the position of being a ruler, a legislator, a general. He has to further the Islamic community. For those who did not accept the new community – such as the Jews and Christians – it became highly dangerous, to the point of death.
Is it true that in Muslim countries Muslims who have converted to Christianity are not able to worship openly?
In Muslim countries where converts occur we need to remember the law of apostasy. In Saria, all four schools of Sunni law and Shi’i law teach that any adult male Muslim who rejects Islam, or becomes a Christian, commits the crime of high treason and that carries the death penalty. Some countries practise it – Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Qatar, Sudan – but where countries do not practise it it is often practised by the communities and families.
In most countries if the death penalty is not applied endemic discrimination and persecution and marginalisation occurs. There is no freedom within Islam. It does not confer all the civic liberties either on converts, or on historic Christian communities in their midst.

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Islam Wants to Control the West?

The following is another segment out of an interview with Sookhdeo.
EXCERPT:
Are you implying that there is a sense in which Islamic communities in the West wish to take control in the West?
Yes I am. Islam is based on power. It does not separate the sacred from the secular, and it has never really had an understanding of being a minority. It must exist within a majority context.
The issue for the West is ‘how will Islam express itself?’ Will it accept that it is a minority? Will it embrace the traditions of the country in which it finds itself and be loyal to it absolutely (whilst of course, keeping aspects of its own religion and culture)?
Or will it, in order to retain control of all religion and culture, set up alternative communities, which then want power for themselves in each geographical area, as well as wanting to be protected further afield by the law. I think this is the tension.
No doubt you are following the position in Australia where there have been about twelve churches burned. I gather four mosques have also been burned. The question increasingly is how Muslims in the West see the countries that they live in. What are their loyalty systems?
When they are a tiny minority, their response to their countries is ‘we are loyal to you’. But as that minority increases and gains strength and self confidence, so it begins to change its allegiance. You can’t just see it on the basis of what it is today, you have to think of what it will be five years from now.
And then you have to look at who is feeding that community: what are the ideological and theological and religious influences that come from the Middle East, from Pakistan, from other countries? Where do the mullahs stand? What is their training and what are their influences? You’ve got to look at a number of factors.
So what should our response be?
I think that as Christians we have to retain what I would call a society built on Judeo-Christian values. Modernity is not all bad, it allows for pluralism to occur. I believe that we should be arguing for the continuing development of a plural society. We need to say to Muslim communities: “we cannot give way to your demands”. In Britain they are now asking for legal protection for their religion and their culture. We have to say no to that, they have to accept a common citizenship based upon individual equality, and not community-religious equality.
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How Shall We Respond to Islam?

I mentioned a seminar that will be taking place this weekend in Washington DC and encouraged those in the area to go. There are two articles I would like to direct you to. Although Rahman is a freed man now, there still lingers questions as to how we should respond and how we should even think about Islam.

Right now the polemic is that Islam is a peaceful religion. People would have you think that the suicide bombers are lunatics and “radicals”. The truth is that they are consistent. If martyrdom gets one to heaven (according to the Qu’ran) then what would keep someone from killing a bunch of infidels (which is virtuous in the Muslim faith) and being killed in the process (thus guaranteeing one’s entrance into heaven)? It’s not crazy if that’s what your religion teaches. The thing that needs to be evaluated is not the person’s psyche, but the religion.

Two Articles to Read:
Sookhdeo on Islam
“The Day Is Coming When British Muslims Will Form a State Within a State”

EXCERPT:
“The whole approach towards Muslim militants was based on appeasement. 7/7 proved that that approach does not work – yet it is still being followed. For example, there is a book, The Noble Koran: a New Rendering of its Meaning in
English, which is openly available in Muslim bookshops. “It calls for the killing of Jews and Christians, and it sets out a strategy for killing the infidels and for warfare against them. The Government has done nothing whatever to interfere with the sale of that book.

“Why not? Government ministers have promised to punish religious hatred, to criminalise the glorification of terrorism, yet they do nothing about this book, which blatantly does both…”

“There’s already a Sharia Law Council for the UK. The Government has already started making concessions: it has changed the law so that there are sharia-compliant mortgages and sharia pensions. “Some Muslims are now pressing to be allowed four wives: they say it is part of their religion. They claim that not being allowed four wives is a denial of their religious liberty. There are Muslim men in Britain who marry and divorce three women, then marry a fourth time – and stay
married, in sharia law, to all four.

“The more fundamentalist clerics think that it is only a matter of time before they will persuade the Government to concede on the issue of sharia law. Given the
Government’s record of capitulating, you can see why they believe that.”

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Wake Up

I have been reading some of the news regarding Abdul Rahman’s plight in Afghanistan and a myriad of thoughts move through my head:

Even if Rahman is released clerics are calling on people to “pull him into pieces” . Say he is released. This does not nullify the fact that the majority of the Muslim people think he should have been executed. This is a man who changes his convictions. What does this say of the Muslim religion? It has been made quite clear that there is a clear distinction between the Muslim value system and that of the West. Even more is there a chasm between Islam and Christianity.
        Some might say that Christians are no better. After all the Crusades were sanctioned with the ad extra panta of Pope Urban II. HOWEVER, the Crusades and other atrocities promulgated under the banner “Christian” are diametrically opposed to Christianity. Men hungry for power and money superseded the teachings of Christ.
        Not so with the Muslim faith. It is being made clearer and clearer that Islam is a repressive religion that seeks to exterminate anyone who disagrees. And I would say that many people are not saying this because they are scared that they will be killed by some radical Muslims. It is clear that this is the mindset of most Muslims. Indeed, it is taught in the Koran. Why won’t more people say something? Because fear has crept in and the truth has been compromised.

One of the main problems is that Muslim equate the West with Christianity. They believe that everyone in the United States is a Christian and in need of conversion to Islam. Movies, music, and television shows from the West cause one to think that Christianity is a religion of license. Oh how I wish there would be a clear witness to the beauty of the Gospel to Muslims! I wish that there would be an open ear to the truth of Jesus.
        What is interesting is that the articles continue to portray the Afghan people as feeling that the West is forcing its morals (licentious freedom?) on them. The West is seen as the bully…In some ways it is. However, putting a man to death for his conversion will not prove to the bully that he can’t pull one over on the people.
        If they really wanted to get under the West’s skin, they would open up dialogues and debate with those of other ideologies rather than kill them. Truth would prevail. But could it be that the only way to get people to believe in the Muslim faith is by coercion?

I believe that God is fueling the flames of these things in order to show the major differences between Islam and Christianity. Rahman and so many other Christians in history refused to deny Christ – choosing rather to be pulled to pieces than deny the Savior of their lives. And so it must continue…the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.
        
The non-Christian is left to ask: What am I so convinced about that I would die for? Why will these people be willing to die for their faith?

And so we end with the Psalmists words:

Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you! (Psa 63.3)

Links to Articles:
Fears Over Afghan Convert Trial 3.22.2006
“Judges to Rule” On Kabul Convert 3.22.2006
Mood Hardens Against Afghan Convert 3.24.2006
Afghan Convert ‘May Be Released’ 3.24.2006
Top Muslim Clerics: Convert Must Die 3.24.2006

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